Thought Catalog


50 Women Share The Hottest And Rawest Things A Man Has Ever Said (And Done) To Them In Bed

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 08:00 PM PDT

via Twenty/20 - santiago__cervantes
via Twenty/20 – santiago__cervantes

1.

After four long years of sexual tension: “god I’ve been waiting so long to fuck you”

2.

“God you taste amazing”

3.

“Good girl”

4.

“Cum for me” is the best thing my husband says. I love hearing him tell me when.

5.

“You’ve got 5 minutes to take off that top or I’m ripping it off you.”

6.

Fuck you’re so beautiful” … that was hot.. and sweet.

7.

“I love being inside of you” “What do you need me to do to make you come?” He also says “good girl” in completely non-sexual conversations and settings and it’s like whoops there go my pants.

8.

One night after going to the bar, we were laying in bed asleep, he woke up from a dead sleep, rolls over (which woke me up), whispers in my ear “I’m going to fuck the shit outta you” and proceeds to do just that. Hottest sex ever!

9.

It’s a tie between “God, your pussy is fucking incredible.” and “You are beautiful.

10.

“It’s taking everything I have not to explode inside you”, gruffly, mid thrust.

11.

It really wasn’t what he said one time in particular, but he had his hand down there rubbing me, he brought his hand back up and licked his finger in the most sexiest manner possible. Oh. My. Gawd.

12.

I may be weird but I just love the “I wanna cum inside you so bad” talk. And even though it’s not a vocal thing per se, but I get sooo super turned on when we’re doggy style and he is lightly rubbing my lower back and ass. like he is being sweet and gentle but doing horrible dirty things to me in the process. I just love that.

13.

“That’s my girl.”

14.

“You’re so fucking tight”….. hey, I like the confidence boost.

15.

He’ll run his hands all over my body and say “This is mine.”

I like being his.

16.

“Who’s pussy is this? Who’s ass is this?” etc. Theres only one right answer.

17.

“More than anything else in this life, I look forward to crawling into bed with you.”

11 Reasons Why “Forever Alone” Girls Would Make The Best Girlfriends

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 07:00 PM PDT

26032266185_5f0eeeb18f_o

1. She has a life of her own. She won't get pissed when you're stuck at work a few hours later than usual or when you want to grab a beer with the boys. In fact, she won't even realize it, because she'll already be out with her own friends.

2. She knows her body well. All of those days she spent masturbating will pay off. She'll be able to teach you exactly how to touch her body, which means making her orgasm will be a piece of cake.

3. She can survive without you. She's used to paying for meals with her own money and driving around town in her own car. She doesn't need you to play the role of the big strong man, because she can handle herself.

4. She won't rush into things. She's not used to being in a serious relationship, so she won't want to move too fast. It'll be a while before she starts bringing up marriage and babies.

5. She doesn't need a man to feel special. She won't need you to feed her constant compliments to feel good about herself. She already knows how damn sexy she is.

6. She'll put in effort to keep you. She was single for long enough. Now that she's found a good man, she's not going to let him go without a fight.

7. She'll genuinely appreciate you. She's never had a man treat her the right way before, so she'll be thankful to have you around. She'll tell you how much she loves you every chance she gets.

8. She won't have any baggage. She hasn't dated much in the past, so she won't randomly accuse you of cheating, all because her ex made her lose faith in men. She's starting out on a (mostly) clean slate.

9. She won't put up with your BS. She knows she can handle the single life, because she has for years. That's why she'd rather go back to being unattached than let you treat her like crap.

10. She knows more about dating than you realize. She doesn't need actual experience to be a great girlfriend. The fact that she's fantasized about going out on certain dates and performing certain sexual acts is good enough.

11. She has high standards. If her standards were low, she would've been in a dead-end relationship with a fuckboy a long time ago. She's waited to date, because she wants to be treated right. But that means she'll treat you right, too.TC mark

The Reason You Can’t Wait To See Her Doesn’t Start With Her Beauty

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 06:00 PM PDT

beautyeverlasting
Jeff Isy

Several years ago a friend shared this passage from the book Attachments by Rainbow Rowellwith me. It struck me then and every time I've read it since, it makes me pause and think. It hits close to home when I think about dating and relationships.

He knew why he wanted to kiss her. Because she was beautiful. And before that, because she was kind. And before that, because she was smart and funny. Because she was exactly the right kind of smart and funny. Because he could imagine taking a long trip with her without ever getting bored. Because whenever he saw something new and interesting, or new and ridiculous, he always wondered what she'd have to say about it—how many stars she'd give it and why.

It is a perfect summary of what I've been looking for in a relationship. Probably what we are all looking for really. I spent years trying to figure it out, what works for me, what doesn't, what are the deal breakers and must haves. Now, I'm not so sure that is the right way to look at things. Of course we have qualities we are looking for and things we know fit better with our beliefs and approach to life. But often those are just boxes to check on an application and are just surface things, the ones that are easy to find or easy to fake.

Dating again after divorce, I began to realize my perspective had changed, not just on what I want in a partner but how to identify those traits in people. It has been clear the real stuff, that lies much deeper in our souls than we let most people see, is the place to look in other people and to share of yourself. It isn't just the photo on Tinder or what we write in our Match profile.

