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September 13th, 2009

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09:38 pm - Your Reject, All-American
Since I wrote this post last year, I have gone through several potential future wives.

I e-mailed with the girl mentioned in the post, and after a few weeks, I didn't really think we were right for each other, but my parents insisted I meet her in person anyway since she was in Oakland. We had an incredibly awkward dinner together, so awkward that at the end she actually said she was sorry I had to do this, and the few minutes where we complained about the whole process were the most natural we were with each other. But there were no sparks of any kind.

I spent a couple good hours with one girl that I wasn't really attracted to but at least gave me hope that I could find an Indian girl with common interests.

Then there was a drought where it was determined that there was not a single Indian girl in the country who was interested in me. Excuse me, whose family was interested in my family. So we took some new pictures at Sears and JCPenney to make me look more attractive.

Earlier this year, I was given a girl who was potentially interesting over e-mail if it weren't for the fact that she took a week to respond. After weeks of e-mailing, we talked on the phone and had a pretty nice conversation. My parents wanted me to make a special trip to Dallas to meet her, but I wasn't that into her. And she wasn't that into me, given that I suddenly got an e-mail declaring that she wanted to make sure we were on the same page, but she sensed a mutual lack of interest, so it was nice meeting me and she wished me well.

My latest potential future wife was a law student in San Francisco who liked Fringe, Incubus, Green Day, Beck, the Postal Service, and Osha Thai. And she had streaks in her hair. She was vaguely promising, much more promising than the local from last year. Her mom and my mom were childhood friends, and the families were both in support of our union. My mom gave me her number to call her. I called her yesterday and got her voicemail, so, unsure of what to say and finding "Hi, call me back" insufficient, I rambled on awkwardly, as I do, joking about the voicemail lady who was going to cut me off eventually and expressing my shared like of the aforementioned things. It could be endearing if you know me, or annoying if you're not into that sort of thing.

Which she apparently wasn't, as today the support of our union was called off. Today, unlike last week, she wants to focus on her studies. Clearly, I left the Worst Voicemail of All Time.

Once again, the continual threat of India is in the air. In India, apparently, the women will be more likely to accept me. I guess they all want to come over to America so it doesn't matter how unappealing I am. I can joke, "Oh, you only want me for my citizenship." Because clearly they wouldn't want me for anything else.

I cried, maybe for the first time about this. For most of my life, I simply dealt with pre-emptive rejection since I never actually made any moves. Now that I am actually talking to girls with a hope of a real future, being rejected over and over is getting to me. This time I was rejected before the girl even talked to me. All I did in my voicemail was be me, and that was enough to scare her off. My dad is telling me to be a grown-up and change my behavior, but why should I fucking change who I am to find a fucking wife? Shouldn't my actual future wife want me for who I am? Shouldn't I be able to just be me? Who the fuck are these women looking for?

As if my own feelings of self-worth weren't enough, my sister texted me that my mom had freaked out and started crying and pray-crying as soon as she hung up the phone, wondering where she went wrong with me. She thinks I don't want to get married, that I'm being difficult to avoid getting married. Which is partly true, as I have told her three million times that I am in no rush to get married but fine I will talk to these girls and see if I like them, so I don't know why she's acting like this is new information. And her friends' kids are getting married, so she must be a failure as a mother since I'm not.

At this point, I feel like pulling a Veronica and declaring that I'm never getting married.

In happier news, I met vonnie_k and oyceter and rilina for dinner, and we had a lovely, rainy time.
Current Mood: crushedcrushed
Current Music: Placebo - Post Blue

(58 memoirs | Describe me as "inscrutable")


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[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 05:01 am (UTC)
I've only had a smidgen of that kind of pressure on me and it sucked a lot, so I can't even imagine what you are going through. I am lucky that my mother has gotten to the "I just don't want you to be alone" stage.

I want to tell you that you should just do what will make you happy, but that's kind of a ridiculous thing to say because following your heart doesn't necessarily go hand in hand with pleasing your family and it seems you will be miserable if you don't do that too.


Basically, you are awesome and I am sorry you have to deal with additional pressure beyond the standard dating crap. *pets*

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[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 05:11 am (UTC)
Thank you. I appreciate it. It's always nice to be reminded of that.
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[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 05:38 am (UTC)
I know this never feels very helpful, but Dan Savage always points out that if you are honest with someone and really put yourself out there and they are not interested, then you haven't lost anything. It never would have worked anyway, and this way you haven't wasted your time. But yeah, that advice has never really made me feel any better post-rejection.

