To all of the Sex & the City fans out there, I send a big... hooray!
I absolutely loved the show and eagerly anticipate the release of the movie. However, I was always left pondering the same thought after every episode. "Do men marry women who have sex on the first date?"
Perhaps I am a little old fashioned, but my parents taught me, "Don't give it up so easy! Why would you pay for the cow if you could have the milk for free?" Over the years, through dating, marriage, divorce, dating and marriage again I have always been conscientious of this lesson. It has become very important for me to spend time getting to know the person without the entanglements created by a sexual relationship. Many times, I was quickly able to determine if I really saw potential in a relationship or not - sex never clouded the issue.
Don't be mistaken, I am not saying that I did not want to have sex. However, I was afraid of putting the cart before the horse - knowing how quickly feelings can escalate with the introduction of sex into the relationship. (What's with the animal analogies today?) A couple of guys quickly come to mind from college that in hindsight I realize I was in "sex with them" not love. The difference, at that time, was unrecognizable.
Sex is very powerful and has the ability to create falsehoods. Women have a horrible tendency of "falling in love" with a man solely based on a sexual relationship with no knowledge of his favorite color, mother's name, highest educational level obtained, interest or hobbies. We bond through sex. Yet...who is this person other than the provider of pleasures of the flesh? Similarly men initially engage in sexual relationships for pleasure. However, there is typically no immediate development of emotional attachments. Eventually, if they genuinely like the female men will begin to develop feelings - explaining why it is easier for men to engage in one-night-stands. This doesn't make men wrong...just different. Women get used to it!
So with that said, do men really respect a woman who has sex on the first date? Do they ever enter into committed relationships with these women? Or do they reserve those second level feelings for the woman who is willing to wait?
Recently after talking to a girlfriend of mine, I began to ponder the challenges in today's dating scene. Is it harder for 40 somethings to re-enter singlehood and date again?
As we talked I was amazed by the challenges she faced as a single woman. In particular, I began to wonder, "Are 40 something men looking for the same things in a relationship as 40 something women? Or... are budding relationships being strangled by mis-matched expectations?"
My girlfriend, who I'll call Chloe is a professional, divorced mother of two teenage boys. She has a very eclectic and artsy personality. She is well read, a dedicated runner, and cute. She never has difficulties meeting men, however, meeting the "right" man seems to be the problem.
Recently she was dating David, who seemed to have great potential. He was a great conversationalist, well read, extremely handsome and had a great job. One night, he invited her over to his apartment where Chloe discovered he had no furniture - nothing but a bed and television. "What 40 something man has no furniture, she asked?" After giving him the benefit of the doubt she was pleasantly surprised to be invited on a weekend getaway with a group of David's friends. That is until he explained that due to his lack of funds they would be carpooling with another couple AND rooming with a group of his friends that she had never met. Unless, of course, she wanted to pay for the hotel stay. "His funds were low."
Finally after several more conversations with David, Chloe decided that it was time to terminate the relationship and move on. While David had a successful career, he was an irresponsible spendthrift with bad credit looking for someone to help him get established. At 40 something? Typical or bizarre?
Before David, there was Keith. Keith was another professional 40 something that Chloe had agreed to go out with on a blind date. Prior to going to dinner, the two enjoyed numerous engaging phone conversations. Chloe eagerly anticipated their first date.
They met at and Italian restaurant. Chloe immediately extended her hand in greeting. Keith reached for a hug. Chloe explained that she was not comfortable hugging immediately and Keith seemed a little offended. Throughout dinner, Keith attempted several times to either hug or kiss Chloe who was becoming increasingly uncomfortable - after all it was their first date. Keith on the other hand was becoming increasingly agitated. The date goes downhill from here.
Keith began making rude comments and Chloe became defensive. By the end of the night, in Chloe's mind, Keith was a controlling maniac and escape was imperative. After paying her portion of the check AND giving Keith a piece of her mind Chloe fled the restaurant and Keith began chasing her! How did a potentially great date go so incredibly wrong?
Are men and woman really looking for something so distinctly different at 40? I always believed that most men and woman after exiting their 20's are looking for stability. You know...loving relationships, starting families, settling down. Is this an erroneous assumption?
While Chloe is not looking to get married tomorrow, there is the hope that eventually she will marry again. Now in her 40's the thought of entering into a relationship with a man who is financially unable to care for himself is undesirable. In addition, being in a relationship with someone who becomes critical when unable to have his way or assert his authority is a bit frightening.
Is this typical of 40 something dating?
Yes, I admit it...I was previously married and divorced. Currently, I am married to my second husband who I love dearly. He's a keeper!
Nevertheless, my first marriage ended one-sided. I didn't want to get divorced but unfortunately that doesn't matter to the legal system. If one party wants out...well the law let's them out. The one thing I remember about being separated and subsequently divorced was the great amount of guilt and shame I felt. Even though I tried repeatedly, albeit unsuccessfully, to salvage the marriage. Yet it seemed that I carried all of the guilt.
