I appreciate that referring to my partner as Gorgeous Man may be a bit nauseating, but the reasons I call him that are probably not quite what you think.
Let me explain…
I’ll start by blaming my beloved deceased Nana. She introduced teenage-me to her friends as “My beautiful granddaughter”.
This both pleased and embarrassed me. It pleased me because, although I’d never have admitted it, I wanted to be beautiful. Heck, even pretty would be great.
But Nana’s introduction also embarrassed me because I wasn’t sure I was attractive, let alone beautiful. Also being, apparently, valued on my questionable good looks was….confusing.
One day, in front of yet another set of Nana’s friends, I challenged her. “Nana”, I asked, with the grace of an obnoxious 15 year old, “how will you introduce me if I’m horribly disfigured in a car accident”.
Nana gave me what I can only describe as an old fashioned look. “I would still introduce you as my beautiful granddaughter”.
I took from Nana’s reply that she thought I was a beautiful person, and my looks were irrelevant. Which was a refreshing and comforting perspective to a teenager who squandered substantial chunks of energy worrying about whether she was attractive or not.
So while I do think Gorgeous Man is very attractive physically; a/ he would still be Gorgeous Man if he was horribly disfigured in a car accident; because, b/ there is so much more to him than his physical appearance.
I just watched Brené Brown presenting on ‘Trust’, and she ‘languaged’ why I call Gorgeous Man Gorgeous Man.
Brene Brown talks about how trust is built, not in the grand sweeping gestures nor heroic efforts, but in the small everyday moments.
I trust Gorgeous Man.
I hope we will be together forever. We may not be. We both have issues that can damage relationships*. But right here and now, I trust him.
I’ve noticed that I’ve fallen more in love with him when he did specific things. Things that generated trust.
For example, to help me progress with this website, Gorgeous Man offered to withhold sex until I had the website up and running.
As Gorgeous Man is a top-shelf lover, this threat was potentially quite motivating.
While it’s bad policy to make threats you aren’t prepared to carry out (as in this case), this threat was so sweet and funny that – after I stopped laughing – I fell more in love with him.
In another recent example, I was concerned a spider had climbed into one my gardening gloves. The glove fingers being stiff rubber, it was impossible to turn them inside out to check.
For the record, I am rarely a pathetic wimp. I’m handy in a fight and I can scull a jug of beer – and I don’t even like beer. I won a crate of beer in a pub tyre-changing competition (as I don’t like beer – I gave the crate to my less than appreciative male competitors). I’ve swum (briefly and accidentally) with three large sharks. I’ve eaten crocodile. I’ve even gone to the movies by myself.
But don’t ask me to put my hand in a glove where there may be a tiny spider lurking.
However Gorgeous Man, unasked, squeezed his own hand into the glove and declared it spider-free.
What a guy!
My trust in Gorgeous Man has solidified over many small moments like these. But it has profoundly grown at some critical times.
During our relationship, there’s been several times when I’ve felt really down. In these situations, Gorgeous Man’s modus operandi is to listen to me. Then he asks if there’s anything he can do to help.
This response makes me feel so supported. It eases the pain. I fall more in love with him.
This is in direct contrast to a former long term partner. Him; I needed to hide my sadness from. My sadness was inconvenient. There was a notable time when, despite my efforts to conceal my sadness, my then-partner detected it anyway.
His response was to suggest I resolve my sadness by killing myself.
So, not a lot of trust. It took me a long time to escape that relationship. But I did.
An unhealthy relationship is an immense weight to carry. It drains you of energy. Your energy, that could be going into you.
When I left that relationship, I took the energy that had previously been consumed in navigating an impossible damaging relationship – and got myself a Ph.D.
I’ve realized three things since meeting Gorgeous Man.
One is that, in the past, I have allowed unhealthy relationships to exhaust me and hold me back.
Two is that I can achieve a lot on my own.
The third revelation is that – with a genuinely supportive partner – I can achieve even more than I can on my own.
For the first time in my life, I feel I can achieve more in life with my partner’s support, than I can alone.
And that, I think, is the point of a relationship.
And that’s why I call him Gorgeous Man
*Update: I’m sorry to report that as of mid-2017 Gorgeous Man is now ex-Gorgeous Man. And I may be sorry, but I have no regrets whatsoever. This relationship has been game-changer in terms of understanding what I want and expect from a great relationship. Plus we are still good friends, which speaks to the quality of both our separation and our three and a half year relationship.
What do you think? What makes a Gorgeous Partner for you? Have you found such a paragon? Are you still looking for one? I’d love to read your opinion below.
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