Thursday, 15 December 2011

Confessions of a Total Dick Head

Since finding myself responsible for not one, but two ever-needing & ever-wanting children it has become a daily ritual for me to have an extravagantly long shower, during which interruptions are completely ignored. Eldest whinging? Baby wailing? Not my problem. I should probably add that I make sure all their needs are met before showering, I don't just ditch them & run, so any complaints are simply attention based & can wait for half an hour.

Shower time is adult time (not like that), it is brain time, it is time for me to think. You know, like wot real people without kidz can do, init.

Usually shower time comes complete with it's own playlist. If my iPod were picked up by a stranger they'd be forgiven for thinking that it belonged to a woman in her mid forties rather than one in her early twenties (apart from a few give-away tracks) but that, my friends, is just how I roll.

Today I was listening to a spot of Beautiful South. The track that got me thinking was 'Prettiest Eyes'. It is one of my favourites. If you aren't familiar you can check it out here. It is basically a song from the perspective of someone who has been with a woman for 60 years. It got me pondering about the nature of relationships, particularly my own (of course) & wondering whether I'd ever experience long lasting love & security in the same way in which older generations, particularly my grandparents' generation seem to experience but which our society & culture seems not to allow room for.

Today, we are told that we have more freedom. We are told that we can have it all & we seek things like fairy-tale happiness, yet it seems to me that increasingly less people have long lasting, happy relationships. Do we set ourselves up for disappointment?

I look at my Mother's parents who have been married for 50 years, this year. They have always been happy, as far as I can tell. My Mum always tells of how she has never seen them argue. My Granny always tells her that that was because they never let her see them argue. This speaks volumes to me. Communication & honesty with each other & to yourself is key, there would be problems if you didn't occasionally quarrel but to find long-lasting happiness through this is exactly what I'd like for my future, but like anything in life, a relationship that lasts is something that requires hard-work & zeal from all involved & if there are children then it is important to think of their happiness first, as you would in all other aspects of life.

Looking at my mother, who is in her mid (to late, ahem) forties - & from whom my taste in music mainly comes - she is currently settled. When we talk about relationships she always jokes that she 'has been through quite a few men' to get to my step-father. I doubt she has been through as many as me, in my notably less years, though I never point this out to her! My Step-Father is, in my opinion (& I'm fairly sure in hers too) her perfect match. I love my Father, but I would never wish for my Mother to be with him. I was young when they divorced, only one year old, but I know in my heart that they aren't compatible, in fact I find it hard to imagine that they were ever a couple. My Step-Father & Mum have been together for about 15 years (I think), but they only married four years or so ago. For some reason I feel that there will never be any reason for them not to grow old together.

The example set by these people in my life is one that I find admirable & somewhat awe-inspiring. I want that for me & I hope that I am headed in the right direction. I have made mistakes. What I am about to share with you I have not shared with anyone outside of my circle of friends & I am certainly not proud, nor can I find any justification for my actions, but bear with me - it bears relevance & is only partly a selfishly placed confession.

My last relationship lasted about a year & a half & was with a guy who I had been acquainted with since college. He was very closed emotionally, but basically a nice, fun guy. I think that I fell in love with him, perhaps in hindsight not in a deep sense, but it was love nevertheless & he loved me too, but he was incapable of saying so. At first, 'the wall' was something that drew me to him - I have always liked a challenge - but as our relationship became more serious & we moved in together the very thing that drew me to him initially was what I came to resent. I couldn't break down 'the wall', not fully & I became increasingly insecure. It wasn't his fault, it was just how he was, but looking back I worry as to how he will ever truly be happy if he can't express such crucial emotions. We became more & more distant from each other. I think that we were both equally to blame for how the relationship deteriorated but the end came when I slept with somebody else. More than once. I'm not sure he even knows now that I was cheating, I wasn't big enough to own up to it, but he wasn't stupid. He left & that was that. I have never felt particularly sad that the relationship ended, it had most certainly run its course, but I feel ashamed that it took me such a cruel & selfish act to realise that it wasn't worth putting in the effort any more. I justified my actions at the time because I felt hurt & rejected, humiliated even, but it was always clear that I was, for want of a more eloquent phrase, just a total dick head.

My point is that I have been hurt & what is worse, I have hurt people along the way & though I feel remorse for some of the more selfish things I have done in the past, I don't regret them because I have always learned from my experiences. I have learned what I want to be in life (faithful, accomplished, hard-working, loved) & equally what I do not want to be (a total dick head).

I think what people lose sight of, in today's 'instant satisfaction' society is that a relationship, like anything, is something that requires input. People chase the dreams of looking beautiful, becoming rich or famous & having a fairytale love, but that simply isn't the case. I'm sure we all know the reasons for all these fucked-up delusions people of our generation suffer & the arguments as to why it is probably wrong yet so difficult to change, so I shan't drag it up, but I think that if we are consciously wanting to change something about ourselves for the better then what I have learned in my relatively few years of dating & loving is that to get more out of anything you must put more in, & what is more you must put it in to the right places. It is nothing profound, it is basic common sense, but I believe that it's something that from time to time, we can all lose sight of.

As for now, I feel very lucky. I have a relationship with someone who is worth every last scrap of effort. I also have two beautiful girls who deserve a happy upbringing, or at least a Mum who isn't a total dick head.


  1. I always think that knowing what you don't want to be is just as good as knowing what you do want to be. At least you know what you want to avoid! I can't imagine my parents ever being a couple either, although they were married for 14 years, all of it spent fighting (verbally, not physically). It's amazing they ever got together! Love your post. Polly

  2. I had to lol at your comments about your mum and yourself with numbers of lovers...every generation thinks its different and at the ripe old age of 40 i can tell you your mums generation definiatley werent prudes


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