Dear Future Boyfriend,
I basically never wash my hands. Even if someone watches me pee in a public setting, I probably still can’t be shamed into washing my hands. I’d rather run the water for 20 seconds for good measure and stare at myself in the mirror to triple-check all my imperfections than get my hands wet. I wash my sheets maybe once a month at most, but usually only if there’s visible sex on them or food stains from eating in bed. I never wash my car because I’d rather just wait for it to rain.
I grow two coarse chin hairs that I pull out with my fingers neurotically during work meetings. I pick my nose when I’m driving. I pee in the shower every time I take a shower. My Sicilian skin is slick with oil and I’ll leave grease marks on your pillowcase. I have cellulite on my ass. I bruise easy. My varicose veins are emerging a few decades early. I don’t have dainty ankles and my scarred knees look swollen and dirty.
I keep saying I’m 30 even though I’m 29, because I feel like somehow when I’m 30 my life will magically feel more figured out. I don’t have a 401K and I’m currently $81,206.32 deep in student loan debt for a Master’s Degree in “Anthropology and Social Change”. I have an okay job and stable income but I want to quit every other day and I spend most of my lunch breaks making Airbnb wishlists. I got evicted once. I’ve been homeless twice–but once it was “by choice”. Still, I’ve never had to sleep on the ground except the time I got roofied at a nightclub and woke up in a yard without any of my belongings.
I think I’ve been in love four times and two of them were weed dealers, one was a deadbeat dad and one was probably gay. Each one sort of canceled out the love I thought existed with the previous ones, so maybe I’ve only been in love once. But most likely, never. I don’t know if I really understand what “I love you” means. It used to mean I fix what’s wrong with you or I need you to fulfill every one of my unreasonable demands. But I’m healthier now, I swear.
I legitimately think I’m smarter than almost everyone I’ve ever met. I will manipulate any situation to show off how intellectual I am. I am secretly begging you with my doe eyes to ask me what my IQ score is (Stanford-Binet 133, but I’ve lied about it being higher). I’m not paying attention to anything you say during “small talk” and 75% of the time when I’m asking you questions to get to know you, I actually just wish we were talking about me instead.
I whisper to myself a million times a day that I’m okay and that everything is fine even though if the wind blows a few degrees in the wrong direction, I’m pretty sure my life is in shambles and I should drive to the Golden Gate Bridge and jump off. But first I should call you and blame you for the wind’s mistake and also for not loving me enough.
I am constantly comparing myself to everyone around me. I wish I could be zen and unaffected by other people and the world at large. I wish I wasn’t a human who was required to feel pesky, petty feelings. At the same time, I’m afraid I’m not human enough, that I’m subhuman. I’m afraid I’m a raging sociopath and that the empathy I feel for you is actually just sadness for myself and the lack of attention I’m currently getting while listening to your problems.
I pretend to be aloof because I’m scared you’ll reject me before I reject you. I pretend to play the role of “chill cool chick” because I have too much ego to tell you that something minor you nonchalantly said or did actually destroyed my feelings. My feelings are like dominoes waiting to knock each other down. Truth is, I would probably be committed to a psych ward or be on trial for murder if I didn’t have 12 Step Programs.
Undoing my “insecure” attachment style branded into me from infancy is like working overtime at a minimum wage job, only to survive 3 or 4 month-maximum relationships that are mostly a crash and burn infatuation where we project fantasies on each other in an earnest, intoxicating fashion.
I want a guy who will stroke my body to sleep every night, without any expected reciprocation. Fuck it, I’ll take a lullaby too. Give me all your affection or watch me turn cold. I want a guy to make shared Spotify playlists with. I want a guy who will wash my dirty car. I want a guy who makes my inner child feel like it’s safe to come out and play. I want a guy I can call Daddy without feeling awkward. I want a guy who can read my mind so I don’t have to find words to communicate any of my needs. Just build a shrine to my emotions and call it a day.
I want a muse who eats up all my writing like it’s motherfucking Joan Didion or Virginia Woolf, but doesn’t panic when I write about him in really vulnerable and low-key exploitative ways.
The truth is I’d rather write a shrouded essay about something mundane that’s actually about you and what you mean to me, than ever confess aloud how I truly feel ON THE INSIDE.
I hate snoring and I hate your sweat touching me and I’m only pretending to accept the fur patches on your back. (Also, I probably hate half of your wardrobe)
Let’s be honest, sex is mostly uninspiring and mediocre and I’d rather be crying together in the dark to Frank Ocean over some weird repressed childhood trauma. I’ve masturbated with unsexy objects like one time in college the handle of a frying pan. I only watch girl on girl porn. I don’t particularly wanna eat your ass but I’m a people pleaser and will take on whatever you want as long as it’s traded for ample validation and occasional cursive handwritten love notes. I spent so much of my past dissociated during sex that now I’m scared I’ll never have a real sexual identity. I got kicked out of my first (and only) orgy for crying in the corner and chain-smoking all the Newports. The fact that I never caught herpes is proof of the existence of a God working in my daily life. I love a good blowjob but 6 minutes into one and I’m basically just choking back my own vomit and praying to every Hindu incarnation of God that I learned about when I lived in India that you will cum soon and that when you do I don’t puke it all out. One time in high school I threw up barely chewed pizza on my boyfriend’s dick and I feel like I have PTSD that gets triggered ever since.
I will never answer your DM Requests, but I read them all and continue to gain a false sense of superiority from not answering them. I’ve stayed with abusive boyfriends who regularly took me shopping to say sorry for regularly cheating on me and sometimes I felt like this was a fair trade. I listen to Kanye West’s music and I don’t care if that makes me a shitty person. I’m probably a gentrifier and probably just as bad as that blonde thot in the movie “White Girl”.
If you have an intimate relationship with your mother then I’m morbidly jealous of it and if your dad didn’t drink himself to death under a bridge after forgetting your birthday 15 years in a row then I HATE YOU.
You should probably also know that I spent a decade escaping in every way imaginable including all the predictable addictions and self destructive behaviors, but also by spinning in circles until I got whiplash and seeing a band called The Disco Biscuits live in concert nearly 100 times. I’m sober now because if I wasn’t I’d already be dead. Sorry to rain on your party parade but just being alive at age 30 is like a lifetime achievement award for me.
I stay busy to avoid examining my “inner world” and I call it productivity. I gossip and call it processing my feelings or even better restating facts. I hate drama but also it feels more natural to get wrapped up in your business than to mind my own. My biggest dream is to one day shut the fuck up. I only learned how to tell the truth and say sorry in the last few years. I will probably never change but at least I can experience the pains of GROWING.
I want to believe that stuff like meditating every morning, having faith in the Universe, sage-ing my closet sized studio apartment, building altars for Mars Retrograde and practicing radical kindness make me spiritual. But being spiritual just means being fucking authentic, and that’s way harder to accomplish in one day.
On a good day I know I’m a woman of integrity and that I’m doing my best. On a bad day I’m unworthy on a cellular level. Sometimes it’s more comfortable to have the bad days because then I don’t have to live up to any standards I set. Then I don’t have to look in the mirror.
The most cunning lie I tell myself is that I’m not enough just as I am. I’m alone. I don’t belong. I’m different.
Or maybe it’s that any of the previous judgments in this letter hold any real meaning about who or what I am–other than I’m a human being, and THIS IS WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE TO BE HONEST ABOUT IT!
These are just a meager fraction of my so-called “flaws”. You’re welcome in advance.
Signed, sealed, delivered–I’m YOURS!
Read more: Shit In My Hands