Of course it all starts with physical attraction and the easy things to have in common…music choices, favorite books, hobbies, etc. But the people we truly connect with become more of those surface things the deeper you dig. The books they choose become much more interesting…because the person telling you about it cares deeply and thoughtfully about why they choose that book. Their hobbies are much more enjoyable than you may have first thought because the time you spend is with them, not the activity you choose. The reason you can't wait to see her doesn't start with her beauty…it ends with it. It starts with her ambition and confidence and grows with her sense of humor and kindness.

By no means do I have it all figured out. But as I've met people and dated I regularly look at this passage as a reminder of what the relationship should be and how we fit in each others world. Can I be me? The real me, not the profile written to sound interesting or the perfect ideal of a dad and his two daughters. But the real person that questions the choices he makes about his career and struggles with deep stress from co-parenting very strong willed children. Can I be that guy and still be comfortable with her?

I've always been guilty of getting caught up in feelings…in excitement and chemistry. Not that these things aren't a big part of attraction, but what this passage reminds me is the goal is much deeper. It isn't tied up in how does she make me feel…it is far more: how do I feel about myself when I am with her.

I'm more convinced now than ever before that this exists. Does this contribute to a lasting relationship? We'll see. But I believe it is absolutely the starting point. TC mark

We Were Addicted To Each Other

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 05:28 PM PDT

laura_thatcher
laura_thatcher

We were creatures of habit
strong habits with strong addictions.

We met
using our addictions to our advantage
and it should have been the first sign of failure.

It isn't right to meet someone
knowing the way you met them
will be the way you destruct them.

As every weekend approached
our addictions grew closer to each other
but drew us farther apart
without us realizing it.

You were addicted to temporary happiness
the temporary happiness of money
finding money in a place that didn't
necessarily make you happy
the temporary happiness of substances
substances you took to be mistakenly happy
but not to live properly in the moment
temporary happiness in woman
woman you rushed to love
and loved to let go
assuming you knew their inner happiness
because you were only addicted to the initial rush

And I was addicted to curiosity and learning
curiosity behind traveling to new places
and meeting new people
people who would show me worlds
that I had never seen before
and I so easily fell in love with.
I was addicted to learning about other people
the way their minds thought
and their bodies moved
and the inner workings of their hearts
what their passions were and what they loved to do
which sometimes meant me

and sometimes I wonder,
if we had known this all along,
would things be different
if we learned how to fully love someone?
if we learned to enjoy small moments?
if we learned to slow time briefly?
if we learned to control our addictions?

But we rushed so quickly
and so rashly
out of our addiction to each other
that it felt like just a breath in time

and sometimes,
a breath is all it takes
for a moment to disappear
and for us to pick up the pieces
before we can clear our heads
and let our addictions continue again. TC mark

There’s A Terrifying Truth Behind My Rock Star Friend’s Downward Spiral And I Wish He’d Never Told Me

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 05:20 PM PDT

Flickr, Ulisse Labiati
Flickr, Ulisse Labiati

He hadn't been onstage in months. I knew it was a bad idea but he kept insisting that he had to, he needed to, the music was inside him and it was screaming to get out. He talked like that sometimes when he was drunk. These days that was all the time.

It wasn't a nice place. It killed me to look at that shitty little setup, the dive bar equivalent of a hotel lounge, half the lights burnt out or on the verge of it. It was hilarious — in a terrible, unfair sort of way — to think of James up there, performing for a sparse crowd of uninterested tipsy travelers when he'd once been headlining with some of the biggest names in music. And not that long ago, really.

I was leaning against the wall of the lounge, hidden in the back. I was usually hiding when we were on the road. No one likes to see a rock star with a plain little brunette sulking at his side, they want to imagine that they have a shot with him. And, with James, they did. It didn't matter that we were just friends, always had been. I learned pretty quick where my place was and it wasn't on his arm. See, I'm good at negotiating deals. I was the one who handled his earlier gigs, talked to people, got him in the door. I was the one he called "Mouse."

Once he was in the door, really just hurtling through the door, I sort of got shuffled to the side. James had a manager, an agent, a publicist. Typical rising star sort of thing. I tried to go back to my old life bartending in Wichita where we'd grown up together but he'd just given me those big blue eyes and said no Mouse, stay, I'll pay you to stay. Be my entourage.

The next few years were a whirlwind of different cities, different states, different countries. I watched James from the back of a thousand different venues and god, he was just so incredible. He'd saunter onstage, give the audience his charming lopsided grin, and just open his mouth… it was magic. There was definitely some truth to his recent plea. There was music in him.

But that night, I knew it was a mistake. The manager and agent and publicist had dropped off once his popularity took a sharp plunge and I was back to handling his offers. Actually, offers isn't the right word. More like begrudging acceptances. When the hotel had said yes, sure, James could perform a solo set on Saturday — because by now it had to be a solo set, the band members had all slowly fallen away to pursue other careers — I didn't even want to tell him about it. But he was getting so depressed, it was just me and him in the luxury apartment he was more than likely going to lose unless he made a payment soon and I thought he deserved to know that there was a gig.

