A conversation I wish we could have.

October 25, 2013 § 2 Comments

I have no idea where to begin.

The blinking cursor and myself are bound to become BFF’s by the end of this, as this is something that’s been trying to find a voice for nearly three months, at least.

I guess with the Texican is a good a place to start as any.  It was that merry-go-round that sparked a hundred conversations and led me to here.  For the longest time, I muted my opinion on all the dysfunction wrapped up in that.  And now you are sitting there in astonishment – “Did she just say she muted her opinion?  I don’t believe it.”
F’real.  I didn’t vocalize so many things.  See, in the number of relationships I’ve had with the opposite sex, only one has been with someone that has the same faith system as me (until recently, that is).  And it was only a couple of months long and it was not meant for marriage.  It was certainly not a mistake & it was used to show both of us where we were in need of a heart check.  As a result, I no longer believe that all relationships are destined for marriage AND that fact is 100% okay.

The local church does not communicate that.  The local church communicates that if it’s not headed for marriage to cut it off at the pass.  Do not waste anyone’s time, let him find a better fit, do what’s good for your heart.  I’m sorry, what if what’s good for my heart is to spend hours with this other, so that I might receive healing, so that he might know what’s healthy, so that Jesus might show us what is good?

Before that pile of beauty, those thoughts had never run through my head.  If a guy left, it meant he rejected you.  It meant you weren’t worthy enough.  It was heartbreaking & took recovery.

And the reason I hadn’t thought about these things and the reason I muted my opinion within whatever-we-are-labeling-the-Texican-dealio are the same.
We, the local church, avoid the topic of healthy dating.
That, frankly, is the conversation I wish we could have.

Here I was, 30 years old, with virtually ZERO idea of what it meant to be a complimentarian and be in a relationship with someone who believed the same.  Want a book about marriage and that passage in Ephesians that everyone is so up in arms about (zomg don’tevengetmestarted)?
You got it.

But, somehow there aren’t a whole lot of guidelines for folks who maybe, kind of, think they might like each other?  He’s cute!  He claims to choose Love!  I see the way he looks at me from underneath the brim of his ballcap…hey ohhhhhh, hot stuff. 😉

Sadly, as I had to learn through experience, just because a man claims to choose Love does not mean he has any idea on how to treat women.  I honestly did not know this lesson.

And so, along comes this Mexican from Texas.  His name is Marco, by the way.  You see, I thought I should not give him a name as some sort of way to protect him or avoid finger pointing because I hate that shit.  But, his name is Marco and he earned his nickname because he is a Mexican from Texas and I thought it was hilarious.  Now, you’re all caught up.
(Ha, if only.)

Off & on for nearly a year, conversations with him consumed 2-5 hours of my day.  Yes, each day.
There was never a definition.  There were never terms.  There was never a “DTR”, as we Protestants so love to call it – you know, with awkward eye contact and a whole lot of “Like”‘s and ice cream.

I became one girl in a long line standing opposite a long line of boys in what seems to be the latest trend.  These seemingly never-ending nebulous relationships with no strict parameters or definitions.  All the while her heart is hanging out there on a string and he doesn’t even see it.  Or, if he does, he simply acts like it isn’t there.
For you women who walked that whole thing with me, (sigh) thank you.

While I pray daily for healing regarding whatever-that-was and I hope he is more considerate to the girl-who-will-love-him-better-than-me, the whole thing sparked this series of conversations that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.  Turns out I wasn’t alone.  Many women have no idea what a healthy dating relationship looks like because no one talks about it.  (Point me to the “I Kissed Dating Goodbye” book.  Do it.)

Frankly, who in the heyall decided this was okay?  And why aren’t we calling it out with each other?  And why can’t we talk about it within the church?  There’s tons of material in the realm of Mark Driscoll on how men can be more manly.  A couple of weeks ago, one of our pastors called men out on how to pursue a woman during his sermon.  From the back row,  I bellowed “Puh-reach!!!”
But, who will help the women?
Who will come alongside and remind them that they are incredible, opinionated and gifted?

Just four days ago, I got called a character.  Yesterday, a friend told me that she adores how independent I am.  How little shit I take off other people.  And I just laughed.  Because in the realm of what was the Texican, I became a shy and muted girl who kept all of her opinions and feelings to herself.
I am laughing out loud as I type this.
How absolutely unhealthy.

At the end of the day, though, I wish all those conversations I had afterwards were conversations that had come before.  I still have very little idea how to be a woman who believes in complimentarianism, and chooses Love, and also runs her own game and laughs loudly.  However, I’m no longer willing to compromise myself.  I’m no longer willing to try and put myself into some sort of mold just to be in a relationship.

I hope that we can reach a place where these sorts of conversations are ok.  Doubts are allowed and hugs are, too.  Yes, the sexes are quite different, but that certainly doesn’t make one better than the other and I sincerely don’t believe that it is supposed to be so hard.

Ladies, you are beautiful.  Walk proudly, but love much.  Respect the gentlemen, for they deserve it.  But, respect who you are, too.
There are far too few days in a life to treat someone poorly.
And that includes yourself.

Sending Love & Double Stufs,
amaris

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§ 2 Responses to A conversation I wish we could have.

  • Beth says:

    Thank you for spelling Double Stuf correctly.

    I have some other thoughts about the good stuff in this post, but they’re not well-formed enough for commenting. So maybe we should coffee.

  • Dad says:

    The plain and simple fact, and I learned this after about 15 years of marriage to your Mom, is that you have to love Jesus more than anyone else, and then the other person more than your self. But, a healthy relationship is when you have two people doing that. If only one is, it’s extremely hard for the one that is doing it.
    But, be yourself, don’t put on an act, and be led by Him to the person that is willing to do that for you. Your Mom and I met where at the same time, we had decided that we were going to be ourselves plain and simple.

    I believe when I came to Charleston and picked her up for our first date, that I knew she was the one I wanted to be with the rest of my life. How could you not love someone who shows up for your first date wearing coveralls, purple tennis shoes and a purple shirt, and still look beautiful?

    The sad fact is there are not a lot of men out there willing to do this, and I’m sure that it makes frustrating for you ladies. So, guys, if you’re reading this, stand tall for Him, love her with all you have, and put yourself in the back seat.

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