I never wanted to be a divorced woman. It seemed at the time that if I were divorced that I was a failure. Inevitably, I internalized a lot of my ex-husband's issues as though they were my own. The constant self-evaluations were draining! It seemed during that period that I wore a plaque on my forehead that proclaimed..."DIVORCED!" That all the world knew my story and secretly blamed me. Yes, looking back in hindsight it sounds like paranoia, but my feelings were real. Those very feelings made me afraid and ashamed to tell my family and friends.
It was not until I began developing a friendship with my current husband, further cultivating my relationship with God, as well as, attending regular counseling sessions that I was able to let those feelings go and completely heal. It is my belief that I am not the only person that experienced these types of marauding emotions.
If you experienced these same or similar types of emotions, while in the midst of separation and divorce, please share how you overcame them. Share how you moved onto to being emotionally healthy and mentally whole. Your story could change the life of someone currently struggling.
My first job out of college was in a small law firm. At that time I worked as a paralegal with attorneys who specialized in domestic relations and criminal law. Typically, after the attorney was retained, I was responsible for meeting with the client to prepare all documents necessary for filing the Complaint for Divorce or Dissolution with the Court of Domestic Relations. In addition, I filed all of the paperwork, obtained restraining orders, set court dates, etc. Throughout the case, I operated as the liaison between the attorney and the client, to answer questions regarding the status of the case. As you can tell, I spent a great deal of time hearing about the marital problems.
The one thing I found interesting was how ugly the proceedings became during the division of marital property. Couples would quibble ad nauseam over the division of pictures, bank accounts, debts, real property, 401K savings plans, automobiles etc. It was typically during this stage of the divorce when attorney fees skyrocketed due to numerous unproductive meetings and hearings attempting to divide the marital property to the satisfaction of both parties. What I found lacking was how rare it was to see someone argue about saving the relationship.
I understand that there are some instances where saving the relationship is virtually impossible - numerous occurrences of infidelity, abuse, and the like. But often that simply wasn't the case. In some instances external drama began to negatively affect the marital relationship. In other instances, as one person began the journey of personal improvement - for example obtaining degrees in higher education or losing weight, that individual developed a new sense of independence. While increased self esteem is wonderful, it was odd to see those individuals no longer found a need for their spouse. In many cases, couples who initially were inseparable could no longer get along and chose to terminate the relationship. Citing excessive bickering and ultimately incompatibility.
Oddly enough, these were the couples that quibbled the most over their material possessions. So I began to ask myself..."When did the value of marital assets become more important than the value of the marriage?"
- $3000 - armour
- $20,000 - vehicle
- $15,000 - equity in real property
- $1,000 - oil painting hanging over the living room sofa
- $250 - stainless steel cookware
Our firm often obtained restraining orders not for individual protection or for the protection of the children, but for the protection of assets. Protection to ensure that one spouse did not vandalize the home or personal property. Protection to ensure that one spouse did not empty bank accounts leaving the other penniless. Protection to ensure that one spouse did not increase credit card debt to the detriment of the other.
I was simply amazed.
On, Tuesday, November 13, 2007, I posted "Cheaper To Keep Her
" where I talked about the irony, in my mind, of Michael Jordan's divorce. Yes, I slithered down into the grimy ranks of the paparazzi and tabloids by posting on a celebrity divorce. Yes, I know, I am always pontificating that the dregs of society spend enough time reporting these types of stories. Yet...I posted the story anyway.
Since then, an anonymous commenter provided a link with the address for the following blog: http://mjordanmistress.blogspot.com/
. The author of this blog claims to be the mistress of Michael Jordan. U-N-B-E-L-I-E-V-A-B-L-E! Okay... while that role/status/title may give what some would call "bragging rights", I personally find it despicable. Better yet repulsive!
If you can't tell by my posts, I am 100% PRO marriage. Therefore, I abhor the very concept of infidelity. Which brings me to my current point...why in the HELL would someone write a blog detailing her affair with a married man? I am at a loss for words and yet I feel the urge to rant and rave and stamp my feet like a 2 year old bubbling to the surface of my rationality.
Regardless of how their relationship ended, Juanita Jordan spent years married to Michael Jordan, taking care of their home and raising their children. Who? I ask again Who would sink to lowest levels of humanity and write a blog for all mankind with access to the Internet to see? A blog detailing her tawdry affair? I am floored by the audacity of some people! And how humiliating it must be for public figures to have the intimate details of their relationship exposed.
Initially, when I saw the link I was intrigued. I thought...NO
, couldn't possibly be real. After reading a couple of posts, I thought even if it's not real...what's the purpose. This psycho needs to find a rock to crawl under!
If my impassioned speech hasn't offended you...what are your thoughts?
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