I'm calling this post Companion Piece because it is a follow up to a post I wrote last month about boyfriends: The Truth about Boyfriends. Shortly after The Truth About Boyfriends was published, I was asked by a friend, who is also a member of my very small circle of readers, to write a follow up to this post but from the alternate perspective; ie, The Truth About Girlfriends.
At first, I was over-joyed at the idea of having a blog concept handed to me. As a sidenote, readers, I LOVE THIS. If you ever have anything you'd like for to me write about, ANY THING AT ALL, please let me know & I'll do my best.
But anyway, while planning for this post, I was very soon confronted by the fact that, never having had a girlfriend, I was not sure what to say about dating girls. So, while thinking of ideas, I consulted a Lesbian friend of mine. My own theories on Western girlfriends were (a la Elizabeth Gilbert) that the Western woman comes off as crazy because of the choices she's confronted with that at one point in time were not available to her gender in this country. My Lesbian friend's response to this was something to the effect of, "No, shut up. Why are you trying to make this so complex? Wasn't your post on boyfriends overly simplified?"
& she was right.
So my beautiful, intelligent, special lady readers, please forgive me for the following:
--I will be over-simplifying our gender;
--It might be funny and stereotypical;
--Everything I write is limited solely & purely to my own experience as a girlfriend and as a friend of girlfriends (as it would be impossible for me to poll all the Western women on the planet to get their input. Maybe not impossible but I still don't want to).
In Rant: The Truth about Boyfriends, I put forth the theory that almost all problems you have with your girlfriend can likely be resolved under one of the following three concepts:
I stand by this theory and will elaborate.
As a boyfriend, you are expected to:
(A) Introduce your girlfriend as "My girlfriend, (insert her name here)" to any and ALL women you interact with on a weekly basis and YOUR PARENTS. Your failure to adhere to this rule will get you in trouble.
(B) Remember holidays, birthdays, and special occasions and give her some sort of token (or gesture) that re-assures her you have not forgotten.
(1)These tokens may range from the very casual verbal gesture to the very expensive jewelry type tokens--this will depend on the girl, the occassion, and the amount of time you've been dating.
(C) Admit when you're wrong. This is a big one. I don't mean this in the sense that over dinner at I-Hop the two of you got into a debate over a particular episode of Seinfeld that when googled, proves she was right. I mean when you've failed her, disappointed her, or broken her heart/spirit: YOU'D DAMN BETTER APOLOGIZE & it better be one of the best articulated, most poetic things you've ever said IN YOUR LIFE.
(D) Realize that you are lucky. Girlfriends do hundreds of different things to show their lover that they care; we try to cook things you like, we try to maintain our looks, we try to get better looking, we buy clothes in colors you like, we do your chores while you're at work, we clean our usually disastrous dwellings before you come over, we pick up the bill some of the time. EVERYTIME you notice that we're doing something right, YOU NEED TO SAY THANK YOU. There are NO coincidences with girlfriends; if there's a day where she looks particularly stunning, realize that on that day she went out of her way to look beautiful for YOU, and tell her that she's breath taking. If you don't, she'll start to think you don't notice & it's only a matter of time before she stops making the effort or finds someone who appreciates that effort. Re-assurance goes a long way.
Possibly the most self explanatory of all the pillars to being a successful boyfriend, but often the most violated.
As a boyfriend, you are expected to:
(A) NOT CHEAT;
(B) BE HONEST;
(C) Not be violent;
(D) Keep the flirting with other women to a MINIMUM (if at all) & also out of her sight;
(E) Believe in her abilities;
(F) Back her up in all quarrels that she's involved in but to which you are not a party, even if she is wrong;
(G) Not do things to intentionally hurt her. This includes any of the above listed actions but also;
(1) Name calling;
(2) Being spiteful.
(H) Let her know when it's over in a DIGNIFIED manner. <--It is NEVER okay to just stop talking to your former girlfriend without notifying her of your intent to see other people and stop seeing her.
