Do I Need To Be a Bitch?

I don’t normally write reviews that aren’t about bad dates or men and I appreciate that this is a little different to what I normally write, however it is relevant. I was recommended a book by a colleague one fateful day and she loved my blog but said I really should read this particular bestseller. Shout out to Ciara Carter for recommending it to me. Big love to you. The book is called ‘Why Men Love Bitches’ and was written by New York Times bestselling author Sherry Argov. Obviously I already loved the title as soon as I heard it. It’s not necessarily that I agree with it as fact but I’ve always been intrigued as to why men don’t like nice girls: I suppose in the exact same way that the old ‘nice guys finish last’ belief rings true also. For the first time in my writing career (yes, that’s exactly what I’m calling it; my writing career) I was about to do some research that didn’t involve me having to go on bad dates or encounter shit men and have my feelings hurt. I was evolving into a somewhat journalist. Alright fine, I might be getting carried away with it all but let me have this. 

For the purpose of referencing correctly but also because this is not my University dissertation, I’m not going to sit and write the reference after every quote I use. I will quote a lot from the book and will write the page number after. For the sake of this blog post I will make it clear that I am using the 2009 edition of Why Men Love Bitches by Sherry Argov published by Adams Media, MA USA. 

I won’t lie to you because I never do, this book took me a while to read. I’ve always been a quick reader but I kind of struggled with this one. I couldn’t get into it quickly and it didn’t have me gripped and keen to continue reading. I do prefer fiction literature so my personal preference held me back a little on this one. When I started the book I was a little disappointed as I felt like Sherry Argov was basically telling me not to be myself at all or no one will ever love me. She mentioned things girls do that turn men off and I kept thinking to myself “oh my God, I do these things and that’s why I’ll stay single forever”. I felt disheartened for the first three chapters at least. Now that I’ve read the whole book I can honestly say please don’t let it put you off if you feel the same way I did. The more I read on, the more I realised that Argov is not saying don’t be yourself, she’s giving us tools and advice on how to just change up your strategies slightly when it comes to men. Argov describes in the Introduction what she means when using the term Bitch in the title. She’s not describing a literal bitch or nasty woman. She’s using the word to describe a woman who is ‘kind yet strong. She has a strength that is ever so subtle. She doesn’t give up her life, and she won’t chase a man. She won’t let a man think he has a 100 percent “hold” on her. And she’ll stand up for herself when he steps over the line.’ [page xiii] Now, let’s all be honest here and admit that we’ve all been in positions where we’ve maybe let a man have more control in a relationship. We’ve all been there where we’ve given up a date with friends or a fitness class to fit in seeing a guy we like because it fits in with his schedule. What the book is telling us is to not do that! Argov is telling us not to make our lives fit around his because he will never do the same for us. I’ll look at this more later on. 

Argov uses this book to address ‘the very issues that men won’t. He won’t say, “Look, don’t be a doormat,” “Don’t always say yes,” “Don’t revolve your whole world around me.” [page xv]. Apparently men won’t tell us these things. We have to read minds and figure it out ourselves so we can then equip ourselves with the manipulation methods to get past the said issues. I knew dating and relationships were a minefield but I had no idea I had to now learn battle tactics. Throughout the entire book, Argov repeatedly reminds us that we have to find ways to subtly manipulate men to do what we want. Being honest is not the way forward apparently which frustrated me when reading because I’ve always tried to pride myself on being honest and open. I’m now being told this doesn’t work on men! They are not attracted to honesty about certain things and won’t listen to you if you are. One example I loved, however, and may actually end up using at some point was in Chapter 4 where Argov is explaining Attraction Principles and being ‘Dumb Like A Fox’. She uses an example of manipulation that is so golden, I even folded down the page! 

‘The dumb fox doesn’t give up power, she simply creates the appearance that she does… A woman I know named Michelle told me about a man she’s seeing. On the second date, he asked her if she’d drive to his place… She ignored the request and very sweetly asked, “Would you prefer to get together another night? If tonight is inconvenient, I do understand”. Michelle averted the question completely. She didn’t act upset or tell him what to do.’ [page 91]

The reason I love this so much is because I’ve been in that situation countless times! I’ve been asked over and over to drive over or to drive further. Basically men ask me indirectly to make more effort than them and more times than I care to admit, I’ve done it. I’ve gone out of my way because it suited them. Why?? Because I’m an idiot and I thought it would make them like me more. Argov sets out in this book to prove that it has the opposite effect. If a guy likes you, he’ll make some effort. If we start in the beginning by making more effort than him, it’ll always be like that because it sets a precedent. He will respect us less and will get bored of us more quickly. As frustrating as this truth is to read about, I can’t help but look back over my own dating experiences and the one long term relationship I’ve had and feel….. it’s right! I can almost pin point where men had got bored of me and almost every time it’s because I’ve been stupid enough to make more effort than them. 

Further on through Chapter 4, Argov hits us with some more truths we wished we didn’t read. We all want to believe that in the beginning guys are 100% honest with us about their intentions but, given that this blog even exists and so many people enjoy the honesty of it, we all know that they are never completely open with us; especially when it comes to their intentions. Argov writes ‘the nice girl believes everything she’s told because it sounds good, which puts her out there to get hurt. The fox knows that, in the beginning, a man is likely to “flower up” his intentions’ [page 97]. Argov even gives us a handy table which essentially deciphers the actual meaning of certain phrases many men use in the beginning of dating. You’ll see this decrypted Da Vinci code style translation below, 

LRM_EXPORT_12332383468409_20190804_122747219.jpeg[page 97] 

Argov continues by insisting that we must not let a man know that we see through his initial shimmer of a white knight. We have to pretend we believe him when he uses phrases from the table above because if he thinks we are fooled, he is more likely to let his true colours show even quicker than usual. Argov thinks of everything because she even gives examples of how a guy will gaslight you if you call him out on his shit too quickly. You might see through his dress up, nice guy act but you should never let him know that straight away. She rightly says ‘when you tell someone who may be manipulating you what you observe, he will immediately try to talk you out of it. He’ll say “you’re insecure” or “you’re prejudging me”. Are you prejudging him? You had better be. The only mistake is letting him know it.’ [page 98] 

Reading further into the book I got more upset because Argov echoed so much that I had done in my past, without even realising I was doing it, or that it was the wrong way to go about things. Chapter 5 is titled ‘Jumping Through Hoops Like a Circus Poodle’ and is all about how women give themselves away to please a man. It delves into the mindset of women who choose to adjust their lives for a man hoping that he might do the same for her. We all want to believe that if someone cares about us enough they will make space in their lives for us. Newsflash… THEY WON’T. No man will change his life to fit you in. Not only that but no man will ever really understand just how much you’ve given up to be with him. He will never understand it because he will never make the same sacrifices for you. This is the rule. There will be people reading this who have good examples of exceptions but for everyone else we should remember the one main thing we learnt from watching the 2009 movie ‘He’s Just Not That Into You’ (directed by Ken Kwapis and based on the 2004 book of the same name written by Greg Behnrendt and Liz Tuccillo). We learnt that we are not the exception. We are the rule and as the rule, men will not make the same sacrifices for us as we do for them. Reading this made me feel angry. I was annoyed that I agreed so much. I could feel myself wanting to start a riot inside about how women always adjust their lives so much to fit him in or make him happy. It’s so true! But then I took a moment. Why do women give up so much of themselves to keep a man around? He doesn’t really explicitly ask us to. He doesn’t make the same effort or sacrifices so why do we do it? We do it because we think it makes him like us more. Argov is telling us the complete opposite. What he actually wants is a bitch who stands up for herself and is confident enough to put her own life first. She doesn’t sacrifice anything in her life to fit a man into it. She acts like a man. A man will never cancel football with the boys for you. When you do the same and don’t cancel your yoga classes for him it’ll make him scratch his head and wonder why you would rather go to your class than see him. It will keep him interested. ‘When you will not drop everything to be with him… this will remind him of your worth, and invariably, he will begin to come your way’ [page 199]. So don’t sacrifice your life to prioritise him because he will not do the same for you. If he does, then keep him forever because he’s a unicorn!! 

