Cliche time: “It’s not you, it’s me”
You ever find yourself on a first, second, or third date with someone at an amazing restaurant, good food and a pleasant ambiance. You are in the scene of romantic perfection. Suddenly you look at your date across the table, and begin to yell to yourself thinking that you would rather be home watching Coyote Ugly for the 189th time, perfecting your own top of the bar dance routine, than spend another minute on this painful, mindless, date. Oh ok maybe that is just me. But if you have ever been anywhere close to that feeling then you can probably understand where I am coming from.
During my last few dates (or whatever term I am using for the night), that feeling has made a strong presence. The feeling of me wanting to pick up the butter knife and stab myself just so I have a valid excuse to go home. (Having to go to the hospital is a good reason to end a meal right?) A little extreme? Maybe. But what is a polite way to say “you know this is just not going to work out” after only being on a date for what may appear to be the longest twenty minutes of my life.
After I processed what is really going on here ( I am a therapist, we process everything!) I realized that it’s not my date with the problem. It’s me! It is all me. I will take the blame and full responsibility for these dates that will never compare to the fun I will have during the 190th time that I watch Coyote Ugly. I must say, my bar dancing routine is almost in perfect form, ready to make its debut.
I will say that I am at fault for the my self torture because I say yes to the date. In the back of mind I hope that it will turn out to be a great time, but in reality it is never that good. I hope to have a series of amazing conversations and endless laughter, but when I am struggling to keep my facial expressions as neutral as possible while wondering “did you really just say that?”, it makes multitasking on trying to hold back apparent sarcasm an extremely difficult job.
I wish there was an easy way for me to tell a guy who takes me out, “hey your good, its me who is the dramatic, crazy, nutcase”, I wonder if that will be the nice way of saying, “thanks, but look, don’t ever call me again”.
The end result of my processing phase: I really shouldn’t date anyone right now until I know he is the right one to date. Maybe a few more moments of talking on the phone will help, stop texting, get to actually know this person before I am stuck in his presence for 2-3 hours at minimum. If he still wants to go out after dinner, I can’t grasp a nice way of saying, “ummmm, I would rather just go home and go to bed”. Even if it is 7:00 pm! I realized I know myself better than I think I do. I have a gut instinct that tells me what would be right. The problem: I never listen to it. But if I did, I would know that I don’t have time to waste on people that I have never been excited to see in the first place. My suggestion, if you are uncertain, pick up the phone and have a conversation. If he gets past that phase and we actually go to dinner, when I feel the dire need to run or pick up that butter knife , I will just remember, it’s not him, it’s all me. And hopefully the night will be over soon!