Congratulations on falling in love. Now take a deep breath and calm the fuck down, because everything is gonna be okay.
So, I have a quandary for you. I met someone a month ago and we’ve been spending a lot of time together. She’s 30. She has a good job. Her shit is together. It’s one of those things where we have incredibly perfect weekends together. There’s a lot of (good) staring and eyelashes and great sex. When we met it was instantaneous attraction. She’s the first woman I’ve met who I can look at and see her when she’s an older woman and be completely attracted to her even in that way, does that make sense? Her eyes fucking kill me. She makes me feel like how Sam Cooke songs sound. She absolutely makes me want to smoke less pot and try harder. The problem, I think, is that the last serious relationship I was in was in 2008, and if you ask me in my heart of hearts I don’t think I’m emotionally mature enough to date someone like her. Or at least that’s what I’m telling myself.
I can tell you the moment that triggered all of this: last week, as she was drifting off to sleep, she said “this has been a really good month.” She said it in passing, too, but it made me think “A month! Oh, fuck, its only been a month! I’m falling for someone, she makes me want to change myself” and I guess drunk-stoner-2009 me got really freaked out by that and overreacted and roared back into the foreground. This has caused her to put on the brakes a little. There’s a chain of events here and a lot of it is caused by my overreaction to a very small thing she said. There’s a whole other side of it, too, wherein she got out of a 3 year thing with somebody a few months ago so we’re taking it as slow as two people who are clearly attracted to each other can take such a thing. I understand that part, the slowing things down part. I’m just wondering why the fuck I can’t get out of my head all of a sudden.
Here’s a good way to put it: I’m trying to be myself around her, but the last week I’ve been kinda grabby and needy and pigeony – not the guy she met. I went from cool-guy Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic Park to what-does-it-all-mean-help-meeeeeeee Jeff Goldblum in the latter half of The Fly. I suppose my question to you is: how much of this is me psyching myself out and being desperate to crawl back into the relative comfort of prolonged adolescence?
Basically, I don’t want to fuck this up. I care about her and want this to work; and I think I need a woman’s perspective on this. And I figured you would know best, to be honest.
Congratulations on falling in love. Yep, you up and done it. Now take a deep breath and calm the fuck down, because everything is gonna be okay.
Well, maybe. You have to get your ego out of the way. Forgive the cliche, but guys like you are your own worst enemy when it comes to women (or pretty much anything you can romanticize.) You’re finally old enough to have figured this out, which is why you’re writing me letters before your ego pulls a Lennie and starts petting the puppy too hard.
A little taste of vulnerability gets you high, but the uncut stuff scares the shit out you. You, my friend, are very vulnerable right now. If you fight it, you’re gonna have a bad trip. The trick is to let go of control. Accept the fact that it might all (yes, all) end tomorrow, and just be present in the moment.
Your ego is afraid of the past and the future. Specifically, her past, and your future together. None of that matters. The only thing that matters is the present moment. When that little voice in your head starts freaking out about her recent long term relationship, tell it to shut the fuck up. You are not a rebound. That’s not what’s happening here. When that same little voice in your head starts freaking out because you can (for the first time) imagine a happy life of monogamy with two kids and a Volvo, keep telling that voice to shut the fuck up. You ain’t there yet.
Just stick to today. Today, you are in fresh love, and that’s all you have to worry about. You don’t even have to worry, really. It’s all going to take care of itself. If eyelashes wants to put on the brakes a little, don’t rail against it. Let her do what she needs to do. Give her space, but don’t go anywhere. Apologize if you acted like a dick, but don’t be so afraid of fucking up. It’s gonna happen. She’ll fuck up too. It’s okay. This is how adults form relationships. They push and pull against one another. They form and test boundaries. They fight. It’s all part of the process.
Just remember, you can’t control the process.
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