Let’s move swiftly into Chapter 6 titled ‘Nagging No More’. Argov uses this chapter to give examples and tips on how to avoid nagging because nagging at a man will get you nowhere. Nagging leads a man to have feelings of obligation and there’s nothing sexy or desirable about obligation in the early stages of a relationship. One of my favourite examples that Argov writes about is about a woman called Diana ‘who started nagging her husband to fix a latch in the laundry room. After the third time she asked, he became so irritated that no force on Earth could get him to fix that latch. One evening some friends came over… Diana asked her friend’s husband to fix the latch… in that sweet damsel in distress tone of voice… Before she could even turn around, her husband ran up the stairs… and fixed the latch in two minutes flat.’ [page 141]. When it comes to men, being nagged at constantly will cause them to push away. Then we get into a vicious cycle of worrying that they’re pushing away so we try our hardest to encourage them to come back to us. Unfortunately, as past experiences will tell me, that doesn’t always work to the desired effect. I will always be an advocate for honesty but I’ve come to realise that when it comes to men, sometimes you have to keep a little bit back. Don’t always tell him how you’re feeling, especially if it comes to telling him you hate that he doesn’t make time for you. This is where Argov gives you more good tips in the art of manipulation. She writes ‘if he has excuses for why he isn’t spending time with you, you need to make excuses for why you can’t spend time with him. Is it a game? No. If he’s too busy and you’ve already tried telling him how you feel, it’s time to show him with your actions that he will no longer be dictating the terms’ [page 137]. Men don’t like it when we play them at their own game. If they act a certain way and you don’t like it, do it back and give them a taste of their own medicine. Rather than nagging to him about how he’s making you feel bad with his actions, treat him exactly the same way and see how he likes it. 

Recently I was texting a guy who clearly wasn’t bothered about whether we spoke or met up or not. He would only message or ask to meet up on his terms. I always had to drive to make the effort if we agreed to see each other and that was always his idea. He’d never offer to drive to me or say something like “let’s both get the train so we can have a drink together”. I always had to make the effort to travel to him or we wouldn’t see each other. Having read this book, I decided to try it out and stopped messaging him at all. Sure enough he started to initiate conversations again. If I engaged too much in messaging, he’d get distant again so I’d stop messaging. Yet again, like a predictable routine, he’d start messaging me again. I started to treat him how he treated me with messaging and he obviously didn’t like it because it caused him to send me a message. I hate playing games but evidently, men love playing them and will continue to play them. One of the games I absolutely hate, that I’ve always known men play even though they insist they don’t, is making us women feel insecure! As you know, I’m a woman who sometimes needs a little reassurance so being with a guy who wants to make me feel insecure is so damaging to my self esteem and many other women. It’s not on and they’d be furious if we did the same thing to them. Argov uses real interviews with men in Chapter 7 ‘The Other Team’s Secret Playbook’ and one guy reveals to her ‘“Sure, men play cool… I know some guys that check out a woman who isn’t even that beautiful, just to make his girlfriend a little insecure”’ [page 158]. REALLY GUYS?? This came from a man admitting that guys actually do things like that. Just putting it out there and saying that making us feel insecure about ourselves is technically emotional abuse. By doing this to us, you’re edging yourself into the category of an abuser in a relationship. This now applies to anyone in any relationship when I say, if you’ve ever done this to someone, you should be ashamed of yourself and you don’t deserve them. Emotionally abusing someone you’re supposed to love to make yourself feel better is disgusting behaviour. 

Moving on. Chapter 10 ‘Gaining Control of Your Emotions’ has a section on men playing it hot and cold. I can hear the groans coming from you all because let’s be honest, we’ve all been there. We’ve all been seeing a guy who turns around and gives excuses about not getting into a relationship. The one who only wants to see you when it suits him and when he’s craving attention. The hot and cold man is a fuck boy. Please see my previous post about fuckboys for more information. Argov nails it when she says ‘He’s not “hot and cold” because he’s indecisive. He’s “hot and cold” because he is manipulating you.’ [page 224] This is the guy who only contacts you when it suits him. You might think “yes, he’s interested because he’s texting me back” and you give him the attention that he wants but really, he’s just manipulating you to get what he wants while he’s finding someone else to fill the gaps. A hot and cold relationship is a red flag and an immediate sign that you are wasting your time. Run. 

Continuing on in Chapter 10, I actually found myself feeling a little upset at one section. I’d been beating myself up about all the things I’ve done wrong in my previous encounters with men. I was reading a book that was literally pointing its finger at me and telling me that I’m doing it wrong so no wonder I’m still single. Now, I will hold my hands up and admit that I have made stupid mistakes where I used sex as a way to try and find love. It wasn’t many times: I ain’t no hussy. But I have previously believed that if I slept with someone, it might make them like me. I blame daddy issues 100% and my need to look for love wherever I can find it. Going back to getting upset involves a long passage being quoted from Argov; one that I will etch into my memory forever to make sure I listen to it and I hope you will too,

‘Sex is not something you do to reward someone or to score a relationship. Sex is something you do with a man who already cares about you… This is often when the nice girl instinct kicks into overdrive. Here’s the succession of logic: “He was wonderful in the beginning… I must have screwed things up… I need to do more, work harder, jump higher…. and pick up a two-by-four and beat myself up with it by wearing myself out and telling myself I’m not worthy.” Life is hard enough; you don’t need anyone around darkening your doorstep to make it worse.’ [page 228]

She’s right. I always blame myself when things go wrong (I mean, except when a guy brings his mum on a date or punches me in the face). I always immediately think that I’ve done something to push him away or make him not like me. In reality, I need to have more self worth and act like a bitch does! The nice girl bit that we need to avoid is all about having more self worth. Argov quotes my favourite thing Eleanor Roosevelt said which is ‘No one can make you feel inferior without your consent’ [page 240]. Let’s stop giving men consent to make us feel like crap. Let’s stop giving them consent to keep us at arms length because we deserve better. 

All in all, I hated this book when I first started it. I hated reading that it was my fault that everything had gone wrong. I hated feeling like I was being told I should never be myself because nobody will love me if I am myself. The book was telling me what I already felt, that I was doing it wrong which meant I was never good enough. Then as I read on and on I came to the realisation that Argov isn’t saying don’t be yourself or that you’re not good enough. She is telling us all that we should never let a man write the terms of a relationship. She is giving us tips to manipulate men to do things without us nagging so we don’t feel like we’re not listened to. If you don’t read the whole book and only read a bit, read Chapters 10 and 11 because they are the most empowering of the entire book. They give us the much needed kick up the arse to be a bitch, not to make a man happy in a relationship, but to make us happy in life and to show ourselves the respect we deserve. We are allowed to stand up for ourselves and if a man doesn’t like it and it pushes him away, was he really the man you wanted to begin with? 

 

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Even a Nice Guy Can Be a Fuck Boy

This week has really opened my eyes to the fact that no matter how nice a guy seems for however many years, he can still revert to ‘Fuck Boy’ tendencies. For anyone reading this who isn’t familiar with the term ‘Fuck Boy’, I have taken the liberty of researching it and the most accurate one comes from Urban Dictionary and reads as follows

Asshole boy who is into strictly sexual relationships; he will lead a girl on and let her down, then apologise only to ask for “pics” once the girl has welcomed him back into her trust. Boys like this will pretend to genuinely care about the girl… he has to hangout on his terms which could be whimsical… and if the girl rejects those plans… he will get pissed… If a girl tries to stand up to this asshole he will most likely deny everything and turn it all around on the girl making it seem as though… he has done nothing wrong.

(https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=fuckboy)

 

I’d say that pretty much nails it! I feel I need a disclaimer here, so… For the purpose of this post it’s important for me to mention the fact that I am a heterosexual female and can only talk about my experiences with heterosexual men. I can only give an account that unfortunately isn’t inclusive of all sexual preferences and partners. Of course I have no doubt that there are plenty of women who also act the same way. I know plenty of people in same sex relationships who have told me their accounts of previous partners who acted like fuck boys.  I am only able to tell of my experiences.