This is where the comedy of being a boyfriend rests. Girls are nuts; each and every single one of us. To successfully date a girl, you need a fuckton of patience...more than that even & I'm not even sure how much that is.
You will need all of this patience because:
(A) Women LOVE to talk, about EVERYTHING. & the kicker is:
(1) Unless a response is warranted from you, you should NEVER interrupt a woman mid-story. I would guestimate that 40% of the conversations I have with my boyfriend are conversations that I not only dominate but would prefer for him to not engage in.
(2) Where a response IS warranted, there is ALWAYS a right answer. Your failure to provide the response we've selected in our minds as the correct response will lead to trouble.
(3) Where a response from you IS NOT warranted, your failure to show signs that you are listening will. get. you. into. trouble.
(B) Women LIE. Some of the biggest lies they will ever tell are:
(1) I'm okay. Which almost ALWAYS means the contrary & more specifically can mean:
(a) I'm not ready to talk about it;
(b) I secretly think you KNOW why I'm upset;
(c) I don't think you'd understand;
(d) I want an apology.
(2) I didn't snoop through your phone, computer history, etc.
(3) I'm not mad that you forgot how important _____ was to me;
(4) Even though I asked you to be my date at _____, I won't be mad if you don't come;
(5) My feelings won't be hurt if you say you don't like my outfit, makeup, hair, pet.
(C) Women can (& often do) hold onto a grudge FOREVER. As a matter of fact, much like men's ever-expanding list of people and objects they would bone, women keep a list of wrongs you've done to them. Every harsh word you've uttered, every time we've caught you looking at the cute girl at the coffee shop, every suspect phone call--mentally recorded, forever. & unless you apologize, we will hold it against you & bring it up one day four months later when you accuse us of forgetting to refill the ice tray.
This one is tricky.
We understand that once you've fucked up and apologized, there's nothing left for you to do. I once reminded a boyfriend of mine how much it killed me to know that he cheated on me--everyday for three months, EVERY OPPORTUNITY I GOT. He later told me that my refusal to forgive him and moreover, my desire to punish him everyday encouraged him to keep cheating because he felt since he was still being punished, he might as well continue to commit the crime. While he was just a dirty cheater and clearly full of shit, there are several things that can be learned from this:
(1) You don't deserve to be punished for things you've already apologized for;
(2) If she's still punishing you, she hasn't gotten over it;
(a) at this point, it's time to break up. There are some wounds time can't heal and resentment only makes them deeper. It IS ENIRELY possible to shatter a relationship beyond repair and once two people have reached that point, the best thing for everyone is to amicably part ways.
(D) Girlfriends NAG. A lot. Most of the time, our nagging is not even rationally related to what we're nagging you about. A nag from your girlfriend could mean anything:
(1) I'm still mad at you for that thing earlier today/last week/last month;
(2) I thought we were about to have sexy time--what are all your friends doing here?;
(3) I want some attention, dammit!/ I feel like you take me for granted;
(4) I'm having a bad day & taking my aggression out on you because I'm sure you'll put up with it;
(5) But sometimes, & rarely: I'm nagging you about something you actually deserve to be nagged about.
--> The thing about our nagging is if you're patient (hence why nagging is listed here), we will probably apologize once we've realized what big ass clowns we were. A woman who nags you incessantly without ever apologizing is immature--you should tell her and then LEAVE HER.
Inexplicable nagging could also mean:
(E) PMS. This is REAL. All women respond to PMS differently but it's something to look out for.
& Finally, to add a little humor to this post:
Girlfriends are Humans & People:
(A) They fart more, eat more, and KNOW more than they will ever admit to you;
(B) ALL OF HER CLOSE FRIENDS know the size, color, and girth of your penis as well as what the first time you've had sex was like and likely, what several subsequent sexual encounters between the two of you have been like;
(C) We burn ourselves all the time trying to cook, do our hair, light candles;
(D) If it ever seems like any of our friends don't like you, it's because everytime we get mad at you, we run & tell our friends how much of a dick you can be sometimes. As much as we try to undo this, our friends will always think you're an ass for pointing out that we gained weight over Christmas break.