Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Let's All Be Adults, Here

How many of you are in perfectly functioning relationships, where every need is met, you never question each other, you're both having exactly as much sex as you both want, he never snores, she never nags, and you're basically shitting rainbows and laughing maniacally while "Happy Together" plays everywhere you go?

Yeah, that's what I thought. Don't tell me if you really are so happy together 24/7/365 and shitting rainbows. But for the rest of us, how can we make what we have better? How can we be more satisfied and relaxed, and less needy and confused?

I have a theory that every. single. goddamn. relationship in the world is complicated and secretly dysfunctional in it's own way. And it's ok. Because we're all just human. And humans are messy, illogical beings. Guys, when was the last time your girl drove you crazy trying to nail you down to a specific event or response? Girls, when was the last time you got pissed at your S.O because he didn't do something you wanted him to? I do not call them "relationshits" or "_____-month adversary"s for no reason.

The next time something your fucking id-...sweetheart is doing something that's driving you crazy, press the mental "pause" button for a second to think. Take the time, before you react, to ask yourself: Am I upset at a need of mine that isn't being met, or am I just pumping myself up about something that I'm making out of nothing? A need (that has been established through prior clear, honest, adult conversation) that isn't being met is not ok to let slide by. Something that you would like but don't necessarily need, like a response back to a text that doesn't demand a response or conversation, isn't something to stew over or blow up about.

I had a night like that recently. I get demanding and unreasonable when I get scared-- it's one of my downfalls. In the past, I hit a 5 month mark and promptly morphed into a harpy. Why? Because I was scared. Would I actually put my very sufficient and wordy vocabulary to use and address this fact? Oh, hell no. Because that might mean actually admitting that I have fEeLiNgS and EMOtionz and I "wanted shit." Fuck that. So I mucked around instead and fucked it all up. Great, right? Exactly what I wanted to NOT happen, right?

Well, been there, bought that t-shirt, learned that lesson. So, this time, when it came down to it, I could step back far enough from the "situation" to realize it wasn't the fact I hadn't gotten a "thanks" back in reply that was making me tetchy and bitchy-- it was the fact that I had recently realized how much time I'd spent with that person (whom I know well enough at this point not to expect a response back to something like what I'd texted in the first place). It scared me, so I took all that emotion, and misplaced it somewhere else where I felt like I could deal with it better, by being a bitch about it with myself and overly-over-analyzing.

All in all, did it help anything? No. But what I was able to do was step back juuust enough to see what the real issue was, and make sure I didn't react offensively to it anywhere else but inside my own head. I did not need a text back in response of receiving it. I would have liked one, because that's what I consider good manners. But have I brought this fact up (in this case, that not getting acknowledgement from anyone drives me up the bloody wall,) before to discuss it? No. So I calmed my ass down, and went to a show downtown to distract myself. Distracting yourself in times like these when you're all keyed up over something asinine is a great trick. It's like time-out for adults. Go somewhere and do something without whoever is driving you nuts. Somewhere loud, with lots of other people, and things that will distract your attention from the snit-fit in your head. (Concerts, festivals, movies, and parties are all great places to go for this.) And viola, in 2 hours, you'll be all Zen again.

Remember: An issue that hasn't been addressed, out loud, in a respectful, adult conversation between the two of you, is not an issue you can get mad or defensive or confrontational about. It's not fair. It's like expecting your S.O to be able to read your mind and intuitively know what they should say or do. And I think we all know by now that men are not mind-readers. Sometimes it's a good thing. (I already say far too much about whatever's on my mind when I drink. We don't need the rest of what I'm not saying aired out, too.) And sometimes it's a bad thing. But I don't think it's going to be changing either way anytime soon.


P.S-- A few good mantras if you think you're about to blow your life out of the water? "Slow your roll," "Are you completely sure you know what you're doing?" On a percentage scale to 100%, where are you? If you're at 85% or lower, it ain't worth it to bug out. And my personal favorite and most often used-- "Don't be so crazy-pants, little one!" I dare you to at least not crack a smile while you say "crazy-pants" to yourself. Or anyone else, for that matter. I'm grinning right now.

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