I’ll be clear from the start and say I have no criticism of someone who wants a strictly sexual relationship, as long as the other person in it agrees and is aware that it’s strictly sexual. The main trait of a fuck boy is the fact they are not open about it being purely physical and they lead a girl on until it is, then get rid of her or keep her at arms length. He’ll see her on his terms and commonly will engage in on/off relationships with her so it works when he wants it but doesn’t when it no longer suits him. He’ll make her feel special to keep her around but will be very vague about future planning and will often be flakey with plans. If she calls him out on his behaviour he’ll call her paranoid or psycho and make it seem like the problems are all her fault. He’ll treat her like his girlfriend but will never make her his. He’s all about a special bond but never a relationship. He’ll be pissed off if she dates anyone else but he’ll have a plethora of girls on the go. Sound familiar? You my friend, have fallen victim to a fuck boy. Don’t worry, most of us have. It’s hard to spot them and we don’t want to believe we’re naive enough to fall for one.

The reason for this particular post is because recently I was hurt. I wasn’t screwed over by a fuck boy (I like to think I’ve had my fair share and have learnt to avoid them) but I was hurt because I watched someone very close to me act like a fuck boy. I’ve known this man since I was 7 years old and we have a close friendship. I love him the way a sister loves a brother. He’s always been a very kind, caring, considerate and respectful man but I had to stand by and watch him behave in a way that I hate. It was really hard. He was leading a girl on; taking her on dates, inviting her to his to cook a romantic dinner and having nights away with her. I assumed he was moving into a relationship with her based on these behaviours but when I asked him about it he replied “nah I’m not looking for a relationship but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do for a shag”. I asked him if she knew it was just for a few rolls in the hay and he said yes. I knew he was lying. I was gutted. This man I thought treated girls so well. This man who had watched so many men screw me over by leading me on with zero intention of caring for me, was doing exactly what they did. All the times he had hugged me and told me I’d find someone amazing and that not all men acted so badly felt completely empty now. My heart suddenly cried out for the girl, a complete stranger to me. She had no idea she was being used.

Many men will read this and think this man did nothing wrong. That’s the problem. It may come as a shock to you but not all women are desperate for relationships. If you were completely honest about your intentions from the start, she might surprise you. You don’t have to trick a woman into thinking you want a relationship with her just for sex. I’ve used this quote before but it seems apt for this now

The biggest coward of a man is to awaken the love of a woman without the intention of loving her

Bob Marley said that. If you’re not sure how you feel about someone then fair enough, sometimes you have to go on a few dates to see how you feel but don’t intentionally lead a girl on just to make yourself feel better. Don’t pretend to be interested only to turn it all around and make it seem like she’s crazy. Some people are a little intense when it comes to relationships but every so often it’s been caused by a fuck boy trying to tell her she’s a psycho. Even more often she’s acting like one because this fuck boy has suddenly stopped being the loving, caring ‘boyfriend’ he pretended to be in the beginning. She’s so unsure of what’s going on because he won’t be honest with her.

I was dealing with a fuck boy earlier this year. I kind of knew he was one before he asked me on a date but we get on so well as friends, I figured I’d give it a chance. He seemed keen and was trying really hard to fit in some time to meet up. I wasn’t too fussed but my lack of interest seemed to fuel his even more. We met for a coffee one afternoon and had such a good time. We laughed like we always do as friends, we caught up on our lives and flirted a little. As we said goodbye he told me he’d had a really good time and we should do it again. With my experience, I figured it was another empty promise from another empty potential suitor. I heard nothing for a week so I wrote it off. Then out of the blue, I receive a text asking to meet up again. Ball was in my court because I was going away on a work trip so was too busy to see him. If he tried to rearrange then I know he’s genuinely keen (sort of). Surprise, surprise, he did not try. Two weeks of absolutely nothing from him went by and then suddenly…. another text message asking if I wanted to catch up. My guess is it didn’t work out with his Plan A girl that I was running parallel to but slightly behind. I’m his Plan B. In all honesty I’m probably more like his Plan F but the others before didn’t pan out and he’s feeling lonely. He’s a good looking guy; he could get a lot of girls. Looks wise he’s out of my league. Personality wise, I’m out of his. I am allowed to say this despite how big headed it might make me sound. I’ve worked a lot on my personality and how I treat people. Don’t get me wrong, I’m fully aware I might have made this up in my head and maybe he is interested but given my background in dating, I think I’m probably not far off on this one. We’ll see how it all pans out but chances are, if he keeps waiting weeks but tries to keep me loosely on hand, I’m done.

So, fuck boys of the world. I see you. We are starting to see you even more than we used to. We recognise your behaviours that manipulate us. We recognise the red flags and warning signs. We are becoming strong enough to walk away because we know that we deserve better.

Theo* – Event Planner

Once again, I put my faith in Tinder to help me find a decent suitor. Once again, I was left disappointed but with another story. As we all know, I love a good dating story; especially a miserable one that doesn’t work out the way we’re hoping it would.

After matching on Tinder with Theo* and striking up a conversation, we chatted on the app for a few weeks until he made the plunge and asked me for my number so we could move over to texting on a popular messaging app. This exchange continued for a few weeks and actually seemed fairly normal to begin with. Theo was funny, intelligent and easy to talk to. Messages flowed effortlessly between us so it seemed promising. He suggested we meet up for dinner and I named a place easy for both of us. I won’t bore you with the details of planning the date because that’s not where the fun happens! The actual date is always what brings the decent stories here to An Education in Dating.

We had a table booked but agreed to meet a little earlier so we could have a drink first and ease into the night. It was the first time meeting each other in person after all so at least we could abort mission if one of us was a catfish. With drinks you can make an excuse or just run while they’re in the toilet (side note: I would never actually run while someone is in the toilet). With dinner you have to sit through the entire meal and just eat really quickly knowing that the impending inevitable indigestion is coming. I have to admit that the drinks bit was actually alright. Conversation flowed as effortlessly as it always had over text. It was comforting to talk to him in person and realise he wasn’t a catfish. Our table was ready so we moved over and prepared for food!

Something to note here is that I was driving so I’d had my one alcoholic drink for the night and was moving onto soft drinks with dinner. Theo was not driving and ordered an entire bottle of wine with his meal. An entire bottle that he was going to drink to himself. On a first date. With a girl he’d literally just met for the first time. All after the two drinks he’d already had while I had my one before dinner. Just let that set the tone and sink in.

We ordered our meals, I sipped on my glass of diet coke while he necked another glass from his bottle of wine. The more drunk he started to get, the more sober I was. That’s saying something because I started completely sober! The food was delicious but the company I was in started to go downhill. He was getting louder and more obnoxious as the wine in the bottle continued to evaporate… into his mouth that I wanted to punch at this point. Other patrons in the restaurant were looking round with judging eyes at our table because it was the source of the drunken arsehole making all of the noise and making crude jokes about the waitress’ ample bosom. Lord, kill me now. The conversation then took a different turn when he said the sentence “I can never tell when you’ve read my messages”. He was sneaky with this one because even though it was clearly rhetorical, I still felt like I had to defend myself to him on the subject; this drunken arsehole. I explained to him that I had turned off the read receipts feature on my messaging app and that I had also switched off the last seen feature. I like having some privacy and anonymity with my messaging. I don’t like people knowing when I’ve last been online or whether I’ve read their messages and chosen to ignore them or, more likely, been too busy to reply in that moment. If I have my phone nearby and have the time to, I will reply. If I haven’t replied, then I’m busy or at work! He didn’t accept my answer. Instead he chose to repeat himself and make it sound like he was genuinely annoyed about the fact he didn’t have ultimate control. I was met with “Well, it’s really annoying that I can’t see if you’ve read my messages or not.” RED FLAG. I repeat. RED FLAG!! Why should he know when I’ve read his messages or not? I’m a grown ass woman and I have every right to keep some privacy when it comes to the settings on MY messaging app on MY phone. So now I’m sat finishing a dinner with a drunk guy who is clearly an absolute control freak and I just want to go home and debate why I bother with this dating malarkey anymore.

Finally, dinner was finished. Obviously I was so full I couldn’t possibly fit in any dessert (even though there was a bloody delicious looking cheesecake on the menu) so I suggested, probably way too enthusiastically, that we get the bill. I insisted we split the food equally. He can pay for his own bloody booze and this way I owe him nothing in terms of a second date because I’ve paid for half. As we got up to go our separate ways and release me from this pain, he turned and asked me for a lift home… He lives in the opposite direction to me from where we were. I will always happily drop someone home if they live on my way and I have done in the past but this guy is still technically a stranger. Also he’s a pain in the arse and the thought of driving out of my way to drop him home where I’m trapped in a confined space with him, was not high on my to do list. I apologised and said I was staying in town at one of my friend’s houses so wouldn’t be going back to my car. Then I made sure to walk the complete opposite way to him after an awkward hug, only to then stand and wait for 15 minutes and walk back the way he went just so I didn’t have to walk with him. The things we do.

