This started out as a rant intended for my blog. I had such fun writing it that I decided to share. At the suggestion of my good friend, mentor and accomplished author, I have made some small revisions to clarify certain facts.
When I left my ex husband, I was fed up. I’d endured his verbal, emotional and financial abuse for 23 years and he still didn’t have a clue. As I grew and matured through being a newlywed, a mother, a business woman and his wife, he whined because I was changing. My spiritual walk became a very large thorn in his side and he began trying to interfere with any growth on my part or our son’s parts. It was as if he thought our growth took something from him.
I’m certain now that I married him for all the wrong reasons, but then, I wouldn’t be the first human being to do that. The reality is that he made the same mistake. I did get two great sons out of the deal and a wealth of experience, so I chalked it up to the learning process, cut my losses and got out of the relationship with my sanity intact.
The divorce has been final for almost nine years. Since I left him, I’ve discovered that I am a lot stronger than I look, that I’m still capable of love and commitment (although my experience with him could have prevented that), and that I really do know what I want out of life.
To ease myself back into the single life, I placed profiles on numerous web venues so I could meet people and perhaps start something in the relationship arena. I didn’t have the means or the desire to get out and about for recreation, and it’s no fun doing it alone, so I ventured onto the net. I’ve met many great men as a result, but the undesirable ones far outweigh the worthwhile possibilities. I have written many lines of text outlining my personality and thought process. I’ve tried to refrain from the “grocery list” of desirable traits in a potential beau because, truthfully, the only thing I really want in a man is for him to be self-aware, forward-looking and honest with himself (and therefore honest with me). Everything else is just a matter of chemistry.
The trouble with writing all these profiles is that few read them. There are those who have and of this group, most have become great friends. Good conversation is like gold. But, based on the other individuals, I’ve come to the conclusion that perhaps I’m just too damn tired and should take a break and rest or focus on more fulfilling things. Perhaps get out more. I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired.
I'm tired of trolls who would be kings. Men of this caliber lurk under bridges and are rulers of their domain. They only have one view of the world from under there and believe their world is how it is everywhere. These types strike me as oversized spiders. They could easily spin a beautiful web and when I touch it, pounce at the vibration, latch onto me with their mandibles, suck the life out of me, leave me for dead and then say it's my fault for getting caught in the web in the first place. I'm tired.
I'm tired of emotionally unavailable men. These are truly desirable good men, but silly bitches have lied to, cheated on and taken advantage of them so much that they have become jaded and encapsulated themselves and their hearts with a fortress. They take stock in (wallow in?) the hurt every day and with their microscopes and magnifying glasses inspect you so closely looking for flaws, that they often fail to see you as a whole person. They effectively break you down into little pieces that they have spread out before them like a CSI lab. Even a woman with honorable motives can't get in because the walls are too damn high. Even when they see she's been hurt as they have and therefore would never duplicate the behavior, especially with someone she cared about, they just aren't motivated to put it on the line again. The risk is too high, the memory too painful and the idea of a repeat is enough to keep them immersed in their work or hobbies. They live in the gray area. It's comfortable there. There is one in this category that I felt was worth the effort and the wait, but I have accepted his interest as purely platonic. We talk frequently and can relate on many levels. Maybe I am the yin to his yang and fall into the emotionally unavailable category myself. I’m being patient because I understand that nothing worthwhile is ever easy, but I’m tired.
I'm tired of men with marriage on their mind. These guys are so busy looking for someone, anyone to be with that their behavior verges on stalking. They want a mama to cook for them, clean the house, do their laundry and kiss the boo-boo and tell them everything's OK. They want a comfort zone where they can stagnate and feel like they have accomplished something. It seems that they want it right now, without the benefit of earning that kind of commitment from a woman. Many times their desire for a wife is so strong that even before you get to meet them in person, they are talking marriage. The stench of desperation is all over them and I flee from it as I would from a rotting corpse. Somebody please get these guys some therapy.
I'm tired of young bucks who think that because I'm in my 50s that if they show me some attention, my legs will magically open wide for them and they can sample my sexual skills that have been fine-tuned over time and 23 years of practice with my ex. I say “young bucks” because although they are not all young men, the mentality is quite infantile. I’ve seen men in their 60s with the same attitude. What they fail to realize is that I will not waste these gifts on an inexperienced novice or a cocky old-head who is only interested in the act and not the person. I am most heinously tired of these.
I'm tired of the material man. Some men with money and "things" are so accustomed to women chasing after them that they are offended when you aren't impressed by their goods. Truthfully, I could care less about what's in your pocket. I want to know what's in your soul and in your brain. Are you so busy reading your press clippings that you've stopped growing and improving? Do you think you've arrived and therefore don't have to put forth any effort to do anything else? If you have true interest in me, it should reveal itself. Seems to me these fellows are only interested in themselves. Almost every one I’ve encountered is concerned about “gold diggers” but they attract this type by flaunting their “bling,” then can’t grasp why a woman of substance isn’t interested. In my view, it’s the gold digger he really needs because her mind functions similar to his.
I'm tired of men who want to keep all their options open. The one thing about these men is at least they know what the hell they want out of life. You truly know where you stand with them. I am not the type of woman who can be in your rotation, though. If I find you interesting, I want to explore friendship, do stuff together and at some point, if we are feeling each other, take it to another level. I don't need you to contact me every couple of weeks and say, "Hey, I'm in the area, let's grab a bite to eat," but I have to drive 30 miles through the hood to get to you after dark. Then, afterward, you expect a little romp in the hay since you’ve done your part by calling and buying me dinner. Ain't gonna happen.
I'm tired of complacent men. These are tired of the rat race, but unwilling to do anything about it. They haven't had any ambition since they were 22 and aren't looking to get any. They have a job and want a woman with a job so they can pay the bills, put a roof over their heads and food on the table. When it comes to stepping outside the box and making something happen together, they are afraid.
I’m tired of the control freak. This one is the cruelest of all; the true spider. He comes on strong with charm and attention, but pays zero attention to your thoughts, feelings, words or needs. He believes he knows what’s best for you and that you can’t possibly think for yourself. He professes his desire for an independent woman of strength, but if you show any chutzpah, he will run, screaming, “Beware the bitch,” all the way into the sunset. If you show him kindness and give him an inch, he thinks he’s a ruler.
The whole point of this rant is that I've decided to just love myself and not worry about having anyone else do it. If a man is TRULY interested in me for ME, he will exhibit that interest. I don’t mean just call frequently, I mean open his mouth and say it or if that’s difficult, at least send me a card that says it. Even if he’s afraid to make a serious play for my affection, at least I know I’m on his radar, that he cares for me, that he is interested enough to want me to take myself off the market and be exclusive to him while he’s growing. Few women are willing to do that, so perhaps they think keeping the feelings inside is best. The stalkers, runners, excuse makers, tap dancers, disappearing acts, nonchalant ones, jokers, desperados, controllers and little boys in old men’s clothes have begun to chip away at my last nugget of patience. I think I’d like to save that nugget for a man deserving of it.
Yes, I guard my heart, too. But I'm not afraid to put it out there again for someone who is on the same page as me and willing to work as a team for something worthwhile. Does such an entity still exist?
Copyright Iva Lawson
March 4, 2006
REVISED: November 5, 2011