How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: The One That Got Away – Part Three

 

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: The One That Got Away – Part ThreeThere’s an odd sort of calm that comes over you when you know exactly what you want. It can be a blessing or a curse, because there may be no assurance you can obtain it, but still there is some kind of peace in the knowing. That’s how I felt when I realized I still wanted to be with the The One That Got Away. It was as if someone had finally turned on the lights in the darkness of my mind and now everything was clear. He was the only person I had ever truly loved and been loved by in return. And I still felt it. Continue reading

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Tara Talks: Episode Thirty One (The One with Top TV Show Boyfriends)

TARA TALKS (Image Credit: Tara Robinson)

TARA TALKS (Image Credit: Tara Robinson)

A few months ago I posted a video, Top 4 Book Boyfriends! So, I decided to make a video about my Top 5 TV Show Boyfriends. Aka Boys I like on TV shows who I’d like to date… Continue reading

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: The One That Got Away – Part Two

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: The One That Got Away – Part TwoI gave in one night and called The One That Got Away. I wanted to tell him how wrong I was to take his words as the end, how sorry I was for all the pain I caused him, how much I still loved him. I didn’t think it would make a difference, but I felt like I had to do it or my heart would truly die. What he did next spelled both a new beginning and an end for us, because I truly suck at love. Continue reading

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: International Man of Mystery – Part Two

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: International Man of Mystery – Part TwoI was in over my head with The International Man of Mystery, otherwise known as 0040, from the very start. I had some gleam of it at the onset, but of course I ignored it in favor of concentrating on the fact that a very smart, very handsome, very successful man thought I was pretty and smart too.

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Tara Talks: Episode Twenty Nine (The One with The Things Guys Say on Dating Apps)

TARA TALKS (Image Credit: Tara Robinson)

TARA TALKS (Image Credit: Tara Robinson)

I have encountered many strange conversations on dating apps like Tinder and OkCupid. I frequently post them onto Twitter or Facebook with comical commentary. So I figured, I’d share all of these with you guys.

Let me know if you’ve gotten any horrible messages like these. And tell me your worst pick up line!!

If you have any topics you want to see me talk about let me know on Twitter or in the comments below!! Continue reading

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: International Man of Mystery – Part One

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By the time I graduated college and had my first “big girl job” you would think I would have figured out the game of love, but that’s a big capital NOPE. I was just as clueless as ever and that’s how I wound up in a relationship with the International Man of Mystery. Let’s call him 0040 for short. Continue reading

What You Can Learn from Treating Best Friends Like Boyfriends and Boyfriends Like Best Friends

(Image Credit: Savage Ultralight)

(Image Credit: Savage Ultralight)

Unlike family, boyfriends and best friends are the people you choose to have in your life. For this reason, I have never known how to treat them. How do you treat the people you don’t need to have around, but want to? (Or, sometimes, don’t want to? Or shouldn’t?) I am no stranger to bad boyfriends or bad friends (we’ve all had a few), and I’ve struggled to come up with a way to sift through all the bullshit that comes with either of these strange, tenuous and wonderful brands of interpersonal relationship. Continue reading

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: The Lost Birthday – Part Two

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My first birthday after breaking up with The One That Got Away was a doozy. I almost made out with Mr. Temptation (ok not almost, actually, but only for a minute…or five) at midnight, missed a birthday celebration with my roommates because of it, and was completely hungover for my actual birthday day. My roommates, none to pleased with me for disappearing, spending the night in Mr. Temptation’s room and refusing to talk about any of it, still intended on throwing me a formal birthday party that night, but first I had to make it through dinner with my family. Dinner with my entire family, who were driving up through a snowstorm come and take me out. Meanwhile, I couldn’t move my head without the room spinning too, and I looked like I had lost a fight with a tube of mascara and can of hairspray. Continue reading

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: The Lost Birthday – Part One

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When The One that Got Away and I broke up, I was in a very weird place — about to leave college, and my friends and everything familiar and safe and go out into the real world. I made the unwise choice of drowning my fears and sorrows in a toxic mix of alcohol and other men…and that’s how I missed my own birthday celebration. Our break up occurred during my birthday week, yes you read that right, “birthday week.” Up until this point, I had always celebrated my birthday for an entire week and I wasn’t about to let a little break up with the man I once considered to be the love of my life change that. So on went the drinking and partying right up until the night where midnight would mark my birthday. Continue reading

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: My First Love – Part Two

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Secret relationships are always so enthralling in the beginning. That element of having something just between the two of you that the rest of the world can’t touch makes it feel so special. And if it’s a relationship you know won’t be deemed socially acceptable, there’s the additional element of elicit danger adding excitement at every turn. You may even start to feel like it’s the two of you against the world, believing both of your feelings are stronger than what other people feel simply because you’re willing to sacrifice to keep the relationship going. That’s exactly how things were for me when I started dating My First Love. Continue reading

Tara Talks: Episode Fifteen (The one with Qualities I Look for in a Guy)

(Image Credit: Tara Robinson / The Daily Quirk)

(Image Credit: Tara Robinson / The Daily Quirk)

In this video, I discuss the three perfect qualities I look for in a guy. Let me know what you guys think of this video! And give me some ideas for next week while I’m at Tribeca! And come back next Tuesday for another episode of Tara Talks.

