I envy people who know exactly what they want out of life and know the steps to take it. Throughout my life, I’ve flip-flopped a bit, but it usually comes back to the same basic thing: I want to teach, I want to write, I want a family. Not necessarily in that order, and sometimes one or another aspect is missing.
What I’ve recently decided, though, was that this whole idea of “knowing what I want” isn’t a set thing. It’s more fluid, on some sort of line or scale. It’s not a popular idea because there’s this belief that at a certain point you just KNOW what it is you want to do with your life. Forever! But what if you don’t?
This idea of everything has to be binary (right or wrong, black or white, gay or straight) is very confining:
- If I like to flirt, especially with more than one person, it means I’m a slut.
- If I confine my flirtation to one person, it means I’m more interested in a relationship than he is.
- If I don’t flirt at all, I’m a prude.
- If I am a teacher, I have to be a prude.
- If I am a writer, I have to be eccentric or depressed, or embracing some struggle to let the words out… (The latest of the Artist’s sense of reality…which isn’t based in my reality.)
Stop forcing me to commit to a particular way of being!!!
Let me back up for a second. I realize this is all coming out of nowhere for anyone reading this. Basically, the Artist has made another stand. He’s drawn a line in the proverbial sand, and decided for some reason that I am in the wrong and a liar. Not a liar, exactly, but I don’t put everything out in the open until he makes me angry and then some bias he is convinced I have supposedly comes out.
I know why he said that. The last time we got to this point (where we were arguing nastily with one another, the night he royally screwed me over and made me wait for several hours before he met me at the place we were supposed to meet, making me look and feel like an idiot for trusting him, and he told me that he would treat me like crap because we had become too close), the only way I could get him to acknowledge that I was speaking to him was to make a comment about how he was proving a stereotype. A racial stereotype.
Wrong thing to do, I know. In my defense, he was acting in a stereotypical, jerky way. He still is. I’ve only seen this behavior in particularly jerky males, and, more specifically, in the jerky male behavior of African American males as portrayed in certain movies. Diary of a Mad Black Woman comes to mind. You know, the jerky husband who trades his wife in for no apparent reason and then calls her basically a doormat because she didn’t put up more of a fight?
Obviously it’s not a perfect analogy. I certainly wasn’t married to the Artist. I wasn’t even sure if he was marriage material. But showing his ass again like this has proved that he really isn’t.
Not that my opinion on the matter matters much. He’s back to telling me that he doesn’t like me or want to have anything romantic to do with me, and that he wasn’t attracted to me. Still didn’t keep him from trying to sleep with me when he was feeling a little randy, but that’s just him being a guy.
Those were his words, or a bad paraphrase of his words. His actual statement was something about how, yeah he liked my boobs and my brain, so that would excite him in a sexual way, but so would someone he was actually attracted to who was dumb… Never understood that analogy (it’s from the first time he treated me like dirt).
This time around, the thing that set him off was that he decided I was being dishonest. Over text, I made a comment about his “mystical” 5 year plan. It was meant as a joke, but yeah, I do think setting a goal that says he’ll be able to make a living out of his art in a specific time frame, any time frame, is unrealistic. And not because I don’t believe in his talent! Anyone who’s kept up with this blog knows that I am in awe of his talent, and frustrated that he doesn’t push himself a little harder to make it into a reality.
When he asked me what I meant by “mystical,” it through me for a loop. I had meant it as a joke. He had asked me if I could guess what he was contemplating. In my head, I heard it in a sarcastic, joking tone. So my response had been meant in the same joking tone.
He took offense. Because he “sensed” that I meant something sinister with it; he felt I was holding back something. Holding back that I think that making a goal is silly, which is a personal opinion, to someone who occasionally seems a little overly sensitive about his work (and as an INFP, he would be sensitive about his work), seemed like a small thing to me.
Then he took it to the next level, insinuating that I was being harsh with him because he wouldn’t flirt with me.
