Three Strikes, He’s Out

About a year and a half ago, I’d met a 49-year-old guy on Tinder that seemed nice. He wasn’t the type that I would normally go for, but everyone kept telling me to try something different. So I did, but the result wasn’t any better.

Since I’m a really outdoorsy person, we agreed to go fishing on the first date – and Three Strikes was supposed to teach me how to fish. I had bought a new purple fishing pole (my favorite color) and hadn’t been able to use it. We met at a loading dock and went off on his boat. He was very personable and I felt safe, but I wasn’t sure if the attraction was there. He talked a lot about his mother, which should have been a red flag. Either way, I’m up for having fun and making friends if nothing more is there. We weren’t out for very long before the clouds moved in and moved us out of the water very quickly. By the time we got to the dock, it started pouring, so we sat in his truck to wait it out so we could retrieve the boat and our belongings inside.

What I didn’t know was that Three Strikes had left my brand new fishing pole on the dock instead of leaving it in the boat, and someone stole it. He was very apologetic, and I said no big deal, it can be replaced. He claimed he’d replace it, and I didn’t have a doubt that he would. We hugged goodbye and kept in touch.

On the second date with Three Strikes, he was on his way out of town, and we met at a cafe for lunch. Something I ordered gave me a sudden allergic reaction. I still don’t know what caused it, but it was a scary feeling that I had to let subside. Three Strikes seemed understanding, but then he said something really freaking stupid. He asked me if I was sure it wasn’t menopause, because of my age. WTF.

At the time I think I was only 43 or 44, but I looked at him like he had three heads and told him that I wasn’t quite up there yet. I thought it was rude for him to even suggest that, especially since he really knew nothing about me, but I still wasn’t feeling well enough to process it. I told him I know my body, and I know the difference between an allergy attack and something hormonal. I forgave him, since I figured most men say stupid things to women anyway.

The third strike came shortly after the menopause comment. Three Strikes, always coming from out of town or leaving and seemingly elusive, decided to stop by my place to say hi. It was probably 80 degrees outside, and I may not have had my a/c running, but I had fans and was comfortable indoors. However, I was dressed appropriately in shorts and a tshirt for the weather; he was in jeans and a long sleeved shirt. We were chatting (probably about his mother lol) and drinking a beer. He started sweating profusely and suddenly had to leave to let out his dog. As he was walking out the door, he said, “Your house is really hot.” I was a little taken aback by his comment, because it just came out of the blue. Again, I didn’t process his comment right away, but once he left I realized I should have suggested he was going through menopause.

After that, I decided that Three Strikes was enough. Not only did he never replace my fishing pole as promised (even after telling me he’d bought one), but his insulting comments were red flags. There was no physical attraction whatsoever at that point, and we hadn’t even kissed. Not a loss. He texted me a couple of months later, but I’d already deleted his number and had to ask who he was. When he sent a selfie on his boat, I never responded and never heard back from him again.

How Long Does it Take to Heal from a Breakup?

I read that for every year of a relationship, it takes that many months to get over. Other articles I’ve read have said that it can take six weeks, and still others have said 18 months. Well, none of them have been correct so far. It hasn’t quite been a year yet for me, and sometimes I feel like I’m going to lose my frigging mind. I bounce back and forth between “I’m over this for good, now I can move on”… to “I still don’t understand and I want answers so I can move on.” I don’t know how else to force myself to forget about a certain person or make those thoughts go away. Here I was thinking I’m finally done and can be myself again … YAY!!! … and quickly reminded that I’ve brought up the subject too many times to be truly healed and over something. Yes, it sucks to hear the awful truth, but it is what it is.

Some breakups are easy to heal from, especially when you’re just sick of that person’s shit or never felt that close to them to begin with. Others, not so much – like when you know you were in love and you have no closure and/or it ended abruptly. The other day when I wrote this blog about OC, I was in a good mood and felt like I had clarity and was truly over everything. But then I saw him in town again yesterday and felt angry and hurt all over again. WTF is wrong with me? I keep thinking to myself.

Then today I was reading something written by Shannon Kaiser‘s “Find Your Happy Daily Mantra Deck”. It was card number 17, and it read:

“I am compassionate with myself. It takes time to heal.”

