Wednesday, 12 August 2009

The Easy Way Out...

My girlfriends and I have noticed a startling phenomenon: men are strange creatures. No, this is not a recent revelation or a sudden epiphany, but a gradual dawning and behaviour that we've come to accept as normal in Dubai.

I'm sure you've all heard a similar story about the seemingly perfect couple who enjoy living in Dubai, the relationship gets serious, there's talk of a future together, children and marriage discussed, hinting at engagement rings and proposals and happily ever after....and then.....cue strange, eerie X-Files-esque music.....the guy freaks out, call everything off and delivers a LAME ARSE EXCUSE like "I can't be in a relationship right now, I need to focus on my career". Don't believe it? Yours truly was smacked disbelievingly in the face with that pearler 2.5 years ago.

I'm sure you're all thinking that his career must have been pretty important to break off a near-engagement, but we're not talking about a neuro-physicist, a high ranking UN official or even a lawyer - we're talking one of my own. That's right; I was inelegantly dumped by a 32 year old flight attendant who'd been in the company for 6 months. Talk about a punch in the guts when I heard he'd hooked up with a total floozy about a month after we split and that he's still with her despite the fact that she cheats, is completely incommunicado for about 98.9% of the time even though they're doing long distance and that he pays for everything, including all their overseas holidays.

There must be some truth to that old saying ''nice guys finish last'', and clearly the word 'guys' is interchangeable with 'girls'. Perhaps the lack of danger or bad boy/bad girl element is what makes us yearn for more? How exciting is the partner who loves you, cooks cupcakes or wants to take you out to dinner for no apparent reason compared to the ones who never call when they say they will, forget dates, run horrendously late, forget to tell you they don't want to be in exclusive relationships, that they have a girlfriend/boyfriend back in their home country or that they don't want to be ''tied down'' by the ''label'' of a relationship.

Hmmm, what a no brainer!

Why is it that the ones who we love the most hurt us the most? They say they'll never do anything to hurt us, but like a very dear friend of mine recently discovered, half carat earrings, meeting each other's parents and family, looking at real estate, talking about children's names and beginning conversations in front of her flatmates with ''when we get married'', or ''when we live in Sydney'' or ''when we're old and wrinkly and still in love'' really doesn't count for much when the interfering mother-in-law-to-be steps in and waves her evil wand.

How does a 42 year old man who clearly loves my friend to death, is the ultimate gentleman, appears to have this shit together and has established a successful career for himself think it's in any way appropriate to blurt out ''I just don't love you enough to marry you'' and call off their 16 month super-serious relationship? It's just not kosher. Or Halal, as would be the culturally appropriate saying in this part of the world.

I'm the kind of girl who has learnt from experience to value honesty and I know that sometimes people realise they don't want to be in relationships RIGHT NOW or don't love their partner enough to be together forever and that telling their other half is the right thing to do, but when what is said is clearly rubbish blurted out to disguise a lie is when I get my hackles up. What makes us chicken out about telling the truth to the one we thought we can tell anything? Fear that we'll REALLY hurt them, that hearing you don't want to be with them anymore could be made softer or easier to deal with? The truth always comes out in the end, so why not be bold and just spit it out at the beginning? Let me tell you, waiting 3 years to hear ''I just fell out of love with you'' sure is an anti-climax compared to all the crazy fatal-attraction theories you've cooked up in your heart-broken brain.

I recently read an article that called people suffering the completely unexpected break-up of their long-term relationships ''nearly-weds''. While many of their peers are married and engaged and having babies, these tormented souls are trying to make sense of no longer reading bridal magazines and planning their marital future, but are pondering why they're suddenly seated at the singles table at the weddings that could have been theirs.

Do people moan and groan about lies, unfaithful partners who let us down and break our hearts, create new buzz words such as ''nearly-weds'' to make themselves feel better? To convince themselves that Prince Charming really is out there, our one true soul mate? Why do we fool ourselves with becoming so pre-occupied with the tragedy of the situation that we can't see the obvious truth? That there are 6.76 billion people in the world and that this ONE person couldn't make them truly happy. They may have done bad things, treated us poorly or just not been a good 'fit' for us. Life is about adventure, self discovery and self respect. Work out what it is you really want and what you really deserve and don't settle for any less! We convince ourselves that we'll never feel like this about anyone else, that problems can be fixed and that things will all be fine if only....

I recently flew with a girl who was so fabulous I couldn't believe she was putting up with her deadbeat boyfriend. Tall, blonde and green eyed, she's an absolute stunner. Funny, smart and witty, she'd clearly make a great girlfriend. I think she even cooks. Her downfall? She fell in love with a guy who thinks it's ok to say ''I think you're great, but if you just lost 5kgs....'' and offered to pay for her to see a personal trainer!!!

I think my mouth fell open in shock when I heard that. What happened to loving someone for all their faults, the things about them that aren't perfect but make them THEM? We're conditioned to think that we should battle through the hard times and that it'll all be rosy. Nothing will ever be rosy if we sacrifice our self-esteem. What happens when the 5kgs are gone? People who criticise others will always find fault, no matter how perfect a thing or a person is. I really felt like telling her if she lost 95kgs in the form of her boyfriend she'd be much better off!!

After all, isn't beauty in our imperfections?

I'm the first to admit I'm not perfect and don't have the guts of steel I'd like to have. I'm ashamed to admit I once faked an asthma attack to avoid staying at the house of a guy I was seeing because I just wasn't into him anymore.

Why do we do this? To take the easy way out.


Jena said...

Brilliant & observant blog, Minxy!
Damn straight, Sista! This sandpit turns men into total players...i should know! Grrr! :/

Traytable said...

Great post. The loser at the start sounds like my ex. Why is it that guys think hearing that they love their career more than you, rather than some other chick, will soften the blow any???

Guess careers rate higher to them than women do :P