About 20 years ago, I was in the Army Reserves. I had a crush on a young man who I'll call Banks. He and I were friends (he had a girlfriend). Now Banks was a COD - a Cutie on Duty. Every time I saw him, it was like a scene from a movie. The scene where the girl walks into a room, everything slows down, some crazy song comes on, and her hair blows softly. And the guy who likes her can't talk. A few times, I'm sure I stared at Banks or couldn't find the words to continue whatever conversation we were having. He was a tall, caramel-covered cutie!! What he taught me about love from the male perspective has stayed with me all these years.
During Army training weekends, we sometimes talked about his girlfriend and how things were going. One day I noticed that he looked really slim. I asked him if he had been working out or dieting. He told me that his girl had broken up with him and that he'd been sleeping a lot. I asked him if they were going to get back together. He said "No" because "I don't want the little scraps of love she'd give me." He explained that it wouldn't be the same if they got back together. And that he didn't want to settle for scraps if she wasn't sure that she wanted to be with him.
It was that simple. We were in our early 20s. I wondered how he knew these types of things already. He wasn't willing to settle? He wasn't trying to put all of his energy into 'making it work' or 'fixing' it? We never got into the details of why they broke up, but I knew that he was heartbroken and really loved her. We also didn't talk about her after that.
It's been easy to assume that guys don't get hurt in relationships. Most of the guys I've known have been the dumpers and the girls were the dumpees. I know that that's not always the case. But Banks showed me why settle for scraps when you can have the full buffett...