It’s not even August yet and I have had an eventful year. Almost none of it is poker or work related. The rest of life that has caught up to me. It has given me an opportunity to examine my past.
As my 44th year on Earth approaches in few weeks, I have yet to be married or to have any kids. I can tell myself that if that lifestyle works for George Clooney, why can’t it work for me? But besides a love of Las Vegas, his and my lifestyle couldn’t be much different.
Why have I never been married or never had kids? It’s not that I was against either. My brother and two sisters — all younger — are either married or divorced. I have eight nieces and nephews between them. My father is the youngest of 10 children, and he had four of his own. Obviously marriage and kids run in my family.
The main reason I am still single is that I have had an adulthood-long string of bad relationships. Some were totally my fault, some were totally the other’s persons fault, most were a mutual mistake. In my 20s and early 30s I was working so hard to prove I could make in my chosen career field I didn’t give my relationships the attention they needed. In my late 30s the dating pool got shallow, the result of living in the Midwest. Most of the women I met were divorcees with children who were trying to catch up to their lost early dating years.
Lately, some of the past relationships have cropped in my life. They have caused anxiety. They have caused remorse. Nothing good has come out of my past relationships. That is why I need to learn to leave them there.
Earlier this year one of my ex-girlfriends was getting married. I haven’t talked to this woman in several years. But here she was calling my number, asking me to borrow money to cover her debts because she has spent her money gambling. I reminded her what I knew of her from Facebook. She was engaged, and perhaps her financee could help her out. She told me that she has already tapped him for several thousand dollars. This latest request might end their relationship and their impending nuptials.
I told her no money would be forthcoming from me. A real man — a man who had decided to marry her — would have gotten her help, such as getting her blacklisted from every casino within a two-hour drive of her town. This would have surely put a stop to her gambling. A real man would not have enabled her bad behavior by providing her with money.
As far as I know, the marriage still happened.
Then I had a 15-month relationship come to an end. It was sad because it ended because the other party was cheating on me and lying to me about it. There were minor children involved whom I had grown very close to, going to school functions and football games. Her parents are great friends of mine from even before we dated. As much as I wanted this relationship to work, I understand that no amount of trying and believing is going to overcome the shattered trust. There is no repairing what happened.
Out of remorse and grief, I came into contact with an ex-girlfriend. This was the only woman I had every proposed to in my life, and it has been several years since that moment. The engagement lasted four days.
There was a lot of misplaced trust and lies the first time around. I don’t know why I expected it to be any different this time, though she assured me it would be. Sure enough, not three weeks into talking again I had a complete stranger text me from her phone. He was sending me text message after text message, including pictures, of how much he loved her and how much he wanted me to go away. If you have never experienced that, it is surprising and confusing. You are receiving text messages and it appears they are coming from the person you care about. But they are actually coming from someone else so it seems surreal.
spirited nasty exchanges that relationship also crashed and burned. It will never rise again.
Even on this blog, someone I knew five years ago recently left a comment. I have no way to contact her. No email address. No phone number. But she decided to google me and found me in Las Vegas. Then she left a comment (though it was a nice gesture and comment I have chosen not to post it). That relationship didn’t really end badly, it just ended.
Relationships end for various reasons. What they have in common it that they end. Let them end. Don’t try to start again. It is not worth it.
If the person you want to be with doesn’t want to be with you for just let it go. It happens for a reason. The reason is someone better is going to come along.