"I need this, Amy," he said, those blue eyes of his looking so tired and sad. "I need this. Mouse, I need to sing. I don't care where it is. It's inside of me, the music, and it's screaming to get out. If I don't sing…" And I thought he was starting to cry, which was horrible, I'd never in our 18 years of friendship seen him cry so I told him yes, I'd book the gig, he could sing again.

So, standing in the back of that hotel lounge, I was nervous. I was thinking that it was going to break his heart, the fact that these people were more interested in their drinks than his music, but maybe it would help. Just a little. James needed help.

The lights in the room went down. The lights onstage went up. I could feel my heart in my throat. I was just… I knew something bad was going to happen. I just did.

I'd left him alone, see. He said he wanted to meditate, it had been so long since he'd performed that he needed to really zone in on his "creative center." James gave me a weaker version of his lopsided grin and said he knew it was tonight, this was the gig that would get him back on track and I had made it happen.

I guess it was that, the rare compliment that I thought I deserved a little more often, that caught me off-guard enough to leave him alone. And I shouldn't have. I should've known better.

He crossed the stage except crossed isn't the right word, he stumbled across the stage, barely catching himself on the microphone stand. James looked up, squinting in the unimpressive lighting, trying to get a handle on how many people were in the audience.

A few people looked up at him and didn't seem to find anything particularly interesting. Until he opened his mouth.

"I, uh," he began, and that was the most sense he made.

After that he just babbled. I couldn't make out any sort of real words, I could tell he was trying to really say something but it was just utter nonsense. I'd never seen him that out of it. I'd seen him drunk, I'd seen him high, I'd seen a complex cocktail of both but he was absolutely out of his mind.

I'd been worried for a while he had evolved beyond his typical vices and this made me certain: he'd scored something hard behind my back and it's why he sent me away. Heroin, acid. Maybe crystal meth, who knows. But I knew it took something strong to fuck him up this badly.

God, he couldn't even talk.

People were starting to laugh now. Whisper. Point. James gripped the microphone like a man drowning and kept trying to sing with no success.

Before I realized what I was doing I was moving from the back of the lounge to the stage. All I knew was I had to put a stop to this, I had to get him off the stage, I had to save him.

I got to the edge of the space and whispered his name in a harsh hiss. James looked at me, blue eyes pleading with me, but he didn't move.

"James," I said again, and he let out a confused sound, almost like a whimper.

He turned his gaze from me to the audience, not understanding. I mean, god, he was just so fucked up.

I climbed the stairs and took him by the hand, tugging him gently away from the microphone stand. I realized dully that during James' entire career it was the first and only time I was ever onstage with him.

"Come on, James," I whispered. He turned to me, looked into my eyes, and just broke.

I mentioned I'd never seen him cry before. Not in 18 years. Not in the whole time we were friends. And at that moment he just absolutely crumbled.

James took a few steps forward and wrapped his arms around me. I'd never been held that tightly before, not ever, not since.

He was trembling. I could hear the sound of little sobs bursting out of him somewhere near my breasts. In the audience, everyone stared. No one was laughing anymore.

I had to get him out of there. I couldn't let them see him like that. I wrapped my arms around him and started ushering him towards the stairs, off the stage, out of the shitty lighting and away from the stares.

We moved through the little cocktail tables and I felt the eyes of the audience on us, judging, pitying. The relief I felt when we were in the hotel hallway was palpable. I just had to get him to the comped room that was part of the gig's payment. (I realized then we would probably have to pay for that since he didn't actually perform. Great, a gig that actually cost us money. A new low.)

But there was more important business to attend to.

"It's okay, James," I was whispering in the direction of his ear. "It's okay, we're out of there, we're going to our room, it's okay.”

"It's okay," I said again. We were approaching an elevator but some asshole had one of those luggage carts absolutely filled to the brim and besides it was closing as we approached anyway. I muttered an expletive and glanced around the hall, hoping no one would come up to us as we waited for the next elevator.

"I'm sorry," James said miserably, and I could actually feel my heart breaking for him.

"It's okay, James." I patted his back like a baby I was trying to burp. "What did you take, honey?" The word surprised me as it left my lips; I had never called him that before, but he was clinging to me like a child, and maybe that was what made me say it.

"I don't wanna say," he whispered, and I felt his already tight grip get even tighter.

"Okay. Okay. It's all right." The elevator dinged and I moved towards it even as it was opening. Luckily it was empty.

The ride up was silent. He just clung to me, shaking.

We got to our room, although on the way James tripped on his own feet and almost sent both of us flying. When the door was closed behind us, I let out a breath I hadn't even known I was holding in.

I set him down on the bed and he still wouldn't let go of me. I finally got him to look up at me by taking his chin in my hands and tilting his face up towards mine.

"James," I said, and saw his blue eyes — the same ones that had asked me to stay, to not go back to Wichita, to stay with him like his tattered old security blanket — were full of tears.

I didn't want to answer because we both knew he had. Instead, I wiped away tears from his cheeks with the pad of my thumb.

