I’m at a point in my life where I don’t have time for meaningless relationships. I’ve dated enough men to know pretty much exactly what to look for in a potential boyfriend. One of the perks of getting older is having more confidence and narrowing down the things that truly make me happy. A common problem with living in places like Los Angeles or New York City is people who think they can always do better in their professional life and relationships. I’m a huge proponent of bettering yourself and working towards a goal, but I’m not a fan of guys who are afraid to commit because someone hotter or smarter might come along.
If you’re not 100% devoted to our relationship, I want nothing to do with you. I’m not saying you need to tell me you love me and want to marry me tomorrow, but I need your complete attention and effort. For me, that means not keeping “options” around. I understand there’s a grace period to eliminate the riff raff of people you were fucking or casually dating before you made me your girlfriend, but occasionally texting “hey how are you?” to some girl you still think about every few months is not okay.
I’ve done this. You’ve done this. We’ve all done this.
The perfect example of this is when I did it one year on New Year’s Eve. I was with my boyfriend at a bar, and the obligatory “happy new year” texts from a few random dudes started to roll in. I replied to one I had briefly dated two years prior. My current bf asked who it was and I replied “No one” and put my phone away. He kept asking and I eventually showed him. He got angry. At the time, I thought he was overreacting because I knew in my mind that it was highly unlikely I would ever hook up with this random dude again, but he didn’t know that. I put myself in his position and I would definitely be upset if he was texting with his ex or some random girl he fucked. We broke up for about 12 hours. I deserved it.
On the other hand, I’ve spent entire relationships side-eyeing incoming text messages because my boyfriend refused to get rid of the riff raff. Being vulnerable is not easy and a lot of us creative people are pretty fucked up emotionally. I’ve sent texts to dudes when I would get nervous in relationships. Knowing you have someone to fall back on if your current significant other tells you to hit the bricks is comforting. Getting a simple “thinking about you” from some banjo-playing dude you made out with at a music festival in Yosemite six months ago can boost your confidence after you get into a fight with your boyfriend about what the definition of feminism is.
If that’s the case, then what’s the point of even being in a relationship? Comfort? Stability? Sex all the time? Sure, probably, but it’s not okay to waste someone’s time when you know you’re just not that into them. It’s more forgivable if you’re doing this at 21, but if you’re in your thirties and still trying to keep your options open, don’t expect anyone to be okay with it.
I’m so anti-bullshit that if you try to hide a text from some girl named Zola who you claim is “just a friend,” I will be out the motherfucking door. There’s nothing wrong with keeping in contact with former flames or love interests, but it’s not okay to do it while being in a relationship.
Thinking about someone* occasionally is much different than being in contact with them.
*does not apply to Ryan Gosling