Monday, February 25, 2013

Backstory: 2009-2011 - Failed romances and demotivation

2007-2009 were probably the most fertile years of my life thus far as far as dating and crushes on women were concerned.  Apart from Christa in my high school years, there was Stella, from my freshman year of college; Anne, a longtime friend of mine for whom I started developing feelings after high school; and Marie, another friend from college.

Anne was this sweet little thing, maybe 5'2" or so. She was a dancer, but she also had a lovely, enchanting voice and was skilled on the piano. The perfect girl to take home to mom and dad, but my parents loved her already since we'd all been such close friends for years.

Marie was a vixen.  She was curvaceous and vivacious and salacious. She had a real tender side too, but she also really knew how to make me feel like a man, somehow. She was a little inappropriate 90% of the time, but she was so lighthearted and hilarious about it that it didn't matter.

Stella, my freshman orientation friend, was this perfect combination of the two. On the surface, she was a cute, sweet girl, tall with great legs and beautiful hair, but as you got to know her, she would sometimes get these looks in her eyes when someone said something dirty and you knew that she was going there with it. One time, she and a friend came with me and one of my guy friends on a trip up the coast. We stopped for dinner and decided to wander the town we'd ended up in. The girls went into a dressing room and we could hear their giggles and could only wonder what they were doing.  After a bit of prying, we'd found out that they were trying on the skimpiest bikinis they could find and taking pictures in the mirror, pictures that would never see the light of day except between the two of them.  That was her.  Completely modest, but with this underground dark, playful side.  She drove me mad.

Well, in 2010, Marie got married to a really nice guy.  Total hottie too.  Can't say I blame her. I never made a move on her, which is honestly for the best. I'm glad to count her as a friend and I've loved getting to know her husband as well.

In September of 2011, Stella got married too.  I'd even made overtures a few weeks before she met this guy and was rebuffed on all accounts. I tried to remain friends, but there comes a time when a man has to admit defeat, and we haven't spoken since she got engaged.

And then, in December of 2011, Anne got married too.  My parents had the decency to badmouth her new husband, who we met when our families shared Thanksgiving dinner a few weeks before their marriage.  They called him goofy-looking, said he tried too hard to look handsome.  I think they were just trying to make me feel better, because he's a good looking guy.

So there it is.  The three post-high school women, now married to other men, who might have been the ones that I could have made it work with.  I'm genuinely happy for each of them and acknowledge 100% that they were ready for marriage before I was, and I also acknowledge that each of them, married as they are to straight men, are going to have an easier life than if they'd chosen me, a gay guy who only occasionally has attractions to women.

Just so's you know, I'm not trying to be self-deprecating here.  I've got some amazing qualities that each one of those women would be lucky to have in a husband, and I know where I have those other three guys bested. I just know that none of them were meant to be mine, as hard as it is to admit.

So that's how it is.  The girls that could have made an easy life in the church possible.

Except, it was also during 2009 and 2010 that I was probably having the hardest time with my pornography consumption (except perhaps now: I'll let you in on a secret, I'm really not doing well with it right now). At the time, I was very underemployed and undermotivated. I had dropped out of college, initially because I wanted to serve a mission, but then when the unemployment and discouragement and loneliness from being away from my friends kicked in, so did the porn consumption. I spent the better part of a year and a half working between 20 and 30 hours a week and doing absolutely nothing of value with the rest of my time.

This was probably the worst period of my life. I was listless and depressed. I saw a therapist for most of it because of the generosity of my bishop and I was taking Celexa to manage my ups and downs. It helped, but it also probably contributed a bit to my lack of motivation and did nothing to help fight the loneliness that fed my addictions. It was a rough few months and I could sense the tailspin happening. It was during this time that suicide entered my mind again, although for only very fleeting moments that were punctuated with immediate distance from the thought.

Finally, after some serious job-hopping and a lot of lameness, I decided it was time to go back to school. I reapplied to my old college and was rejected, but somehow, I found the motivation to keep looking. The only school that would accept me happened to be my last choice, but at least I had a somewhat definable future and I was looking forward to moving forward.

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