Maybe Not

Nov 15, 2014 by

“There’s a game in the world, a little bit of cat and mouse, with the boys and the girls; and if I had to ante up, I’d bet on the birds, ’cause they don’t have to get caught up with the boys and the girls and a little game of cat and mouse.”

Let’s Fall in Love, Mother Mother

 

          I’ve read a few articles this week about “almost boyfriends” and why they need to go. I wouldn’t consider the guy I cried about at the Eiffel Tower an almost coffee date, let alone an almost boyfriend; however, I find these articles relatable and motivating. What I like most about them is that they focus on having higher standards for yourself, i.e. a real boyfriend. One in particular, 4 Ways to Know if you Should Break Up with your Almost Boyfriend,” had a point that stuck with me: “You deserve to be called ‘girlfriend’ in public, and for your [significant other] to feel proud and unashamed to announce it.” It wasn’t its obvious message that I should find a guy that is proud of me that made this line stand out. Of course I want someone that brags about me to his friends. What I liked about it is that it made me consider my own sense of pride. Not only do I deserve a boyfriend that is proud of me, I deserve a boyfriend that I am proud of.

          This revelation led to a flood of thoughts about what it would be like to call the guy I cried about at the Eiffel Tower my boyfriend. The first feeling that came to mind was embarrassment. (I’m on an epiphany roll with regard to him lately. Round of applause, please.) Frankly, I’m embarrassed just for having developed feelings. He has good qualities, which I used to justify being strung along as his backup plan, but how a guy treats a girl he ultimately isn’t interested in pursuing is a better demonstration of his character than how he treats one he wants. I want a guy that treats all girls, all people, whether he wants something from them or not, with respect. Remembering that basic requirement for human decency turned my hope of ending up with this guy into a source of shame, like I dropped my standards simply by having an interest.

          My expectations used to be higher than almost. I didn’t want potential; I wanted an actual, tangible, kissable boyfriend. While I was jumping through hoops for no prize, I lost sight of that. I followed mere crumbs of attention like a mouse following a cheese trail to a trap. That’s what almost is: a chase to disappointment. It’s a game. It’s a less-than. It’s a shortfall. If that’s how almost is defined, what did that make me to him? A maybe. An if-he-has-time. A when-he’s-bored. Now, I’m choosing to be a no: a no-chance, a not-happening, a not-his. And if I’m a no, he’s a nothing, because I don’t want almost. I can’t be proud of almost. I can’t be proud of myself with almost.

Happiness Tip: Stop hoping for all from almost.

 
Previous: Time + Happiness > Money Next: Ex Talk Resuscitates Date
 

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