March 1999

Wow, the months are just burning by! It feels like a couple of weeks ago I was writing my February column! Well a lot of stuff has happened since then, and a lot of it is so predictable that I'm fairly apprehensive about writing about it. Anyway, as usual I'm going to just get into it and see where it goes.


Well AJ+Brett are no more. The more I think about relationships, the more I'm realizing I'm absolutely no good at them. For example with Brett, I honestly thought I'd found somebody who was a wonderful guy who fit everything I was looking for: intelligent, fun, and attractive. I guess in a lot of ways I was at fault for it not working out. Wait a second, I'm just being really cryptic, and not explaining myself. Let me start this right:

I have already talked about how we met, and how our relationship got started. The first month was really great. And by the 16th of January, I'd already realized that I'd gone and ... well ... yeah ... sort of fallen entirely ... again. Well, if I'd written my last column around then (like I'm SUPPOSED to), it would have been filled with gushy mushy crap like usual. Well, if people remember the "Playing around" section of my last column, my "friend" was Brett. The line was, "AJ, I'm never going to cheat on you, but there's nothing wrong with playing."

Granted my opinion of the matter has changed slightly, I still find it difficult to accept that random sexual encounters can possibly be good for any kind of rela-tionship. Moreover, its not exactly the safest way of living. In any case, that was seriously bothering me while I was writing that article, so I pretty much glossed over Brett.

Well the day the article went online, Brett had decided that he wanted a hiatus. Basically, your guess on what that means is as good as mine. I pretty much shrugged it off once he was acting exactly the same way towards me as before. Well the first weekend after that, I got ditched for him looking at warehouses. That wouldn't suck quite as bad, had I not gone out and bought a rose for him.

The next weekend was Valentines day, and I never got a phone call at all from him. In fact, that entire week he had seemed like he'd been trying to really ignore me. I'd had the idea that we'd go to the Chicago Autoshow as a sort of Valentine's Day outing, since he only had one day free a week because of his work. I found out later that he'd gone to the autoshow already with somebody else. That's not really a big deal, I really do understand that he was dealing with his stuff and dealing with me wasn't on his agenda. What really thoroughly pissed me off about the whole situation is that throughout this entire long period of time, he never called me, never e-mailed me, never indicated in anyway what he was feeling or what was going on. He totally shut me out, and not calling me on Valentines day (a totally meaningless holiday ... ) was just a complete and total bitch slap. I mean I had spent a lot of time figuring out what I was going to get him, and moreover looking for it that took FOREVER. I managed to get myself so incredibly excited about it too! I just remember my friend looking at me showing her what I was going to give him ... she got this really sad look and said, "AJ, you know you are really totally wasted on that asshole." I had told him the last time I had talked to him that I really wanted to see him or at least talk to him on Valentine's Day. Well he didn't call ... didn't e-mail ... didn't do anything ... it hurt really bad. I got an e-mail at around 1am saying that he had been out looking for apartments all day, and that he was sorry. I tried to convince myself that there was a perfectly legitimate reason for him to have ditched me like he did. Maybe he got kicked out of his apartment, or something really terrible like that. He didn't, he and his roommate were looking at apartments together, and he could have called whenever.

Jesus, I can't possibly tell you what shit I was feeling like. I mean there aren't words to describe how absolutely worthless being treated so badly can make you feel. I don't think I've ever been treated like that. Its not even important whether or not he meant to do what he was doing, but I have no question that he KNEW what he was making me feel like. I mean somebody tells you that you mean a lot to them and/or they love you, what do you think ignoring and ditching them is gonna do to them?!

I probably shouldn't be writing this while I'm so pissed, but oh well. The anger is mostly self-directed. After things were cut off ... it's just that I can't think of any-thing else. I went to a gay conference in Madison this weekend, and had a lot of fun. I was surrounded by more gay people than I'd been around in my life (says a LOT, I'm pretty active in the gay community!). All the while, I saw guys who were strictly speaking more attractive than Brett ... and sometimes better kissers ... but the whole time, my brain was going back to him. I really hate not being able to control what I'm thinking.

It frustrates me to no end that despite knowing I've been treated lousily in this relationship. Despite being so incredibly annoyed at myself for not seeing the ob-vious fact that he really didn't want to be in a relationship with me, I'm blown away by him. There are so many reasons that I shouldn't be so incredibly blown away by him. It scares me, because it means that what I'm telling myself isn't what the real-ity of the situation is. I can't say I've ever gotten over somebody I've fallen for ... but at the same time ... I get the feeling that totally putting this one out of my mind is going to be harder than it was before. I don't know. I'm so confused right now, maybe it's just I haven't had enough time to sort my feelings out.

I talked to him today online. I'm trying really hard to not be a cold asshole or try and beg for him back. But I get the feeling if I try and go talk to him in person, I'm going to end up groveling for him back. I fucking refuse to do that. Not saying I don't want to be with him, I don't think I could even convince myself I believed that long enough to say it ... but I refuse to beg to go back into a situation where my ego is a doormat. I deserve better than being taken entirely for granted and having that shoved in my face constantly.

