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When I started this series, I was worried that by writing it I would come off as an innocent bystander who had no fault in how things progressed and ultimately ended. I definitely shouldered my fair share of deceitfulness, stubbornness and spitefulness. I didn’t include those things because that’s not what made a jaded man. In fact, I would go as far to say that most of the things that I left out that played into the demise of my relationship were reactionary. I now know that that’s no way to maintain a relationship of any kind. Two wrongs never add up to a right. As much angst that I endured, I’m glad for one thing.
I learned what bullshit not to put up with from a woman. If I were a woman, I would be given the cliché advice that I would have to kiss a few frogs to find my prince. No one thinks about the effect of a really bad experience can have on a man. Before that relationship, I was still naïve and wet behind the ears when it came to dealing with women. I learned that all women aren’t innocent and they are capable of manipulating and cheating. Not because they aren’t getting enough attention or because they don’t feel connected to the person they are with. Just like men can stray just because they want to and have the opportunity.
At the end of the last post, I said that was the end of things with Stacey, but I wasn’t entirely truthful. As with most matters of the heart, clean breaks rarely occur. That summer after going back and forth a couple of times with what accounted to nothing more than throwback sex and arguing, she out of the blue asked me “Why is it that some people in your fraternity won’t date a woman if she previously dated someone in the same fraternity?” Knowing our history I should have known how loaded that question was but given our status I told myself I didn’t care.
Eventually we drifted further and further apart until we eventually stopped talking all together. I would eventually see her around campus since her laboratory was in a different building. I was pretty sure she was dating other people as I definitely was taking advantage of my newfound singleness. Nashville isn’t that big of a city and it’s even smaller when you only take into account young black professionals. Eventually I found out that she was dating one of my frat brothers who had moved to the Nashville area whom I had known before I moved there. When I found out, I was so indifferent to the news that I might as well have been reading it in a newspaper about a complete stranger. That’s when I knew I was truly over her. One of our classmates keeps me updated with (unsolicited) updates on her life. She told me that Stacey was engaged (and I’m assuming she’s now married) to my frat brother. I guess most would say she won.
As I said earlier in this post, I learned what not to accept from a woman in regards to my own happiness and pride, but I also learned what I actually wanted in a woman. While I still did what a lot of jaded men do (read: be a man whore and in turn hurt other women), I knew what it was I wanted in a woman. My story is far from over, but I’ve found happier times. Today I truly believe I have found what I’ve been looking for. Everything that I know I don’t want in a woman she doesn’t exude. Everything that I discovered I’ve desired in a woman including honesty, loyalty, and sensitivity, I’ve found in her. I’m finally genuinely happy and I can see myself being happy with her for a long time. In the end, I won. I’ve realized that I wasn’t really naïve or wet behind the ears. I loved a woman and when you truly love a person you open yourself up to be hurt. It’s the risk you take when you trust someone with your heart. If you can make one heap of all your [feelings], And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss, And lose, and start again at your beginnings… I’m older and wiser, but I’m right back where I was before. The difference is I understand that it’s all about the chances you take.
Thanks for reading how I became a jaded man who is no longer jaded. Fin.