I have been through a pretty hellish period in the last couple of years and now in the thick of breaking up and initiating a divorce, but in none of this time have I really thought about dating, or men, or jumping into a new relationship. None of this was about that, it truly wasn’t and the fact that over the past couple of years my ex has said really insulting things to me implying that I am, deep down, some kind of slut and suggesting that he didn’t trust me around other men was actually quite weird because I haven’t so much as looked at, or fantasised about another man in the entire ten years we were together, and that despite the fact that by the end I was feeling a lot of contempt for him.
No, I have always had it in my mind that actually, I need to change the script – not let my life be dominated by the need for a man at all – after all, they only seem to bring trouble, abuse and heartache.
I have really wanted to be that woman – you know the one – the super-single-mum who’s handy with a spanner, provides for her children, enjoys doing every single thing her heart really desires – whether that be travelling far and wide or wading through mud at Glastonbury festival – completely free from the *negotiation process* that you might go through in a relationship unless you are both on exactly the same page.
However… a guy I’m friends with on Facebook – somewhat awkwardly, the friend of one of my husband’s good childhood friends who I kind of vaguely knew way back when we first got together – sent me a DM the other night which was really supportive and kind. He is a single dad himself and so he’s been down the road of breaking up with a co-parent and he told me that he was there if I wanted to vent or get a guy’s point of view.
So I did. We ended up chatting on Messenger on and off for about 24 hours (!!) and kind of got to know each other a little bit and I began to remember that he is quite a nice looking guy – albeit that was only vaguely on my radar ten years ago when I was actually quite into my husband.
There was a bit of winky flirting towards the end – god I miss that! And I decided to throw caution to the wind (life’s too short and all that) and ask him if he wanted to meet up some time. He seemed pretty keen and we’ve now got a ‘date’ of sorts tomorrow morning.
Well, as you can imagine, this whole scenario has played out in my head – everything from a standard first date – a kiss – to an entire life together (!) I mean a really fucking happy life, where he happily plays dad to my children, loves me, supports me, defends me against the wrath of my ex-husband, finds me ridiculously attractive despite my ever increasing years (I think he’s about the same age as me), does thoughtful little things – is basically everything my husband was not.
I know this is a stupid little fantasy because life doesn’t have a fairytale ending and we’re maybe just not quite right for each other, and besides which what the fuck am I doing even considering throwing myself headlong into a relationship when what I wanted (and probably really need) is to just be single at least for a while; find my feet, find a fucking house for Christ’s sake! Priorities woman – someone slap me round the face right now!
Anyway he seems like a nice person, I could use as many friends and allies as I can get right now so why do I feel so scared that he might turn out to be a dick – I’ve been through that before in the dating game and getting rejected when you got your hopes up is a really shitty thing to experience. I don’t want to be feeling like a hurt, humiliated, heartbroken 16 year old at my age, particularly not during this stressful time and the point at which I am feeling so insecure about anyone ever finding me attractive again.
So I’m going along tomorrow to meet him as a friend and nothing more. If something more happens then I’ll go with the flow, if it doesn’t look like what I thought it was – actually hoped it was – then I’ll console myself that this was just a week long blip and attempt to carry on as before – it came out of the blue, it can go back into the blue.