Follow the signs...
I love to flirt. It’s one of my favorite things to do and I have no idea why. It’s almost never with any agenda in mind…it’s not like I say to myself oh look at that hot guy, he is definitely about to get some intense eye contact from me then we’ll get married, have 3 kids and grow old and grey together…
Maybe that’s not 100% true…because now that I think about it I almost never flirt with someone that I’m not at least mildly attracted to.
The point of this random and extemporaneous blog post is to therapeutically address an issue that I’ve had for most of my adult life and that is recognizing the difference between flirting and actual interest. I mean if we go off my assumption then every guy I’ve ever met has been into me. But my track record proves this to be untrue.
By nature I’m what Psychology Today calls: Touchy-Feely. I LOVE to hug, kiss, caress a forearm, tricep and or bicep and if we sit together long enough I might put my hand on your thigh or casually hold your hand as we talk. For the most part I keep these desires in check and since there hasn’t been a class action lawsuit made against me I think the way I do these things hasn’t made anyone overtly uncomfortable…yet. I’ll even go as far to say that the flirtee enjoys these interactions…or do they?
My biggest problem is that I’m never sure. I once had a guy tell me I was one of his favorite people and I was like “Really? Since when? I didn’t even think you liked me! We barely even talk to each other!” Another incident involved a gentlemen who I’d been flirting with for a few weeks and being the semi-straightforward girl that I am I told him I was romantically interested in him and he said something like “Ewwww gross” and then he pulled my hair and picked up a handful of sand from the sandbox and threw it in my eyes….
Okay that’s not true but that analogy is the equivalent of what I felt on the inside after countless hugs, cutesy jokes, soft kisses on my cheek, his smile that seemed tailor made for me and the intense look in his eyes as if I was the only one in the room when we were together all boiled down to “Thanks, Joyce. I’m so flattered but yeah I’m just really enjoying being your friend.”
My friend? Did I misread the signs or is he just being a vinegar and water wash douche? Let’s assume its the former and in that case how can I be that bad at misinterpreting the signs that to me all point to:
I really think there’s some sort of intuative misfire in my brain when it comes to this sort of thing. Maybe it’s because I’m terrible at hiding my feelings. When I like you, you know it because nine times out of ten I will tell you. And when I don’t like you in that way or I’m only interested in being friends I won’t flirt with you and I’ll ALWAYS tell you I’m not interested in anything other than friendship the moment I get a flirtatious vibe from you.
I’ve said all that to say this… I haven’t had this problem in the past year (cause its actually something I’m working on!!) but recently I’ve found myself slipping back into the realm of misinterpretation and along with that comes hurt feelings and my bruised ego. I am not about that life. With so many disappointments in my past I had adopted the belief that unless a guy comes out and says he likes me and wants to date me then any flirtatious interaction we have is merely a source of entertainment for him and should not be taken seriously in any way shape or form. Keep you non-committal hands to yourself sweet cheeks. This doesn’t mean I’m ready to settle down and get married and start poppin’ out babies up down and sideways but what’s wrong with admitting that we like each other and letting the chips fall where they may?
I’ve had some interesting relationships in the past which I’ll certainly write about in my memoirs if they are still worth remembering around that time but in the meantime I guess I’ll do some soul searching and focus on becoming an adult when I turn 30 in less than a month and try to figure out why I tend to fall for guys that don’t want me and I don’t want the guys that actually do fall for me which is a whole other crazy thing. More on this later…