My fragile male ego

Nearly twelve years ago, a woman named Poison rejected me, and brought me into contact with just how ill I was.

Recently, a benign turn of events reminded me of the vulnerable little toddler inside me, the one who wants what he wants when he wants it (hint: everything, and now!). And, more important, who – when deprived – feels the world is coming to an end.

It’s this latter phenomenon – the sensation that the world is coming to an end – that I find most interesting.

Not her

Here’s what happened: this doe-eyed beauty I’ve been pining for – or, not really pining for so much as “enjoying fantasizing about while knowing that, for 10,000 reasons, my lust never would be, never should be, never could be consummated” – unintentionally revealed to me that a) she’s almost certainly not pining for me in the same way (I had allowed myself to imagine she was), and b) she is pining for someone else I know. Now – the dude for whom she pines? He’s lovely. Clever, funny, attractive. He’s about 15 years younger than I am, and he’s… damaged. In all the ways that a woman might find compelling – and in all the ways she probably should find repulsive (or at least, repelling). I can’t fault her for liking him.

Somehow the hardest part of him is that he and I share a secret, a different common love/lust/obsession/devotion interest – and one we’ve managed to find an awkward, uncomfortable way to share that leaves each of us, I think, feeling victorious in all the ways we need to feel victorious even as it leaves each of us feeling vulnerable in all the ways we need to feel vulnerable.

So she’s managed to identify the person in the world currently the most awkward for me. So. Ouch. The “good” news – such as it is? I think it’s unlikely my friend/rival will return the interest.

In the mean time, though, I’m left with my feelings. Intolerable, excruciating, painful feelings of longing and deprivation and unfairness. And, of course, just a smidge of self-loathing.

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