Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Child Factor

Admittedly, when you start dating someone, you can only hope that the two of you don't run into any obstacles that would get in the way of getting closer to each other. Things like an intense ex or a pushy best friend can really end up being troublesome in a blooming relationship. But, what do you do if it's something else -- like a child?

It's actually one of the very issues that got in the way of me and my ex, Charles. And, it seems like the very issue Marisol is tackling with more than one of the men in her life. For starters, she learned through the ever revealing Facebook that her old hook-up, Will, is as of a month ago a father. FACEBOOK. And the kicker here? The baby was born just a few days after he spent the night with her. (UGH!)

And now, Marcus, the new younger man in her life, has just recently introduced her to his very small child, who's basically just shy of pre-school age!

I have to admit, this makes me shudder NOT because of the children. I grew up in a huge family, love kids and hope to have one or maybe two of my own (as much as I may put up appearances). But because these guys aren't married nor are they currently in long term relationships, it's just a little trickier to comprehend. Essentially, these two young men brought a whole new life into this world just like that. Meanwhile, me, very career centric and living on my own can't even fathom the idea of taking care of another life form right now. At least, not alone.

I truly believe that children are the result of very special unions, regardless of how couples fare out after their offspring is born. But, I get a little confused when this happens in a situation like Will's or Marcus's -- had so young and then dealing with the reactions of potential dating companions, like Marisol.

But, while not a fan of how young he is as a dad, I must commend Marcus for his upfront approach letting Marisol know about his child early on. It's honest, real, and can be seen as a mature move. Will, on the other hand...

Regardless of whether someone has a child or not, it's how the parent puts it out there that matters. Then the rest is up to the two in the relationship. If it's strong enough, it'll weather the storm, right?

Well, that's the hope.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Age: Isn't It Just a Number?

So, for the longest time, I've had a hang up about dating men younger than I am. Sounds stereotypical and cliche, but truth is, I prefer my men with a bit of life experience, a little established, and with some type of focus or ambition. And, if past precedence is anything to go by, men my age (mid/late 20s) and younger don't seem to have these things quite as developed -- or aren't focused in quite the same way. At least my odds are better when a man is a touch older than I am. Theoretically speaking, of course.

Anyway, I say this speaking from personal preferences -- of course, understanding that there may be several arguments to the contrary.  And, I've had my fair share of men who contradict what I've just said (The Casanova, for one). However, generally it's a rule of thumb I tend to apply, making case-by-case exceptions based on the man and the circumstances (Heck, the months of difference between Jackson and myself makes me kooky).

Well, this is the same issue that has caused me to poke a little fun at Marisol lately. A couple of weeks back, she met a good looking young man, Marcus. And since then she's been like a giddy schoolgirl. It's actually all quite adorable. But the clincher here? He is six years her junior. 

This isn't a huge gap in most cases. But in the 20s? I'd say it's noteworthy. If I think about what I knew just coming out of college and now... I've learned lots more since then. I'd also say that my behavior and social habits have changed on many levels. Overall, many differences. 

So that's why it's hard for me to fathom. However, Marisol's happy. It's genuine... And regardless of whether this situation works or not, I think the whole happiness thing would be the strongest argument. She's happy, and Marcus is helping with that. What more could you need?

I mean, would you rule out someone that makes you happy just because of a "chronology error"? (Of course I use this term very loosely)

As for me? I'm not sure. He'd have to be a heck of a guy... :-) 

Image Credit: Flickr by aknace