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My friend Julie in Baltimore decided to dip her toes in the OKC waters, which inspired the two of us to go at this together. Much like workout buddies, we are there to remind each other to hold our heads high and not to give up — and to share some of the insanity that runs rampant on the Internet. We also thought it would be interesting to compare and contrast the Los Angeles and Baltimore dating scenes.

Because some of this material is too good not to share, we’ve decided to share it with you in the form of weekly highlights. You’ll get them until either one of us finds love (don’t hold your breath) or gives up (more likely).

Dates: 3
Phone Calls: 0
Messages: Enough

Interestingly, the girls are getting better at writing — and kind of everything else. No one specific message sticks out, but they are engaged, thoughtful messages. A turning tide?

Nothing bad enough.

Julie nailed it when she said, “OKC might not give you exactly what you want, but I’m starting to believe it gives you what you need.” I used to have this image in my head of the kind of person I should be with. This image was primarily based on knowing I needed someone strong enough to put up with me, someone confident enough not to be afraid of me, someone who could keep up with me. One of the reasons I stopped dating women was because I didn’t think I would find that with another girl. One of the reasons I have had such crappy luck in LA is because those men don’t seem to exist out here.

But I realized something this last week.

I tend to gravitate towards being the caretaker, the nurturer, in my relationships. I like to be supportive and helpful. Which is why in most of my relationships, my career has been back-burnered, because my career has never been as important to me as the person I was with. That was the dynamic I kept finding myself in — and I was okay with it, because, at the end of the day, what mattered to me was whom I shared my day with, not what that day brought me, not what I achieved within its hours.

Ironically, the last relationship that actually brought my career forward, rather than backward, was the girl I lived with in NYC, the one who encouraged me to start singing, to pursue my musical and artistic passions. Men, on the other hand, have always been threatened by those passions, and explicitly or implicitly had me push them away.

So I have started to think that maybe I don’t need (or want) that macho man after all. Maybe that macho man is no longer copacetic with my current plan. One of the reasons I stopped dating last year was precisely because I wanted to focus on my career — and, on some level, dating and career are mutually exclusive in my life. But maybe that’s because of whom I’ve been dating (or trying to date).

All of which is making me question what, exactly, I am looking for. Who, exactly, I need.

So why am I not a card-carrying lesbian? Because one of my aversions to that scene was that I found the gender roles even more limiting than in heteroland. I’m not a token femme — I don’t fit into the box carved out for me  — and it was a source of friction in my last girl relationship. I’ve never been a real team player. I have never fit into any clique. I’ve always been a loner, mixing it up with a little of that — and a little of that.

I suspect that the person I end up with might be the same. Someone who doesn’t fit in a box. Someone who exists in that same grey in-between area. Someone who frustrates everyone else who tries to label him/her.

Which makes it even more confusing to figure out what kind of relationship I should end up in — or with whom.

But what I do know is that everything I thought I knew, everything I thought I needed, might actually be totally wrong.

What an exhilarating thought.