I feel slightly odd writing this post, because I’m not particularly fond of making grand, sweeping statements of declaration anymore. I mentioned it in my 2013 wrap-up, though, and it’s an idea that’s been growing to a point of culmination for quite a while, so here it is in official MarkMushakian.com-form.
If you know me or have read my site for even a short amount of time, you’ve likely heard me talk about the dream of one day having a wife, kids, a dog, the white-picket fence… all of it. I love women, I love children, and I love dogs; you’ll see them peppered throughout my posts, and you can see my visible reaction of happiness when I come across them in real life, but I’ve come to some very surprising realizations, lately… namely, that I don’t actually want a relationship, kids of my own, or another dog.
Mark Mushakian blasphemy!? Perhaps.
I’m not just saying that now I’m confident and content and that I’d be OKAY without a wife and kids of my own, I’m actually considering the possibility that I might not want them at all. Haha, even typing it feels strange, but if I’m honest with myself, it’s a thought that’s been percolating for some time. I think my recent attitude adjustment and perspective alignment (i.e. the Year of Mark that was 2013) just pushed it all over the edge.
I love spending time with people, and I love culturing as many deep relationships as I can, but at the end of the day, I enjoy coming home to solitude. Obviously, I don’t live alone so I’m not talking about an empty house (but boy am I looking forward to that), but I’m talking about actual personal solitude. I’m on my own schedule, with no intimate responsibility to anyone else… and I really like that. What actually inspired me to write this post was my recent Corgi Christmas. Now, don’t get me wrong (especially you, Mrs. Reiber)… I loved having little Allie around, and she wasn’t a burden, but she was also just a visitor. At the end of the day (figuratively), I was able to give her back to her owners and be on my merry way back to my own, do-as-I-wish routine. It’s curious, perhaps, that I can be such a loving fella – always happy to take my time or money if someone needs help – but also revere my solitude so much.
Over the last few years, I have hidden over 10,000 profiles on OkCupid. I’ve often had the conversation, both here publicly and with friends, about my seeking perfection in a romantic partner, but what if it’s more than that? I talk about how it’s not that these women aren’t “good enough,” but more that I just don’t feel compelled enough to make a move or take the effort in asking them out. Obviously, asking them out isn’t hard, but then we have to go on a date, then maybe another, and on and on – and I haven’t come across but a few gals who have made that sound appealing. I very rarely send messages on there, and have only taken two girls out, and I certainly have particular tastes (just in general), but what if most of this rejection has come about simply because I’m not really looking to bring someone else into my life in that way? Sure, I want love (in a general sense) and I sure as heck want some of that sex all the kids are talkin’ about these days, but I’m fully aware of how much effort a romantic relationship takes. I’ve had a tough time finding someone, I think, because I’m not actually looking for someone. I don’t want a wife or a girlfriend with faults and desires of their own, not because of an idea that women shouldn’t be their own person, but because I don’t actually want to live my life with another person that isn’t just me. Haha, years ago I used to talk about how I was looking for “me” in a female form, but maybe that’s because I was just looking for myself in me form 😉 .
This isn’t just a love-lorn bitterness, either. I took a girl out on a couple of dates this fall, and I was genuinely kinda sad when things didn’t work out, but I was actually more sad that the relationship didn’t carry on as a friendship, because we just got along so famously. I’m doing well in life, I’m happy, so I can’t see this as a negative denial of my real desires. It extends towards children and pets, too. As I mentioned above, I loved visiting with my friends’ corgi, and I was happy to help out and have her around for a bit, but it’s not a daily responsibility I’m looking for. Similarly, when I went to visit my friend Joe and his wife, Laura, and spent a week with them and their 2-month-old, I absolutely fell in love with little Natalie, and I spent most of my days just watching her with a big smile on my face, but ultimately I was satisfied with the idea that this little girl wasn’t my responsibility. I had my own home to return to, where I wasn’t going to be disturbed by late-night crying. I was returning a corgi to her owners and wouldn’t have to worry about when the last time she went out to pee was. I was going to do whatever I wanted with my days, without having to share my bed space with another body or coordinate plans and activities with a significant other.
Basically, it’s all a selfish interest in “me time,” not as a desire to ignore relationships or the needs of others, but more as my hope to retain my own solitude when I am away from others. A wife is forever, children are 18+ years of bonding, and it’s curious for me to be at a point where I’m looking at things this way, but that type of regular commitment to disturbing my daily life doesn’t appeal to me. I was talking with Joe the other day, commenting how ironic it was that he had become the happy family man and I was the content bachelor – a complete reversal of the dreams of our younger selves.
I could write more, because I can ALWAYS write more, but I’ll stop here. I’ve considered closing my OkCupid profile, or at least making some sort of comment on it, since now it feels almost disingenuous to have it sitting there, plastered with comments about my interest in having a wife and truck-loads of children. Perhaps this is only a phase that I shall pass through, I couldn’t say, but it’s certainly an interesting attitude – one I wouldn’t have imagined coming to, but one that I’ve come to so naturally and gradually that I thought it prudent to document. I still adore the company of women (and I’m hardly asexual), I still have a passion for teaching and spending time with children, and I would love to find a valuable way to do volunteer work with animals… but for now, I have no real interest in making them a cemented part of my personal life.
Imagine that 🙂 .