She explains that it’s basically a grieving process and even though others may tell you that you need to get over something, to follow your true self and trust what you know is best for you.

I mean, I’m the only person on earth that truly knows how I feel inside and how I felt about that person, and those feelings went deeper than I knew could happen. The only thing I can do, I suppose, is to just force myself to get out of the house and do all of the things I used to do prior to and during the time we were together. Be more active, workout more, eat better, write more, etc… I guess now it’s just finding that motivation to do so.

Another Dating Chapter Done

If you have read my first book, “Unheard,” you’ll understand the type of mindfucking I had to deal with as a child. As an adult, I guess I have been attracted to what I know, even though it’s not what I want and I don’t necessarily recognize it. But now I think I do.

It has taken me several months to get over OC, and I know I am for sure done with my feelings for him, except maybe feelings of disgust. I suppose I was more obsessed with the idea of finding out why things ended the way they did (a text without any explanation) that I was blinded to the fact that he’s a narcissistic mindfuck. What happened recently resulted in me finally seeing that lightbulb finally shine.

I’ve been on Bumble, mostly bored, because I really never meet anyone in person from there. The other day, OC’s face showed up. I saw that he had updated his profile to his current age but still fails to be truthful about his marital status (claims to be single but has never filed for divorce). Just for the hell of it, I swiped right on his, not imaging he’d do the same. Three days later, we matched up. I was shocked. I don’t know if it was a mistake or what, but he had an opportunity to unmatch it, which he did not. I had no intention of ever dating him again, because I no longer trust him; I just wanted answers. He’s had ample opportunity to apologize for being a complete douche to me and give me the truth I deserve. I thought maybe this time I’d have it. I got the answer, alright.

Since women have to be the first to initiate conversation on the Bumble app, I took the opportunity to only say, “Well this is a surprise.” He had 24 hours to reply or the app automatically unmatches. I know for certain he saw my message, but he didn’t respond. It really aggravated me that after all of the shit he put me through, he would take the time to match with me and never even say boo. I asked if he was just playing games again… no reply, which was my answer. The fucker is playing games with me, I thought. How rude and immature and unnecessary! What kind of a person does that?? A narcisicistic asshole!

Once I realized he was playing some mindfuck game with me, I decided enough is enough with me allowing this person to screw with my head and emotions. About three hours prior to the app automatically unmatching us, I deleted him.

It’s exactly what I needed to do in order to make myself feel better and move onto the next chapter of my life. I instantly felt liberated that I had finally taken control of the situation, and I felt a huge sense of relief that I had been yearning for for several months. It was like a weight lifted off of me, and I can feel that lost part of myself coming back. And he can shove his man-child games right up his ass, because I deserve a hell of a lot better than that.

Dealing with Abandonment in Relationships

Looking back, I suppose I’ve always had some type of abandonment issue. If you’ve ever read my book, “Unheard,” you’ll have a general idea of my childhood experiences with abandonment. Beyond that book, I had never written much about my adult life, and writing helps me to examine things that I have played over and over throughout my life.

I moved to the Florida Keys in 2003 and was told by a family member that my father thought I had moved there to “become a lesbian.” This was a surprise to me, considering I’ve only dated men and believe that no one just “becomes a lesbian.” I thought that was absurd and ignorant, as it only went to show that my father knows absolutely nothing about me, nor does he bother to care enough to ask me a thing about my life. In fact, the last time we spent any time alone together was when I was about 12 years old.

My father hasn’t spoken to me verbally or seen me since my grandmother’s death in 2003 – and currently, we only live about 10 miles apart. I can only guess it’s because I don’t live the lifestyle that he would choose for me – even though I’ve done nothing wrong – and he just assumes untrue things about me. Religion has played a huge part in this, which is why I have rejected religion since I was a teenager. My father and I don’t share the same beliefs, and I do believe that my stepmother is an extremely huge influence on his decision making or lack thereof. The reason I partly blame her is because my invitations, addresses, and the same phone number I’ve had for 15 years have always been “lost”. The last time I heard from my father was in 2007 when I sent a wedding invitation that he declined. I never even received a card. And to top it off, he has also avoided his first grandchild, my daughter, all of these years.