The aftermath of the date remained fairly quiet and we didn’t text any more which was good for me because I wasn’t rushing to see him again. Obviously he knew I wasn’t over the moon about the date. Then a little over a week ago (4 months after our date) he messaged me out of the blue! He messaged saying he wanted to get in touch and see how I was doing. He said he was thinking about me and curious to know how I was getting on. That’s really nice, thank you but at the end of the day, you’re still the guy who wanted to know when I had read messages and got drunk on our first date. You’re also the guy who genuinely got pissed off that I like to have some privacy. Not really a good sign mate. I’m hoping he was just nervous and it didn’t manifest in the best way. I wish Theo all the best in his endeavours.

Guest Blogger – Gemma from How To Make Friends

Hey guys, Georgie here just to introduce! As promised, I’ve enlisted the help of an incredible fellow blogger Gemma of How To Make Friends blog and more recently the winner of a UK Blog Award! We met a few years ago and her blog is all about positivity and self empowerment so it felt natural to have her write something for me; especially while I’m in such a negative place. Please go on and have a read of her blog. Details of how to connect with Gemma are all at the bottom of her post so sit back, relax and enjoy…

 

How to build self-esteem after a break up

The breakup itself…

Nothing can prepare you for a breakup and no two breakups are ever the same. Real-talk: no matter how a breakup is instigated (even if it’s amicable) it is always shit. It’s hard because your life gets fully flipped upside down, no one truly understands how you are feeling and you have to continue living your life as if nothing has happened. Not only are you juggling all the changes that hit you at once but the moment you realise you are back navigating the world alone is absolutely heartbreaking. There is nothing else quite like that moment you realise you no longer have a partner in crime, no longer have someone always on your team and no longer have someone to come home to at the end of every day. It’s scary and it’s lonely, which is why people will willingly stay in the wrong relationship for much longer than they know they should. As humans we prefer negative attention over no attention at all. Loosely translated we would rather be in a wrong relationship than be single – it’s human nature! So battling the elements of our natural instincts to have security at home, to have attention and to have someone to love, it’s no wonder breakups trigger the same reactions as when you are grieving the death of someone.

Finding you again…

Most people will agree the best bit about a breakup is the ‘breakup diet’. After the initial shock of it all, is usually the ‘I really must pull myself together now’ phase. The instant want to better yourself, whether it be weight, diet, money, fitness, hair; this is the time you are most likely to make changes. This is the time you will be tempted to jump in and reinvent yourself. New found freedom, friendships and things to look forward to will become a welcome distraction to the heartbreak you are living every single day. The best bit about this phase is that you start getting attention and that’s exactly what you are doing it for. It makes up for the lack of attention from a partner and instead you have other people complimenting you on your upgrades. It feels good but you inevitably still have your wobbles. You feel like you’re really finding the real you, a new you and a better you and you will be feeling the best you’ve felt in a long time.

While you’re feeling fantastic about yourself you may feel tempted to dip a toe back into the world of dating. A few swipes on Tinder and you may just have bagged yourself a date to match your new upgraded self and you convince yourself you are moving on.

Dating…

‘WARNING: Dating may cause extreme lows of self-esteem’

If I could shout this from the rooftops to all the single ladies out there I really would. Yes, dating should feed your curiosity and provide you with some fun, but please take care of yourself. Putting a brave face on to the world is absolutely different to opening up yourself to being completely vulnerable to another person. The worst bit about this first stage of dating is that you will be rejected. Just as you are feeling bloody fantastic about yourself, super confident and the best version of you; along will come a date to really bring you back to earth with a bang! Go into dating expecting to be ghosted, to be told you’re not good enough and to be rejected. Unfortunately, it’s going to happen and the sooner you accept that the better.

From experience I naively went into the world of dating thinking I had struck really lucky with the first date I went on after my breakup. After 6/7 incredible dates he panicked and fled! It felt like a breakup all over again but actually even worse. I had been very cautious to be a strong independent woman and the moment I felt my guard drop slightly, he was gone.

After more dates with different guys I fully gave up on dating. As I hit an absolute low of feeling worthless, depressed and fat I deleted all of the apps on my phone and felt the pressure I was burdening myself with every second of every day release. I had never felt so disgusting about myself in my life and I knew I needed to change.

My advice to anyone reading this fresh from a breakup into the dating world is that it is absolutely brutal and please never lose your love for yourself based on rejection from others. You need to be your own biggest cheerleader throughout this whole process. Some days will be easier than others, but if even on your worst days you can show yourself a tiny bit of love it will make a huge difference.

Whether you successfully navigate through the dating world with ease, whether you find your perfect partner in no time or whether you set out to enjoy single time, now is the perfect opportunity to invest time in building your self-worth. It really is the perfect time to really invest in finding who you are, what you want from life and what your true passions are.

5 ways to build self-esteem after a breakup

1. Be alone

Give yourself quiet and alone time to reflect over your relationship and where you are now. It will hurt like hell, you won’t want to do it but it is really important to make you mindful. You don’t have to get angry at an ex, you don’t have to resent them and you don’t have to want to get your own back. Try to think of the happy times, try to forgive the bad times and really tune in with who you are now. It is important to see things as they are and not to escalate them in your mind. There is nothing wrong with you, no you’re not going to be alone forever and more importantly yes you can absolutely be single and happy.

2. Be grateful

Gratitude is a beautiful thing in times of despair. No matter who you are or what your circumstances are, there is always something to be grateful for. Even reading this you can be grateful to be alive, to have a phone/computer, to have the internet at your fingertips and to be already trying to better yourself. Make a list of all the things you are grateful for. Remember everyone we cross paths with is a lesson or a blessing. Be grateful for the lessons your ex has taught you, be grateful for the time you had together and be grateful that you are the strong independent person you are today.

3. Make some goals

Now is a great time to think about you and your life. A great way to set goals is to make a list of your top 5 priorities. Then you can delve into the what, why, how and when. Dream big. These are your goals and you can achieve whatever you put your mind to. Now is your time to fully invest all of your time and energy into yourself.. Be ambitious, believe in yourself and go set out to become the best version of yourself possible.

4. Commit to loving yourself

If during the breakup things were said that weren’t meant, now is the time to forgive and forget them. Use bitter words said about you to fuel your future passions, definitely don’t dwell on them and put yourself down with them. Yes you are alone right now and do you know what? We also enter and leave this world alone too. If you cannot enjoy your own company, rely on yourself or be independently strong, you are never going to be happy. Other people should complement our lives not make them. Never, ever look to someone else to fulfil your insecurities. This is the time to love, nourish and appreciate yourself for everything you are.

5. Surround yourself with positive family & friends

Amongst spending time alone also schedule in time with friends and family. Go places, see people and be sociable. Learn things from others, get their perspective and soak in any wonderful things they have to say about you. Even if you don’t feel like going out, being sociable will really get you feeling better. This is a fantastic opportunity in your life to make new like-minded friends.

**

I will forever be grateful for having this single time in my life. It has been a chunk of my life that has allowed me to be completely selfish with my time, money and energy. I know single life won’t be forever. I am a true believe in divine timing and I am exactly where I need to be right now. In the last 6 months I have hit lows, felt the loneliest person in the world and absolutely hated myself, but now I am confident, truly happy, extremely grateful and hustling harder than ever to chase my dreams. I still have moments where I miss having a partner, someone to love and someone to give me attention but I know the feeling is only temporary. Being single is a journey, but when you start to embrace it, it is a wonderful one too. I hope you find comfort from this post, you have so got this!!

