Friday, April 13, 2007

Hope Was Here

Besides us, I know of another mixed-orientation couple that is divorcing, and another that is separating. A good friend of mine is breaking up with his boyfriend of over two years. I might conclude that gay people are not equipped to be in relationships of any sort, but another close friend of mine, a straight man in a long-term straight relationship, is also breaking up with his girlfriend.

When I look into my future I would like to see myself in a happy long-term relationship, but I see a lot of things that scare me. I see a lot of gay men who (a) aren't interested in long-term relationships, (b) I wouldn't want to be with, (c) wouldn't want to be with me, or (d) some combination of the above. I see the Pandora's box I'm opening by accepting the premise that commitments can be broken, by acknowledging that divorce is possible. I fear this will make future commitments that much more difficult to keep, that much more difficult to trust they will be kept.

I would like to think that FoxyJ has better chances than I, being that Mormons are almost inherently interested in committed relationships. I wonder how many good Mormon men are available, though, and how many of them can even pretend to be in her intellectual ballpark (all I've ever done is pretend, and for the most part it's worked). Part of this concern is selfish, of course, because I don't want to be responsible for her being alone for the rest of her life, but when I allow myself to see past my narcissism I really am concerned for her happiness.

Last year when I was applying for job after job I came up with the following catch phrase to describe my greatest strength: "I am optimistic enough to believe anything is possible, and stubborn enough to make it so." Problems would surely arise, I acknowledged, but I would deal with them as I had always done. I liked seeing myself this way. I'm afraid I'm losing that naive optimism, though.

There are some things I cannot do, some things that no amount of optimism or stubbornness can control. I can choose to stay married, but I cannot choose the consequences of that decision--I cannot force myself to be happy by telling myself and everyone else how happy I am and I cannot make FoxyJ happy with a relationship from which I am emotionally withdrawn because I don't want her to see how unhappy I am. On the other hand, I cannot choose the consequences of divorce.

I would like to end this post with my usual And that's why I don't really suck and you don't suck and let's all hug, or at least something along the lines of I may not be as naive as I once was, but that doesn't mean I have to give up hope, but honestly I don't see a lot of hope lately.

11 comments:

Foxx said...

All you can do is be yourself and know what you're looking for so that when it comes around, you'll be ready. When something comes around that you're not looking for, you'll know to pass.

And, as far as your list goes, I'm sure there will be someone who will satisfy your criteria, while you satisfy theirs.

Chris said...

[unsolicited advice]
You know, maybe you shouldn't worry about finding that long-term relationship just yet. You're going through a lot Meet some new people. You might be surprised--I certainly was when I found Jed. That was nearly a year ago.
[/unsolicited advice]

Master Fob said...

Thanks for the unsolicited advice. :)

I have a hard time viewing life in little chunks rather than in one big universe-spanning mess. I'll figure it out eventually.

Chris said...

I suggest you simply look forward to having dinner with me in Seattle in a few weeks.

(Gay men are very self centered.)

:)

Edgy said...

I would also recommend not reading that much into the gay relationship breaking apart. There could be a number of factors involved, including the possibility that the gay couple came together to fulfill particular growth needs, and now that those needs have been met, it's time for them to move along. Heaven knows it's not because both of them don't want a meaningful long-term relationship and didn't try to make this one work.

Only speaking on behalf of half the couple of course . . .

Amy said...

[unsolicited AMEN to Chris' post]

Take this in chunks. I can't imagine thinking about dating yet. Deal with life bit by bit - while it might be exciting to think about dating (that's the only up part in this deal isn't it?) - it should probably not even be a blip on your radar for a looooooooong time.

[unsolicited AMEN now over, and slapping self for sticking nose in business of another - but if I ever have interesting business, you will then be entitled to give me unsolicited advice!]

Amy said...

[unsolicited AMEN to Chris' post]

Take this in chunks. I can't imagine thinking about dating yet. Deal with life bit by bit - while it might be exciting to think about dating (that's the only up part in this deal isn't it?) - it should probably not even be a blip on your radar for a looooooooong time.

[unsolicited AMEN now over, and slapping self for sticking nose in business of another - but if I ever have interesting business, you will then be entitled to give me unsolicited advice!]

Amy said...

Ohhh - so sorry my unsolicited Amen posted twice.

I'll slap myself again, for good measure.

TK said...

This may sound simplistic, but have you tried ‘the prayer that never fails’? It won’t guarantee that things will turn out how (you think) you want them, but it will guarantee that ultimately, things will turn out for the best. When I remember to do that, I find more peace than in begging for things to turn out how (I think) I want them.

The prayer that never fails = “Thy will be done.”

Sir Jupiter said...

[Please be advised that any and all advice that may come from the following comment is purely unsolicited and may or may not be in Master Fob's best interests. Thank you]

Seattle is striking me as a really tough city to get to know other gay guys who aren't simply looking your way because they envision your pants off. Before looking for relationships, though, try to establish a network of friendly gay guys who will be able to be your safety net, warn you if a regionally infamous creep is heading your way and be a support for when a relationship goes awry (and when you need someone to call up on a random weekday night to go get ice cream to fill the void).

Now, as for healthy gay activities that don't involve clubs and/or sex...well...be sure to tell me because I'm having a helluva time finding any.

MoHoHawaii said...

Sir J.--

Now, as for healthy gay activities that don't involve clubs and/or sex...well...be sure to tell me ...

Check out OutVentures.org. This is a gay Seattle organization focused on outdoor recreation. It's friendly and fun and not oriented toward sex.

There's also a gay cycling group in Seattle: http://www.differentspokes.com.

If you like to sing, try the Seattle Men's Chorus.