Note: The "Trooper" in question is not actually in the military. It's a metaphor, people.

October 3, 2007

My Gut Just Might Be Useless

Wine Guy and I will hit our six month "anniversary" one week from tomorrow. I can already feel myself having a nervous breakdown - just like I did right before our three month mark.

Apparently, relationship milestones scare the crap out of me. I think it's that whole "how things are supposed to be" versus how they actually are. I must have read too many Cosmo relationship columns when I was a preteen or something because no matter how realistic (sometimes cynical) I am when it comes to my love life, I still deep down think that someday it will be all roses and valentines. And when it inevitably isn't, I jump to the most immediate conclusion - this relationship must be over.

At our three month mark, I was dealing with the "are we right for each other" doubts because I must have read somewhere that, by this point, you should know if you're compatible enough to continue dating.

Thank God we survived that bout of bickering, caused mostly by my hyper-focused analyses of our every interaction. Since then it's been pretty much smooth sailing. We are growing closer, learning more about each other (the good and the bad) and even making plans as far ahead as New Year's Eve (we're taking a 10-day holiday road trip to visit his older sister and parents).

All was fine in reality and in my head (what an accomplishment, I know). Fine, that is, until I realized that our six month mark was approaching and we still haven't said "I love you."

Several friends I've shared this news with were quite surprised. Frankly, I'm surprised too. It's not that we haven't discussed it in a semi-ridiculous roundabout way, because we have. He knows I have issues with saying it first after getting burned doing just that in my past two relationships. This time around I want the guy to be the one who is so inspired by his feelings that he must confess his love.

That's certainly how I felt in the past when I uttered those words for the first time. It's an almost overwhelming, unstoppable sensation. Like the words must be spoken or you'll die. This can be wonderful and exciting if you are confident the other person will say it back.

I've had this overwhelming sensation to say these words to Wine Guy for the past two months. But unlike my previous relationships, this time I held my tongue. I want to know that he's not saying it back just to be polite.

He knows all of this. And he still hasn't said it.

What is my gut telling me? Well, if it could talk it would say, "Of course he loves you, idiot! He's pretty much said so. He's just toying with you because he knows you're waiting for it. You know how much he loves to tease you!" (He does love to tease me, as do many of my friends. I am apparently very fun to tease because, like a typical youngest child, I get easily riled up. Annoying.)

For the last three months I've been quietly accepting my gut's opinions. But with this next milestone approaching, I'm remembering something. My gut has the worst instincts on the planet. It's been wrong several times before and, frankly, I'm still kind of pissed at it.

So now what? Is he waiting for the right moment to declare his love when I'd least expect it? Or is he just stalling because he still doesn't know how he feels about me? If it's the former then he's just being a pain in the ass and obviously doesn't understand how important this is for me. If it's the latter, well, then we need to have a serious talk because, according to the relationship guide that is mysteriously implanted in my head, at six months you should know. Especially when you are 34 years old and hearing that damn maternal clock ticking away every second.

But things don't seem that ominous, at least at the moment. We just got off the phone and he's ridiculously excited about our big holiday road trip to see his family - three and half months from now. He's already mapped out the route, calculated the cost of gas, and decided what wines he'll bring for Christmas dinner. Doesn't that say something?

If only my gut had a better track record.



The Organ Harvester said...

I am the direct opposite. I ignore my gut. Much to my chagrin. I say roll with the gut. The gut is usually right. And happy music never works, except leave an annoying tune in your head.

Loverville said...

"If it's the latter, well, then we need to have a serious talk..."

It seems that you two have great communication and ARE able to talk about so much... do you feel that you can talk to him about this?

I KNOW - in a perfect world, he wouldn't need this kind of talk.

In my last serious relationship, it took us 9 months to say it to each other... talk about agonizing waiting!

Anonymous said...

actions speak much louder than words. You have nothing to worry about. My now husband really did not declare his love until he proposed, but I had no doubts. j

Colorful Mind said...

i could not admit to having a relationship with my guy for about 3 or 4 months! I have to say that Cosmo is the last thing any woman in a relationship should read-it is the DEVIL! I have started more and more fights because of that smut! You guys will say it when it is the right time--trust me!

Mendoza Line said...

My gut tells me that on your road trip you have to stop and get your picture taken under the "Space Age Lodge" sign in the sad town of Gila Bend, AZ...then depart immediately!

(As for relationship advice, I am not helpful, hence the nickname)

Kelly said...

I'm having the opposite problem. I don't know if I'm in love or not and, after being crazy about my last boyfriend and getting dumped, I can't tell if it's just a protection instinct or if he was one in a million and I'll never feel that way about anyone again and this new guy just isn't right for me. If, at 3 months, I can't honestly say to myself, "I am in love with this guy," does that mean I never will be, or should I wait for it? How long should I wait until it's obvious it will never happen? I was only broken up with the last one for a couple months when I met the new one, and still find myself thinking about him sometimes. Uggh. So unfair to the new guy, but if I waited until I was ready, I'd be waiting years. Lifetimes. Planets would collide. I would hate for him to say it first and for me not feel the same way. I'd never say it back just to be polite. Neither would your man. It seems there would be a sense that you both know. I think. But then I know nothing about love. It's constantly screwing with your head. Kermit had it easy with his pigs and rainbows. The rest of us just have to figure it out as we go.

Oh yeah, he loves you. The pre-roadtrip gas calculation is a dead giveaway.

Michele said...

My husband and I used to celebrate all those anniversaries and then we got married and forgot when they even where. Try not to put so much pressure on yourself. Just enjoying getting to know each other and don't worry about where Cosmo or anyone else says you "should" be in your relationship.

Melissa said...

These are great comments! I'm totally insecure and probably would have crumpled under the weight of not knowing for sure. But your commentors seem to have their heads on straight. The mind kills...stay in the moment.

coffeesnob said...

re: "I must have read too many Cosmo relationship columns when I was a preteen or something"

so much of the trouble in life is caused by people recalling something they've read, somewhere. magazines are the usual culprits.

Samantha said...

It sounds like he loves you. Definitely. Is it possible that he is waiting to tell you he loves you because he doesn't want to freak you out?

KateM said...

Strangely enough, my new relationship seems to mirror your milestone stages. So, every time i start to have a neurotic freak out, i come to your blog, search a phrase and hey presto!! At roughly the same time we were going through the exact same wobble. I've said it before and I'll say it again, your blog helps me to feel that im not alone in this messy dating landmine. Thank you.

I myself am fast approaching my 6 month relationship milestone and am patiently (on the surface) waiting to hear those 3 magic words...and after a glorious 10 day christmas break spent with him and his family, I'm still waiting...!!! Urgh. But alas, i feel better reading your blog, which reminds me to seriously check myself and my sometimes misguided expectations.

Happy New Year!!

KateM said...

How funny. I was searching through your blog to re-read your entry about Wine Guy saying he loved you for the first time and low and behold, I read my comment written in January which I had completely forgotten about! What great therapy your blog proves to be. A reminder that at 6 months I was pining to hear those 3 words and fast forward to our 9 month anniversary (last week) when I decided to end the relationship because he still just didn't feel that way about me.

So, now Im that woman with tears in her eyes google searching for any little bit of comfort and reassurance from other women who have loved and not been loved back. I know you mentioned something happening in your previous two relationships...have you any related blog entries that might sooth an aching heart?