Thursday

A stalker kind of love...



My friends and I often share stories about the kind of relationship we'd like to have. At times one or all of us has expressed a desire for a man who is sensitive and strong, charismatic and caring, sexy and steadfast, lustful and loyal, ambitious and amiable. The list goes on.

However, I suspect that some of us have a secret desire. We want a man who needs us nearly as much as he needs air to breathe.

A quote attributed to John Keats expresses our secret sentiment accurately. "I cannot exist without you. I am forgetful of everything but seeing you again. My life seems to stop there, I see no further. You have absorb'd me. I have a sensation at the present moment as though I were dissolving. I have been astonished that men could die martyrs for religion... I have shudder'd at it... I shudder no more. I could be martyr'd for my religion: Love is my religion. I could die for that. I could die for you. My creed is love, and you are its only tenet. You have ravish'd me away by a power I cannot resist."

Admittedly, this quote makes Keats sound more than slightly like a stalker, co-dependent, suicidal crazy man. However, when I read it struck a chord with me. I forwarded the quote to my friend and confessed that I wanted a man to feel that way about me. What can I say, the time was late, the night was cold, and I was alone.

In the morning, under light of day and warmth of the sun, I saw things more clearly. Having a man who possesses that kind "can't live without you devotion" is a great romantic idea. It's the recipe for romance novels, poetry, movies and Soap Operas. In practice though, it is unrealistic and way too much pressure. I remembered that I have known stalker, co-dependent, suicidal and crazy men. And none of those men inspired devotion.

There was a guy from college who confessed that he didn't believe he could make it without me. I was frightened rather than comforted. There was a guy a couple of years ago who sent me a couple of dozen roses for a month after we shared one dinner (no that is not a euphemism). He also sent roses to my grandmother. He was quite undone when I didn't want to date him. He also claimed that he had previously worked for the CIA and had ways to keep tabs on me.

One took the cake though. My most significant college boyfriend was so "devoted" to me that he defied police orders and drove from New York to Virginia with a suspended license, expired registration and expired insurance after spending a night in jail for the same. He arrived sans license, registration and insurance, with a kiss and a smile. Since he had no place to stay and no money, I gave in to the pressure and let him stay with me. Rather than being impressed, I was appalled that he would risk his liberty just to see me.

Time has a way of making you forget. However, remembering these men from my past reminded me that it is much more romantic to be wanted than to be needed. Having someone who enjoys your company and feels that you add value to their life is much sexier than someone who doesn't know what to do without you. It's also lot more fun because you can focus on romance instead of dependence.

Still, if you catch me in a weak moment. You may hear me whining about wanting a "Keats kind of love". If so, remind me to go to the library, take in a movie or go watch the Young and the Restless! :-)


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