Gemma x

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The Fallout

I want you to imagine a little girl. A girl that is no older than 4 years old. At this age her Dad walks away from her Mum, her two sisters and her. He walks away like it’s the easiest thing in the world; like they had no impact on his life. As she grows older, this little girl doesn’t trust many people. At 8 years old a boy tells her he loves her but she pushes him away because she doesn’t trust him. She pushes friends away in whatever way she can because she believes it’s easier than people hurting her. At 12 years old she writes a letter to her Dad. His reply? It includes the simple sentence “You should put me in your past as I have done with you”. Imagine how that feels for a 12 year old girl. As she grows even older she decides to seek help in the form of counselling. She wants to learn how to trust people and better herself. At 16 she learns that the only male who ever said he loved her has died in a terrible accident. At 18 this girl decides to try to trust men and starts dating. At 20 she is sexually assaulted by a complete stranger. A man who thinks it’s his right to take what he wants from her even when she said no more than once and tried to fight back. From the ages of 21 to 26 this girl is lied to by various men who lead her on with whatever lies until they get bored and walk away from her using excuses, like it’s the easiest thing in the world for them. Like she meant nothing to them and like she had no impact on their lives. At 26, this girl fell in love. Truly fell in love with a man she thought was different. In the end he turned out to be the same and walked away from her like she meant nothing. Like it was the easiest thing in the world to walk away. Like she had no impact on his life whatsoever. Do you see how important this girl’s story is now? Do you understand why this girl feels so broken now?

In case you haven’t realised, that girl is me. She grew up to be cynical and bitter. Can you blame her? How can I blame each man individually though? Each one probably didn’t think much of their lies or poor excuses. They didn’t think it would have such an effect on me but when you look at the bigger picture, the effect is huge. One lie from one man means almost nothing. But every lie from every man turns it into something continuous that tells the girl she’s worthless, means nothing to them and has no impact on their lives. Let’s look back at some of the big ones who could have been something great… Andy* ghosted completely so not even a reason for walking away was given. Ok, I can get over that. Brian* who ended up giving me the excuses that he could do better than me and that he couldn’t commit to me. He committed. The girl after me; he committed to her. Richard* who fed me the lies that he would never settle down because he was an unsettled soul who just wanted to travel; he settled for a girl after me, in England of all places! Jamie* who lead me on and on until I admitted I liked him and then suddenly turned around and said he ‘wasn’t in the same place’ as me fed me some bullshit that made me think it was my fault but then a week later had a new girlfriend. Jack* (who was horrific in bed anyway) fed me the excuse that he didn’t have time to date but a week later went on a date with another girl to the pub I work in! They’re now in a relationship. It’s important to recap each of these stories because, just like my Father did, each of these men walked away like it was the easiest thing in the world. Like I meant nothing to them. Like I had no impact on their lives at all. Like I wasn’t good enough for them.

Then there is Scott; the man I fell in love with. The man who ended things with me recently. This man is not a villain. He is good. Although he could never say he loved me, I think he wanted to and even tried to love me. But 4 weeks away from turning 28, i still don’t have experience of someone being in love with me. As you can tell I’m taking the breakup really well haha. I want to believe him when he says that there isn’t anyone else but how can I believe that? Every man before him has fed me various different lies because another girl ended up being there. I wasn’t good enough. How do I believe that this isn’t the case here? Scott lied to me in the end when he promised that everything would be ok; this wasn’t the beginning of the end. As we all know, it was the beginning of the end. How can I trust that anything was real when he lied at the end? Just like every man before him had lied. I get that he never meant to lie to me. He really thought it would be ok. He’d be mortified if he knew I was questioning everything now but what else can I do? I invested everything into our relationship because he promised me a future and I believed him. Then he walked away from me, like it was the easiest thing in the world. Like I meant nothing to him. Like I had no impact on his life whatsoever. I lost his family that I loved as well as his friends and workmates. I guess they walked away from me too. They all forgot about me like I never existed. At least that’s how it feels. I know that he would never say it was easy for him to walk away. I know he would hate for me to think that but how do I separate this from previous experiences?

How do I get past this? All this has proven to me is that I’m nothing more to anyone than ordinary. When I was younger I believed I would grow up to be something special. I thought I was destined to be amazing. Now, I realise that I am nothing more than average. Every man in my life has shown me with their actions in treating me the way they did, that I am nothing more than bottom of the pile. When I walk into a room, nobody looks up; I’m as good as invisible. I was never something special to anyone, even the man I recently fell in love with. He couldn’t see me as anything more than average. Someone easy to walk away from. He gets to move on easily. His family and friends get to move on easily because I’m easily replaceable. I spent time being angry. I went through and impulsively deleted photos of us together on my instagram but he never had to do that because I was never on his. Like I was easy to walk away from. Like I never meant anything to him. Almost like, despite everything I did for him, I never had any impact on his life at all. You see the pattern here?

I was dumped recently and no matter how much people try to tell me that time is a healer do you now understand why this means more than that? Every man in my life has walked away from me like I mean nothing. I’m nothing but average. I’m not special because I make no impact on anyone’s life, no matter how hard I try.

The fallout of being dumped has been something I haven’t dealt with well. It’s brought up a lot for me from my past. It’s knocked my self esteem. I have tried to find different distractions. I’ve been going to the gym a lot and wearing more make up. People are telling me how amazing I look considering everything. I’ve lost nearly a stone in weight, desperately trying to make myself appear good enough for any man who screwed me over. I’m releasing anger in kick boxing classes. I’m eating less and drinking more in a desperate attempt to temporarily forget things. I’m ignoring my friend’s messages about buying houses and getting engaged because although I want to be happy for them, I can’t. I am struggling to be happy for them because Scott wanted to buy a house with me before he suddenly ended things. I had that life, that future that my friends now have but it was pulled out from underneath me. I wasn’t good enough to have it. Now I’m supposed to smile and pretend I’m happy for everyone else who gets to have the future I had stolen from me. I suppose my useless Drama degree needs to come into play at some point.

So the fallout of the breakup? As you can tell, I’m angry. I’m moving forward but I’m still so angry. I am in a place where I’m constantly questioning everything. I am cynical and bitter and struggling to understand why things ended. The reasons I was given aren’t good enough. I am unable to trust that another woman isn’t involved and my past will explain why I don’t trust it. Also, his lies at the end mean I’m struggling to trust anything he ever said or did. I’m terrified to turn up to any of our places in case I see him with someone else. The pub we had our first date, the cafe we had breakfast in all the time. The studio we went to a spin class at. They’re all in my village but he gets custody of them and I have to avoid them all. His life doesn’t change but mine does; because chances are, I meant nothing. I had no impact on his life. I was easy to walk away from.

As you can tell, I’m still in an incredibly negative place. Sorry about that. I don’t want to keep writing so negatively so I’ve enlisted the help of a fellow blogger for my next post. The beautiful Gemma from www.howtomakefriends.co.uk has agreed to write a guest post for me to transition to something more positive for you all to read. I look forward to posting her post!

In terms of the future for me. I’m struggling to see anything but negativity but to the unlucky guy who ends up with me, I ask you to please be honest with me. Tell me the truth about everything. If you are having a bad day, tell me. If there is someone else, tell me. If you don’t think I’m good enough, tell me. Please don’t lie to me. I am worth more than that.

Richard – Pensioner

Don’t be ridiculous, I didn’t go on a date with someone 50 years my senior! I mean, I did but it wasn’t a date. It was a chance meeting with a complete stranger that happened at the right time in my life.

The fact I’m writing this post is difficult; heart breaking in fact because it means I’m no longer in my relationship. You’ll know from my previous post, written a long time ago, that I found someone. I was in a relationship for over a year and I thought I’d found the one. Turns out I was not his one. I fell in love. Whether he loved me back or not, I don’t think I’ll ever know but I loved him with every part of me. I still do so please bear with me because this is painful. I’ve decided not to write a detailed post about why the relationship ended because half of our story is not mine to tell. He is a good man and although I don’t agree with his reasons for breaking up with me, I do understand them. He met me to explain why he’d made his decision. He sat with me while I shouted, cried and even insulted him for what he was doing. He didn’t argue; instead just listened and let me get out my frustration and pain at what was happening. Bob Marley once said “the biggest coward of a man is to awaken the love of a woman without the intention of loving her”. That’s how I feel in this situation. My love was awakened but I will never know for sure whether the recipient ever had the intention of loving me back. His reasons for ending the relationship were cowardly, maybe, but by sitting and taking responsibility; listening to my pain; facing the consequences of initiating the break up; I can’t call him a coward. I imagine that could have been one of the hardest things he’ll ever have to do. Men in my life before him had never had the balls to actually explain real reasons for ending things, and none had done it to my face! I still don’t agree with the decision, but I’m trying to accept it.