"It's okay." I had to protect him at that moment, protect him from the reaction of the audience, from himself. More than anything, from himself. "It's going to be okay. You'll bounce back from his. I know you will.”

He blinked hard, let out a shaky breath. I felt like it was a nonverbal way of him saying he knew I was lying to him. I could smell whiskey on him, which meant he'd doubled down.

I opened my mouth to say something else and James pressed his against mine.

I was so shocked I didn't know how to react — I can't say it wasn't something I'd wanted, because it was, it was something I'd wanted for a long time. But not, necessarily, like this.

He tasted like cigarettes, alcohol, something unnamable that wasn't particularly pleasant. Thinking back, I suspect it may have been death.

When he pulled away, miraculously, he was smiling. He was smiling at me with fresh tears on his cheeks. It's one of the most beautiful, horrible things I've ever seen.

"You know what we are?" he asked me in a soft voice. Before I could answer, he said, "We're one week's worth of a good thing.”

I didn't know what that meant so I just helped him get undressed, got him into his bed. Tucked the covers around him like he was six and tried to get into my own bed but he grabbed a handful of my shirt and tugged, begging me to stay.

The next morning I offered to settle the cost of the room and take him home but he said no, he'd meant it, one week.

"One week, Mouse," James pleaded with me from the tangle of sheets. "Just give me one good week with you. It should have always been you, I know that now. But I can't… I can't drag you down with me. I can't do this in that shitty place, I'm going to lose it anyway, I know. It has to be a week, it has to be with you, and it has to be here.”

His eyes were still blue and they were a little deader than normal — I suspect he was working on one hell of a hangover — but they were clear, for once. He meant what he was saying. For once, after all those years, after all those groupies who came and went, he wanted me.

The previous night I had just held him as he sweat out whatever cocktail of drugs he'd taken, the smell of it on his skin, stark and almost medicinal. But that morning he beckoned me back to the bed and when I went to him (because of course I did) he touched my face so tenderly I thought I was going to cry.

"I love you, Amy," he said, and he kissed me again, but this time was different. This time he laid me down on the bed, he ran his hands through my plain brown hair, he kissed me like there was only one week left in the world and he needed to make it count.

I won't bore you with the details of the week. Besides, some things are so precious you have to keep them secret, safe, deep in the cellar of your heart.

When I woke up exactly seven days after the onstage meltdown, dreading the inevitable hotel room bill I'd have to somehow settle with management, James was nowhere to be found. In the space where he should've been, nearly hidden by the rumpled curve of a dirty sheet, was a note.

My hands were shaking when I picked it up. One week, he'd said. One week's worth of a good thing.

Mouse,

I'm sorry I did this to you. I'm sorry I pulled you close and kept you at arm's length at the same time. It may be hard to believe that I love you but truly, I do, and I always have. But part of me always knew you had to stay at arm's length or you'd be sucked down into the shipwreck with me.

Because that's what I am, you know. A shipwreck. I had my moment in the sun and I paid for it. But I'm done paying. I'm letting the bill settle itself now.

Did you know I'm actually a really shitty singer? That's not just me ragging on myself, I really do suck. Can't play the guitar, either. It's like someone taped fat sausages to my fingers. Sounds awful. That's the real me, you know, the one you never saw onstage until last week.

But the music part, that part was real. There's always been some sort of magic inside me that needed to come out. When it did, though, my voice was shaky, screechy. Playing guitar sounded like a cat was dying somewhere in an alley. It felt like being a genius with all the cures to the world's diseases who can't write or speak. That's the only way I can describe it, I guess.

So I did what cowards do. Instead of working hard at it, instead of accepting that maybe someone else could make magic with their music, I reached out to the only thing I could think of. And, you know, after all those years of praying God sure wasn't listening to me. God wasn't coming through.

But someone else did.

We struck a deal. He'd make me a star and you know what? I didn't even have to give him my soul, he said. No golden fiddle contest, no signature in blood. He would give me the talents I needed to get the music out and I would bring him what he wanted. One a week.

I guess souls taste better when they're delivered to you. When they're snuffed out in pain and terror. I don't know, he never really explained it to me.

Didn't you ever wonder why those groupies never stuck around?

Of course you didn't. Not just because that was the plan, but because you trusted me. Because you're a good person and I'm not.

That's 52 a year, you know. One a week.

It wasn't that hard. Sometimes I took them out behind a venue and strangled them to death. Once, I stabbed a girl and took her purse to make it look like a mugging gone wrong. A lot of times I just gave them too much H and just let them… slip away.

I'm telling you this so you can hate me. So you can realize what I am. I'm a monster who served a bigger monster all to get what I wanted.

Isn't that sort of what we all do? No. There's no getting around this. I've tried.

The fame, my talents have been slipping because I don't want to pay him anymore. I've gotten away with one a month for a little while, paying him in small doses the way a broke guy might sneak bits of his rent to his landlord, hoping to keep him off his back. But last week proved he's pissed. He won't let me get away with it. No welching on the deal. Gotta settle the debt.