Bringing all of this into consideration, I can see that many of the relationships I’ve had over the years have replayed the theme of abandonment. It seems to have either gone that way or the complete opposite – the suffocating type. I have yet to find that happy middle with anyone, and now that I see things for what they are, it’s difficult for me to allow myself to get close to anyone.

After reading this article, “The Five Signs of Adults with Abandonment Issues” – I recognize that I exhibit all five of these signs. I know I have insecurity issues at times, but I never understood why – and people have commented to me and often question me about this. I spend a lot of time alone, more so than most people and a lot more than most people think, especially since my divorce. I’ve made some pretty bad decisions or started having panic attacks after being dumped (“heightened emotional response”) or rejected in some way – or even having thoughts of being dumped or rejected. I definitely have commitment issues and fear getting too close – or quite the opposite of attaching to someone too soon, only to get dumped.

I mean, I always knew there was something wrong with me and felt like no one would ever love me, but this really clears up a lot. Wow, do I have a lot of work to do, but how do I fix these things? At least for now, I’m glad I can recognize these traits.

Dating Mr. Disappointment

Expectations lead to disappointments, so I’ve decided that there’s no point in looking forward to anything anymore, especially when it comes to the world of dating. I have pretty much had it with broken promises and being stood up. This also comes from friends that make plans and cancel at the last minute or don’t bother to show up. How inconsiderate of someone else’s time! So I have stopped making plans with anyone in my life that does this to me.

Recently, someone that lives a distance from me that I’d been very interested (and hopeful) in meeting came onto me very strong. It was flattering, and we tried to plan a week to meet up. Supposedly, his work or something got in the way of things that week, so I offered to meet him at the halfway point across the state at a yearly event I thought we’d both enjoy. I had free tickets, and he agreed to meet me. A few days later, he suddenly wasn’t sure if he’d be able to meet. And then he just blew me off altogether, so I ended up telling him I’d find someone else to go with, because I don’t need bullshit in my life. I haven’t heard from him since, and he’s even stopped liking my Facebook and Instagram posts.

On the day we were supposed to meet and do some fun activities, he posted something on Facebook about having mimosas with people. Nice. Now I will be sure to remove him from my social media. Perhaps I will tag him on this post so he knows how I really feel.

If someone can’t meet me halfway, then fuck ’em. I’m not going out of my way for a man that clearly doesn’t know how to make a commitment and just gets my hopes up only to be let down in a big way. Not only do I not have time for that crap, I don’t deserve it.

The Worst Kayaking Date

Prior to my last post, I met a guy at the beach while looking for seaglass. He was my age, had grown kids, and liked to make creative things, so I felt we might have some common ground. We spoke about kayaking and made a date to do it the following week.

When the day finally arrived, he couldn’t get the kayak on his car, and he canceled at the last minute, so I decided I’d just go to the beach instead. I was a little frustrated with his lack of communication and planning. Then about an hour later he said he was on his way. I was confused as to what he was talking about since everything was by text, and his communication was unclear. He’d borrowed a truck to take the kayak. He had to come to my house to pick up my kayak, but asked me to drive my own car, because the truck was literally full of garbage and didn’t have enough room for me.

We launched at a place near my house, found an island to eat lunch and listen to music. At some point he made it clear he wanted to have sex with me, but that wasn’t going to happen. I mean, we hadn’t even kissed, and he was just being… well, weird. He decided he wanted to leave the island shortly after. I had to pee in the woods before loading up, and when I came back out, he was gone. He totally left me, and even by the time I rounded the corner, he was clear out of sight. So he must have really been hauling ass. By the time I paddled back to the launch area, his truck was gone. I wasn’t sure how in the hell I was getting my kayak back to the house, so I just paddled to a nearby sandbar and slammed a few beers while figuring out what to do.

Then he texted me. Said someone stole his kayak. I said well that sucks, but thinking this is karma for ditching me. I tried to ask what happened, where was he when it happened, because his truck was gone by the time I came back. He said he went to use the bathroom, and when he came out it was gone. I suggested making a police report, but I don’t think he ever did. I managed to shove my kayak into my car and hoped I made it home safely.

