The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Messed-Up People Make Bad Choices in Disastrously Dysfunctional Relationships

Posted on | January 12, 2013 | 25 Comments

Instapundit had this headline:

21ST CENTURY RELATIONSHIPS:
My Ex Posted “Revenge Porn” Photos Of Me.

OK, so this was intriguing, but the whole “revenge porn” theme was forgotten as soon as I started reading the article by the (obviously pseudonymous) “Rhoda Kelly”:

I started dating Rob toward the end of high school. He was five years my senior.

Whoa. Full stop. Isn’t this a gigantic red flag? I’m not saying that it is impossible for a 17-year-old and a 22-year-old to have positive romantic experience together, but it was like the first clue (besides the headline, of course) that this story wasn’t going to end happily ever after.

He added me on Myspace, and we talked online occasionally. Then, after hanging out in real life only a handful of times, he insisted that we become a couple.

See there? That’s three warning signs right away:

  1. Older guy dating teenager.
  2. Meeting via online social-networking.
  3. Guy insists on quick rush into “couple” status.

Just on the basis of that, I figure there’s not only something wrong with the guy, but there’s something wrong with this girl, too.

Maybe I’m old-fashioned. Maybe I don’t “get” the whole online-dating thing. But it seems to me that, unless the girl was of the lonely/desperate misfit/oddball type, she’d be meeting guys through the regular real-life routines — a guy from school, someone she met through an after-school job, “friend of a friend,” whatever. When somebody asks, How did you meet your boyfriend? and your answer is, He added me on Myspace, excuse me for thinking there’s something wrong with you. So I keep reading and find out, yeah, my hunch was right:

I liked him. He played guitar in a punk band and was a gifted graphic designer. He was quiet and cynical, but sweet to me.
Fast-forward three years, after the initial sweetness diluted considerably, and what was left was a controlling, territorial, sardonic, and deeply troubled man who I knew I had to leave, but who by then was like an extension of me. We both struggled with psychological disorders: I was diagnosed with major depression when I was nineteen, and he would have such severe depressive episodes that he couldn’t get out of bed to go to work many days. Or he’d stay awake for two weeks straight because of his recurring nightmares about being abducted by aliens. Once, believing me to be an alien, he lay in my bed sobbing uncontrollably. Later, I looked up alien-abduction dreams and found that many studies pointed to childhood sexual abuse as a cause; after we broke up, he told me that he had in fact been molested as a child.

OK, you can go read the whole thing, and you’ll eventually get to the part where she gets drunk and lets him take a video of them having sex,  then finds out he’s posted it online as an act of revenge after they broke up, but that’s not what the story is really about.

What the story is really about is a vulnerable misfit/oddball chick who has trouble attracting a boyfriend in her real-life environment, and instead hooks up with some weirdo she meets online.

Insufficiently aware of her own vulnerability, and apparently incapable of recognizing that Mr. Controlling Older Guy She Met Online might have problematic “issues” of his own, Little Miss Oddball is therefore shocked to find that this leads to a Harmful Relationship That Ends Badly.

The “revenge porn” thing may be the hook that sells the story, but more important is the lesson about How Not to Find Healthy Relationships.

If you’re in that lonely/desperate situation where you’re willing to accept “He added me on Myspace” as an invitation to romance . . .

Do I even have to finish that sentence to explain why it’s a signal that you might be vulnerable to a bad relationship?

Seventeen-year-old girls aren’t always good judges of character. This is why, in ancient days of yore (i.e., when I was a kid), parents made it their business to keep an eye on their 17-year-old daughters. And the default parental position was, Keep Away From My Daughter, Creep.

Lots of bad things happen to people who stray from the wise ways of the ancient days of yore, and being victimized by “revenge porn” is certainly one possibility. All things considered, though, “Rhoda Kelly” should be thankful she’s alive to tell her story. A lot of stories like hers end up with headlines like, “Woman Slain by Obsessive Stalker Ex-Boyfriend.”

