Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Day Woes

Good morning everyone. As you are probably aware, today is Valentine's Day. Now I'd like to preface this post by saying, I have absolutely no problem with Valentine's Day. I like chocolates, flowers, and dinners out just as much as the next person. In fact, I have gone out of my way to wish happy "couple-y" people a a happy valentine's day. I have even, albeit halfheartedly, asked what their plans are.

This is just to say, that I am not trying to be a Valentine's Day grinch. However, I feel obligated to warn you of the following: If you are in a happy, upbeat mood and want to stay in your mood, maybe you should skip the rest of this blog post.

I am not exactly in the Valentine's Day spirit. This past weekend, I had some pretty frustrating conversations with men that resulted in me burying my face into a squirmy dog's tummy last night and wishing that more men were like Max (the dog). But then again, who hasn't done that?

All of the conversations revolved around the same issue--I'm looking for a meaningful relationship (or at least looking to being on the path towards a relationship) and both guys are freaked out by that very notion and wish that we could just keep things more casual...and have sex of course. At that point, we would reach a sort of stalemate because I have made (and am following) a new rule not to sleep with guys I'm just casually dating. So the conversation went something like this:

(In the middle of making out)

Me: Wait, we need to talk about this. What are we doing here?

Guy: What do you mean? I think we're having a good time.

Me: No, seriously. I'm really concerned that we're headed to the "friends with benefits" zone and I really don't want that.

Guy: No, of course not. You know I like you. (Then, he makes attempt to smother my questions with kisses)

(But I am not so easily deterred)

Me: So are you saying you think you could see a future with me?

Guy: Katie, Katie, Katie...(Bizarrely, both guys used that exact expression.)

Me: Look, I'm not saying I want a relationship now, but that's what I ultimately want.

Guy: (Mumbles something and then successfully distracts me with making out.)

Now the stupidest thing about this whole exchange (and believe me, I know how ridiculous these conversations were) is that if both of these guys arrived at my apartment with roses and a card that said, "Will you be mine," I'd probably freak out and feel that they were pushing the commitment issue a little early. I'd probably start to wonder how much I really liked them.

So, the real problem isn't the guys (or their frustrating habit of wanting to have sex rather than talk about the future), it's me. What on earth do I feel that I will accomplish by jumping into a relationship? A relationship, while it may come with regular sex (if I'm lucky) and may ensure that I always have a date for Valentine's Day, won't complete me.

Sometimes I feel like I'm the most confused person in the world. I'm still trying to figure out who I am, what kind of music I like, how I like to eat, how I like to exercise, how I like to socialize, etc...I get into a groove for a while (socializing and drinking like a maniac/ acting like a hermit and eating dinner alone with my cats) and then I decide things need to change and I spiral in a different direction. I spend nights drinking too much with friends to feel relaxed enough to be myself. I (often) mismanage my biweekly paychecks, so that I occasionally end up paying for gas with quarters. I have over three loads of laundry hidden in the back of my closet. I run out of clean underwear. I sometimes spend entire days, sprawled out on my couch, eating raw cookie dough and watching some arcane television show.

But distracting myself from my problems with men doesn't solve the deeper problem, and in fact, as this weekend has shown, sometimes it makes me feel even worse. So, as per usual, Valentine's Day is shaping up to be a dismal 24 hours. I'll try to avoid eating the Valentine's Day candy (from considerate coworkers) on my desk.

Sorry for the downer Valentine's Day post. But I gotta say, it can be a rough holiday for single people.


  1. Think of it as "the day before chocolate goes on sale everywhere." That should help.

  2. Hi Katie,

    I love reading your blog. The one thing that stuck out to me in this post was your conversation with the young men while you were intimate. Perhaps not the best time for that conversation? I really feel and understand your struggle because I was there a few years, kind of rotating food and men and hermit like behavior interchangeably until I could get a hold of my own identity. Keep working at it girl.

  3. Katie, I wish that a relationship could solve all problems, but... it's just not true.

    I may be having a breakup soon, and I'm actually looking forward to finally taking the time to get to know myself as myself, as a unique individual who doesn't need a man to be complete. Hang in there, and enjoy your journey towards self-discovery!

    And thanks for your honesty, once again. :-)

  4. You are one honest girl!

    Don't let the holiday itself bring you down. I think you sound pretty much like every other 20-something single (including my previously single self). It's easy for anyone to say "Ya can't do x,y,z if you want a relationship. "Ya have to do a, b, c...". I never listened to anyone else... I kept my standards high and my expectations even higher. It worked out really well for me :)

    Wash your underwear tonight, throw out the cookie dough, and continue to nuzzle your head in the pups belly :) really IS just another day :)

  5. Katie - What a tough situation. I do agree with Liz, maybe not the best time to talk about the future? Maybe you should try to do casual dating not at your apartment or theirs so that sex isn't even a possibility until things get more serious, if you really want to avoid it? Just a thought. Hand in there!

  6. Thanks for all the support and feedback everyone. You guys are awesome!