Our current relationship status doesn’t guarantee us happiness or happily ever after. The status has to be lived in real time. Many of us are in relationships acting as if we’re single at selective moments. And many of us are single… pretending to be attached also at selective moments. And many of us are simply in undefined relationships…playing it by the other persons level of contact…or mood…or how much sex we can get or make ourselves available for…under the guise that this is what an exclusive relationship is.
I’m not saying two people have to sit each others feelings or constantly define their union. What I’m am saying, is that it’s OK to spend time with the people you like to spend time with too…away from the definitions and labels. It’s ok to be an adult in your own happiness, which may include openly seeing multiple people, while dating one person. Until you and that person discuss being more to each other, and define concrete purpose to each other, you are free to enjoy your time with other adults.
Some days ago I ran into a male associate whom I hadn’t seen in some years. During our quick catch-up he asked if I were seeing anyone. I said yes…long distance. He chuckled, reached in his suit breast pocket and handed me his business card. He told me to call him when I’m free for lunch or dinner and drinks. And he moved on…eye-ing me in the face. Now had he said that first, then handed his card I more than likely wouldn’t have taken it. But still, did he not respect what I just informed him? He didn’t give me a chance to deny him. But that doesn’t mean he had sinister motive either. I still exist with my own mind and purposes…but I wondered still. What if I hadn’t said long distance?
Recently, I’ve also observed that when I tell people I’m dating long distance…it reflects back as sorrowful or desperate. “Oh that must be hard for youuu.”…or…”How often do you see each other??”…or…”You’re not worried about him cheating?…you know he cheatin right?”…or “Wow there’s plenty of men here who would definitely date you…what made you go long distance?” I mean they wanna know everything! I have no answers. If anything…I’m left with questioning myself. It’s not like all the world knows and I just have to suck it up. But when I’m invited to events and I RSVP for one…or show as a single in a place full of adults…it just feels awkward. Few people know the details of this long distance thing…but even they seem to “forget” I’m dating someone, and regularly attempt to connect me to sorts of men.
It’s OK to want and even need definitions and labels. Your relationship isn’t for other people. But neither does it have to be a secret or undefined to the people around you. If you commit yourself to someone make sure you’re dating that person regularly and they’re committed to you, and all intents and purposes are absolute clear. You don’t want to look like a fool at any point should you be the more lovey dovey partner and want to be openly affectionate, whether online or in real life. There’s nothing more embarrassing than being publicly rejected, or to be subjected to watch other people openly flirt with your partner as if you aren’t there. Which means either they really don’t know about you or they don’t care…because your partner hasn’t created clear and concrete boundaries. People treat you how your partner speaks of you…if at all.
Annnd lastly, it’s absolutely OK to ‘not date’ or have any type of relationship with someone if you don’t see a future with them or cannot define absolute exclusivity — whether til tomorrow or years from today.