I’ve followed your blog roughly since Day 1 (when I read posts about it on PEx), but I’ve only had the opportunity to write you now. I’m not sure if I’m asking your advice exactly, or I just want to be able to tell somebody about my frustrations.
I’m a single professional based in the Metro. I live alone, am financially self-sufficient, and possess a certain amount of charm, so to speak. I’m very discreet, and although I have a few friends who know about me, I don’t get to talk to them a lot.
I’ve been single now for quite a few years. At first, it was by choice – I wanted to focus on my career first, and on improving myself. Now, however, loneliness has hit me quite hard, and I’ve been trying my luck with dating, and it hasn’t been a very pleasant experience.
Because I don’t have a lot of gay friends, I don’t have a network from where I could get “referrals.” So, I turned to the online routes: chat and personals ads.
I’ve talked to guys who genuinely seemed like they were nice. I get told a lot that I’m a pleasure to talk to. And yet, nothing seems to work out. Most of the time, it’s either they want other things (i.e. just to fool around), or they just disappear all of a sudden. I don’t know if it’s a function of the way I look, or if I’m just too intense. The bottom line is, I still go home alone at the end of the day.
I am still hopeful that there’s somebody out there for me. But, as the days, weeks, and months pass, I’m starting to get less and less hopeful, and more and more cynical. I’m so close to giving up on relationships, and I’m afraid that I might actually end up chasing away the one, when he finally comes.
That’s the boat I’m in currently. Just today, this guy I was talking to for 3 hours on the phone last night, flaked on me. That’s the second time in one week. I am so frustrated, saddened, and hurt. I know that after I’ve cried about it for a while, I will put a smile on my face and go on living.
But, my heart feels like it’s been skinned over and over, and it feels raw right now, and frankly, unbearable. I seriously don’t know if I’m okay anymore – and I know I wouldn’t have e-mailed you had I been okay.
Anyway, thanks Migs for this opportunity to get a load off my chest. I wish you all the best – and the happiness to boot.
Dear Cool Pare,
When I read your email, the first thing that came to mind was one of my favorite books — “Hope for the Flowers” by Trina Paulus. I first encountered the book as a required reading back in high school, but loved it since then. I have given the book as gift to many of my very close friends. If you were a personal friend, I’d give you a copy as well.
You sound like a very smart guy. I can see you write well, and you express yourself very clearly. You said that for a time you consumed your time mostly to further yourself in your career as well as in your personal development. All these things are very good. You also said that there came a point in time when you started looking for “The One” through online venues. Nothing wrong with that.
Towards the end of your letter, you said your “heart feels like it’s been skinned over and over, and it feels raw right now, and frankly, unbearable.” This is a very profound statement. I would invite you to ponder more on this, and see what makes you use this very graphic imagery. Can it be seen any other way? Can a different lens make you see a different reality looking at the same thing?
“Hope for the flowers” is a parable about hope. Here’s an excerpt:
“Butterfly — that word,” she [a caterpillar] thought.
“Tell me, sir, what is a butterfly?”
“It’s what you are meant to become. It flies with beautiful wings and joins the earth to heaven. It drinks only nectar from the flowers and carries the seeds of love from one flower to another.”
“Without butterflies the world would soon have few flowers.”
“It can’t be true!” gasped Yellow.
“How can I believe there’s a butterfly inside you or me when all I see is a fuzzy worm?”
“How does one become a butterfly?” she asked pensively.
“You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.”
“You mean die?” asked Yellow, remembering the three who fell out of the sky.
“Yes and No,” he answered.
“What looks like you will die but what’s really you will still live. Life is changed, not taken away. Isn’t that different from those who die without ever becoming butterflies?”
Nurture hope inside you, Cool Pare. When you find “The One” you will see it’s all worth the wait. Meanwhile, continue your quest for developing yourself. Gradually transform your caterpillars into butterflies, and I tell you, it’s no easy task. Be patient and as you become, day by day, a better version of yourself, you will also be an inch closer to your best destiny. If that destiny contains a life with “The One” so be it. But it will definitely be a future that you create now.