Thursday, October 21, 2004

Sentries at the Gate

I've reached the conclusion (again) that I am emotionally stunted and way too guarded for my own emotional well-being. I am once again driven to this conclusion by a random confluence of events over the past few weeks which, when examined in their totality, make the conclusion inescapable.

1: I will never actually date anyone seriously because I have internal triggers which will make this impossible.

I actually flirted with a guy on Tuesday night. Frankly, I just did it for fun. That and I was probably a little less than sober as I did, even though we weren't even really supposed to be drinking that night. The flirting consisted exclusively of some arm-touching and some back-fondling. At some point he even gave a kind a back massage. That was really about it.

I honestly don't expect that this guy will even remotely make an effort to get in touch with me again, even though I gave him a business card that bears my cell phone number. Why not, you ask? Because by this point in my life I'm hard-wired to believe that I repulse gay men -- or at least I do if they ever get a chance to stop and actually think about me. His having left the party has given him a chance to think. Ergo, I'll never hear from him again.

2: I keep far too much distance from even some of my closest friends.

Don't get me wrong, I love my friends dearly. There's nothing I wouldn't do for my closest ones. But I don't expect the same in return. Heck, at times I'll literally feel like it's simply wrong for me to impose on anyone, including my closest friends. My fiercely independent streak takes hold and asserts itself to an irrational end. (I've sort of blogged about this before.)

Thus, making new friends is difficult for me. No, wait, let me clarify that: Meeting new people isn't too terribly difficult; it's the making new friends part that's trickier. You can meet new people all the time; it's the intimacy that comes with making them your friend that's tricky. And I find that this is a difficult endeavor for me.

I've met several great people in recent months whom I truly consider wonderful people whom I'd love to be able to hang out with more. Yet each of them, as is to be expected, has their own sets of friends, which include their own shared sets of memories/habits/hobbies/rituals, of which I, of course, have no part. So when I say to my newfound acquaintances, "Hey, you guys actually do that? I've always wanted to! I'd love to join you sometime...." it feels like I'm inviting myself into a social scene that doesn't necessarily want me there. All too often, this feeling is reinforced when those people actually do fail to include me when they make their plans.

3: I can't compose a personals ad to save my life.

Okay, this may sound stupid, but it's true. I've tried. It's quite difficult to put your life in 200 characters or less in a way which will actually attract attention. Whenever I try, I come across as trite at best, boring at worst. Is that who I am? Is that how people perceive me? Ugh.

What's worse, composing a personals ad forces me to set aside a more powerful impulse, viz., the impulse to get ballistic, and inappropriately bitter. Even if I find myself at a personals ad site with the best of intentions, and in a good mood, with the intention of composing a catchy ad for myself, I find myself overtaken with the desire to just type something like, "I'm not your type. There's nothing to see here. Move along. Get going now. Why did you even bother to click on this profile? Have fun. G'night now."

It's a good thing I'm doing okay professionally. At some point I'll just get a dog and call it a Life.


p.p. said...

Holy shit, that was depressing. Honestly, I doubt even you seriously believe what you wrote. You think you "repulse gay men?" Why? Unless, you are way too fat or have a penis coming out of your forehead, I think you should be fine.

I know zero about the "gay scene," but here goes: Why don't you call that guy? Don't wait for his call -- you make the first move. If he says, no, fuck him. One less loser you have to concern yourself about.

Don't worry about making friends. That will eventually happen. What matters is being dependable, funny, and caring. The rest will fall into place. Instead of inviting yourself to their scene, why not invite them to yours? This way, they are interviewing for you, not you for them. Does that make sense?

I have nothing on personal ads; I've never used them. Simply, be yourself. Don't exaggerate or sound macho or cool -- it's too transparent. Here’s an idea, write it as if writing your blog (just not this post). :)

Sorry, if I just seemed preachy.

You sound like an intelligent, goal driven, funny/sarcastic guy – all very sought-after characteristics.

Don’t over-analyze things. Just go with the flow.

My two cents.

Matthew said...

I mostly agree with Peter here, although he really should watch his "fat" remarks, at times. As a gay man whose battled with his weight over the years, I can definitely attest to the fact that it can hamper one's confidence when it comes to the dating scene.

What do you think is the source of your hang-ups, Dennis? You've basically relayed to us some random events, and how you feel/think about them, but there's got to be an underlying cause for *why* you are this way. If it's too personal, that's cool. Just curious.

Not sure if this gives you any hope, or not, but this post of yours sounds *just like* me about 5 - 6 years ago. I'd been single my whole life, could never find the right guy, had guys that I *did* like distance themselves from me, sex was infrequent, I was scared to be bold enough to seriously try dating someone, I didn't want to 'impose' on my friends, and I just felt lonely, neglected and miserable (not sure if you're feeling *quite* that bad, but oh well). Much of this had to do with my weight, but there were other factors, as well.

Finally, I made a personals' ad, and that brought me the love of my life. The whole point of me telling you all this is to say, "Hang in there." And don't be *too* overly-analytical. I agree with Peter: You seem to be a nice guy with a good head on your shoulders. Feel free to work on any issues you think you may have, but don't put yourself down. You don't deserve it.


p.p. said...


I know what it means to be overweight. I had to battle that shit too. I was 189lbs once; so, I know the feelings associated with it. Just my sarcastic nature at play.

My apologizes if I offended.

Dennis! said...

Wow, sorry if I was a downer! Didn't mean to be... although I guess I can see how that's the way it turned out.

Thanks for your comments.

I'm still planning on getting a dog, though. :P