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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Wednesday Guest Post "Can Casual Dating Lead You Down To The Road To No Relation At All?" By Autumn Garrison-House

Autumn Garrison-House

My name is Autumn and I have been asked to by my wonderful big sister to do a guest Blog. I am a mother of two wonderful little people - Aniyah (5), and Tahari (11). It was through my career in the Hotel and Restaurant industry that I initially met Rose, and we've been close friends ever since. I have worked for several major corporations in the industry and am currently a waitress for Chili’s, near my home in sunny Ormond Beach, Fl.

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Can Casual Dating Lead You down the Road to No Relationship at all?

                                                
“I no longer believed in the idea of soul mates, or love at first sight. But I was beginning to believe that a very few times in your life, if you were lucky, you might meet someone who was exactly right for you. Not because he was perfect, or because you were, but because you’re combined flaws were arranged in a way that allowed two separate beings to hinge together.”
~Lisa Kleypas

Next month I will be turning the ripe (old) age of 35 and I have yet to be married. For some strange reason this has a lot of my friends worried. Time and time again, I hear that I am not getting any younger and I need to find a husband. My current dating status is single.  I am dating several men, none of whom are leading me down a path to a serious relationship, however; I would say that I am content in my current situation. Hey…. variety is the spice of life! Does this mean that I don’t want a long term relationship or a husband? NO. However, due to past relationships, I am not looking as hard as I used to. The reason being; when it’s meant to be it will be. Yet and still, my friends feel that since I am casually dating, I will not find “Mr. Right.” Well I want to know, says who?

Recently I was listening to the “Michael Baisden Show” and he touched on this subject too.  Funny enough, his opinion was the same as my girl-friends. Women (and men) who casually date (sexually or not), are not leaving themselves open to someone for a real relationship. My friends tell me that sleeping with a man quickly or even sleeping with multiple men will not land me a husband. Michael Baisden thinks casual dating/sex will not leave a person (mainly women) emotionally available to be in a long term relationship. Well, why is it okay for men to do this and not women? Sorry…. but I’m not big on double standards. As for me - personally, I tend to go against the gender rules when it comes to relationships. I get it; women are emotional creatures and our feelings tend to lead us, rather than our heads leading us. Well yes, I get emotional - but I am, by no means, overly emotional when it comes to men. I enjoy sex just as much as them and that has nothing to do with my emotions. So what I’m older! So what I may sleep with a man within the first week of knowing them! Trust me when I tell you, it’s only for my benefit! So why does that make me damaged goods? I am still capable of giving that one man (Mr. Right) a loving, respectfully fulfilling relationship. No one ever says to a man, that he is getting too old or that they shouldn’t sleep with too many women. So why am I any different? Hell….. I’m in my prime; sexually or otherwise! I’m a big girl, trust me I can handle it!!!

Here’s the deal. Do I want a relationship? Yes. Would I like a husband? Sure. However, I am tired of putting myself out there and giving all of myself and getting nothing in return. My last serious relationship lasted a year and a half and ironically, he is one of the men I am dating now. We are still intimate and yes I still love him. Now the other two men, (yes, I said two) just so happen to be friends…. I know, I know I’m terrible, but hey! One is more like a booty call (I’ll admit) and the other himself is not emotionally available to be in more than a casual dating situation. Yes they are aware of each others’ presence and no they are not exactly happy but a little competition is good for you. Either way, all parties involved are protected and are fully aware of the situation.

Like I said, I am more than willing to enter a committed, long-term relationship but I am not willing to lose myself to a one sided relationship. Yes, I know that love is a gamble and you never know when you give your heart to someone if they will give you theirs in return. So for now, I am leaving my options open to any possibilities. I personally don’t think that the fact that I am seeing multiple men is going to keep me from meeting “Mr. Right.” I don’t think that this is not leaving me emotionally unavailable to anyone who wants to make themselves emotionally available to me. I will not say, however, that what my friends and Michael Baisden say are wrong, maybe just wrong for me. At this point in my life, I may be in my mid-thirties but I am still young and when God is ready to place that man who is meant, I will be ready. Until then, I plan on enjoying myself!!! Life is too short to worry about their opinion!!!


“I can't promise you a perfect relationship, but what I can promise you
is that as long as we're trying, I'm staying.”


Picture courtesy of themetapicture.com

7 comments:

  1. Hi Autumn, I have to say this…., I love the fact that all the players in your “game “ are aware of all your cards. That in itself is so difficult to achieve. A lot of us , married or not are never able to reach this level of honesty.

    I am 41, married with one child. I can say that I am one of those who met Mr. Right very early in my life. He was what I needed when we first start dating when we were in high school. Today, 25 years later (yes we have been together for almost 25 years) he is so different from the young boy he was back in high school. We both changed but managed to grow together and still enjoy each other company and still happy to see each other every day after work. I do believe that our relationship would have been the same even if we didn’t get married 15 years ago.

    Why did I get married then? Because marriage is the socially acceptable way to raise a family. Because it was the right way I thought at the time for my family to accept him. With time, I realized that they would still have accepted him if we didn’t get married. They would still see the same man that makes me happy!

    Today we have a daughter, and I know I will not push her to marriage. She will have to decide for herself. As far as I am concerned, time and age will not be an issue. I will tell to get married because she truly feels that he is Mr. Right but not because it is socially right.

