Poor One Girl! She has been dating this guy, and they are at that stage where you begin to wonder and stress about the relationship's "status". Ugh. I hate that feeling. The over-analyzing, the stress, the extra effort you begin to put into the relationship as you "campaign" for girlfriend....
Maybe Stuck's right, and all women are crazy.
But I like to think that men are the same way, sometimes, even if they don't show it or feel that they have anything to do with the issue at hand:
I'm talking about the "Are we dating other people or not?" conversation.
I myself make it a point to rarely, if ever, bring up this topic. In our society, it's often implied that women want a boyfriend yesterday and that we go bat-shit crazy, much like a shark in a feeding frenzy, when it comes to anything bearing a hint of commitment. If asked whether or not we want exclusivity, it's expected that we will reply, "Duh." We have heard all the horror stories of men who went MIA upon even the suggestion of a committed relationship. So for most women, we stay silent out of fear. Which is funny to me, because up until that point, women usually control the pace of the relationship: how often the guy can see us, how many dates we go on before we have sex, when it's ok to meet friends and family, that sort of thing.
(On a side note, maybe I'm weird, but new guys always meet my friends before I meet his. Or maybe I just need a thorough screening before meeting his friends! LOL He's got to be positive I'm not bat shit crazy, you know. Do my female readers have the same tendency? Or is this just a random coincidence for me?)
Men, on the other hand, like to feel as free as James Bond and have options open to them if available. Whether or not they have options is irrelevant. Which is funny to me! They are so optimistic when it comes to the ability to "spread their seed". They just assume lots of women want it in the first place. Or that they will enjoy the wild-oat-sowing at all. Don't they realize that as a friend of mine* once said, "The problem with dating more than one person at the same time is that you don't really like any of them." Add to that the stress that may come from juggling multiple girls, and I'm amazed guys even want to fool with it. I don't know why men are like this, maybe it's something Darwinistic, but for the most part, I think we can agree that just the thought of having a girlfriend or --gasp!--a fiance or wife leaves men clammy and shaking. They want to be desired, but God forbid one woman takes a keen interest in him. They want ALL women to take an interest, which in my experience, is pretty delusional....LOL.
I like to tell myself men just can't visualize all of the wonderful things that can happen in a committed and healthy relationship--trust, intimacy, comfort, better sex, a deep friendship, better sex....yes, that one gets counted twice! But to each their own. I can understand, to an extent. I've been known to hesitate a time or two when the Big Talk comes up. So I can relate a bit. But 90% of the time, I am your stereotypical single girl, chomping at the bit for the permission to use the phrase "my boyfriend" in every day conversation.
So imagine my surprise when, a few weeks back, I suddenly realized that I was not even thinking about exclusivity with CN. It wasn't that I didn't want it -- I did, very much. And it wasn't just that it hadn't occurred to me. It was that I was, for the very first time ever, not even worried about it. The idea was automatically filed under "Bridges We Will Cross When We Get to Them". I was not feeling panicky or concerned about it. There was no nervous flutter in my stomach when he would introduce me to someone. I didn't feel like a little puppy dog, hoping that if I wagged my tail just right, I'd be adopted, so to speak. I didn't feel that need to "campaign".
And I'm not saying that it was assumed we were exclusive, or that it already felt like we were boyfriend and girlfriend. It wasn't like that. I knew we needed to talk about it pretty soon. I wanted to talk about it. But I was not worried about how it would go or where he might stand on the issue. Not one bit. Just like everything else in our relationship, I have felt totally secure and comfortable with what's going on. The "talk" just seemed like the next logical progression in our relationship. Like a no-brainer. A formality, almost.
When it happened, it ended up being almost comical. It was a Saturday night, in the middle of a crowded and very loud bar. We were with a group of friends and he had already thrown back 5 drinks when he sloshed into my ear about whether or not we wanted to see other people. I remember thinking, "Um, ok. I guess we can talk about this now. It should be a short conversation, anyway. OMG, did he have to get halfway to Drunktown before working up the courage to talk about this?? Nah. I'm not going to flatter myself like that."
So I asked him what he wanted to do, and he said he didn't want to date anyone else. I told him that I felt the same way, and we had a nice little smooch to seal the deal. The End. Easy as pie.
Or was it?
The next morning, I was reflecting on the night before when I realized that may have been the beer talking the night before. So I asked him if he remembered what we talked about the night before. He cried, "Yeah. What, you changed your mind????" in an almost panicked tone of voice. I chuckled and shook my head.
"Just checking," I said, smiling.
So what do you think about The Talk? Is it an unnecessary formality? The man's job? The woman's job? Should exclusivity be assumed, or are we just being control freaks? Have you ever had one that went badly? Do you have advice for anyone who is approaching that stage in their relationship? If you're not having sex with the person(s), is it even necessary? Let's talk about The Talk!
* Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think MJ is the source of this quote.