Is it too premature for me to write about missing the single life? Not missing it as in – I wanna go back there. I had a good 3.5 year run at it. I mean missing it as in admitting that with every situation, there are upsides and downsides.
In I Think I Might Be a Man Lover, I shared how my appreciation for men grew over a long period of sporadic dating – despite encounters with liars, stalkers, cowards, control freaks, and sex fiends. All those men, and the stories on this blog made me better prepared for something long-term with an ideal man. Definitely an upside to the single woman phase.
In committing to a new stage (I’m spoken for. Yass!), I initially missed being selfish with my time and energy – scheduling dates around my workouts, slipping under the radar whenever I didn’t feel like being bothered, feeling no need to keep my armpits completely smooth (judge me!), and avoiding being open and vulnerable. Why disclose personal details about my life with men who aren’t relationship candidates?
Healthy partnerships involve making yourself physically and emotionally available. That means if you’re going a week or more without seeing your significant other, you indulge them in video chats – raccoon eyes, blemishes, untamed hair and all – if that’s what they want. (Or put on some concealer!)
It means opening up and trusting your partner with the bits of you that may be unsavory. Even traumatic experiences that have shaped your character and your life (slowly, and in the natural course of the relationship).
The second time LB and I went out, I told him all about my teen pregnancy – a story I rarely rehash because for one, those were painful, uncertain times. Second, there’s no real need to in day-to-day conversation. Who needs to know that I was pregnant at 15? He understood. And I understood. This is new, because I’ve always been guarded.
If you’re trying to build with someone, I recommend that you strive to be as transparent as possible. As hard as that is. The discomfort is almost suffocating when you worry about how your mate will receive your words. Especially when you’re thinking “What if this is a deal breaker? Will he want to move forward if I share this? What if he thinks I’m a mess?” You try to open your mouth and the words get stuck in your throat. (Yea.)
Difficult conversations are a given. Revelations are certain. But everyone deserves to know exactly what they’re signing up for though. Agreed?
I’d also recommend enjoying whatever stage you’re in now. If you’ve read my blog, you know I enjoyed single life. I made the best of it. Went on vacations (even all-expense paid). Dated. Partied. Wrote. Spent time with friends. Nurtured my family. Grew!
This stage? I’m loving it even more! Amen! Dating, traveling, cultivating friendship with LB – just being… And I’m more than willing to make adjustments that bring us closer – even video calling when I’m in desperate need of sleep. And waxing. Worth it.
Are you enjoying the relationship stage you’re in now? Why or why not? What kinds of adjustments have you had to make if you’re in a relationship or married? How do you feel about being transparent and or vulnerable with your partner? Does it help or hurt?