As a teenager I loved Sex and The City. Living in Bolton (near Manchester in the UK) at the time was the polar opposite of the amazing lives of these four women and I desperately wanted to live in New York, wear fabulous clothes, drink cocktails and have a group of wonderful friends to share it all with.
However, as an adult, my opinion of Carrie and her escapades have completely changed. Before I continue, I realise that I’m discussing a fictional character that hasn’t been on our screens now for years, which may seem silly, but I really think that Carrie Bradshaw needs a slap. Why? Two words: Mr. Big.
Let’s ignore her ridiculous dress sense and her obsession with over-priced shoes. Let’s ignore her needy, whiny mentality (oh no, I have a brilliant job, wonderful friends and I live in one of the world’s most amazing cities), her massive insecurities and her messed up friends. The main message that Carrie taught us was that if you hang around long enough, the man of your dreams will get bored of giving you crap and messing you around and will eventually give in. It will take ten years, he’ll marry someone else first, get jealous when you’re happy with a wonderful man and will leave you at the alter, but when he’s done everything that he wants to do first he’ll settle down with you and you’ll be blissfully happy for the rest of your life. She also taught us that if you meet an ‘Aidan’, the seemingly perfect man, it’s absolutely fine to cheat on him and treat him badly because he’s not edgy enough and doesn’t bring a ridiculous level of drama to life.
I think most people have had a relationship similar to Carrie and Big. I certainly have. AY was an attractive older man that I met whilst working at a previous job. He was well established in his career, he was successful, intelligent and charming and I couldn’t believe my luck when he asked me out for drinks. My previous relationships had been with men of a similar age to mine and so this was new territory – I was so excited about our first date that I bought a whole new outfit and spent three hours getting ready. Looking back, it is still one of the best nights out that I’ve ever had. We went to a swanky cocktail bar, talked, laughed hysterically and ate amazing food, and then we ended up sitting in his car and talked further until the early hours of the morning. It was a wonderful evening.
Over the next few months we saw each other a lot. I waited quite a while to stay over at his because I wanted to do things properly, I got to know his friends and would go out with them, we would go on random day trips out to places I’d never been, we’d cuddle up and watch movies on his couch, and I was genuinely extremely happy.
About eight months into the relationship he had a barbecue at his house and invited his friends. Everything was going well and I was having a lovely time, until his best friend asked him “How’s R doing?”. All the men in the room exchanged panicked looks, and AY mumbled something that she was fine and was thinking of coming home soon. I waited until later to ask who she was, not because I was jealous, but the worried looks from his friends had set off alarm bells for me. He replied that she was his friend who used to live with him, but had gone to Australia for a year to explore the country. I didn’t believe him. After some prodding he informed me that R was actually his girlfriend of four years that lived with him, and the reason why she had gone to Australia was that her brother had killed himself and she needed time away. AY had told her that he’d wait for her. He wasn’t lying, he was waiting for her, it was just that he’d decided to wait for her with me in his bed next to him.
Devastated is not the word. I finished things immediately. He then convinced me that he was planning on breaking up the relationship when she returned from her trip, he wanted to be with me, blah blah blah. R returned, she moved back in, and I essentially became the other woman. After months of being messed about and waiting I finally came to my senses and told him that I didn’t want to see him anymore. It hurt like hell, but I eventually realised that I deserved better. I didn’t want to wait for my Mr Big to come to his senses. He shouldn’t have needed to.
When I met The Bloke, I knew immediately what a great man he was, and I’ve no intention of messing around in the way that Carrie did. He’s attractive, fun, caring and considerate, and I know exactly where I stand. I don’t have to play second fiddle to anybody else – he does what he says what he is going to do, he goes where he says is going to go and he is upfront about what he wants. I love him and realise how lucky I am. Carrie should have done the same.
F**k Big. Give me my Aidan any day…
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