For the past weeks I have been trying to make a list of qualities that I would want to see in a man with whom I might have a relationship. Nada Niets Nihil Null Nichts…the page remained blank! Pathetic…I chastised myself… how have you chosen your men in the past? How are you choosing men now? Based on what? Obviously, nothing conscious. And so my confession unfolds.

I Don't Know What I Love in a Man!

I Don’t Know What I Love in a Man!

3 months ago I went out with a man called K. Supposedly, I said, within minutes of sitting down, “I am emotionally available, but not physically.” I say supposedly because I cannot imagine ME saying anything so clear and honest. K told me the other day, that these words are akin to hearing 2 other ‘kiss of death’ expressions from women. ‘I really like you but’ … or ‘You remind me of my brother!’  He then said that after nursing his bruised ego for some weeks, he realized that he too wanted to be friends, and so asked me out in pursuit of friendship. Now, as mutually proclaimed BFFs, we can talk to each other about our forays into the dating world. When K asked me to identify the dominant characteristics of men I have loved, I did some Freudian ‘free association’, feeling K’s non-judgmental curiosity and acceptance of anything I would say.

I blurted out, “Men I love are good looking, intelligent and emotionally unavailable.” A little flummoxed by this list, I tried to recant it. But K laughed out loud and said this described him perfectly…making the point that nothing had really changed for me…I was still attracted to the same type. I replied that I could see his good looks and intelligence, but needed him to explain the typical behaviours of an emotionally unavailable man. He guffawed with incredulity,

K: “Don’t you read Cosmo or Chatelaine? Women are always complaining about emotionally unavailable men!  When you told me you were emotionally available, but not physically, what went through my mind was that most guys, including me, are the opposite…present in body, absent in heart!”

Emotionally Unavailable

Emotionally Unavailable

Between2Marys: “Wait a minute, are you saying that this is a ‘thing’, a documented Character Flaw?”

K:  “I’ll use my very Smart Phone and show you! AHA! 267 578 sites on topic in 0.1 seconds. I’ll read a few descriptions of Emotionally Unavailable Men(EUM) and Emotionally Eager Women(EEW) to see if you recognize your men and yourself, okay?”

K: An EUM will do any one(or a combination of)the following, rather than explore the emotional side of an issue:

K: He will give his woman the silent treatment or pretend to agree with her so she’ll leave him alone or constantly forget to do an agreed upon task or do it poorly or procrastinate on an infinite number of things or feign fatigue as soon as his woman sits down to ‘have a chat’ or he’ll have a temper outburst or become a workaholic or give undue attention to a hobby or a sport or hide in an addiction or the real kicker, talk endlessly about other women…his friends of course…

As K droned on, every word bombarding my heart, I began to retreat into my martini addled consciousness. I didn’t need to hear the characteristics of the EEW, because I have just spent the last 6 months on The Other Woman Blog, dissecting her every thought and behaviour, past and present.

I went home that night feeling disoriented and stupid. I have spent my entire life trying to ‘turn’ emotionally evasive men into emotionally available men…I never accepted I was interacting with emoticons …you know, when the man you are talking to lifts the corners of his mouth upwards to simulate a smile or widens his eyes to convince you he is listening.

My Men!

My Men!

Emotionally Eager Women attract Emotionally Unavailable Men…ARGHHHHHHHH And just as an aside, look at those acronyms. Could they be better? In response to my signature query, “How are you feeling, dear husband, boyfriend, lover, father…I would hear, “eh…um”(EUM). And, after discovering that I am known to psychologists around the world as an Emotionally Eager Woman, makes me say…eew(EEW).

After this revelation with K, I spent the next week dancing to wild music, while maniacally playing ‘air guitar’, as I screamed a barrage of expletives…doing a good imitation of an angry teen. For those of you who do not know, below is aYouTube video which you can watch by clicking the triangle in the middle of the picture!

All of this dancing released a surge of energy from the core of my body…a seismic event, a cataclysmic, life altering shift in perspective. The pressure between Something’s Gotta Give and As Good as it Gets finally burst.

The men in my life ‘gotta give’ and this is ‘as good as I’m gonna get’!

 WEEK 32 OF 52


Here is my deepest confession, although it may be perfectly apparent to all of you. I have spent the last 6 months, ‘working on myself’, so that I MIGHT GET MY MAN…FINALLY…

But never again will I believe that desiring emotional involvement from my partner is wrong. Never again will I believe that if I improve just a bit more, he will turn to me and say with conviction, “I LOVE YOU!”

I will remember that he owns this problem! He has a character defect!

February is the month of love.  So if I can’t be with someone who loves me, I’ll love the one I’m with. And as I am alone, I will start by loving me! I’m going to buy chocolates and flowers for myself on Valentine’s Day!

I will never accept emotional ambiguity, from a man, again!