During my teen years, I had this overly romanticized notion of what it would be like to start dating as an adult: going out each weekend, enjoying lavish drinks and dinners, indulging in an extended courting process before taking things to the next level... Then once you were in a relationship, it only got better in my head: constant sleepovers, more dating... Basically, I was just consumed with the idea of the perfect relationship.
Anyway, I wised up QUICKLY and by my adult years, realized that while it's possible to have a happy relationship, dating wasn't always the bed of roses I'd imagined. And, along the way, I learned one other lesson: it wasn't uncommon to have old exes work back into your life, whether you were spending time with them again or entertaining the idea of dating them again.
The prompt for this post came from a good talk I just had with one of my close friends, Veronica*. We had been catching up on her current dating situation, since she had a lot going on not too long ago
-- mainly an issue involving a guy she was seeing eight years her junior. They'd seem
to be having a lot of fun a couple of months ago and at that moment, he
was what she needed. However, not too long into it, his other (read: needy) attributes started to
rear their head and not too long after that, she was showing him the door.
After that, he was calling her and texting her around the clock, professing his love for her and apologizing for all the horrible things he'd said and done. And, after several weeks of this, she slowly agreed to start over as friends. Now, their situation is pretty casual -- she sees him when she feels like it. And, while he continues to tell her that he feels strongly for her, she refuses to get invested, enjoying their arrangement just the way it is while she keeps her options open.
I have to admit that in the past, I've found myself revisiting exes and situations that, well, I really just plain ol' shouldn't (**Ahem** --- Casanova). Not proud of admitting this, I know, but I'll own it. It was what it was back then.
After hanging up with Veronica, I thought about the times I've taken a stroll down memory lane. Truth is, I know I fell back in old patterns because it took less work, I knew what to expect and it didn't require a formal start or end. And, while I was shopping around for my real match, it didn't seem like a bad idea to have some type of placeholder.
Ultimately, if it's in you to do, then do it -- but for you. After all, we only live once, and you need to get your kicks when you can get 'em, right? These days though, I'm trying to take a new drama-less approach and minimize how often I indulge my exes so as to avoid any messy entanglements. To help me with that, I keep reminding myself that there's a reason they're past and not present.
Let's see how this goes. :-)
* = Aliases to protect the innocent