Anyway, I'm of the opinion that the most interesting, unique people never have an easy time finding the right person. But would you really want to be the kind of boring person who clicks about the same amount with everyone they meet?
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 06:43 am (UTC)
I'm sorry! *hugs* You're absolutely right that you shouldn't have to change to find a wife, as the right person will love you as the imperfectly perfect person for them you are, just as you would love them. Not to mention, trying to change for someone else, rather than yourself never works out, so if you're happy with yourself, then that's the important thing and then you can look to find someone that is also happy with you and makes you happy. My impression is that you are happy/like yourself and to be honest, that's the hardest part, because how can you find someone who likes you, if you don't like or know yourself? You know and like who you are (whether or not it's 100% of the time is irrelevant) and you'll find the right person, if you stick to your guns.

I'll also add that unfortunately many of us dismiss others too easily for stupid reasons and I have no doubt that if more of these women actually got to know you as a friend first, they'd be interested. I'd also say that if you ARE really interested in the one in SF, just call her back and leave a message apologizing for rambling since she was probably like (WTF? Heh.) and invite her to a concert or something, where you can hang out & enjoy being at an event with someone, without feeling like you're having a dinner interview, you know? Given that she likes Green Day, Incubus, The Postal Service, Thai food and Fringe, she probably also has a hard time finding a single Americanized Indian guy, that actually is also still looking for an Indian woman.

As for your Mom praying & crying and pray-crying, etc, don't let it get to you too much. Marriage isn't a competition nor should it be just about culture or parental status/honor, so you need to make sure you stand firm, when it's YOUR happiness at stake.

Edited at 2009-09-14 06:44 am (UTC)
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 06:49 am (UTC)
Oh fuck. See, this is one of those times I wish I lived next door to all of my friends and I could come over with ice cream or something and talk to you.

This I get, I so fucking get. Since I was young I've always been told, don't talk so much, boys don't like girls who talk so much. Don't be so opinionated, your husband will always be angry at you. Keep your feelings hidden otherwise you'll cause problems in your marriage. Boys want skinny wives, when I was your age I was anorexic. Ok, that last part, not exactly, but the sentiment was there.

And every time a statement like that was thrown at me the more angry I got. As you said, why should I have to change myself? What kind of life would I live if I couldn't be who I am? And it got to the point where I believed that I was never getting married, I was too unattractive, too crazy, too stubborn, too loud, too everything to ever attract a suitable mate. That I was worthless.

And just when I had come to accept that I was going to be the crazy spinster aunt, my mom started telling me if I didn't straighten up she would have to compromise. More or less, she'd marry me off to the first bastard that said yes. Or at least that's what she made it sound like. That's when I started seriously contemplated getting disowned by my family because that was my biggest fear, that I would end up hitched to an abusive asshole for the sake of being married. Or to the first boy from the homeland that was willing to look over all of my "issues" because the only plus point I had was my green card. *headdesk*

Let me tell you, moms specialize in that "Oh woe is me, what did I do to deserve children like this, what did I do wrong" crying. There is nothing wrong with you. Do you know how many times I contemplated telling my parents I was gay so maybe they'd stop pressuring me about marriage? And I mean that as no joke either.

These girls, they can't see you for how awesome you are and that's fine (yeah, I know, it doesn't feel like it) because you and they aren't meant to be. Look, rest assured that Mrs.spectralbovine exists, ok? She's already been born and grown up, it's just a matter of coming across her. But she's out there. And when you do find her, ask her what took so bloody long.

Btw, these girls rejecting you, they don't even know you, so they aren't rejecting you, they are rejecting this construct they have of you in their heads. Plus, they are most likely dealing with the same family shit that you are. Chances are that they are saying no to you on a matter of principle, to piss off their parents, not because they have an issue with you specifically. I was going to say no to Dude on the basis of him being someone my parents introduced me to and because he was from the homeland until I realized he wasn't an asshole and he couldn't care less about my craziness. It isn't wtf are these girls looking for, it's more of a wth aren't they seeing because they have their blinders on.