Mouse, I'm so sorry. You may not believe me but I'm so sorry. And I'm so grateful to have had you by my side all these years, even though you didn't know what I was doing, what I was capable of. Even though I didn't give you what you deserve. It was pretty selfish, I guess. I always knew I could look in the back and see you there, smiling.

You thought I couldn't see you but you were all I could see.

So now, I'm going. There's only one way to settle this debt for good. Please don't go in the bathroom.

I love you, Amy.

James

I found him in the tub with a needle in his arm. His skin was waxy, those big blue eyes milky and faraway. He was smiling.

I try to remember him differently. I try to remember him onstage in the golden years, that lopsided grin lighting up his handsome face, the magic coming from his mouth. I try to remember him deftly strumming away at his guitar and try to forget what he'd done for years with those hands.

I try to hate him but I can't because when I look inside myself, inside the cellar of my heart, I know how much it hurts to not get what you need to be whole. How the pain can seem, at times, unbearable. How you would do anything, anything to get that thing you need.

I've given it a lot of thought and I think I know what I'm going to do. I mean, I know who to talk to. The right guy to ask. To bring James back.

Besides, I'm used to negotiating deals. I can probably get him down to one a month.

I think I can do that. TC mark

To The Boy Who Let My Best Friend Go

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 05:15 PM PDT

kaitlynzuverink
kaitlynzuverink

I'd love to see you in a few years when you are standing there watching how happy she is with someone else and you get that hint of sadness and regret in your heart that you let someone amazing go. You let go of someone who was ready to give you her world. You let go of someone who would've never let go of you.

As I listened to her cry over you, I couldn't help but wonder what kind of person you really are. What kind of man do you really want to be? Do you find joy in leading women on? Do you find joy in making women fall in love with you then run away before you can catch them?

Regardless of what kind of man you are, let me tell you what kind of woman you let go of.

You let go of a woman who knew from the day she met you that she wanted to do nothing but love you, and love you with all her heart. Someone who told the whole world that she is in love with a wonderful man. Someone who told the world that she will not even look at any other man because all she sees is you. Someone who was ready to give up her world for you.

You let go of a woman who saw greatness in you even when you couldn't see it in yourself. Someone who believed in you more than she believed in herself. Someone who was willing to stand by you through thick and thin and patiently wait for you as you figure out your life, your career and yourself.

You let go of a woman who once said to me that you are all she ever wished for, she once believed you are the answer to all her prayers. You let go of someone who believed that you were her destiny, you let go of someone who had unwavering faith in you. I wonder if you saw how happy she was with you and how the smile never left her face. I wonder if you have any heart at all to willingly take that smile away.

You let go of a woman who fought for you. She fought with her friends when they doubted you, she fought with her parents when they asked if you were serious about her, and she fought her own thoughts when they warned her about you. She fought for you over and over again. I wonder if you knew how hard she fought for you and how every time she would fight for you; she would lose some of her own strength. I wonder if you ever ask yourself if you were even worth that fight.

I say 'boy' because this is exactly what you are. You're a boy who took the love of an amazing girl for granted, you were selfish, immature and insecure and she made you love yourself. You loved how she made you feel, you kept giving her small doses of love to keep her going until you felt good about yourself again and no longer needed her attention.

You're a boy for not being honest about your intentions and your future plans. You're a boy for making someone tear down their walls only to build your own walls higher. You're a boy for making someone open up to you only to close yourself off. You're a boy for promising love to someone only to break their heart.

I would like to tell you that I'm not worried about her, she will be fine a lot sooner than you think. She's got friends who will stand by her and make her forget you even existed. That's how much she is loved and that’s how much you should’ve loved her. It's you who I'm worried about; I'm worried about the kind of man you're becoming, I'm worried about the women that you will keep dragging along on your roller coaster. I'm worried about the friends you will start losing as you continue down that selfish path. I'm worried about the hearts that you will keep on breaking in an attempt to fix yours.

I'm not worried about you because I care about you – not at all. I'm worried about you because amazing women like my best friend believe in boys like you and they end up getting heartbroken. I'm worried about the number of best friends who will want to write you the same letter one day. I hope you realize that women are not toys. I hope you realize that if you don't know how to give love then you should stop looking for it. I know one day you will regret letting her go, and if you don't, I hope you realize that you only paved the way for someone much better to come into her life. You taught her how to look for a man – not another boy. TC mark

This Is How Heartbreak Changes With Age

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 05:00 PM PDT

Wendy Liu
Wendy Liu

At 14, he’ll leave you for your best friend. You’ll be alone for the first time, trying to piece back the pieces of a heart so young and so afraid that it has no idea what’s in store. You’ll scribble shitty love poems on the margins of your notebooks, take up smoking for two days and hide in the little crevice down by the beach that you call your own. You’ll watch powerless as the two people you were meant to care about the most drift away from you. At 14, you won’t know how to rebuild yourself. This will be your saving moment.

At 21, he’ll leave you because he doesn’t want to hurt you anymore. He’ll argue that you’re both toxic and deserve people who won’t poison each other’s minds as much. You’ll stop eating, stop moving. You’ll skip class and ignore the phone calls from friends
trying to lift your spirits with wine and meaningless conversations. It will seem like the end of the world, but the world always finds a way to start over. At 21 you’ll feel like a broken heart can actually kill you.

