Sunday, December 10, 2006

Toxic relationships

One of my friends - I would consider a Grace to my Wil (name deliberately misspelled) - intentionally moved from Des Moines to Omaha to be closer to me. I've repeatedly told her there's no way I can be a boyfriend. She seemed to accept this. And Omaha had more job opportunities than Des Moines. So far so good.

But she hasn't found a guy in almost three years. A few dates, maybe even a few "one week" relationships. With my lease expiring in about 120 days, I'm starting to look at other cities. I haven't told my family or her yet because I don't want to be that person who says "One of these days, I'm ditching this crummy town..." - but never does, like a character in a Bruce Springsteen song. When I sign the lease in this new city, that's when I'll tell my family and her.

Anyway - I vented to my mom about my concern for her and my mom said "Well, you probably ruined her life for the past two years." My mom doesn't know about my sexuality (she only needs to know when I found that person who I'm going to spend the rest of my life with), and I've purposefully kept a lot of stuff secret because she has the ability to use lines like "you ruined her life" to reduce my confidence to rubble at a whim.

To this woman, I think we've helped each other through a lot, but like a lot of Will and Grace-like relationships, they can stunt growth just as easily as enhance it (so do all relationships/friendships, I realize). But I'm starting to feel like I'm stunting her growth. And after this weekend, hearing s**t like "You're never going to get a woman the way you dress, I mean, with those Converse shoes and unironed shirts" from family, it's becoming clear this area is toxic for me and I need to get away - soon.

My buddy from Dallas came up with his wife this weekend. He works at a paper and encouraged me to find an entry level reporting job on the West coast - any paper that would take me. It would doom me financially, but it's something that has to be done if I'm going to get serious about this profession.


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