Remember how I said a little while back about how people are always searching for The "Perfect" One? They don't see what's right in front of them and trust me, you don't want any of these girls.

It sucks, oh lord does it suck being in this position. But honestly, you're an awesome and really decent guy, and it comes across. If they can't see it, it's not a reflection of you, but of them. Ok?
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 02:23 pm (UTC)
See, this is one of those times I wish I lived next door to all of my friends and I could come over with ice cream or something and talk to you.
I wish it too!

But honestly, you're an awesome and really decent guy, and it comes across. If they can't see it, it's not a reflection of you, but of them. Ok?
Thanks. For your whole comment. I wanted to quote it all and say thanks and EXACTLY but that would take a while.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 09:06 am (UTC)
So... no pressure, then. There are times (e.g. when I read your post) when I'm glad that I don't have a whole raft of family requirements and expectations laid on top of the already difficult enough task of figuring out who I want to be with. I feel for you, even if I don't have any constructive advice beyond driving into the sunset while drinking whisky, whooping incoherently and firing a six-shooter wildly into the air. Which feels like a good solution to many things.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 09:10 am (UTC)
In the year or so I've sort of known you online (and even met you in person!) I've found you witty, interesting, intelligent, a great storyteller, and attractive. What's not to like? You are the opposite of unappealing. One of these days you'll meet a girl and you'll both *know* you're meant for each other. Your true love soulmate is out there and when the time is right, your paths will cross.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 11:05 am (UTC)
Ah Sunil. At the end of the day your friends love you. I don't have any advice or help but to say that romance if a tough gig even for those of us not looking for an Indian spouse. It's not just you. And hugs.
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[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 02:35 pm (UTC)
I agree with what others have said. If things aren't working out with these girls, that's because it's not supposed to work with these girls.

If I had met my husband even a few months before I did, neither of us would've been ready for each other. We were both in a period where we were working on ourselves, growing and getting ready for a strong relationship with honest communication, trust, and compromise, on equal footing. That is hard to find, because it really starts within yourself. You learn - starting with yourself - that people aren't perfect, and can't be put on pedestals.

Honestly, rejection is a good thing to learn to face. I'd actually recommend you practice dating more. Both my husband and I had about a year dating a range of people through online personals. This allowed us to get used to the fact that we just aren't going to connect with everyone. And allowed us to learn that, you know, interesting and attractive people are in fact, real and imperfect - just as we are. And by the time we met each other, we knew a really good connection when we saw it. Doing a stretch of online dating will also let you get used to, you know, dating... without the pressure of your family's anxieties and wishes weighing on you.

Hang in there. I know your family only wants the best for you... but this will happen in its own time, not on their schedule.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 03:01 pm (UTC)
That is such a tough situation. I really feel for you.

A few comments:

1) As hard as it can be sometimes, ignore your mom and her laments. The important thing isn't for you to make her happy, it's for you to BE happy. In the end, that's probably what she wants most anyway... for you to be happy. (She probably just thinks that this is the only way for you to truly get there, even though she's probably wrong about that.)

2) You are awesome, and don't forget it! It's tough sometimes being quirky in a world mostly made up of people trying for the status quo... and I know from massive amounts of experience. But don't you DARE settle for less than someone who appreciates you as you are, and someone who you feel the same about. Life is far too short to settle for anything less than that.

3) First impressions are super tricky. I still haven't mastered them, but I've gotten better at it. The one way you get better at them is, unfortunately, practice. That probably means a lot of rejection. But cheer up: EVERYONE gets rejected, and most people get rejected a LOT. That has nothing to do with the quality of your character.

4) The best thing to remember about first impressions is to focus on showing your strengths and avoiding your weaknesses. I know it sounds kind of devious, but it's actually the better way to go. If someone likes your strengths enough, they're more likely to tolerate the weaknesses when they show up... but if you present yourself as a whole, flawed human being up front, they assume that's you ARE presenting your best side and that there must be a lot more weaknesses under the surface. Sad, but for the most part true. (I don't mean that you should hide who you are... be yourself, just a slightly stylized version of yourself, if that makes sense.)