At 22, he’ll say it’s not you, it’s him. He'll tell you he wants to be alone, that he doesn’t want to be tied down just yet. You’ll hug and promise each other an equally blooming friendship that compares to the romance you both had. Two weeks later you’ll find out he’s dating someone else. He’d been dating someone else. You’ll grovel and ask for a second chance, a chance to prove to him that you’re better than anything he could ever hope to find elsewhere. You’ll betray everything you told yourself you’d never do again.

At 23, you’ll destroy yourself completely because it’s the only way to start over.

At 24, you’ll be the one who leaves. Not on purpose, not because things went wrong, but because the universe had bigger plans and the timing, as it usually goes in overplayed romance stories, was off. You’ll trace your fingers along his spine and whisper that you’ll miss him. You’ll kiss him goodbye multiple times, hoping to freeze that moment in time for as long as humanly possible. He’ll mumble a few incoherent words as you walk out the door with everything packed into a bag that seems light compared to the thumping in your chest.

At 24, the promise of a new love will hurt more than the passing of an old one. TC mark

I Think About How Different Our Lives Would Have Been If I Had Just Said Hello

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 04:00 PM PDT

Jeff Isy
Jeff Isy

She's a shy student with messy brown hair. She's layered. She has pale skinny legs under sheer black tights under short shorts under an oversized sweater. Tight in certain places, loose in others. Her knees and toes point toward each other, her eyes droop and she frowns. She looks down.

She listens to music, her headphones the size of her head. She's in her own world. I enter the train and sit directly across from her. I look at her, look for what seems like forever, sure that everyone except her is noticing. She finally glances up toward me, then darts her eyes away quickly.

I'm listening to music too, but I can’t tune her out. I keep looking. I look at her mousy face and her fidgety legs. She has pointy features and slender fingers. She holds herself up just barely with her thin hidden body. Her hair is in her face and she tries to move it, fails, sighs as if her whole life is an exasperation. She glances up quickly again.

How sad is she, exactly? Is it possible for her to be happy? Could she be happy with me? She can feel me looking at her, can’t she?

I want to stand up in the train and take that step up to her and look into her eyes and touch her chin and put my hands on her legs and kiss her in the corner of her mouth as our eyelids fall. I want to sit next to her and whisper into her ear there there. I wanted to hear her tell me anything, hear her voice, hold her, kiss her with tongues and play with her clothes and I wonder about the unbridgeable abyss between us.

She will vanish. One day, if not now. I can already feel her go.

I'm on the U8 from Kottbusser Tor to Alexanderplatz, still new to Berlin, feeling slow. I'm taking the U-Bahn from Kreuzberg to my Prenzlauer Berg, from one neighborhood to another, transient, moving. It's Friday night, past 9 PM and I'm running late. I'm going to meet someone I don’t really care about meeting. Making plans just to have them made — the business of the lonely.

The train reaches the main transfer station. I stand up to get off. She rises also. I let her out first and watch her walk ahead of me, watch her walk up the stairs, her hips swaying. I’m a creep. I’m a weirdo. I turn toward the U2 line, trying to behave normally, to ignore her like she probably wants to be ignored — I can feel her saying no somehow. She turns too. She's going my way and for a moment I feel something. Interest! Reciprocal desire! But just because you feel it doesn’t mean it's there.

There is a long corridor at Alexanderplatz — the Union Square of Berlin — and it seems like we will walk the length of it next to each other. I turn my head, make the effort to face her, wanting to say something to her, anything, but can't do it, can’t interrupt her, speak over her music, mumble over her bewilderment, convey all these stupid feelings, be heard. It would come out wrong. It would be embarrassing, awkward. We’d be scratching our skin off, scratching chalkboards, too self-conscious for it to work.

She's closed off, anyway. She gives me nothing. I pretend to be interested in everything else in the entire world. My music is talking to me: If you want me, then come on and break the door down. The wise advice of my future self. But instead: Normalcy! Politeness! Coward! My head. I swear I’ll explode. I leave her alone.

I veer left when she goes right, up opposite stairs to our same platform. Please let the train be arriving, let us separate, let her disappear completely. But no, the train is 10 minutes away and I panic. What to do for ten minutes?! I turn around and walk down the platform to where she is, lean on a pillar near where she leans. Let's keep this going. Again, I'm watching.

She moves around, almost dances, dancing in self-conscious twirls around me. Please give me a sign, come this way, look up, look at me, smile, anything. Smile at me and make my day. All the conversation we could be having and me with nothing to say. Nine minutes of waiting. Eight. The countdown display mocking me. What can I do? I do nothing.

People wait restlessly. All the normal folks of the city, shuffling around, extras in my world. And then another significant player — another girl appears. New feelings! She's more experienced, more posh, more worldly, with dark skin and clothing, put together nicely. She enters slowly, positions herself right at the pillar in front of me. She's pretty.