    Marriage is there for a lot of things. It is there to socially protect relationship, children and property. In your case, you don’t care about what people thinks, you have your own children and you somehow are financially secure.
    Marriage is also there to give you love (sometimes the illusion of it) and avoid loneliness (some people hate coming home into an empty house). But I don’t think you mind. At least you get to go home sometime and not be bothered.
    Marriage is also there for the ones in need of belongingness and need to have a family (there is someone I am responsible for and there is someone who cares for me ). Well you have that but you are not married.
    Marriage is also there to have socially acceptable sex. You might actually be getting more sex than most married women. Why do you think so many married people cheat?

    All this is kind of odd coming from a married woman that claims to be happily married. Yes it is. Because I don’t mind sharing things that married women might be afraid to share.

    You take a lot of risks when you get married.
    You can lose your independence and freedom. (why would you trade the free you?)
    You can divorce and lose your savings and even pay alimony (yes it does happen to us women)
    You also risk of getting comfortable in your relationship and stop taking care of yourself and become unattractive ( I saw recent pictures of you and you look fabulous)
    There is so much more I could add….(I actually might have to post my own blog to do so)
    All that to say….don’t worry about being 35 and not married.
    When Mr. Right will come your way, the good thing is that he will fall in Love with the real you…

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    Replies
    1. Thank you soo much for you candor on married life and my situation. You managed to hit the nail on the head with my feeling towards marriage my current relationship status. Yes I think you should do a blog on making a marriage work as it appears you have been able to do so for over 10 years. I really respecet you and am glad you understand my situation.

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  2. Dear Autumn,

    I've known you for so many years that when you gave me this post, unlike probably many of my blog followers, I wasn't surprise by your candor, bluntness in telling your stand on relationship, on YOUR relationship status and how unlike your friends you've decided to leave the worries of the “why” behind so you can live and let live. All this in the truthfulness style that is you…
    We discuss in length my thought, and laugh about me coming up with a 10 step action plan Ha!
    Remember baby sis’ your way of thinking and acting may just be what prevent you from “THE” relationship you wouldn't mind having (and trust I’m not talking about marriage as I agree totally with LaMuiks comment). I’m talking about just having that someone you can call your own. Sometimes endorsing whatever attitude or behavior that satisfies your now and laying all the cards on the table thinking you are not hurting anyone is exactly what will scare someone away even if they act like they don’t care.

    When you will be ready you will know…

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks big sis. And yes I am awaiting my "Action Plan" that will get me that relationship. As always you opinion means a lot to me and you are on of the few people who truly know me. As we discussed yes maybe my blunt honesty and laying all the cards on the table will deter someone away from a relationship but I also feel that you have to take me as I am.... love ya lots and thank you for the opportunity to voice my small opinion :)

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  3. Hi Autumn. You sound like a wonderful person but I feel bad for you. I don’t only feel bad because you’re giving yourself away (intimately) to men who probably don’t deserve you, but also because you clearly don’t realize how special you are. You say that you don’t understand how sleeping with 3 different men will affect your chances to find Mr. Right? You also say that due to a sick, silly double-standard, you’re out to do these things just to prove you don’t conform? Well, your answer is obviously staring you in the face.

    Your friends probably love and care about you, which is why they advise you to protect yourself. Not protect yourself by using contraceptives, but protect yourself by not giving away your pearls; your treasure. Yes, men can be dogs; but when you wave meat in front of them, there’s no other option for them but to bark and bite at it. There’s nothing more beautiful and precious than a woman who knows her worth and will not settle until she gets exactly what she wants and needs. That said, you've probably been hurt, but haven’t we all? You've probably been let-down, disappointed and completely disgusted by something someone did/said. That’s still no reason to ignore thousands of years’ worth of old-school logic…. Lauren Hill said it best, “You give it up so easy, you ain’t even fooling him.”

    No one can tell you what to do; granted. But if you were looking for a little bit of advise, being that you put all your business out there for everyone to read, this is what I would tell you…. Start putting demands on yourself. Yes, everyone likes sex. However, I’ve never read a case where someone died from the lack of sex. In contrast, we’ve all seen thousands of cases where people have died from having sex, with the wrong people. Demand that you at least only be intimate with someone who could potentially be your man. You might not be looking for a man right now, but I think you are. I think you’re responding to hurt that stems from a deeper issue, and until you deal with that issue, you’ll be running wild wondering when God will send him your way. And btw, God isn't sending Mr. Right your way until you get all the Mr. Wrongs out of your bed. At least, not according to the book God wrote; the Bible.

    I hope you find what you need, not just what feels good right now. And of course my opinion doesn't matter, but I hope you treat yourself better. Listen to your friends. Listen to people who have had experience and have seen this behavior, time and time again. It doesn't ever end happily. It usually ends with you making a mistake and getting pregnant, making a mistake and getting an STD or making a mistake and ending up letting the wrong guy in (after a week) who doesn't understand the word “NO.”

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  4. Let me start by saying, Taylor, that I both respect and agree with your take on my situation. However I think you may not completely understand so let me help you. First by no means should you feel sorry for me or pitty me. As you stated I should know my self-worth and not give my precious pearls to someone not deserving of me. Well to put it quite bluntly I love having sex and in no way do any of these men have to manipulate their way into my bed. And yes I know, quite well, how to say NO!!! I have sex when and because I want to not the other way around. Secondly, these are not new behaviors for me when it comes to men. I by now means feel like I have a point to prove but simply that I am not governed by the "rules". I have been close to marriage on more than one occasion and have had more than one meaningful relationship with ONE man. It just so happens that right now that is not the case. Third and most important, you are absolutely right God will not do for me until I do right by myself and him. However my lord knows my heart and my journey with and to him is mine and mine alone to walk. So rest assured he and I are working this one out together. But again I thank you for your concern and honesty.

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  5. You are grown and realistic. Enjoy your self. It is your life. No hating over hear... Conrad

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