You may be asking about the title of this post. The chance meeting with the stranger that came at the right time. The week after my relationship was ended (I use the word ‘was’ intentionally because it wasn’t my decision, nor was it ended by me) I was meant to be going away with my boyfriend, his family and for the weekend, his work mates and boss. Because of the last minute timing, I couldn’t give my annual leave back to work and there was no way I could sit at home crying all week. I had to find something else to do so I contacted my younger sister and booked last minute flights to France to visit her for a few days. I struggled with the trip, I was still feeling immense pain at the loss of my other half. But I needed to be away. Anyway, the flight home was where I met a man who showed me kindness. Kindness that I needed. The flight back to London was not busy at all. I was seated in the window seat while the two seats to my right remained unoccupied until towards the end of boarding when an older gentleman sat in the aisle seat. During take off, a wave of sadness came over me and tears started to roll down my cheeks. This was how it happened since being broken. The sadness hit me in waves, it still does. The rest of the time I feel numb, disinterested and in pain.

Once in the air, the man in the same row as me leant over and asked if I was ok. As I wiped away tears I gave a non committal answer about being fine, just that I had recently been through a painful break up. At this point the cabin crew stopped at us and asked if we wanted any drinks. I ordered a peppermint tea and the gentleman told the cabin crew he would like a tea and would pay for both. He then looked at me and said with such kindness in his eyes “Why don’t you tell me about it over a hot drink?” He introduced himself as Richard (he won’t mind me using his real name) and said he’d been in France visiting his son who lives there. After I had briefly told him about my boyfriend ending our relationship he went on to tell me about his own experiences of heartbreak. This may not be verbatim but it’s pretty damn close to what he did say.
“Georgie, I am 79 years old and I know what you’re feeling right now. I have been married twice. My first marriage lasted for 30 years and I thought we were happy. Then one day my wife left me and told me she wanted a divorce. She gave faintly similar reasons to your boyfriend and I felt the same way about it as you do now. I didn’t agree with them but I understood the reasons. I thought I’d never meet someone else as perfect for me as my first wife. Then years later when I was ready, I did. My second wife was even more perfect and we were married for 23 years in total before she passed away last year. Do you know which relationship ending hurt more?” Well I figured obviously his wife dying hurt more! His reply was calm, like he’d said it 100 times before. He was talking from experience. I have had to paraphrase it because I can’t remember exactly in detail everything he said. I’ve kept the parts that I do remember and that stuck with me
“My first wife leaving me hurt much more. I have mourned the end of two marriages. Just as you now need to mourn the end of your relationship. My wife passing away last year left me devastated, but I only look back on our time together with fondness and happiness. She didn’t choose to leave me and in death, still loved me just as I still love her. The reason my first wife hurt me so much was because she left me. She chose to leave… I fought with myself over it for years after because I didn’t want her to look back and only see the reasons she left me. I didn’t want her to look back and forget the good things we had together… She left me and it made me feel like I wasn’t good enough… As you grow older, you will meet someone else who will make you realise that you were always good enough, he just didn’t see it. Your next love will be the one who proves to you that you were always good enough and he will fight to show you that; the way your recent boyfriend did not fight for you. I promise, you will be ok. But take this time to cry when you need to, talk to strangers on planes if it helps, give yourself space.”

I barely had to speak because he already knew it all. Richard knew what I was feeling. I feel let down. Unanswered questions tornado in my mind. Was I not a good enough girlfriend even though I thought I was? Did I not support him enough even though I thought I did everything I could? Is there someone else that he feels is better than me and who he wants to be with instead? Somebody else who gets to benefit from the future I should have had with him? I feel like I invested everything into a relationship with someone who made me think he too was invested. He planned a future together with me. Yes, he planned it. It was what he wanted. Then to one day decide I wasn’t enough; the future he had promised wasn’t enough to fight for. I will have to live with it. I will have to live with the feeling that I was easy to walk away from. It was easy to just sweep me under the carpet and forget I ever happened. I wasn’t worth fighting for (story of my life). Whether that’s true or not, I’ll never fully know. But that’s certainly how it feels right now. My life has stopped still temporarily. His continues on. Now, I am sat on a plane with a 79 year old man who listened to me. Who let me get all of the pain out into the open. Who offered his own experiences freely; only to try and help ease some of my hurt. I can’t help but be reminded of the long list of people who have messaged me with words of comfort, support and advice for how they have dealt with their own heartbreaks. So many people, some I barely even know, who have offered me kind words proving the amount of good there is in this world. To those people, I thank you. I thank you with all of the love left in me (I’m afraid there’s not much left though since this).

I want to hate the man who is putting me through this. I want to lump him in with every other man who has hurt me. What makes it so difficult is that I can’t hate him. Nor can I compare him to previous frogs because he wasn’t like them. As I said, he is a good man. He’s an incredibly good person. Although he may have been careless with my heart he himself does have a good heart. I fear that even when he realises the mistake he’s made, I know he’s too stubborn to admit it. His fear will take priority over fighting for what we had. I’ve lost the man that I fell so much in love with. I’ve also lost his family that I fell in love with. His warm family who opened their arms to me and who I shared so much with. I’ve lost the friends that I made through him. I’ve lost the future we had together. The break up has made me lose pieces of myself too. I used to love being social, meeting new people and now? I’ve isolated myself from friends and family. I ignore messages from friends and cancel plans because I can’t face going into the outside world. I used to love food. Now, I can barely eat one full meal in each day because my appetite has disappeared from me. I’m not there yet; not ready to accept the loss just yet. But I will get there. In time, I will find the pieces of me that I’ve lost and I’ll put the puzzle back together. I will learn to accept that although this one maybe didn’t love me as much as I thought, there might be somebody else who can. Maybe I can learn to fall in love with somebody else, their family and friends just like I did with this one.

For now, while I still love him and it hurts so deeply to think of him with someone else. I do wish him happiness. He deserves it because even though he broke my heart, before that he taught me that I could experience what I’d never had. He taught me how to fall in love. He opened his family to me and trusted me with his vulnerabilities. He never once let me feel bad about myself (granted until now). He would tell me I’m beautiful. He supported me when I needed it just as I did for him. He was the other half of me who complimented me and knew how to ease my anxiety. He showed me that there are men out there who don’t play dating games and who can be honest. He taught me how to let my guard come down enough to let someone in. Most importantly, he taught me that someone can care about me just the way I am. Although I will feel great pain for a long time, I will always be grateful and look back on the good times we had. I just hope he will do the same.

Scott – The Good Guy

I want to start this post with an apology. I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to write anything for a while. There is a reason behind it. A big one! Brace yourselves people, this is going to be a long post. Get a cup of tea/glass of wine and some snacks because we’re in this for the long run right now…..

You ready?

The reason I’ve been quiet for so long is because I have managed to bag myself a boyfriend!! A fully fledged, living, breathing boyfriend. Before I go on anymore I have to apologise again. I’ve had said boyfriend for a while now but with the blog awards looming I decided to keep him quiet until they were done with [on a side note, I didn’t win the award]. Once the blog awards were over, life just kept getting in the way of writing a blog post about it. I guess a part of me also felt like because I didn’t win the award what was the point in writing anymore; but that’s a whole other issue in itself. Anyway, although I’ve had a birthday since and am now 27 I got my first ever boyfriend at 26 years old. I’ve managed to keep him for coming up eight months now. EIGHT MONTHS!!!

I’ll go back to the beginning. We met on Bumble (the dating app) where I was trying to find guys to give me new blog material. There I matched with Scott (no asterisk needed because that’s his real name). His pictures were nice, he was very handsome and so I figured why not! For those who have never used Bumble, it’s basically the same as Tinder in the swipe left and right sort of way except that it’s designed to give women the control. If you match with someone the girl has to message first within 24 hours or the match disappears. So I had to message first! Oh Christ this isn’t ideal for me because I’m useless with chat up lines. My solution? Google. I kid you not my exact search on Google was ‘best chat up lines on dating apps’ and I promised to use the first one. Life is low when you have to Google search chat up lines. The top result was my winning opener so I quickly copied it down and sent the message. Sorry Scott, I also sent the same message to about 4 other matches. It was research… for science… maybe. Within ten minutes he replied. Oh right I should tell you my chat up line, you might want it for future use. Thanks to Google I sent, “tell me two truths and one lie”. Scott’s reply was “you’re very beautiful, Virgin is better than British Airways, we’re going for dinner this weekend” well unfortunately work was taking me to Antigua that weekend so no dinner plans for us so it must have been his lie. Instead we arranged to meet for drinks the following week.

