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My Troubles in Love or Why My Stab Wounds Haven’t Healed

I’m having trouble with love.  Sort-of.  Not between Kyle and I.  If you take into consideration the fact that we’ve lived in a studio apartment for a month now without slitting each other’s throats, we’re doing wonderfully.  No, I’m having trouble with how much trouble other people are having with our love.

It’s something we’ve had to deal with before.  Upon first examination, Kyle and I are an…unorthodox match.  I’m tall for a woman, and slender, (well, I used to be…shut up!) while Kyle is built like a fire hydrant.  He doesn’t seem to notice the holes in his t-shirts or the tattering hems of his pants, and I have trouble going to the grocery store without a put-together outfit, complete with accessories.  And I love to go to clubs with day-glo drinks and dance, while Kyle would prefer to go to a dive bar, drink beer and play Big Buck Hunter.

we're awkward

Because of our mis-matched appearance, I’m constantly being asked why I’m with him.   Shit, I just joined a website that Kyle administrates and my very presence inspired a 30-post thread on whether I was real or a character Kyle invented.  The question is always asked as a joke, but there’s also always a glimmer in the questioner’s eye that tells me that they’re actually pretty curious about the answer.

It’s not the questions that are bothering me, however.  They’re harmless, annoying at most, and fabulous on my ego.  But since we’ve been here in Wichita, people have been much more…aggressive, shall we say, in their responses to us.  (Keep in mind that Kyle and I aren’t incredibly touchy-feely; we’re not afraid of a little pda, but we don’t do that walk-with-your-hand-in-his-butt-pocket thing.  We don’t act any differently around, say, my grandmother than we do when we’re at the bar with friends.)  If there is the slightest amount of affection between the two of us, there will be vocal, (and snide,) reactions.  There will be rolled eyes, joined with a sour face.  There will be comparisons of us to a train wreck to the rest of the table.  There will be complaints of being “stuck” next to us at a party.  Shit, if we even pretend to like each other we’ll get nasty looks.  We’ve even had people walk away in the middle of a conversation because they didn’t want to hear us talk about our relationship.

Tell a story about how we tried to strangle each other for the last breakfast bar, however, and they will listen, enraptured.  Get Kyle’s attention by calling, “Hey, asshole!” and they’ll laugh.  But tell him I love him and give him a quick kiss and it’s, “Christ, do I really have to listen to that?”  I’ve never had such adverse and vocal reactions to our relationship before, especially from people who are at the very least, colleagues, and I’m a little baffled by it.

And frankly, it’s starting to piss me off.  Sure, most of these people knew Kyle as an engaged bachelor, so seeing him with a wife might be kind-of weird.    And to be fair, 90% of the people we work with are completely single, and maybe a little bitter.  Okay, maybe very bitter.  The theatre industry is not conducive to the married couple, what with the scarcity of jobs and the gypsy lifestyle, so it is teeming with the single and bitter.  It makes me wonder if we would be getting these violent reactions if we worked for the same company in a different industry.  But whatever their reason, no one has the right to try and make us feel guilty for having found love.

So what are we supposed to do?  Are we supposed to try not to touch each other except within the confines of our home?  Pretend that we don’t like each other?  Feign misery so that our single friends can look at the unhappy married couple and feel better about being single?  These ideas seem ridiculous and insulting, not to mention fairly unhealthy for our relationship.  Personally I would like to be able to call people out for their selfish and childish behavior, and stand up for our right to express our happiness.  But since we like these people, for reasons unknown, we’ll probably just continue to laugh it off, and hope that they’ll eventually stop seeing the weirdness or the jealousy, and start seeing two people who make each other very, very happy.

we're happy

{ 9 comments… add one }
  • Brad Peterson June 18, 2009, 7:57 am

    Well, I think you two are a great couple. And lets be honest, some of the Wichita townies are redneck idiots whose opinion should never ever count (and usually doesnt).

    And fuck’em if they are bitter – its their own damn fault that no one wants to date/lay them.

  • Suzy June 18, 2009, 8:39 am

    These people need to just SUCK IT UP and deal with it already! You shouldn’t have to change your behavior to please anyone. And I think you SHOULD call them out, but maybe in a way that is funny. You don’t have to be mean, just let them know that you guys are in love and you’re not going to hide it! 🙂

  • doahleigh June 18, 2009, 9:35 am

    Ok what the hell is their problem? I say you amp it up – start grinding on each other and stuff – just to prove a point. Then they’ll be relieved when you go back to just holding hands.

  • adriana June 18, 2009, 12:18 pm

    That would seriously piss me off! I think I’d say something, maybe in joking manner, like “Why does our happiness bother you so much? Who hurt you?” Just to call it to their attention that they’re being that way, you know?

    You should by NO means hide or downplay how happy you are together!

  • Carrie May June 18, 2009, 10:30 pm

    The same thing happens with your kids. Tell people that they are ranked number 6 in the class or one of the top dancers, and people say “that’s nice” with a look of indifference. Tell them that your kid wrecked the car or pulled an end-of-the-senior-year prank, and they want all the details. No one wants to hear the good. All they want to hear is the bad.

  • CharmCityKim June 19, 2009, 9:01 am

    I’m with Doahleigh. You guys need to start dry humping in public!

    I think people just like seeing people unhappy.

    Hmmm…I think you may be on to something with that last thought.

  • Swedish Hugs June 20, 2009, 7:29 am

    I think Carrie Mae has it right. There are people who don’t want to see people happy. I’ve been in my relationship since high school, and especially early on by single people there was negative reactions to it. It’s not as bad as it is anymore, but I think some people think I’m exagerating when I say how great our relationship is. To me though, I figure it’s there problem not mine.

  • Peg June 21, 2009, 1:43 pm

    Misery loves company; company loves misery.

  • David June 28, 2009, 8:46 pm

    Hmmm, didn’t know that was going on. My only impression is that you two are a happy couple. I’m really glad that the two of you are getting to work together over the summer.

    Sorry that you had to listen to Camelot over and over. How painful. I’ve always used the Flintstones theme to get music out of my head. A heads up… the next one is just as bad.

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