Are You Trying to Make Mr. (Not-Quite) Right Fit?
Posted by Meg Thompson on August 29, 2012 at 6:36 PM
So you hit the mall one day and stumble upon an amazing shoe sale. You find a pair that is exactly your dream pair of shoes if you could design any pair in the world…but they only have it in a half size too small. If you’re anything like me, you’ll probably buy the shoes anyway convinced that after a few days of wearing them around the house with your thickest wool socks they will stretch and magically fit. You want them to fit, so you squeeze your foot in and hope for the best. I mean, they aren’t unbearable. You wear the shoes, and they become more comfortable every day, but you don’t recognize how uncomfortable they are until you put on a shoe that is the correct size.
After a lot of soul searching and nights spent having a pity party for one, I have come to the realization that I have been dating this exact same way. Trust me, it’s not a happy realization. If you’re smart, you don’t buy shoes – or try out men – this way. Let me explain.
I tend to “try on” guys for a long time, even when I know I shouldn’t. I mean, I could take you on a magic carpet ride through my past relationships, but it’s not really a whole new world. It probably looks like your past if you’re reading this article, and do really want to see more of that? No, I will spare you and simply say that nearly all those dates/boyfriends didn’t really fit at all. The trouble was that that pesky thing called “hope” got in the way. I really wanted them to work out, so I gave too many chances, even when there were red flags from Day One.
Why?!? So many of us women know deep down when something isn’t right, and we ignore those inner voices that are saying WALK AWAY. What’s the point of having “women’s intuition” if we don’t use it? I totally get it: We don’t want to be single forever, and we’re afraid that if we don’t give chances, we may be missing out. So we give chance after chance, we hang on to a slight hope that on the third date the spark will come, or by the fifth he’ll laugh like a normal human and not a helium-high chimpanzee. And that three months from now he will take his wall down and open up, or by a year in he will tell you he loves you. That’s a lot of hoping, my friends.
I recently tried on this one guy I will leave nameless. He seriously was almost too nice, but I figured it was nervous excitement. He called me “dude” throughout the entire first date. Dude! He practically ate my face off on a teenage-dream makeout session, but it was probably one-time awkwardness. He thought he was God’s gift to women in the bedroom (he, in fact, was not), but I gave him another chance. We were in very different places in our lives, and it was obvious. I kept thinking … it will change, he’s so cute and nice and things can change. No. They won’t change. He, like those magical half-size-too-small heels, simply didn’t fit. And honestly, I am sure there were things about me that didn’t fit for him either.
I was having dinner with a guy friend of mine over the weekend. He was talking about a girl he has dated a couple times. He thought she was a really great, a smart girl, a girl he probably should like. Problem was, there wasn’t a spark, there wasn’t that excitement of going on the second date. He was wondering if he should give her another chance, because maybe he just wasn’t seeing something he should. It was then I realized … guys go through the same thing! Many of us do this!
I’m not desperate to be in a relationship—parts of me are still trying to heal the blisters from the last shoe – err -- boyfriend who didn’t fit. I hold out hope (that pesky hope again!) that when I find some good qualities in a relationship (like comfort and chemistry) the rest of the dominoes will fall in place. Sometimes you just have to realize that if the shoe DOESN’T fit, don’t buy it. More importantly, don’t marry it.
Hey! I’m hopeful for humanity. Too hopeful? I don’t think so, but I do vow not to give more chances than are necessary, and hope that you can do the same.