For you, one of your fantastic strengths is writing. Maybe you should try to focus on email/IM interactions at first, and then graduate to phone/in-person meetings once you've established a rapport. (I'm not trying to indicate that phone conversation is a weakness of yours! But everyone gets nervous on the phone and if you have an already established conversation going, it's much easier to transition and feel comfortable.) Are there any dating websites out there particularly for your dating pool? I'm sure your mom would be horrified at the prospect, but if you actually found someone that way on your own that ended up meeting most of their criteria, I bet your parents would accept it. With a dating site, it's already expected that you'll converse via email/IM for a little while before meeting.

I hope some of that helps. Hang in there! You'll find someone eventually, you're too awesome not to.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 03:13 pm (UTC)
4) That's an interesting way to look at it. It does sound devious! But...yeah.

Usually we start over e-mail, but I guess they didn't get her e-mail address, only her phone number.

Thanks for commenting, Amy. *hug*
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 04:54 pm (UTC)
*hugs* I really hate that you have to go through this and it's causing you so much distress.

I keep thinking that there has to be a better way for you to find someone. I mean, you know so many people, who all know so many other people - one of them has to know an attractive, compatable, single, appropriate Indian (Gujarati? I'm sorry, I forgot exactly which group you are a part of.) young lady. Unfortunately my own days of knowing lots of Indian girls seem to be behind me, but someone else has to be friends with them! They can't just exist in a vacuum! We need to set you up a website and pimp the hell out of you. Okay, not really; that sounds kind of awkward. But you could totally go viral and find someone. Somehow.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 05:05 pm (UTC)
I mean, you know so many people, who all know so many other people - one of them has to know an attractive, compatable, single, appropriate Indian (Gujarati? I'm sorry, I forgot exactly which group you are a part of.) young lady.
I know, right? This should be easier! I have a network! (And, yes, Gujarati is right, well done.)
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 07:13 pm (UTC)
Oh, Sunil. You're such an awesome guy that I can't believe you won't get there eventually. Of course, it doesn't help having a mother praying and crying at you and adding on the pressure. But there has to be the right girl out there for you. Or, like you said, never get married. You have tons of awesome friends, and you're famous on the internet! Here is a hug: *hug*
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 07:48 pm (UTC)

My dad is telling me to be a grown-up and change my behavior, but why should I fucking change who I am to find a fucking wife? Shouldn't my actual future wife want me for who I am? Shouldn't I be able to just be me? Who the fuck are these women looking for?

I don't think you need to change, clearly, but perhaps what he is suggesting is tweaking how you do or say who you are.(or should be suggestion, bc you should be you.) It might feel compromising at first, but is it really any different than the other miens we assume through the day? How to be professional, how to talk to your parents, how to be tough with a landlord, etc. Those are just different ways of expression who we are and what we want, and unfortunately some of that is required in relationships. I'm sure you do it in friendships to some extent, especially in the beginning. I *always* want to be free with my bluntness with new friends, but you can't be; I have to express my thoughts in a different way to charm them into being my friend before I can really be comfortable showing the rougher elements.

And as an ex law student and full time impatient phone hater, long messages would create a knee jerk reaction. I'd write out a new voice mail message, short, pithy, that doesn't sound to available (or eager?) and leave her another message. You can do the one liners, so write it up before and deliver it. If nothing else, you'll know you ended that one on a more positive note that was also you.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 08:16 pm (UTC)
That's a good way of looking at it, thanks. I may leave her another voicemail just to, as you say, end it on a more positive note.
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 08:51 pm (UTC)
I don't get where your dad tells you that you're not a grown-up. Because you're refusing to compromise on what you want, you're not a grown-up? ARGH your parents drive me crazy.

Sunil, you ARE pretty grown-up. You're responsible and fun and intelligent and great, and there is a geek girl out there who is wishing like hell for you. I don't know if she's Indian or not, but I have no doubt you will find her. I hope it's soon, for everyone's sanity! *hugs*

(for the record I think you ROCK and had a bit of a crush on you when I first found you in OD, ages ago. You were so funny! You still are! It went straight to my heart)
[User Picture]
Date:September 14th, 2009 09:28 pm (UTC)
I don't get where your dad tells you that you're not a grown-up. Because you're refusing to compromise on what you want, you're not a grown-up?
I think it's more about the way I comport myself. I like silly voicemail messages, I wear clever T-shirts, I try to be different, etc.

(for the record I think you ROCK and had a bit of a crush on you when I first found you in OD, ages ago. You were so funny! You still are! It went straight to my heart)
Aww. Thanks.

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