To be completely honest with you (he’s said this too so will agree with me) neither of us were that fussed to begin with. Yeah we had a good laugh together and he was amazing at fitting in dates whenever worked with my work rota but I don’t think either of us were really that bothered about whether it was going anywhere or not. After about a month of talking and a few dates, Scott went on holiday with his Dad and brother. We didn’t talk much while he was away and I figured, like every other time, things were beginning to fizzle out and it was the end. I was wrong and boy am I glad about that now. When Scott returned from holiday he messaged me asking if I wanted to meet up again; I agreed. We had a good laugh together so why not! From there things naturally progressed but not too quickly. We spent a lot of time meeting for drinks and dinner or afternoon coffee (hot chocolate for me). After only 2 months of dating we decided what the hell and booked a few days away in Prague. I mean I’m not conventional so this was ok for me. I was a little nervous leading up to it though; what if he murdered me while we were away? What if something bad happened? I mean, I don’t really know this guy that much do I? My worries were put to rest when I fell ill less than two weeks before our trip away. I was really ill with something caught on a work trip. Scott had time off work as it was just after Christmas (I know, sorry it really has been that long) and this wonderful man came over and sat with me nearly every single day. He just sat with me while I was unbelievably ill and watched rubbish films with me and cuddled me. It was his idea of hell cuddling me on the sofa watching movies but he did it anyway. All my fears of going away together melted after that and I could tell he was alright. I mean, what guy spends his time with a sick girl knowing he won’t get anything in return? A good one.

I am always honest here so another truth is that I still wasn’t 100% sure how I felt about Scott at this point. I think I was scared, terrified in fact. Here was this guy who I liked and normally that means something will go wrong and he’ll get rid of me. But instead we were planning a holiday so soon! A part of me knew I liked him but another part couldn’t tell if maybe I just liked the idea of him wanting to be with me. I told my friends that I’d see how Prague went but I think I knew it would go well. Jesus I was optimistic about a guy! That never happens.

Skip forward and Prague was amazing! It was one of the best holidays I’ve ever had. It snowed and we explored the city. Scott had booked a beautiful hotel. We held hands and kissed on Charles bridge. He messed around picking me up and throwing me in the snow. We laughed (a lot) and spent the time really getting to know each other. Cue the romantic music in the background because I don’t know what to tell you guys other than, it was perfect! No funny stories about things going wrong I’m afraid. I started falling hard for Scott during that trip. No guy has ever treated me like this before or made me feel like I deserve to be treated like this. He was and still is of course the best I’ve ever had (yes, in that way too. Really. The best ever! Sorry, Scott for making that public knowledge).

Once back from Prague things continued on. We spent time meeting each other’s families and planning more trips we wanted to go on. I met his boss and work friends. I was and still am one half of a couple. When the hell did I become someone’s girlfriend? Scott and I carried on growing stronger and stronger together. Obviously I had no idea what I was doing. At some point the reality started to settle in that maybe I’m not cut out to be someone’s girlfriend. I was scared everyday that he might break up with me after realising I’m clueless and he’s better than me. I’d lie awake at night and look at him just to remind myself it’s real; I’ve found someone and he’s still here. Sometimes, like a weirdo, I would sit and just look at Scott. I liked to just take him in and admire how damn good looking he is! He’d catch me staring and shake his head with a smile. He lets me do it now. He knows I’m just looking and he understands why. It’s because by this point I’m falling in love and staring at him like a psycho just proves to me he’s really there.

Since then we’ve been on more trips to New York, Mallorca and a trip to Centre Parcs with his family. We see each other when we can which for me isn’t enough but we make it work. We’ve had Valentine’s day together and birthdays together. The poor man has experienced coming into the bathroom to see a naked me crouched on the floor with wet hair and throwing up in the toilet crying! Scott is an absolute Saint who treats me like a princess. Skip back to my first ever Valentine’s day with a guy in my life! I bought him tickets for us to watch his favourite football team on Valentine’s day (I know someone get me some goalie gloves because I’m a keeper). He went one further and bought me a designer purse and surprised me with roses. Jesus it’s amazing I went so long not knowing how much I love all this soppy stuff. For the first time ever I’ve told a guy I love them. Granted we were out with my friends in Brighton and I drunkenly told Scott I love him in the middle of a gay club. I believe my words were “I don’t know if I am but I think I am. I mean I don’t think I’ve ever been in love but I think I love you”. Smooth girl, real smooth. He didn’t say it back. He smiled at me and said “you’re the most amazing girl in the world”. I’m ok with that. Can’t force these things and besides I think he does love me really but just won’t say it out loud yet.

Also seriously why did no one warn me that being happy in a relationship brought along the extra fat pockets on my stomach, thighs and arse! This happy weight is something I never knew about. Be warned people; being happy makes you fat (well slightly bigger. I’m exaggerating).

Now? I’ve settled in. We have a very open and honest relationship. I can talk to him about anything that I’m worrying about or feeling. I feel like maybe I can do this. I am capable of being a girlfriend. Don’t get me wrong, I’m scared. I worry if he feels distant or has an excuse not to see me. I’m a ridiculous worrying mess sometimes when it comes to us. He jokes that I worry about what day of the week it is (I don’t). The reality is I’m scared that he doesn’t love me yet. If after this long he still doesn’t love me will he ever? I’m scared every single day that Scott will break up with me. He might find someone better or someone that hasn’t put a load of happy weight on. He might get bored of being so incredibly patient with me. There might be some awful excuse to end it with me. That’s what all those other guys did to me. I live in fear of losing this because all I know is men hurting me. All I’ve ever known is that I’ve never been good enough for someone, anyone and yet maybe I am now. I just need to figure out how to let go and enjoy it. I need to trust that if Scott becomes unhappy with me, he’ll tell me. I also need to trust that he won’t hurt me unnecessarily. He’s a good one and I can’t wait to see the future. In the mean time, if I go quiet again for a while it’s because I’m happy. If you see a blog post soon, it’s either a funny story about Scott and I or there’ll be a shortage of tissues because I’m crying and heartbroken

Sean* – Stranger Boy Racer

Yes, the job title of this guy sounds intriguing. It’s not exciting, I just don’t know what his actual job is so this will do. You’ll understand why as the story unfolds.

As your detective skills have already determined from reading my previous posts, it’s clear that I work as cabin crew. On this particular day after landing back from a long haul night flight, my car was dying for a drink so I stopped at a petrol station on the way home to satisfy the poor thing. It was this supermarket petrol station that set the scene for my oh so romantic encounter with Sean*, the stranger boy racer. I’m going to inspire you to imagine how this looks for an outsider. Yes I am in full uniform which some may find attractive (I don’t) however, after working a nine hour night flight on about 4 hours sleep for the previous 24 hours, my hair was a mess, my make up had slipped from my face and I’m pretty sure it was hard to determine whether the dark circles under my eyes was smudged eye make up or genuine evidence of how shattered I was. To put it bluntly, I looked like a zombie from an apocalypse movie who had just happened to stumble across the uniform of a flight attendant and put it on for kicks.

After paying for my petrol and buying a much needed sugar kick in the form of a toffee crisp, I got in my car and willed myself to start the journey home. As I was pulling away and driving towards the exit, I could see a car start to jolt forward from one of the petrol pumps that was to my left. This car kept coming forward towards me so I had to swerve to the right of me to avoid being hit. The other car stopped and I followed suit. I looked to see some guy who couldn’t have been any older that twenty looking at me and getting out of his car. Again, I followed his lead and got out the car and vaguely remember the words “What is wrong with you? Did you decide to just not look at all when you nearly drove into the side of me?” He just stood there and looked at me for a minute. Ok this feels uncomfortable. His excuse for why he’d nearly smashed into my car was ridiculous. It’s something you think would be really cute to hear and some awful screen writer somewhere has probably used it as the way two people meet before falling in love. To me it sounded like the stupidest thing I’d ever heard and I almost felt insulted I looked like the kind of girl who would fall for it. I kid you not when I tell you that his reply to my anger was “I’m so sorry. I saw you getting back into your car and I needed an excuse to talk to you because I think you’re stunning. I figured even if I did hit you, the bump in my insurance would be worth it.” Please, Lord, give me strength. Naturally I was a little speechless by this. I looked anything but stunning and I’m pretty sure I was wearing a big sign on my forehead saying ‘Fuck off. I am not in the mood’. He continued on to ask me for my number like it was the most normal thing in the world after he’d nearly rammed his modified Renault Clio into my passenger door. First of all, get rid of those stupid wheel rims and throw out the awful low modified bumper you’ve got; you’re not 17 anymore buddy. Second of all, absolutely no thank you! I politely declined, muttered something about being more careful next time and got back into the car to make my escape and get to my bed!

