So I’m reading yet another book on online dating, this time “Confessions of an Online Dating Addict: a True Account of Dating and Relating in the Internet Age” by Jane Coloccia, when I come across the following passage:
Overall the relationship was good. We spent every weekend together and had a fabulous time whether we were shopping in Wal-mart or going to a winery for a romantic weekend. One night we were in his house and he was showing me old family movies and his sister called. At the end of the conversation he said, “I love you too.”
“So you do have that word in your vocabulary?”
He smiled and said, “You know I love you Jane.”
“I love you too,” I said and then we hugged. It was the first time a man had ever told me he loved me.
I am floored. The first time? The very first time? The author is in her forties at this point and her adventures in “dating and relating” span 8 years and over 200 men, with a fair amount of casual sex on the side.
Granted Coloccia is very, very unlucky in love and reading “Confessions…” is not unlike watching a soccer match: you get all excited that your team’s finally about to score (no pun intended), you’re up out of your seat yelling at the television in your native tongue, sloshing your drink all over the place when suddenly, out of nowhere, the goalie intercedes and moment is gone.
(This is why my dad prefers American football; he can’t stand the constant letdowns. And yet he continues to root for the Mets year after year… I’m not sure what that’s all about.)
But getting back to the matter at hand—the fact that this poor woman is in her forties, dating a garbage man from Long Island (and none too happy that she’s “stooped” to a man of his profession, I can assure you) and she has to practically beg him for the “L” word.
I was 18 the first time a boyfriend told me he loved me. Granted, I was actually the one to say it first, and we were in the midst of yet another tearful “Should we break up?” conversation so it wasn’t terribly romantic (save the snow, the hot chocolate and the fact that I was in a foreign country at the time) but at least he had the good sense to say it back right away.
The second time a man told me he loved me was my senior year of college. We’d been dating all of three or four weeks and seeing as he was living in Florida at the time (don’t ask…) we’d seen each other maybe four or five times. He actually drove all the way up from Florida to take me to dinner one night and after the meal, instructed me to follow him in my car so he could show me the way back to the highway. A few blocks later, he pulled over and stepped out of his jeep so I pulled over and rolled down my window. It was then that he lowered the boom: Kat, I love you.
I remember literally banging my head against the steering wheel, which probably wasn’t the reaction the poor fellow had been going for, but what can I say? It was way too soon for the “L” word, especially as I was still quite unsure how I felt about the whole thing.
Since then, I’ve received three similar declarations, although the circumstances surrounding each render them hardly worth counting. Upon further reflection, I’ve also realized that the whole “I love you/I love you too” exchange has never gone exactly the way I’ve hoped (by which I mean Guy says it first and Girl responds in the affirmative immediately) but at least I’ve been through it once or twice!
Coloccia’s book made me realize how lucky I am—perhaps there are actually thousands of women out there who have to wait their whole lives to hear those three little words?
So you to tell me (guys too): How old were you the first time someone told you s/he loved you? How did it happen? Did you initiate the declaration or simply respond? (And for bonus points tell me A) Were you already sleeping together? And B) Did it last?)
- Kissing Frogs in Cyberspace (katrichterwrites.wordpress.com)
- The Science of Single: A book review for people who don’t like book reviews (katrichterwrites.wordpress.com)
- An Epidemic of Serial Daters (katrichterwrites.wordpress.com)
- Online dating is eroding humanity | John Walters (guardian.co.uk)