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Well Dad.......... You Asked


Monday, November 26, 2012

It all started when Tim walked in the door Thursday morning. “You cut your hair!!” Katie exclaimed. “And you trimmed your beard.” “I’m seeing someone on Saturday,” he responded. “You have a date?” I asked. They all looked at me like I’d said something wrong. Back in the day, Joan and I met, we dated, we got engaged and then we got married. I realize I’ve compressed a time line. Katie, Maggie, my nieces and a nephew sat down and began to explain this phenomenon to me in that tone you use when you are trying to potty train a two year old.

Apparently people don’t just date anymore. First they “talk to one another.” I’m not sure how long talking lasts but if everything goes right they start to “see each other.” This conjured a vision of people walking around with blindfolds on until the right moment. My insecurities led me to wonder what would happen if they didn’t like what they saw? After you see one another for a prescribed period of time (No one could tell me how long this period of time was. They said “You just know.”) you begin to “date.” Dating leads to that wonderful Facebook status called “Being In A Relationship.” I’ve never been sure what to say or do when I get someone’s status update saying they are “In a relationship.” Do I send a gift? Should I get my suit cleaned? (Do they even wear suits anymore?) Thank goodness for the little thumbs-up-like-icon. I just hit that and wish them well. Being In A Relationship is sort of tricky. It can go on and on or it can end, which means you are single once again and everyone sends you sad, yet supportive messages or it can evolve into becoming “significant others.” I figure if you reach this point the term is redundant. I mean, if you invested that much of yourself shouldn’t it be significant? Does the world need to know the distinction? By this point my head was throbbing. We were only getting started.

We went into the subsets. Once you were a significant other you could tack on “partner” or “domestic partner,” Domestic partners shared a residence and the chores and duties and all the other exciting stuff that goes along with managing a household. “Partners,” maintained their own residence or not because some people don’t like the term “domestic.” During this stage of a relationship you can announce on Facebook that you are “engaged” or single depending how the partnership works out or you can just remain partners.

You can also decide you don’t really want to commit totally to a relationship but you still enjoy certain aspects of one another’s company. That’s when you become “friends with benefits.” It means that you “hook up” on occasion simple to enjoy certain pleasures without any real commitment other than showering afterwards. (Didn’t I put that diplomatically?) You are allowed to have more than one “friends with benefits.” Usually you don’t put this on Facebook because some people look at it as being a bit tawdry. While you can introduce someone as a partner, a significant other or a fiancé it is bad form to introduce someone as being a “friend with benefits.”

Sometime when I wake up in the middle of the night and play with my regrets I wish I was young again. After this discussion on Thanksgiving I’m glad I’m where I’m at. I’d need a score card to keep track of my life and mostly I learned next time, not to ask.

Namsate
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LYNMEINDERS 12/2/2012 12:56AM

    Love it...it is really hard to keep up with todays phraseology

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NUNZIATA43 12/1/2012 6:37PM

    It's a whole new world out there, John! I'm glad I'm in the observer seat and not having to "execute". Well stated!

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NUNZIATA43 12/1/2012 6:30PM

    It's a whole new world out there, John! I'm glad I'm in the observer seat and not having to "execute". Well stated!

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_MOBII_ 12/1/2012 11:11AM

    Or, you can you know....just 'date' someone, go ahead, be an old fuddy duddy! emoticon

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GEEMAWEST 11/27/2012 10:54PM

    All I can say is that "Life is Complicated". And I am so glad that I don't have to worry about that aspect of life.
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RACINGSLUG 11/27/2012 2:05PM

    I'm glad I never went through that dating thing, and will never have to. For me and my husband it was straight from friendship to love.

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WORKINGSTIFF 11/27/2012 10:20AM

    I'm so happy to be old-fashioned after reading this.

I asked my son once if he ever talks to friends on his phone. "No."

They only text each other. No communication, no relationship, no committment.