But this new person doesn't have the magic. She isn’t as elusive; I can’t shroud her in romantic mystery. She's more typically attractive but less interesting. She looks at me. I can't look back. I glance up and darte my eyes away quickly. I feel vulnerable, shameful, hyper-aware of my gaze, where my eyes face. I can feel my heart betray my crush for seconds at a time.

In a moment I've spent a lifetime with my new love — we hibernate in the approaching winter together, travel, learn about each other, listen to each other's music, share our pain, and then maybe comes the fighting, and then cheating on her with this new girl, this safer, more stable person maybe, maybe crazy, maybe I’m the one who's crazy.

Surely the girls become aware of each other, on their own or through me by proxy. The new girl can probably feel the energy, something percolating around her, unsure of what it is exactly, but surely something. I move around, go to stand somewhere else as if to stir the air, position myself in just the right way so that I can remain open, protected, interested, aloof, all things at once and nothing. Don’t mind me. The girls move too. The new one goes further away like she's conceding space and the first one comes closer, takes over the space, reclaims my heart, my gaze. It is a dance and I am sober, anxious, paralyzed like a middle-school wallflower. I drown my self-doubt and fear in whatever song is playing in my ears. I'm not here. This isn’t happening.

The train finally comes. I hold back as everyone gets off. I wait more as the movie extras all board and then the leading ladies and finally me. My crush and I stand in the same doorway, in either corner, looking up, pretending still to be in our own worlds, each of us perhaps hoping that the illusion of obliviousness can be shattered.

The new girl sits. She entered from another door but ends up right next to us. There aren’t many people standing. Just the two of us, still dancing, and an old lady, placed there like in a movie: and so the other girl gets up to offer the lady her seat. Now it's back to our triangle, standing, suspended in this drawn out drama of waiting. And then my crush, so coquettishly oblivious, leaves her corner of our door, shuffling her feet, moves to the center of the space between the doors, looks around ambivalently at nothing in particular, timid and bored and amusing. The corner next to me, now temporarily empty, gets filled, of course, by the other girl.

And then something happens. Action! My crush returns back into her corner, backward, unaware that her place has been filled. "Oh excuse me! I'm sorry!" She bumps into the other girl, the two colliding quite literally. They each excuse themselves, apologize, laugh at the clumsiness, at this awkward, obvious dance. What are the chances? And there I am, smiling. She takes off her large headphones, faces the other girl, and smiles. She's open now. She stands there, waiting for a conversation or something, wonders if anything is coming. And the new girl wonders too, stands there, wonders if words will fill the air.

The most pregnant of pauses, where everything happens, all the possibilities and our futures, balancing precariously in these split seconds. Like accidents waiting to happen.

You girls alright? What is your name? I could say this. I would have… I won't. I can't. Maybe tomorrow, when I feel less lonely; maybe if things were different in some way. But not now. Not today. Instead I just lean there, look at them but then averted, toward safety, then periodic glances, enough to see her put her headphones back on her head, back into her own world, gone, away.

It's too late. If I open my mouth, where should I point it? I think of feelings. I would snub one by talking to the other, would have to admit my desire to one in front of the other, would be vulnerable from every direction, multiple cameras, feel the scrutiny of my desires from within and inside this train. What is this desire and this shame?

I want to escape, to get off this train. There are two more stops, though. We must live in this tension for another few minutes, our heartbeats and the way time freezes and forever keeps going. Listen to music, just listen to yourself.

We reach Eberswelderstra├če — of course both girls are getting off here too. The long, painful dance of isolation and possible opportunities continues out the door, toward the stairs, which stairwell to pick, how slowly to walk, how quickly to get over it all. Shed off all the weird energy. The other girl does so the quickest. She bolts. And again it is me and this student, this sad wonderful stranger, in a final moment of realization that nothing happened between us. Forever.

She's typically frazzled, stumbles toward the other staircase, down the crowded stairs, her visage turning into a blurry silhouette. She looks back, you look back. No. She doesn't. I could follow her. I could run after her. I could have run after her at any moment and never did and won't now. Still not yet. Not ever. It doesn’t matter to me. I walk away like it's nothing. I turn my head back… for something else, some other reason… Because we separate, like ripples on a blank shore, in rainbows. No. I watch her go. TC mark

Stop Analyzing Why You’re Alone And Just Go Live Your Life Already

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 03:54 PM PDT

jakestrongphotog
jakestrongphotog

Our generation seems to have developed a collective obsession with aloneness.

Log onto any Millenial-run website and you'll see it everywhere:

'14 Signs True Love Is Just Around The Corner For You.'

'10 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Settle For The F*ckboy'

'7 Subtle Signs That There Isn't Going To Be A Second Date'

Love is an important part of all of our lives – but we've gone from investing ourselves in it to obsessing over it.

We lament over our aloneness. We dissect it. We pick our flaws apart in the mirror, criticize the choices we've made, and measure what we have up against what our coupled-up friends have – wondering why their equation adds up to togetherness and something about our own does not.

We formulate excuses as to why we're alone. We develop complex explanations and psychological equations to explain away the absence of someone important in our lives.

But there's one thing we too often fail to consider and it's this:

Maybe it doesn't matter if you're the prettiest, ugliest, richest, poorest, dullest or most fascinating person in the world – you're alone because you just are.

