Not all the time, obviously. There are the good times – dates (that lead to doing it), long conversations (that lead to dirty talk and sexting, which leads to doing it), vacations (doing it away from home), making up after arguing (which inevitably leads to doing it), cuddling (doing it), and enjoying each other’s company (which is either foreplay, doing it or afterglow, depending on the moment). But in the end, relationships are comprised of an individual attempting to share his/her space and life with another person, all while maintaining his/her sense of self, reaching personal and professional goals and attempting not to drown in the sea of baggage that every person brings with them. *cue Queen Erykah Badu “Bag Lady”* Not everyone has 10 kids, 14 baby mama’s, a police record and a latent drug habit, but adapting your life to involve another will always be work. And I’m not sure I’m here for it.
Although I have a history of miserable relationships, I never grew up around bad relationships. My parents were married after college, a year or so before the birth of my older brother, their first child. Thirty-plus years later, they still enjoy each other and are slightly obsessed with one another. They talk to each other all day, have date night and are partners through everything. However, their example doesn’t, and hasn’t, shielded me from the bevy of damaged individuals muddying the dating pool. I’ve dated liars, cheaters, verbal abusers, men with money who needed control, men with no job or ambition who needed a mother figure, whores, psychos and complete weirdos. Actually, this was all one person, but it was a long relationship and he was a mess throughout the whole thing.
So what’s the common denominator? Obviously, it’s me, but what is the seemingly insurmountable wall that prevents a successful relationship? Many factors could be considered, but in my case, I think it’s two-fold. On one hand, you have to sacrifice a lot of yourself to make your intricate puzzle fit properly with someone else. I’m a middle child: I had to fend for myself a lot growing up because my parents were too busy allowing the oldest to spread his wings, and babying the baby. It was a rough life, I promise you. Anyway, I say that to illustrate that I don’t sacrifice much of myself. Ever. The other side of this highly unfortunate relationship coin is the ability (or lack thereof) to admit defeat and throw in the towel on a relationship when it’s kind of dead, as opposed to waiting until it’s on life support in a medically induced coma hoping for a brain and a heart (like the Scarecrow and Tin Man, respectively). I can never seem to quit. I tend go for the long haul at full throttle, without realizing all four tires are flat.
A short story to back up my second point: My roommate (let’s call her BigBootyWhiteGirl), has been dating a guy (let’s call him Unsuccessful-Drug-Dealer-With-No-Car-or-Job-who-Lives-With-His-Mother, UDD for short) since June or July of last year. BigBootyWhiteGirl drives the 30-minutes to UDD’s house, takes him to get food, and brings him over. It’s always the same: the enjoy each other’s company (see explanation above) for the first 8 hours, argue, she threatens to call the cops and kicks him out of the house. UDD then stands on the sidewalk soliciting rides from people until someone comes to pick him up. BigBootyWhiteGirl opens her window and berates him, he shouts death threats at her, his ride comes and he leaves, usually leaning out the window shouting at her so that he can have the last word. She deletes his number, fuming, until her next day off approaches. She then breaks into his Facebook, finds his number, they reconcile via phone until the next time that she picks him up and the cycle continues.
I sit in my room, open a bottle of wine, pick a trashy show on Hulu or Netflix, and toast my single and drama-free life.
Yeah, relationships are garbage. I’ll pass.