What guy in their right mind thinks that would be the best way to get a girl’s number? I mean, obviously he was a little cocky and thought I’d fall weak at the knees at his grand gesture but what sonny boy over here didn’t think of was the fact I just didn’t care. Boys, if ever you think it’s ok to nearly drive into a girl as an attempt to get her number… Think again. First of all, it’s stupid. Second of all, it’s stupid. Third of all, it’s stupid. I do hope the little tyke finds a girl who’s heart melts at his risky attempts of romance. I, however, will move on to find a man who does the old fashioned stuff that doesn’t mean a nearly smashed up car.

Bad Things Come in Threes

You know when you’re having 24 hours that seem like all the bad stuff is happening in one go? Well I had that. Yes, I am being extremely over dramatic about this particular 24 hours; but I have every right to be. During the 24 hours in question, I received three messages from three different men. None of the messages were good. One was ridiculous. The second was actually just really rude. The third one really upset me; it hit me hard but in the same way it was also quite unbelievable. Enough so that I had to send it to my friends to read so I knew I wasn’t imagining things….. so naturally I had to write about it.

The first message I received was from a guy at work who I have never met. I mean, I’ve never seen him and I’ve never even heard his name before.

work-fo

First of all, my name is not Georgia. It never has been and never will be but easy mistake to make. Second of all, you’re right, you don’t know me. How can I trust you when you are a complete stranger? The most important and final point of this is that your so called Chinese whisper is completely untrue! I know I’ve written about two pilots on here but he is not referring to either of those. I know the pilot this guy is referring to though. I once worked a St Lucia trip with him and he was memorable for the wrong reasons! He played this cute schoolboy with a crush act on all the girls in the hope that one would fall for his charms. Unfortunately for him, none on our particular crew fell for it (I guess he had better luck elsewhere). This particular guy has made a name for himself because he sleeps around the crew (Yes, I know. I was one of those moronic crew members who fell for it with other pilots and I have blog posts to prove it) and pretends like he really likes them. Who are these naive girls that fall for his game? They need a slap! The one thing about this one that SHOULD be the big flashing, red deterrent for the stupid girls who sleep with him……. he’s married!! He wears a gold band on the ring finger of his left hand. As my unknown friend in the message above has made clear though, his friend obviously doesn’t care about her fella’s wedding vows.

What happened to girl power and girls sticking up for each other? Aren’t we supposed to help each other out? No wonder some (not all) guys walk all over some of us. Certain women hand men that power by screwing (literally) behind their backs. Now untwist your knickers and stop moaning, I know it isn’t everyone and I know full well that girls cheat on their boyfriends and husbands too. I just hate that women have fought so hard TOGETHER for equality throughout the ages and yet here we are, watching women (and some men) screw each other over. Just leave each others’ husbands and boyfriends alone alright?

 

Message number two on this fateful day was from a guy that I dated very briefly. We had a total of three dates together and he was nice enough but there just wasn’t any kind of va va voom for me. We didn’t have a lot in common which I know isn’t always important, but it just wasn’t there for me. He ignored me first via messages though so I figured he felt the same way and left it at that. Which brings me to this random message from him…. three months later

sorry-message

Come on!! Really? This was necessary to send why? He had an out. This echoes previous guys I’ve written about and brings me back to my point where guys just have to be the ones to end it. They can’t accept it when a girl makes the decision to end something so they have to try and get in the last word. Derek was my most recent frog who just couldn’t handle not being in control of the end. This guy just couldn’t hack it that we’d both kind of ignored each other. He had to have the last word to end it. Come on, he lacks all kind of style really. Don’t try to make out like it’s my fault because I work away a lot and then put me down by saying you are out of my league. If you’re going to be a complete tool then own it. Be confident in your utter toolness. Be the best tool you can be. I guess I have to appreciate that he did tell me to ‘take care’ and took the time to put a kiss at the end. I feel like he really meant it too.

 

The third and final message I received in this over dramatic period ending my 2016 was a tough one. What was even tougher was figuring out how I could write about it whilst also keeping the complete anonymity of the man in question. In order to do that I’ve decided not to include the message in this post. Even though I cried, shook with anger and also sat in a state of shock for a few minutes, this man has people close to him who’s anonymity needs to remain protected.

You know those moments when you look up to the sky, to a God, to the Universe maybe or just because you don’t know what else to do? This was one of them. I believe my exact words were “Are you kidding me?” to nobody in particular. My phone had buzzed so when I looked at it to read the message I had received, nothing could have prepared me for what I opened. A message from the Father (yes, Father) of a man I had previously dated. This message was inappropriate. It is important to me that you don’t jump to conclusions here. There was no offensive language or any details of a disgusting nature. There were no dick pics (thank god) or requests for pictures from me. There was simply the mention of a kiss and the implied nature of where it would lead. I don’t know if alcohol was involved but I can only assume it was in this instance. I was gutted. I cried a bit. Not because I was scared or anything. I cried because I was embarrassed for this man. I was embarrassed that I had ever met him and spent time with him. At one point the thought will have crossed my mind he could have been my family! If things had turned out differently with his son, he could have been my Father in Law. I replied telling him that he was being completely inappropriate with me and that he should never contact me again. He agreed. He knew what he’d done was wrong. Do I tell his son? Do I send him the message and fracture his relationship with his Dad? I decided not to. I couldn’t put him through that and I wanted to make sure I wasn’t using it as an excuse to talk to him again. Was that the right decision? I don’t know but I’m only human. Naturally I sent the message to my friends and after the initial shock we all laughed. Honestly, how the hell do I end up in these situations?! What did I ever do in a previous life to become the butt of almost every dating joke imaginable?

So that was the 24 hours. Three messages from three different men; all completely unrelated. At least this proves that every day really does bring something new and unexpected to life and for me, every day brings me new material to write about.

Tinder Tidbits; Take Two

Previously in the post titled ‘Tinder Tidbits’ I posted pictures of messages that I had received and also sent while toying with the popular dating app. I also included pictures of messages not on Tinder. This post is mainly just pictures of various messages on various social media platforms or means of contact all in one place. I figured the title just lead on nicely from the Tinder Tidbits post.

This first one really is from Tinder.

normal-looking

I mean, is it a compliment? I get the impression he didn’t mean it as one but decided as an after thought ‘actually if it makes you feel better take it as a compliment but yeah you’re kind of normal looking’. Apparently I’m not anything special to look at but on the plus side, at least I’m normal looking. Um, thank you?

This next guy took a different approach in complimenting me. After I didn’t reply to his first message, he waited a whole nine months to message me again giving me my compliment. Much better than normal looking. I just hope I am still sexy!

still-sexy

As you can see, this next one was via Facebook. I am not friends with this person and have never ever met him but he sent me this random message! I mean, he’s got balls I have to say and his complimenting skills are top notch compared to other guys previously so bravo my friend.

f-beautiful

This next set of messages consists of three photos from one night and one from about a month later. The dates are on the pictures with the messages. This is a guy that I met years ago through a friend of mine. We never dated but we are friends on Facebook.

There seems to be a common view that women are more likely to show signs of needy behaviour or act clingy with guys. Men worry that if a girl messages too much, she’s obviously a psycho who will trap him into a relationship or even worse…. marriage!! God forbid you message someone more than once in the space of seven hours. Saying that however, this guy really takes the prize for needy behaviour….

Well he’s certainly persistent. Also extremely charming obviously. To add the icing, cherry and little sugar swirl decorations on the cake…. he has a girlfriend!!

Ah you’ve got to love the wonderful world where phones can take screenshots of the stuff you really want to see again and again and again.