The Day the Undatable Became ‘Sweetie’
I am 20. I will be 21 in 3 1/2ish months. And I have never been on a date, had a boyfriend, or even so much as held hands. I tried for a very long time to not complain about it. My Mum had one boyfriend before my Dad but he was a manipulative fuck who she doesn’t like to talk about. Her first real partner was my Dad who she met at 19. My sister, never very lucky in love finally found someone who she really cared for right before she went to university at age 18. So I told myself I wouldn’t complain out loud about still being single until I had passed the ages of my Mum and sister at the time they first found a relationship.
That time has come, and that time has gone. In 128 days I will hit the milestone of 21. If it gets to that day and I am still single I will allow myself to say the words out loud. I will voice it. Up until now I have kept my mouth shut on the subject. My fingers have danced across the keyboard and typed the words on occasion but I have never spoken them aloud. I am sick of being alone. I can’t lie – I would like to know what it is like to have a boyfriend, to hold hands, to be found attractive and goddamn it I want to know before I’m dead. People wonder why I fear being alone forever and it’s because I’ve been alone from birth until this very day in that respect. Do I not deserve to know what it feels like to be liked? I mean, like liked? Not even loved – heck I don’t know if it’s even possible to love me, but for someone to want to spend time with me simply because they like me is something I have rarely if ever experienced. Everyone I’ve tried to be friends with have left me. I just want to be liked.
In my lifetime only one guy has ever shown an interest. He was T. I met him when I began college at 16. We met on day 1, we got on, he complimented me, I began to like him. We didn’t see each other again until a week later. Then for the next four days we spent our free periods together. From the day we met we had spent only a matter of hours together but I was starting to like the guy. Two weeks to the day of meeting, T asked me out. And I blew it. I panicked. He was moving too fast and I didn’t know how to handle the situation. I liked him, but wasn’t ready to jump into relationship territory yet. And I didn’t know how to make him understand so I did the only thing my mind could think of and I said no. I turned him down. The only person who has ever wanted to be with me and I said no. I regret it now, but if I was to do it again I imagine I would end up doing the same. That was 4 1/2 years ago and now I am here, still single, and ever more frustrated about it.
I have been on Kerrang! Dating for close to a month now and in that time a few people have contacted me. Mr L has not come back to me in almost 2 weeks. I have decided he has chosen to break contact and have not tried to recontact him since. If he wants to reply and restart contact then we’ll take it from there but I’m not going out of my way to talk to someone who doesn’t want to know. I’ve spent too many hours of my life doing that very thing and look where it’s got me. I have received Winks from a number of people, half of which I hate to say are from over 40’s. But in amongst this array of creepy, rude, and somewhat hilarious attempts at attraction, one has stuck out as the obvious victor.
We have been exchanging emails now since last Thursday – only 5 1/2 days but our message history now consists of 13 pages. He is down to earth, funny, close to his family and, dare I say it, potentially likes me. He did on one occasion tell me he found me attractive and says he thinks I’m thoughtful and caring. But I know he can’t possibly know me in only 5 days. Still, it’s nice to hear it. I won’t lie, for the first time, today I did something purely because a cute guy asked me to. I went into town, actually getting out of my house (a feat in itself) and bought Call of Duty: Black Ops. He recommended it in several messages and said I should get it so we can play it together online. I decided this was a step in the right direction. £10 for the ability to play his favourite game with him? To spend some time doing something he enjoys and not just swapping text? I think that’s a fair deal. As it happens, I really like the game.
Other than my family and my best friend, I have never been given a term of endearment. My best friend calls me dear, or dearest, or lovely. My family have nicknames for me and call me the typical names like sweetheart. But never before have I been given a name like this by somebody – except in a creepy way which I won’t go into. That is until yesterday.
When M24 signed off his final email of the night, he said ‘Goodnight sweetie’ and upgraded to three x’s to end with. Every email since has ended with these same three x’s and again today he called me sweetie. I feel that this is a big moment for me. Perhaps not life changing or something to go writing home about, but in terms of my personal achievements, to have somebody call me sweetie is a first, and a not-unwelcome second.
I don’t like to get gushy over guys I like. I get annoyed at the sound of my own typing (because who do I have to tell face to face?) and I also feel maybe I curse any chance I may have had by doing so. Every time a guy appears on my radar, I tend to get too invested in it and expend an inordinate amount of energy swooning over how nice they have been to me. And time after time they have disappeared from me. So no, I won’t get gushy over M24.
But I’m not going to hide away and pretend that I’m not very excited by his inviting me to play Black Ops, or his teasing me about jinxing the weather, or his choice to call me sweetie, or his decision to email me while at work. This makes me very happy. In fact, I have been in a good mood since he replied to my first email. My face aches from grinning so much. The last time I was in a good mood for over 24 hours was early last November.
He may not stick around, and if he chooses to walk away I won’t stop him. Maybe I should. Maybe I should fight for him. But in my mind, if someone wants to walk away from me I don’t blame them. I live with myself every second of every day and I hate it here. My head is not a place that an outsider would want to spend a lot of time around. So if someone realises that and wants to leave, I wont stop them.
But if he chooses to stick around and continues to want to know me, then I’m going to try my absolute damndest to make it stay that way. People leave me, fact. I don’t know what it is I do that makes them go but it happens to everyone. Something I do must drive them away, and I don’t know how to stop it. So until that happens or until I figure out what I’m doing wrong and change, I’m going to make the most of my time with M24. He seems to want to know me, and until the day he changes his mind and turns away, I’m going to do my utmost to convince him to stay. I just hope I figure out what I’m doing wrong before I drive him away too.