I met him when I was young. Too young to enter into a relationship that serious, but my parents said I was old enough to wake up on my own, and hindsight is a cruel bitch. In all honesty, I had no other choice. I was just a helpless female trying to get by in this patriarchal world where men run our bodies and decide that we should wake up before we naturally want to. Like most toxic relationships, I settled. He was young and hip and available on my cell phone, and like any other naïve girl, I was enamored by the first alarm that decided to pay attention to me.
But he doesn’t understand my love language.
I’ve told him countless times that my love language is physical touch, not a repetitive five-second loop of electronic sounds impersonating music. I don’t know how many times I’ve told him I want to be woken up by tender nibbles on my neck, soft caresses that leave goosebumps along my skin, sweet nothings being whispered in my ear, and ideally a cup of coffee that he made for me himself, but he seems incapable of any communication that doesn’t involve electronic noise making.
He doesn’t take no for an answer.
When we are in bed together, he is the last thing on my mind. He tries to get my attention, but I just shut him up as fast as I can, and try to return to whatever fantasies of real romance I was experiencing in my dreams. But I can’t even do that, because five minutes later, he’s going off at me again. “NOT NOW,” I want to scream, “I was about to make out with a very attractive celebrity, and you just RUINED IT.” He doesn’t even care.
He taunts me.
We’re both constantly pushing each other’s buttons, literally. He knows I would love to be a morning person. Someone who wakes up and reads important and inspirational literature and eats a full breakfast and manages to put on makeup the right way at 7 a.m. But I can’t. I never will, and he knows it. So he twists that knife in my back every single morning, every five minutes until I finally get up to accomplish nothing. Nothing. And all I do is push his buttons back. His coping mechanism is the silent treatment. Ugh.
I’ve tried breaking up with him, but I don’t seem to be able to remove him from my phone.
My friends know this is a problem. They know how unhappy I am. I’m so embarrassed that I haven’t been able to cut him out of my life, but I’m just not able to cut him off completely. Every time I decide the best thing to do is delete him from my phone, I just…can’t. And at the end of the day, I think I’ll be trapped in this relationship forever. Like I have to accept the fact that I can’t leave him.
Maybe, just maybe, I will learn to love him. But I doubt it.
Maybe, just maybe, one-day society will evolve enough that a woman can live alone, live a happy, fulfilled life, without a snooze button, and can be accepted just for who and what she is.
Until then, I remain a slave to the system.