I was talking to a friend this week and she said that every apartment advertised for an unbelievable price inevitably has something wrong with it when she shows up — a shared bathroom down the hall, no windows, a weird permanent smell — which makes me think of an unfortunate recent dating experience. Well, relationship experience, really.
I met Mike in July, the month I was supposed to meet my future husband, according to a Las Vegas psychic who shares my name and whose phone number I’ve harbored ever since our February meeting (I planned to invite her to the eventual wedding if her prediction came true).
Actually, I met a lot of guys in July…but none of them gave me butterflies like Mike did. He was tall, handsome, Southern, earnest as hell and chivalrous to the core. Things moved very slowly in the beginning. He seemed to be interviewing me; questions included where I pictured myself living in the future, my readiness for marriage, and the number of kids I wanted to have. I guess I finally passed the test six weeks in because he asked me to be his girlfriend. I don’t remember the last time someone asked me that question and I didn’t hesitate to say YES.
My mind reeled…Beth, the psychic, could actually be right! I hadn’t had such a good feeling about someone for a long time. Not only did we both enjoy French restaurants, rooftop talks, dressing up, and bourbon…the sex was incredible AND he wanted to settle down. Jackpot.
I remember thinking over the next few weeks that I was the luckiest girl in the universe. What is happening?! Do I deserve this?! Yes! I’ve been dating people who haven’t knocked my socks off for years! This is what it is supposed to feel like.
And then, just like that, the shoe dropped.
I started to notice the frequency in which new bottles of bourbon and vodka were appearing in Mike’s apartment — every few days. The more time I spent with him…consecutive days and nights…the more I recognized the smell of alcohol on his breath. Before afternoon hikes and (gasp) in the mornings over mouthwash.
I’m all for drinking wine at night, having the occasional bourbon nightcap, champagne brunches and day drinking at BBQs, but vodka in the morning, weekend benders, and bottle-o-bourbon weeknights are beyond reasonable in my book. While his behavior didn’t affect me all that much (he’s a fairly happy drunk), I know one thing for sure: I don’t want to be in a relationship with an alcoholic. Nothing good would come of it.
The breakup lasted less than three minutes.
Me: I love almost everything about you… But the amount of alcohol you consume makes me uncomfortable.
Him: Well, it’s been nice spending time with you.
Me: (Staring. Waiting for more.)
Him: (Staring back with a blank expression.)
Me: Do what you will with this…I’m worried about you.
Him: Like I said, it’s been nice spending time with you. Can I walk you to your car?
Fairy tale over. Crisis averted. Life has moved on…though I can’t say that I’m not disappointed or not worried about him still.