Thursday, June 10, 2010

5 Dating Commandments

Recently, through another text-flirtation with an entirely different hot musician (yes, I am aware I have an addiction), talk progressed into the "when are we gonna go get drinks?" avenue and - I imagine he verbally braced himself - he made a comment to me indicating that before we really got to know each other very well, he would appreciate it if I would forewarn him about whether or not I was crazy so that he would be prepared for any and all windfalls.

Now, most normal ladies who are in the midst of a flirtation with hopes of dateability would toss their hair nonchalantly, tilt their head back and laugh at the idea, while secretly swearing up and down that if this man ever even so much as looks in the direction of another female, she will sugar up his gas tank and set fire to his entire collection of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Editions dating back to 1993. Having repeatedly burned myself by trying to play The Cool Girl, however, I miserably resigned myself to his loss of interest when I answered in all honesty, "Oh. Well, yes. I am."

He then needed to know the extent of crazy that I had just openly admitted to, but it left me to wonder... when it comes to women, does it *really* matter? Granted, I'm well aware that it's my own damn fault for laying my cards down so early in the game, but I have tried the latter - keeping your crazy a secret until, God help you, PMS or a shitty boss or alcohol or another female entering the picture sets you off and you are then guilty of blindsiding the poor fella with pent-up female rage coupled with (more than likely) hormonal imbalances, when you promised him from the beginning that you weren't like that, no sir, you weren't like those girls.

I have written before about every single female's capacity to be the crazy broad, but let me explain a bit further. Yes, there are varying degrees of crazy women, and no, no female wants to be labeled "the crazy ex" (at least no women that I know) but it is all pretty relative to one's experience. I think it's all conditional based on how you were raised, what you expect from a relationship and what you expect of yourself. In an effort to further quantify the subjectivity of these instances, below is my own personal list of Dating Commandments, which if broken, stand an excellent chance of eliciting from me the response of a crazy broad.

1. THOU SHALT NOT SCREW OTHER BROADS. This, while basic, needs to be burned into the insides of many a man's eyelids. While I may be alone in my "only have eyes for you" genes, there are so many issues at work here... a devotion to honesty and maturity of self-control, and what boils down to a basic common courtesy to treat others with respect. Whether it's knocking up some other skizank or a fervent kiss in a bar parking lot, it's never the act itself that hurts, it's the betrayal, which is, in my world, utterly inexcusable.
2. THOU SHALT RESPECT MY PERSONAL CHOICES AS MY OWN. My parents, very loving and wise individuals, raised me to respect the opinions of other people as their own, and while I might not agree with them, it was a selfish and sometimes ignorant thing to judge someone not only based on race, sexuality or gender, but by their religious and political beliefs. As a result, I will never inflict my beliefs and opinions upon you because they are quite personal to me, and I expect you to do the same.
3. THOU SHALT UNDERSTAND THAT I AM A WOMAN. Oscar Wilde has this great quote, "Women are meant to be loved, not understood." I couldn't agree more. You may think I'm mental when PMS hits and all I want is to be told I'm loved, curl up in a ball under my covers and cry because there wasn't enough peanut butter in my Reese's, but most of the time, I legitimately cannot help it, so please don't get angry with me. Be patient. I don't need you to fix it. I'm not like that all the time, but I will not apologize for hormone shifts because it's what makes me a female. It's okay, though, for you to tell me I'm out of line if I yell at you for no reason. Sometimes, I need to hear that. Additionally, get used to the fact that I do not care about your power tools, sports team or computer thing, and I will accept that you do not care about which stilettos match best, which celebrity's ass looks fattest in person and whether or not you really could grate cheese on that Calvin Klein model's abs. I have my girlfriends, you have your manfriends.
4. THOU SHALT PUT THE FRIENDSHIP FIRST. I don't think anything can really last without a serious foundation of friendship, and that's what will last when the honeymoon phase of any relationship fizzles. I expect you to be a friend to me, be honest with me if I'm about to make a stupid decision, tell me if you need something more from me instead of hoping I'll guess correctly, laugh with me, laugh at me, indulge with me and tell me when enough is enough.
5. THOU SHALT BE A GENTLEMAN. I definitely don't expect you to treat me like a princess, pay for me all the time, send me flowers every other week or carry me over any kind of threshold - I can do that myself. I do, however, expect you to be a man, offer to pull out chairs and open doors and show me the kindness that, at the very least, you expect to be shown yourself. I probably won't get crazy if you break this commandment, but I also won't call you again. Ever. And, I'll probably tell all my friends you were too much of an idiot for me.
That's pretty much it for me, because I think most everything else will fall into one of those rules. In short, you might think I'm crazy because I have a short attention span and probably a mild case of ADD and the incurable habit of voicing almost everything that enters my brain, be it a craving for some cheesy fried thing or a pontification on the number of sweat glands in a woman's cleavage, but I've since accepted that it is my crazy that makes me who I am, and let me tell you, finding comfort in your own skin is better than any comfort you'll find with another person.

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