The following day, he started sending me text messages accusing me of stealing his kayak. I literally laughed out loud, and said with what, my magical powers? I reminded him I was still paddling and he’d left me on the island. He tried calling me, but I was driving and let it go to voicemail. He was still accusing me of stealing his kayak. I couldn’t understand why in the hell he could even think it was possible. Then he said he had my neighbors check their video surveillance and a car that looked like mine had a green kayak like his hanging out of it. I said good luck with that, but I have no reason to steal your cheap kayak and could barely get my own kayak home. Besides, why would I suggest filing a police report if I stole the damn thing? I realized he was total batshit crazy.

He didn’t stop with the accusations. He even went as far to suggest I planned to steal it by having someone else do it. I said that’s ridiculous, and I’m not going to argue anymore so don’t contact me again. He kept contacting me and I eventually blocked him. Thankfully, I never ran into him again!

The Most Boring Kayaking Date

Sometime last year, prior to meeting Orange Crush, I met someone that lived a few streets from me. I wasn’t sure if it was a good idea or not to try to date someone so close, but it sure made it convenient. We only saw each other a few times anyway. He was too young for me and incredibly boring. After the second meet up, I didn’t hear from him for about a month. When I did hear from him, he told me he had an extra spot open for someone to go on a kayaking trip with him to Marco Island… and everything was paid for. I didn’t ask too many questions about details, but it sounded like it might be fun. (At this point, I had been on two dates with OC.)

Since he said he had “an extra spot,” I had assumed there would be other people going. It wasn’t until the drive there that I learned we would be the only two on the trip. Of course, I had to ask the details of why there was this extra spot. It turns out he was actually dating someone that he had previously told me were only friends, but it was short lived, and they broke up. Interesting, I thought.

The 7-hour drive mostly consisted of catching up, with me asking most of the questions and initiating conversation. It was also seven hours of listening to country music, because he didn’t seem to like anything else. Now, don’t get me wrong – I like country music, but not for seven freaking hours. The only music that played that I really liked was Chris Stapleton. I was going to scream if I heard “Buy Me a Boat” for the umpteenth time.

The trip went nothing like I’d expected or hoped. The first evening was fine, and he was on his best behavior, but that changed the following day. Between the weather and him having us do all of the things he wanted to do, I didn’t get to experience kayaking to an island or somewhere that we’d talked about. Then he began doing some things that really pissed me off – just immature, rude things. For example, we had to put our kayaks in from a dock during low tide, so it was difficult to maneuver without tipping over. He helped put them in the water, I helped hold his kayak so he could get in. But when it was my turn to get in, he thought it was okay to paddle away from me and leave me struggling to get in on my own. I thought that was a dick move.

When we got back, we’d planned to find a place to eat. But he was also acting very strange and played on his phone – on Bumble, no less! He said he was trying to find someone else to hang out with us (another female), and I thought that was incredibly rude. When we went out to eat, he sat in the front of the Uber we called. Another dick move.

At that point, I felt pretty trapped. I was 3 hours away from my closest relatives and 7 from my own home. I just wanted to leave. I ended up paying for my own dinner that night, because I wanted nothing more from this asshole, and he’d already made some snide comments about paying for something. And then he asked me to pay for the Uber ride back – and again sat in the front seat! We’d discussed doing something after dinner, because it was still early, but when we got back to the room, he’d changed his mind. He was still playing on Bumble, and I guess maybe he got mad that someone he was talking to didn’t want to meet. By then, I’d had enough of his bullshit, and I asked him why in the hell did he even invite me if he’s trying to hook up with other women and act like a dick to me. I left to walk down to a bar around the corner. I was gone for a few hours, and he started texting me all concerned and apologizing.

When I got back to the room, he spent the rest of the night playing on his phone. The next morning, he’d planned an offshore fishing trip in which I was super glad I didn’t go, because they got back late, he caught nothing, and it was chilly that day – plus there was no canopy on the tiny boat. We had to leave that afternoon, and I couldn’t wait. It was mainly seven excruciating hours of listening to country music and silence. After he dropped me off, he hugged me, I thanked him, and we never contacted each other again. That evening, I had my third date with OC.