While I haven’t been in a large number of relationships, there’s one constant that I’ve noticed: I can easily see why some people think I don’t care. I’m sure many other men are in the same situation, so let me speak for those who come off looking like nonchalant and care-free.
This couldn’t be further from the truth, but I can see why some people would think that we don’t care. If my girlfriend says she is going out with her friends — a bar, the mall, the movies, a daycation — I don’t really ask too many questions about it. I don’t need to know which friends in particular you are going with; I don’t need to know if there is a guy in the group; I don’t need to know an itinerary of your minute-by-minute plans.
And I expect the same from her.
If I’m out playing cards, or bowling, or hanging at a friends house, I don’t feel the need to take a head count of who is there and disclose the information. If there is a girl in the group (whether she is a friend of mine, or someone else’s), I don’t feel the need to tell her. I also don’t feel the need to give her an update every half hour as to what we’re doing.
The reasoning behind all of this? Trust.
Just by being in a relationship with you, I have given you my full and undying loyalty. I trust you with my heart and I trust that you will not break it, or our unspoken vow to remain faithful to one another. You never need to worry that I will cheat on you. When in a relationship, I think many people — men, in particular — lose sight of the fact that they are lucky to have someone who is willing to give their time and affection to one person. Monogamy is not overrated; in fact, it is sorely underappreciated. If you don’t believe me, look at the latest divorce rate numbers.
And I expect the same from her.
I trust you to be out and not worry that you will be obliterated and sleep with someone else. I trust that you are with whom you say you are with and that you are where you say you are. I wouldn’t want you to have to lie to me about things like that, nor should you feel the need to.
The only addendum I have in our relationship is when it comes to past lovers. If you are with someone you have been intimately involved with, I would like to know. I just think it’s common courtesy. The same goes for me. Now, if this is someone you dated years ago and have remained friends with afterwards and before you met me, that’s fine. I don’t fear that every second you’re with them you two are thinking about jumping each other’s bones.
And she should expect the same from me.
As of now, I only talk to one girl I was intimately involved with and she lives 1,000 miles away; so I don’t think my girlfriend needs to worry about me bumping into her. But, if, in between the posting of this article and me dating someone, I am involved with someone else, I would let her know if that person was in our social circle for the evening, for whatever reason.
Too many people fear “settling down,” or “wasting their youth,” or whatever awful excuse they use to escape committing to someone. If you’re with someone who makes you happier than you have ever been, why wouldn’t you want to make them the only person in your life?
Despite what we told our 14-year-old selves, we don’t need to be engaged by 25, married by 26, have a kid by 27 and be a full-fledged adult with a family by 30. Live your life on your own terms, not what everyone says you should do. Clear those major life hurdles when you are financially and emotionally ready, not when you think you have to.
So ladies, if you are with a guy who sounds like this, don’t think that he doesn’t care about you. This couldn’t be further from the truth. He cares about you so much that he doesn’t need to remind the world that you are his by being involved in every detail of your life. He wants to be with you, and so he makes you the only girl in his (romantic) life. And he trusts that you can have your own social life, while keeping him the only guy in your (romantic) life.