Then when I let go of the sugar coated version, he got angry at me for not being honest sooner. And then told me that he didn’t trust me…
Does anyone remember him point blank telling me that he lied to me? Because I do. And I let it go. He explained his reasoning, and I let it go.
That doesn’t mean that I trust him 100%, especially not after the last 72 hours or so of bad behavior, which culminated in him telling me that he could cut me out of his life, no problem. He might be able to do that. That’s fine.
But I can feel the curiosity rumbling and bubbling in my belly. I don’t understand how we went from him introducing me to some key members of his family a week ago, to he wants to cut me out of his life because I told him my opinion, and he thinks I was being spiteful…
My initial thought was that he is really REALLY oversensitive about his artwork. Passion is really sexy. Not being able to handle criticism, especially criticism that isn’t really criticism, is not.
To me, it feels like he is hurt that I pointed out that he was sabotaging himself, all based on things he has told me about how he feels about his current situation.
He, like me, is reevaluating his life’s goal/dream. Because his first attempt at a “mystical” 5 year goal didn’t work, he feels that he is a failure, and consistently tells me that his work isn’t that good. The time when he won with an unfinished product? That doesn’t count for anything apparently. No matter how many times I told him that I think that shows how awesome his talent is, my opinion doesn’t matter because I’m just “humoring” him.
Obviously he doesn’t really know me yet.
And now, he’s cut me out of his life… Wow.
Well, we’ve been here before. We went through this a couple of months ago.
And then he started following me on Twitter. And then I asked him to the movies. And then fast forward a few weeks and he was introducing me to his family. His brother even made a comment that it was about time he finally met me…
And now we’re here.
Well, he was probably a distraction for me and my creative aspirations anyhow. So while I wasted a little time today thinking about what (if anything) I did wrong, I’m going to try really hard not to dwell on it. I sent him a link to this blog and told him if he wanted a full account of how I see him, he could do it by reading. For better or worse, if he does, then it will all be in the open, and he can see how little I was holding back.
Admittedly, I didn’t confront him about some of the lies we didn’t discuss (the wedding thing jumps to mind), and there are probably a few other things he will take out of context.
For instance, my disdain for racism isn’t confined to white racists. I think the more we make race an issue, the less actually gets solved. If we started acting like we were all people instead of trying to prove that one color is better, or that one group suffers more, or that one ethnic group deserves something just because of their skin color, we might actually see some changes in this country.
When we stop identifying ourselves by the color of our skin and start recognizing each other by our individual talents and abilities, we might see some actual progress. I think Chris Rock said something to that effect recently, although he definitely didn’t say it the same way because he was emphasizing how racism is still a big deal (which it obviously is, no arguments here). The point I’m trying to make is that assuming a group of people is (fill in the blank) because they are a particular race is asinine.
But that’s all for another post.
I’m just concerned that the Artist (assuming he reads it at all) will take anything I say about race out of context and assume it proves this imaginary bias he thinks I have based on a stupid comment I made when I was angry. The fact that I think he was acting in a way that proved a negative stereotype to be true doesn’t make me a racist. It just makes me an asshole for pointing it out.
And I can admit that.
Rightly or wrongly, I did the same thing with the injustice and following unpleasantness surrounding the death of Michael Brown, and he and I discussed it. At length. It was a really interesting discussion and led to a really great evening.
*Sigh* I enjoy our discussions, when we have them, but I’m not going to be treated like crap for no reason.
If there is anything else he feels I should apologize for, I’d be willing to have a civilized, grown up discussion about it. In the meantime, I’m going to go on with my life. I’m working on a couple of ideas about how to make my life into what I want it to be by balancing my wants with my responsibilities, which is something I haven’t been doing very well as of late. I’ve narrowed it down to a few key things that I want (teaching, writing, family). Now I have to figure out how to put it all together in a way that’s not going to make me miserable or broke for the rest of my life.