 

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Comments

  • http://twitter.com/righty64 righty64

    The real tragedy of this story is . . . MySpace?! Who uses MySpace anymore?!
    Seriously, this is not a good tale.
    No 17-year-old is worldly enough to have a relationship with some one older. At this point in life, age matters.
    But, dissing meeting online is wrong.
    It all depends on where.
    I know a couple that met through eHarmony, happily married and have 2 kids.
    So, it can be done.
    Oh, and never, evah allow anyone to videotape you having sex if ye DON’T want it to end up online ;-)!

  • AnonymousDrivel

    Is this the 21st century’s digital version of “Do NOT Pick Up A Hitchhiker”?

    Good advice nonetheless.

  • http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/ Evi L. Bloggerlady

    It used to be weird to say “I met him/her in a bar.” But if it weren’t for bars, would Meghan McCain date anyone?

  • http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/ Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Myspace is Facebook for uber losers.

  • http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/ Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Five years +/- is not a big deal if you are 25/30 and up. Not good if you are younger. .

  • http://wizbangblog.com/ Adjoran

    Facebook is Twitter for uber losers.

  • http://wizbangblog.com/ Adjoran

    It’s not the bars that get Meghan dates, it’s closing time.

  • http://wizbangblog.com/ Adjoran

    Young people these days just don’t have any fear of the internet. Many of them will suffer for it. Not just embarrassing pix, but everything they ever said is permanently there.

    We used to joke about “will this go on my permanent record?” Now it ALL does. ALL of it.

    Part of being young is being stupid and learning through experience. Back in the day, you could forget those mistakes. No more.

  • http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/ Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Nice! And very true!

  • http://evilbloggerlady.blogspot.com/ Evi L. Bloggerlady

    Let’s not forget alcohol!

  • Robin

    I came to the same conclusion except mine came out as: “This girl is stupider than shit.” She started with no self-respect and went downhill from there.

  • http://twitter.com/Kala_Bon Tom Callow

    Calm down Bob
    Your daughter is ok, and your wife is wise and will guide her well.
    Yes most men are pigs, whether teens or 20’s or later.
    It takes a good lady to teach em, to give them lessons their momma’s can’t.
    Chillax a bit, and give the kids a break.
    Keep the shotgun loaded and your eyes open but don’t be so openly paranoid, ok ?

  • http://wizbangblog.com/ Adjoran

    I’ll drink to that!

  • Steve Skubinna

    To be fair, Mister Moody Punk Guitar Control Freak was her second choice. She really wanted a sparkly vampire.

  • herddog505

    This sort of thing must give fathers nightmares. It seems to me that this girl’s father must be wondering what he did wrong: “How did I raise my little girl to have such low self-respect and such lack of good sense?”

  • http://twitter.com/richard_mcenroe richard mcenroe

  • sablegsd

    I was 16, mr sablegsd was 26. We have been happily married for almost 35 years.

  • http://thecampofthesaints.org Bob Belvedere

    I think the fact that so many parents do not spend time providing their children with a belief in Absolute Truth contributes as well.

  • RichFader

    Number One, the 17-22 thing, in and of itself that’s not a red flag if you’re friends, or friends of friends. Not knowing the guy from Adam before Myspace, that’s another thing entirely.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dana.pico Dana Pico

    Stacey Stacy wrote:

    I’m not saying that it is impossible for a 17-year-old and a 22-year-old to have positive romantic experience together, but it was like the first clue (besides the headline, of course) that this story wasn’t going to end happily ever after.

    I guess I shouldn’t tell you, then, that I was 26 years old when I married my darling bride, who was 19 at the time. We’ve only been married for 33 years, 7 months and 25 days.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dana.pico Dana Pico

    The problem isn’t the age difference; the problem is that she let him videotape them having sex. There are dozens of “girlfriend revenge” sites on the internet, and in a lot of them, there isn’t a huge age difference.

    Just how stupid does a woman have to be to let someone take pictures of her with his dick in her mouth?

  • Quartermaster

    Social media is for über losers. The rest of us have better things to do.

  • Patrick Carroll

    Date?

  • Patrick Carroll

    A swallow, unfortunately, does not a summer make.

  • http://twitter.com/RoxeanneDeLuca Roxeanne de Luca

    Ahem! I met my boyfriend online. (That he is friends with my friend’s brother in law is, I think, part of the reason we are together – we like the same people, but those people never knew enough to introduce us.).

    That said, the guy doesn’t have a sex tape of me, nor will he ever have one.