I intended to post this weekend about a couple of books I read this week, despite the fact that Reading With Fakename is probably my least popular subject. Actually, my most popular subject is Fakename’s Animal Planet. If it weren’t for nutria, I’d have no friends at all.
So today, we will instead discuss personal relationships. Let’s suppose, theoretically, that you were recently involved on some level with another person. In my case, that would be a man, but I’m trying to keep this gender-neutral in case it might resonate better with you that way.
Let’s suppose that he (just substitute whatever gender applies to you in the following story) had qualities that you value greatly: smart, witty, funny, agrees with you on politics, and is very sexy. Let’s say at the same time that he was the most irresponsible person you ever met, and couldn’t show up on time (or at all) if you paid him. Wait. I never tried that one. Maybe if I’d paid him…? And you know it isn’t just you…it’s everyone. It’s just a characteristic, which you either accept, or don’t. So you decided 6 months ago that the bad outweighed the good and said, “Don’t call me anymore. I’m done.”
Then you become aware that he is allegedly involved with a new woman. Good for him! Happy trails! (You might spend a moment feeling sorry for her, however.) The problem is this: the new woman might be imaginary. Imaginary as in completely made up. Even if she’s a real person, she’s imaginary in the sense that he’s never met her, and the relationship exists in his head.
This bothers me enormously, and I’ve been trying to nail down why for 3 or 4 weeks now. Why should I care? When I try to think about it, my mind just skitters away into a corner.
Part of it is that I think part of the whole scenario is designed to get a reaction from me. Which it did, and he knows it. Which makes me angry with myself. But makes me ask, who does this? Who makes such an effort to rub your face in a new relationship…or make one up? (The answer may be, someone whose feelings you hurt.) Then I think, that can’t possibly be it. Everything is not all about me.
So maybe that isn’t it at all, and he’s just so happy about this new woman that he can’t help but share it with me and all his friends, nevermind his well-known gentlemanly insistence on privacy prior to now. I don’t think that’s it either.
I have, of course, already asked the most important question, which is, Why do I care? The closest I can come to it is this: I can’t bear the thought that I once was involved with someone who could be this manipulative. It borders on crazy to make up someone, or to claim to have a relationship with someone you don’t even know (if she’s real) and to suck your family and friends into it. So you see, it really is all about me.
Could you excuse me for a moment? I think I see something skittering in the corner.