Tuesday, August 19, 2008

My “Brothers” (Marnie)

I went on a road trip this weekend with some really great friends. There were 5 of us, two girlfriends of mine and two guy friends I consider my brothers. I haven’t had a lot of close “guy friends” in my life. I was always afraid of getting to close to them or them wanting more from me than I wanted to give. (I always feared confrontation of any kind with guys). But over the years, my girlfriends showed me how to let great men in your life that you didn’t end up with on a permanent basis. And after knowing them for 9 years, I consider them as brothers and the men in my life I can count on. They are the kind of men who come to my rescue when I need them. Because let’s face it! You never have a boyfriend when you need your new stackable washer and dryer moved in. And these “brothers” are always there for me.

I used to think, “Why bother getting to know a man that you won’t end up with?” (We are all in agreement that although we have fun together and share a great friendship – we’d be terrible for each other in a romantic relationship). You are only supposed to need your husband, right? And if they aren’t going to be your husband, why waste your time? But these guys have been important to me. They’ve helped me understand the male gender, become more open to them, and have helped me not to be so darn frightened of men in general.

While on our road trip, we had lots of conversation about dating and relationships between men and women. They both try hard to date too. (Maybe they should start a blog?) They are about as good at it as I am at finding a mate: hit and misses all over the place, risk taking and heartache, really trying but also going through “droughts” and rejection. My girlfriends and I are pretty open with them and feel safe enough to give our honest thoughts about dating men over 30 and expressing our struggles in finding that perfect guy. They are compassionate but also put us straight when we need to hear it. It’s so healthy it’s almost disgusting!! But I can’t tell you how helpful it’s been to me!

They don’t always tell me what I want to hear, but I need to hear it. The best advice they’ve given me is “don’t over-analyze what a guy does! Because most of the time we just don’t have an ulterior motive.” I always forget it’s the women that are the ones giving signals and scheming…guys just don’t think that deeply about it.

They’ve also told me many times to just be patient. I’m in the middle of flirting with several guys – practicing my “skills” as I like to call it – but I’m finding that I’m preferring one over the others. It makes it SO hard to focus on all of them and not pull away and just spend all of my flirting time with the one that I’m clicking with (let’s call him Mr. Click). It’s even harder because Mr. Click hasn’t done anything to really let me know he prefers me over any other girls he talks to. Sure, he’s been encouraging and flirting with me, but I’m done putting interpretations with “moments” or “looks” or really great conversations. You’ve got to deliver and do something!! The only way I will ever believe a guy is really interested in me is if he ASKS ME OUT. Hanging out at church activities or even parties is great! But until the risk is taken, I just won’t let myself even consider it a real interest. I’ve been burned too many times now to do it any differently.

Of course that is the rational side of me talking. But really, I'm prone to irrational thought processes. Keeping your heart from only wanting to be with someone like Mr. Click over the others while waiting for him to do “something” is so hard! I’ve been trying to be guarded (meaning trying to keep myself from having a real crush on him), but really it’s against the “natural woman” in females. We just like to focus on one. It’s our natural tendency AND our downfall.

I talked to my “brothers” about my current situation, and their advice? Keep looking around, keep flirting with them all and don’t discount any of them - even if you like one more than another - and be patient! I didn’t like that advice at all…but I know they are right! I need to keep getting out there! Keep meeting new people and NOT focusing too much of my time and effort on Mr. Click. And best of all, BE PATIENT!

What’s that scripture in Ether? “After the trial of your faith” Yeah, I’ve just got to keep trying and keeping the faith…

Luckily, I’ve got some great “brothers” who keep reminding me of that.

6 comments:

Kris said...

Oh how I love my guy friends! Nice to get a guys perspective on things. My advice with Mr. Click is to make it easy/safe for him to ask you out. I'm so glad I'm not the one to traditionally do the asking. I'm such a chicken! I suggest some sincere compliments and lots of arm touching.

Rychelle said...

I think you should talk those guys into starting their own blog! It would help us single gals without any "brothers" get a glimpse into the male psychi. =)

Leah said...

Rychelle - the problem with "the brothers" is that they don't over analyze like we do so they'd have nothing for the blog.

rychelle said...

true. maybe they could just have a q&a section and take questions and give advice to those of us that do over analyze. and if they're such great guys, maybe you should feature them here, and we could find them dates with your readers......

Bryan said...

I'm game!

Leah said...

Bryan are you game for answering questions? You could easily do a guest post - we'd love it. I think you just email the link on the right side of the page. Or did you mean you were game for going on dates with our readers? =)
Rychelle - I think you have a great point. Next time I take a question to the brothers I'll try to remember to make a post about it. The last thing I asked them was if I looked all right in the bathing suit I'd chosen or if I should go shopping for something different. They said it looked great - that's some useful feedback - but hard to put in a post!