Paper and Ink, Series

Paper and Ink: Femme Aimee (65)

paper-inkBy Emmeline Bisiikwa, Uganda:

'The I-don't-know-what-is-going-on phase of a relationship is pretty confusing. After you talk to someone for a while and have a connection, you begin to imagine there is something more. The danger is to imagine there is something before having the talk. Guys are particularly famous for being visual; he might like what he sees but doesn't think beyond that. It could be a purely physical thing, or emotions could develop but he doesn't know and doesn't care.

It gets dangerous when your feelings develop and his don't. I have been in this situation more times than I care to count. Always wanting something more was probably my downfall because somehow I fell even when trying to just enjoy someone's company and wait. That hasn't gotten any easier, but maybe I have changed because recently I may not feel something for someone and yet have a good time with them. I guess the heartbreaks and hard choices had a point after all.

Yet it's so easy to get carried away with texting or instant messaging. When you talk to someone for many hours, you begin to feel a connection develop. The problem is this connection may be one way. He sees someone to flirt with and have fun and you see someone that gets you and might be meant for you.

I recently had one of those maybes with a friend I have known for over 18 years. We would occasionally hang out, watch a movie or go for cake although we wouldn't talk so much. Then one day we started texting all day and before you know it my mind had rings and vacations all planned. He was nowhere near close but I chose not to push for the talk. We had one romantic night and the next day he was over it. I tried seeing where we could go from there but his response was things got out of hand and we can't be more.

Such disappointment shouldn't come as a surprise, I suppose, considering texts create a fantasy based on the one side of someone you get to see – the side they want you to see. It's hard for anyone to live up to a fantasy, and you definitely set yourself up for failure.

People present two identities; who they are when they text and the real person after they no longer have the mystery of what you will be like in person, then they move on to the next flirtationship. These are people who refer to you as their friend in public; I guess after that you get your priorities straight.

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