You're alone because things haven't worked out for you thus far and maybe that's genuinely it. Maybe your flaws are not at all what is keeping you out of love. After all, there are plenty of other flawed people out there, wandering around looking for someone as imperfect as themselves.

Chances are, you're alone because life is one big crapshoot.

Because the cards fall differently for all of us, and some people find the loves of their lives at seventeen and others find them at thirty-seven and others find them at ninety-five and some never find them at all.

But if there's one thing that's not going to help you find the person you're meant to spend forever with, it's obsessing over not having found them.

The more you agonize over being alone, the more pressure you put on every new relationship you enter into. The more you convince yourself that a relationship is the answer to all of your problems, the more you idealize and project upon new partners, ending potential relationships before they even have the chance to begin.

The more you analyze, dissect and obsess over the reasons why you haven't found love yet, the more self-conscious you become. And the more your loneliness turns into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

So instead of obsessively analyzing why you don't have someone special in your life, what if you channeled your efforts into the actual living of it?

Instead of wondering why you're alone, wonder how many days it would take you to pen the next great American novel. Wonder what the Northern lights look like from the Arctic oceanside. Wonder about cities you haven't explored and books you haven't read and experiences you haven't had because you've been too preoccupied searching for the love that you cannot seem to find.

Instead of wondering why you're alone, wonder what you could become through your aloneness. Wonder how many adventures you can partake in, how many lives you can lead, how many ways you can find to change and alter and expand yourself into a bigger, greater version of yourself.

Instead of wondering when someone else is finally going to accept you for everything you are, step up to the plate and be the person who accepts you for who you are – even if right now, who you are is a flawed person. A broken person. A lonely person.

But a lonely person who is capable of absolutely incredible things.

And one who is finally ready to start going after them. TC mark

17 Reasons Why Your Independence Is Your Best Friend

Posted: 11 Apr 2016 03:00 PM PDT

Twenty20, hellokristine
Twenty20, hellokristine

1. You've learned to navigate tough obstacles. You're the captain of your life vessel and you can take it in any direction that you wish to go. The future is calling to you and it's up to you to decide how to get there.

2. You're a do-er, not a dweller. You're the last person to sit around moping about the past. When you're having a rough week, you'd rather get off the couch and make plans to keep busy rather than rehash every detail of how your life has gone off the rails.

3. When opportunity comes knocking, you're ready to go for it. Shyness, fear or the unknown rarely holds you back. You've worked hard to get to where you're at and have put yourself in a position to take chances.

4. You're able to create the life that you want for yourself in the best way that you see fit. The voice in your head has always been the best guide there is. You answer to yourself and listen to where that voice has always wanted to go.

5. You're a force. Your beauty exudes itself in your self-reliance and the way that you manage to navigate situations and grow stronger with every new experience you encounter.

6. You can get to places on your own. It may take a bit longer but you're up for the challenge. Plus you've got GPS technology in your favor.

7. Because you're comfortable doing things on your own, you're open to new experiences, new opportunities and new people. This results in creativity just popping up all around you. What others deem "luck," you've secretly known is a combination of hard work combined with the right timing.

8. You're not designed to wait around for someone to explain something to you. At times, this can delay you getting to where you want to go, but ultimately, you'd rather make a few mistakes in the beginning and figure it out on your own than having something spoon fed to you.

9. It's important to you to earn your own and save money. You also choose to live in a place of your preference and make your own decisions about the major choices in life.

10. Your self-sufficiency enables you to go about your day with confidence, calmness and a sense of pride. Your sense of well-being is reflected in your interactions with those around you and has become an admired quality by all who know you.

11. You see potential where others see roadblocks. Your natural leadership ability is part of your independent nature – motivating you to take on new ventures and risks that someone with less confidence could not accomplish.

12. You have a "stick with it" attitude that lets you obsess over something until you find a solution. While those around you may have lost interest quickly – you have the fortitude to see things through from start to finish.

13. You challenge the status quo. Your opinions and questions uncover things that nobody thought to ask. You could have nodded your head or remained silent, but it's not in your nature to sit back when you notice something is not right.

14. When somebody intentionally wrongs you, you're not prone to looking the other way. This doesn't mean you're argumentative, it just means you're less willing to take crap from those who dish it out. You'll either confront the person directly to speak your mind or move on from the friendship. You're not satisfied with people in your life who treat you less than you treat them. You'd rather have a smaller circle of close friends than a huge circle of acquaintances.

15. When you're ready to commit to a romantic relationship, you won't be consumed by it. The people you're attracted to are the ones who appreciate your independence and will in turn appreciate that sometimes you just want to do something by yourself.

16. You're not afraid to be alone. You embrace the solitude to check in with yourself, to do the things that you enjoy and to recharge your batteries. Having no plans on a Friday night is not a sign that you're going to die alone. It's an opportunity to read a great book, hit the gym or go see a movie by yourself.

17. It's not part of your DNA to be clingy. You're just not that type. Others may find you intimidating or at times "cold," but in reality – you're a walking superhero, ready to take on the world with your thoughtfulness, focus and fortitude. TC mark