I kind of had an epiphany yesterday while driving home from work. The ideal “MAN”…from society’s perspective–strong, independent, emotionless. A person who is rock solid and can do anything they set their mind to and has no worries about their feelings ever getting in the way.
But that’s a bunch of bullshit and I’m speaking from personal experience as well as observing others.
You can make fun of me all you want, but I watch that show Naked and Afraid on tv. Do you know who has the hardest time with their team’s success? The military men… especially Navy SEALS. Why? They aren’t team players and they try to do everything on their own until the team fails. They usually drive their partners away emotionally as well by not being supportive of them when they’re mentally and emotionally drained. This may be fine when someone is mission-oriented but romantically speaking, this is a recipe for disaster.
Up until very recently, I have been, for the most part, a very emotionless person. Having lost my mom, I learned to stuff those feelings down deep and keep it all to myself. My feelings would come out in my writing, but as far as actually voicing them, I kept them to myself. I had to be mentally “tough”. I am also very independent and I tend to avoid asking for help or asking others to join me, etc. If they wanted to they could but I had the mindset that I would do it all myself.
The problem is, a relationship involves a strong emotional connection…and your partner also needs to feel wanted. So what happens when society’s perfect man tries to fall in love? He fails miserably, just as I did. Eventually your partner gives up because she doesn’t feel wanted and doesn’t feel like her feelings were ever taken into consideration.
I had tried to be better with Amanda but I also was trying to be the “perfect” man which was counterproductive to our relationship…and she finally broke.
It all hit me after thinking about that last episode of Naked and Afraid and how these “perfect men” were the ones struggling so badly.
Amanda left for vacation this week…went with her mom to go visit her aunt. We’ve been apart many times before and I was always unphased. She would miss me terribly but I’d just shrug it off cuz it was no big deal to me. But this time was different. I missed HER terribly.
It was just like that quote says…
“You don’t know what you have, ’til it’s gone.”
We broke up a month ago…and I went through some initial heartbreak, then numbness…or so I thought. I thought I could cope with losing her being emotionless and all. But with her leaving, showing me what it’s like when she’s really gone for good… opening the bathroom cabinet and seeing most of her stuff gone. Man, that hurt. I’m not numb. I’m still heartbroken. Plus I’ve come to realize that all this time she’s been chipping away at the wall I’d built just trying to get me to open up and my stubborn ass just never would. Now that she’s gone, albeit temporarily, I’m realizing that the wall has begun to fall down and I’m seeing the damage I’ve done and realizing I wasn’t being the perfect man. I may have been mimicking the perfect soldier, but I was failing as a lover and the perfect man needs to be a perfect lover not a soldier.
I just hope it’s not too late to repair all the damage…because if it is, I fear that wall may get built back up as I try to cope with losing her.