I'm tired of being hurt by everybody I open up to. As a result, I have completely clamed up. I mean to Brett, to my folks, to my brothers ... and even to my friends to a large extent. Poor Ali called me tonight to tell me she thought I was taking her for granted!

I guess I'm trying to just convince myself that things are no different, and the whole Brett thing hasn't changed me. The fact of the matter is that it has ... I've changed a lot since I started dating him. Sometimes, nature forces to people together for them to be together for ever ... other times its so that they can learn from one another. Maybe he was a learning experience. Maybe he was supposed to teach me something about myself? Well he did. I love too easily, and after having done that I ignore my own best interests entirely. I'm not selfish enough in a relationship, I should always make sure I'm happy first. And finally, that I should never let somebody else take control in a relationship.

I guess I've also learned that even though I've grown past a lot of the mistakes I used to make in relationships, it's not enough. In all honesty, I was a really good boyfriend: I supported when he needed to be supported, I argued when he needed to be argued with, I put his wants and desires above my own, and I gave more than I ever asked for. The fact is that nice guys DON'T WIN. My friend Nadine pointed out that I was itching to martyr myself, oh woe is me, look at me suffer. Unfortu-nately she's so right. Well don't feel sorry for me, I deserve what I'm feeling right now because I was stupid.

Neon Genesis-Evangelion:

This anime was probably what contributed to my highly annoyed and frustrated tone regarding Brett. I watched it the day after we cut things off, and since it's 13 tapes long ... it took a lot out of me. To say that it was therapeutic is a complete understatement. It made me feel really miserable, and depressed. Not because the anime was depressing (which it was), but that I related so well to the fourteen year old character. It was too easy to relate to his behavior and reactions. It was dis-tressing to see myself on TV. It pointed out things in my personality I need to deal with. Since I was a kid, everything I ever did was motivated by this fundamental fear and state: sabishi, loneliness. I don't want to get into it, because I don't know that I'm really happy talking about it. But now that I found my fundamental moti-vation, I also came up with my new motto (also in Japanese) sabishi de mo shinanai desu: lonely but not dead. Loneliness never kills, and it only makes the times when you aren't lonely that much sweeter. Loneliness makes a person grow, and its not that horrible to not have another person in my life. I would really love to have Brett here ... I really wish things could go back to January, and I could be as happy as I was then. But, that's impossible, and I refuse to let myself linger too long thinking about it. I do believe in a higher order power, and I believe that there is a reason for everything. I would never have gone to Madison had I still been seeing him ... oh yeah, I need to talk about that ...

Madison and the MGLBTCC:

Well this conference was a really great time. It is unfortunate that 60 percent of the attendees had a primary agenda of getting laid, but a lot of work got done too. One of the keynote speakers was Rebecca Walker ... who I must say is AMAZING. Listening to her speak was a wonderful experience. I'm going to try and organize for her to come to the University of Chicago to speak. I really think it would be a great experience. I also listened to Larry Kramer, and I must say that if you are feeling like you are doing a great job for the gay community, this man will thoroughly deflate your ego. I suppose anybody who is as old and frustrated with the gay community (God knows anybody trying to make a difference here feels that way some of the time) would be that pessimistic. Then again, he's always been that way, he wrote articles in the 70's that were much to the same tone. One thing that was really depressing was when he spoke about the "hope" he felt when working to fight the AIDS epidemic in the 80's ... the hopes that he had, the honest faith in other people ... that he totally lost. I was going to cry. An amazing man who I would pray to never either hear speak again or meet: I am too young and too full of hope (damn, I didn't know THAT 'til I heard him speak). There were also a lot of sessions where various topics were discussed, and overall it was a very fun conference.

I met a ton of people, and I was making out with a few of them ... I discovered where I could draw a line for "playing" and be comfortable: while dancing, making out and grabbing through clothing. If I was dating somebody and saw that, I wouldn't really be stressed out. Before dating Brett, that would have made me really uptight. <g> anyway, maybe I've made Brett out to be a real villain or something, and he's not. Its just from my point of view, I feel like dirt, and its tak-ing a lot to fix that.

Fixing my demolished ego:

I didn't realize that I was completely egotistically demolished until I didn't have the guts to flirt with this guy at the law school who was obviously interested in me. I mean, with me, flirting is a no holds barred activity. The game is fun to play. In order to remedy that situation, I got a great haircut and a new wardrobe. I now own 4 more sweaters, 2 silk pants, an Abercrombie-frat shirt. I've got an interview to-night, and I really need any boost I can get. Apparently, whatever I'm doing is get-ting noticed, because people are flirting a lot. I really look much more preppy than I have before, and I guess that is a good thing. What's really disappointing is that I am having a difficult time making myself interested. I'm really busy, and I guess really obsessed. I need to stop that. I wish there was a pill to turn it off ... <sigh>


Well I have to go eat. Wish me luck in my interview. Hopefully things will work out. As usual if you feel like contacting me, e-mail me at soulseer@cyberdude.com or IM me at uchcgo19 on AOL. Take care of everybody, and have a great month.

About the Author
©1998-1999 Oasis Magazine. All Rights Reserved.