We girls can spend what seems like hours talking about “timing”, “fate”, “distance”, either reasons or perhaps excuses that help numb the pain that another failed relationship produced. Our girlfriends are our best support network, telling each other that there are more fish in the sea, quoting clichés cum placations over a bottle of red, giving advice that we rarely take ourselves. We quote our mothers, our happily married friends, anyone who seems to know something that we don’t given our current situations. We suggest waiting until Thursday to return a certain suitor’s call (or at least that was my hard-assed advice last night), wondering ourselves if distance really does make the heart grow fonder. And despite the colloquialisms, the time-tested suggestions, the “easier said than done” advice, I return to two opinions that, if adhering to the principle of Occam’s Razor, are most likely the truth.
A recent column in the Washington Post opened my eyes to the new book by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo. While I haven’t yet read it, the premise is clear – we girls tend to over-analyze our way out of heartbreak when, in actuality, he’s probably just not that into you. Harsh, yet realistic advice in today’s world of Friendship PC Style, the unwritten rule of girlhood that mandates nothing but the “It’s not you, it’s HIM” statements, true or not. While I don’t advocate the belief that guys are the only ones who can call, I also have seen too many of my friends get (and, let’s be honest here, have at times myself gotten) a bit too enamored with someone without merit, and have held on way too long to the belief that there could be some excuse as to why his interest waned. In actuality, it was probably the combination of a myriad of reasons, all encapsulated to result in the fact that, sadly, he’s really not that into you.
This goes hand-in-hand with one of my Mom’s most astute pieces of wisdom, that “people tell you who they really are, and it’s up to you to listen.” I’ve found this out the hard way, with a few one-sided relationships full of actionless promises and eventual disappointment. We girls are great at hearing what we want to. He says that you can date others, and we hear “I don’t want to date anyone but you, and am just a good guy and want you to be happy.” He doesn’t say he loves you, misses you, is thinking about you. We hear “Aww, I know he feels these things, it’s just a shame he can’t express them.” Though actions do speak louder than words, the absence of these statements doesn’t replace the words entirely. If he isn’t calling, isn’t treating you the way you want, is giving half-assed efforts with an occasional apology, you need to listen. You need to hear him, he just told you (somehow in the combination of words and actions) who he was, and if it doesn’t match what you want – move on.