I'll take the good old days anytime! Those of us in long term relationships are downright radical! Courageous even! Thanks for the chuckle!

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CRYSTALJEM 11/27/2012 7:19AM

    Exactly. :)

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DALID414 11/27/2012 1:32AM

    Too funny.

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CARTOONB 11/26/2012 9:57PM

    It's complicated doesn't begin to explain it! Ha!

And you *did* ask! emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 11/26/2012 9:02PM

    I think I need to add to my Thanksgiving list: I'm glad my son went so quickly from single to engaged to married... made it easier for his mom to retain her innocence.

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MOBYCARP 11/26/2012 8:44PM

    Heh. Makes me glad that my daughter explained the term "friends with benefits" with reference to *other people* and some disapproval in her voice. Not that I'm about to ask for clarification; it can't make me any happier to get her to tell me something that she's decided I don't need to know.

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SHERIO5 11/26/2012 8:42PM

    emoticon

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CRAZY_DIET_MOM 11/26/2012 5:16PM

    Another reason to be thankful for my husband. emoticon

Beautifully written, apparently very accurate according to my 17yr old and a great smile. Thank you.

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GARDENQE2 11/26/2012 2:25PM

    TEE! HEE!
Good clarification of present-day social mores for us ol' fuddy-duddies!.
It's great to be over the hill so nobody even cares what I'm doing!
I wonder if anyone under 50 understands the word, "tawdry?"
Keep up the good work, John!
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WORLDSERIES11 11/26/2012 2:06PM

    funny, yet sadly true emoticon

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NASFKAB 11/26/2012 1:44PM

  thanks for posting

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BOOKAPHILE 11/26/2012 1:26PM

    Next time he gets a haircut, just smile or say he looks good. What a minefield!

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ADELE66 11/26/2012 1:09PM

    I can confirm (as a single woman) that this is shockingly accurate!! I do believe that life was a lot simpler before Facebook.......!

:o)

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CELLISTA1 11/26/2012 12:57PM

    Apparently email is passe too. Those same people text but they don't email. So if I want someone to respond to an email, I have to text them to ask them to check their email and answer me.
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REGILIEH 11/26/2012 12:23PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SIMPLY-4-ME 11/26/2012 12:22PM

    If anything happens to my hubby, I'll just stay single. No way would I start dating again. It'd scare me to death.

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HDHAWK 11/26/2012 12:17PM

    This makes me laugh. I just dated my husband. I guess I'm old fashioned. I did feel a little weird calling him my boyfriend at 50 yrs. old. At least fiance was a term everyone understood. Now I don't have to worry about it anymore!

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NEELIXNKES 11/26/2012 12:16PM

    Way to complicated and I'm not that old. emoticon

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DOODIE59 11/26/2012 11:55AM

    You made my day:) I hope you have yourself a good one, too:)
Deirdre

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MORTICIAADDAMS 11/26/2012 11:53AM

    Yep, it's hard to fathom. No wonder people don't get married like they used to. With the cost of a wedding and a divorce it's kind of good that they spend 30 years seeing if someone is date worthy. LOL.

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MARITIMER3 11/26/2012 11:49AM

    Oh John - we're just so terribly out of date. Isn't it lovely? I wouldn't want to start over again for anything.

Gail

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LUCYJOY 11/26/2012 11:39AM

    LOL-Darn, I should have gotten a "domestic partner" instead of getting married. I liked that description-you know, the part with shared household responsibilities?

Now these things are important when Christmas shopping. I mean, my son with the 4 year long domestic partnership's partner is that a family gift? What about the other son with the 6 month relationship that was friend's with benefits but now a domestic partnership? What to buy, what to buy-LOL

Loved the blog.

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DARJR50 11/26/2012 11:33AM

  Boy, can I relate to this. My feeling is the heck with it. I will do what feels right and if the younger generation can't understand it, Oh Well. As best as I can figure out the rules really haven't changed it is just the terminology. I think. Good luck with the relationship, or whatever it is call now days.

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