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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Starting at the end.

It should be no surprise to you that we are all human. (Well, except for Barbara Walters maybe. Does she age?) We all make mistakes. We do things every once in a while that we said we never would. We have emotions, desires, fetishes, and hang-ups.

One of the mistakes we often make is to start a relationship in the wrong way. Instead of getting to know the other person well, we get excited, emotions like desire take over, and the next thing you know you are crawling around in the dark looking for your socks. (I'm not the only one that has happened to, right?). We go home and beat ourselves up over our indiscretion. We worry about safety. And as we brush our teeth and look at our messed up hair we promise to never do that again.

Of course, some of us probably will.

I don't know that a lot of that actually matters. But what matters, in my humble opinion, is what we do next.

Instead of beating ourselves up and making promises we may never keep, I propose something different.

Look at a casual encounter as an opportunity rather than a mistake. Instead of running away, embrace the possibilities. Often after a casual encounter our first response is to avoid the person or, at a minimum, avoid finding ourselves in the same situation with them again. But why write the person off as simply poor judgment?

In my mind, it is never too late to take a step back and reapproach things with a level head. Why not realize that there was some attraction to the person or the casual encounter would never have happened? Sit down and have some of the conversations you should have had up front. Learn more about them and find out if there might be a connection. Let them know that you are interested in the possibility of more than just a physical relationship. If they feel at all the same they will welcome the conversation, and the opportunity. They will be happy to take the time to build a real, solid relationship.

And while you take that step back and negotiate a possible relationship try to remember that every relationship is different. There is no reason it has to fit social models or fit into acceptable categories. Build a relationship that you want, that satisfies your needs, whatever that may look like. Realize that building a relationship is a good time to challenge yourself as well. Try something you haven't tried before. Accept the other persons differences as qualities, rather than deficiencies. You never know, you just might find that you enjoy something in another person you never have before or didn't think possible.

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