For Whom the Wedding Bells Toll…

 

Now usually I like to receive questions through the comment section of this site, but I got a good one through myspace. So here it is:

“Alright, so I feel completely crappy for even bringing this up, but better with you than with someone I really know. I’m 30-years-old, with a good job, lots of friends, and a great family. My boyfriend of two years broke up with me about 5 months ago – a man I thought I was going to marry someday. I’m still pretty raw over the break-up. To make matters worse, my 22-year-old sister – my BABY sister – just got engaged to a great guy. I am happy for her. Well, at least I want to be happy for her.  But I’m having a hard time feigning excitement.  Even though she hasn’t said anything, I can tell she knows I’m having a hard time with this – and that makes me feel even worse. What do I do?

                                     Signed, “Cassie”

Dear Cassie,

I am probably going to sound as if I’m talking out of both sides of my mouth on this one – but a situation like this warrants it. On one hand, let yourself off the hook.  You are legimitately going through a difficult time; mourning the loss of a relationship you thought was going to last a lifetime.  Also, I’m guessing that since you mentioned your age, perhaps you feel some pressure to have your personal life settled by a certain age or timeline, only exaacerbated by your younger sister’s announcement (I can hear you saying “uh yeah, DUH”).  I won’t insult your intelligence by telling you not to let all that get to you. It already has, right?

That said, this is your sister’s time…one you don’t want darkened by your cloud of self-pity.  Your relationship with her is also a lifetime commitment. Show the relationship the respect it deserves by letting her know what’s going on with you. Tell her how happy you are for her, but that you’re also going through a bitch of a time right now. Just getting it outside your own head can do wonders for dissipating the anxiety these feelings cause.  Sharing our demons makes them weaker.

If you are indeed focused on a  lifetime goals “check-list” for yourself, I would urge you to create a paradigm shift in thinking: that is, keep the goals, lose the ticking clock.  I remember on my first day of graduate school, my husband and I found out I was pregnant. We had just moved cross-country, were living in a 700 sq foot studio with two cats and a dog, and no family for 3,000 miles. To say the pregnancy was unplanned was an understatement. I was hell-bent determined to finish my master’s degree in 1 1/2 to 2 years tops, and then go right into a Ph.D. program. No baby was going to stop me. But something happened during my pregnancy and in that first year of my daughter’s life: I learned to let go of the “should have bys” in my mind. I had to – with frequent feedings and diaper changes through the night, coupled with a husband on the road, and 500-1000 pages of reading to do every week, I discovered I couldn’t do it all. At least not all at once. I did finish my master’s degree – three years later – but I finished. And I realized that if I had stuck to my “grand plan,” I would have never had my daughters and I would have been in the wrong profession.

My point is, sometimes the universe – whether you want to call it God or fate or karma or destiny – has other plans for us. I don’t know what that will be for you – I hope it mean meeting a guy that rocks your world forever – but none of us knows really. What I do know for sure is that love is infinite; meaning, just because your sister has found her decadent slice of heaven doesn’t mean you won’t. Just be open – REALLY open to all the possibilities, without feeling pressured to settle for anything less than what you want or deserve. It’ll happen for you. Just make sure your sister doesn’t put you in some poofy pastel disaster of a bridesmaid dress for the wedding, o.k?

1. “Jealousy,” Lori McKenna. [The Kitchen Tapes]

2. “Melancholy Melody,” Esthero. [Wikked Lil’ Grrls]

3. “4 Kim,” Sally Taylor. [Apartment, No. 6S]

4. “How Will He Find Me,” Deb Talan. [Sincerely]

5. “Attainable Love,” Christine Lavin. [Attainable Love]

6. “So Long Sweet Misery,” Brett Dennen. [So Much More]

7. “Magic Time,” Van Morrison. [Magic Time]

8. “This Fine Social Scene,” Zero 7. [The Garden]

9. “Somebody,” Depeche Mode. [The Singles 81>85]

10. “Someday You Will Be Loved,” Death Cab for Cutie. [Plans]

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3 responses to “For Whom the Wedding Bells Toll…

  1. I am a married man, father of 2 girls and a business owner. My life is pretty boring, my business controlled by my parents and my wife constantly bothers me about the house. I smoke a lot of pot and started doing cocaine lately to take the edge off, or maybe give me some edge. About 9 months ago I went to see a trans-sexual, it was an experience I wanted to have for a long time. We did it all and it felt great. At the urging of a friend I went to another one a few months later, same thing. Since then I have been back several times and given head several times. There is something exhilirating about it.. I am by no means gay just so bored with life I need a shock to the system every now and then. I also call phone sex and ask for chicks with dicks. Does this make me gay?

    Andrew W.

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