Real stories about dating and relationships in New York City. Truth is more interesting than fiction.

How Many Times Can I Be Wrong (and still keep going)?

The first time I fell in love was in my early 20s.  I was a seriously cynical chick back then.  I’d seen more than my fair share of sadness and heartache with a little bit of premature death thrown in for good measure and was fairly certain that I’d never live past 30.  I was determined to live for myself and play by my own rules and honestly, it never occured to me that I might meet someone at that stage of the game that I could possibly love.  Even more improbable to me was the fact that this person seemed to have equally deep feelings for me.

Our timing couldn’t have been worse.  Neither of us was in a place in our lives where we could commit to a .  Heck, neither of us was in a place in our lives where we could commit to a continent.

And then there was the fact that we were a complete mismatch.  Our backgrounds, lifestyles, goals and even value systems were just so completely different from one another’s.  Completely.

It was something kind of magical that happened.  We met one morning, just bumped into one another.  Casually, neither of us expecting to have anything special happen to us that day.  And it was like lightning struck.  We were both so completely enamored of each other from the moment we met.  It took him less than a day before he used the word “” to describe me and no, we hadn’t had yet.  Hadn’t even come close.  He was a “nice” boy (like I said, we were very different).

We couldn’t ever get our shit together to have anything that resembled a functional relationship, although we were in each other’s lives for years (about 7 of them to be exact).  But he played a pretty big part in my life.  I truly believed that he was my soulmate.  And every time I started to doubt it he would do something, say something, to make me believe all over again.

For years I held onto the belief that when our lives settled down he and I would find a way to make it work. And that (ludicrous, juvenile, fantastical) belief led me to make some really dumbass decisions at a time in my life when I should have been thinking more keenly about myself and my future.  I don’t blame him. How could I?  It was my fault.  No one made me believe.  It was my choice.  And I was wrong.

I’ve been wrong a lot in my life, when it comes to guys. I’ve shared a few of those times with you.  Recently, in comments and on Twitter, I’ve been questioned a lot about my lack last of in Mr. Potential and about my seemingly insane level of fear related to taking a leap of in relation to him.  You see, I’ve been wrong so many time.  So many times.  I am starting to fear that I’ve run out of faith as far as guys and relationships go.  I don’t really trust my own judgment any more.  I don’t really trust myself to figure out who is worth making compromises for, who is worth making sacrifices for, who is worth risking everything for.  Because if I make that leap again (which I’m sure to do, eventually, if not with Mr. Potential then with someone else) and I’m wrong, then I just might have to run away and become a hermit.

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10 to “How Many Times Can I Be Wrong (and still keep going)?”

  1. Teifion says:

    Draw up a list of actions and possible consequences. Weigh up the pros and cons and it may well become a lot clearer as to what you need to do.

  2. RVASarah says:

    I understand how you feel. I think you just need to keep the faith. Someone (or people) is worth the risk.

  3. bobbyjensen says:

    Some people who know me can’t believe how I am when it comes to the dating scene. I don’t actively seek a relationship, just take things as they come. I find this attitude to be quite relaxing.

  4. derek7272 says:

    What ended up happening with the soulmate guy?

    You don’t need to figure out everything with Mr. P. right now you know. Just relax and enjoy it for a bit … you can figure out where things are going in time.

  5. recklessstudio says:

    Ah, life. I think there’s no need to rush into anything with Mr. P.
    But I will say this. There is really no way to determine the outcome of an relationship at any given time. Anything you do for the sake of the relationship will be a risk and a risk that you take alone.
    It can be terrifying but that rush is an element of living that we fail to appreciate because it can be our biggest strength and our biggest weakness.

  6. 20forty says:

    It becomes difficult to trust your heart when it’s led you into pain and heartache so many times before. I’ve questioned whether or not I can still trust mine many times. The thing is though is that if you don’t, the results can be just as devastating because as time goes on it just becomes even more difficult. I think you have to take the risk because there’s a chance that, if you walk away, you will have walked away from something pretty damn incredible.

    Thanks for posting this. I needed a reminder not to close myself off right about now. :)


  7. SINgleGIRL says:

    I’m a big fan of lists in general, but this is one of those cases where a list would be completely useless. Just like the other times in my life when I took that leap because my heart told me it was the right thing to do, that what’s going to happen this time/the next time. I’m hoping that my heart will listen to my head, and will pay a little bit more attention to the big picture (no more falling for unsuitable men). But I can’t ask my heart to go with a list. That’s not the way it works.
    Your’re right. Someone will be worth the risk. I believe that strongly.
    I wish I could be less Type A. I do. But it’s not who I am. I am one of the least “take it as it comes” people you will ever meet. I am more of a, “life it short and you should work hard to get what you want out of it” kind of person. You’ll probably live longer and healthier.
    Yep, there are no guarantees. I, however, think that that rush is overrated. Seriously. But then again, I’m old. I’ve had that rush plenty and so now it’s kind of a been there, done that thing for me.

  8. That Lawyer Dude says:

    Your problem isn’t that you were wrong so many times about soul mates, it is that your definition of a soul mate does not lead to you finding a soul mate.

    You wrote
    “And then there was the fact that we were a complete mismatch. Our backgrounds, lifestyles, goals and even value systems were just so completely different from one another’s. Completely.”

    Those words in and of themselves immediately disqualify the person as a soulmate. What you had was an amazing buddy who also gave enormous benefits. It doesn’t mean you didn’t love him and it doesn’t cheapen that relationship, it just means that a marital relationship built on anything less than common values and goals is doomed.

    I am of the belief that there are core values in each of us, that cannot change. Those are the things that keep you together. My wife and I are polar opposites when it comes to personality and dispositon. She is petite, shy, quiet, and has a sunny disposition and thinks positively. I am Large, LOUD, Outgoing and cynical, at best. We however are twins on things like kids, goals, values, money and use of same. We are open and completely trusting of each other. We have no secrets and do not lie to each other. We show patience with each other. Not easy when one is as ill as she is.

    If we didn’t share these core values of Fidelity, honesty, love and responsibility, we would not survive the illness she has and that we face together.

    Look at those values when deciding if you have a marriable prospect. Looks fade, values last a life time.

    Good luck and Happy New Year.

  9. SINgleGIRL says:

    -That Lawyer Dude,
    I believed he was my soulmate, back in my 20s. I’m a lot older now. I don’t really believe in soulmates anymore. But back then I believed a soulmate was some kind of mystical, spiritual nonsense. Silly, huh?

  10. enemypoet says:

    You seem to have a better idea of what you want now than your pages give you credit for.
    You seem clear on what you like, and what you don’t.

    As I see it, your negotiations with yourself are a great way to check in,
    make sure the fire is still roaring; priority maintenance, housekeeping.

    I’ve enjoyed reading your letters, and the only concern I would address for you,
    as a man of 40, is – a little pause for the drum roll in my head –

    don’t take too much longer. At some point, you are going to deserve
    to get, what ever it is you’ve got.

    The short of it? You close with hermitage. Be careful with that tic, and trust your instincts.
    They are the only way you will get into the trouble that only you can get out of.

    Thanks for the good reading!
    (and forgive my sloppiness, I am new;)

    Mr. Left-Justified.