Continue reading

How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: If Things Were Different – Part Two

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It all had such a promising start. The boy from vacation, the one I would later call If Things Were Different, and I were both genuinely happy to be together at the start, happy to love and be loved. But we were also both damaged in many ways, and instead of trying to help ourselves, we tried to lose it all in each other. Later recounting this time in my life to my friend Charlotte, I tell her “We were crazy in love. I was crazy in love with him, and he was crazy in love with me, and unfortunately, there was a little too much crazy in that situation.” I have never come up with a better way to describe my relationship with If Things Had Been Different.

It’s a Friday night in my dorm room. I’m working on a paper that’s due Monday, when there’s a loud knocking at my window. I know who it is immediately, because no one else ever comes to my window. It’s If Things Were Different — and he’s not supposed to be here. I pull up the blinds, so he know’s I’m going to buzz him in and then go to my door confused by his arrival…because it doesn’t seem pleasant.

Before he’s even through the threshold he’s cursing and asking me what’s wrong with me. I don’t understand what’s happening, but I do know he smells like alcohol. I don’t even hear what he’s saying as my own inner monologue starts about how I can’t believe he’s driven all the way here after drinking. Finally I snap back into the moment as he tells me, “You know, I could have effin‘ cheated on you many times.” I’m still confused, but actually aware of the conversation now. I ask him what he’s talking about and he acts like I’m playing dumb. We do this dance for awhile and finally he tells me about how Indecision answered my phone earlier and told him I was sleeping and he wasn’t going to wake me up because I had a long night. Indecision’s statement was true. I had been up getting sick a lot of the night, and I must have been sleeping when If Things Were Different called, because I don’t remember it. But, I’m sure the was he said it implied much more and If Things Were Different was at the end of his rope with this kind of stuff. Did it justify his response? No not at all, but at least now I knew what we were fighting about.

I try to set If Things Were Different right, but he doesn’t want to hear it. Instead he begins to tell me about all the times he “almost” hooked up with other girls. My blood boils. At least two of these almosts count as actual cheating to me, and I can’t believe all this time I’ve had no idea that he was spending all this time with other women. Now I’m screaming too, and I have plenty of things I want to say in the moment about how he’s a cheater, and a drunk and a needy bastard who doesn’t deserve my love. And somewhere in all this screaming, Indecision hears us from upstairs, and comes bursting in just as If Things Were Different grabs a picture frame from my desk and throws it the ground smashing it at my feet. What happens next is a blur of chaos, tears and confrontation. The RA comes rushing in and threatens to call campus public safety if If Things Were Different doesn’t leave campus immediately. He storms out and Indecision comes toward me to comfort me, but I want him gone. In my mind, this is his fault. I send him away and cry alone this time as I pick up the shattered pieces from the floor.

“You definitely broke up with him this time, right?” you might be asking at this point. No. I suck at love and I took him back. I blamed my own time spent with Indecision for my boyfriend’s need to seek attention elsewhere, and after a long, drawn out reconciliation process where we both swore to be completely faithful, emotionally and physically, we were back together. And more so than ever, as my health declined and I was forced to take the next semester off from school.

I move back home with my parents to try and recover and get back on track from my recent relapse. And within a short amount of time If Things Were Different is having such bad problems at home that my parents allow him to move in, too. We all live together like a weird little family for awhile, and things are good. The only other person he has to share my time with is my friend Heather, the only true good thing If Things Were Different ever brought into my life.

Heather has health issues as well and it’s a comfort and a solace to have someone to discuss IVs, side effects and physical therapy with. She becomes one of the best friends I have ever had, and I become supremely loyal to her. As spring turns to summer, I get stronger and she declines. I drive her to pick up her prescriptions, sit with her through therapy and become the one who tries to make things normal for someone else.

If Things Were Different eventually moves back home, feeling unwarranted guilt for leaving his family, and with the separation comes issues once again. My willingness to be there for Heather when she needs me, even if it means cancelling plans with him, makes him jealous and he goes back to filling his alone time with reckless behavior. We try to make things work, but as Heather becomes more ill, I become more distracted and my priorities change. It takes everything he and my family have to convince me to go on our yearly vacation that summer, and I do my best to enjoy it, especially as I hear how Heather is doing better than when I left.

I check in with her in the few days between returning from vacation and moving back into school and things seems to be fine. And they’re fine with If Things Were Different, too. Being on vacation has made things good again between us, and since he starts school later than I do, he moves me in on a Saturday and stays with me the first three days. After classes Monday, we go to a bunch of stores collecting stuff for a care package for Heather that I’ll deliver to her in the hospital on Thursday. I spend Tuesday night  cutting silly construction paper flowers to put all over the box because I know she’ll think it’s cheesy, and therefore laugh one of her old man sounding chuckles, a sound I needed to hear to know she was really going to be alright.

On Wednesday morning, I get up late like any other morning and make myself oatmeal in my room with my semi in violation of dorm rules water boiler, bring my laptop back to life from its sleep, and then peruse people’s AIM away messages to entertain myself as I eat. And that’s when I see it. One after another, RIP. My heart stops. I check my dorm phone — no messages. But no one really has that number except my schoolmates, parents and my boyfriend. I get charged for using it so I prefer to use the cell phone I’m already paying for…except it rarely works in the dorms. I grab it and my keys and run outside shoeless to try and get service.

The messages on my voicemail shake me from my hope and denial. I go back inside, now soaked from rain and stand in the middle of my room in shock. I don’t know what to do. I feel like my heart has been ripped from my chest. I see the stupid box covered in flowers and I throw it all the wall. I must start to scream because a RA comes in my unlocked door and is so scared by how I’m acting that they call campus mental health services. They must tell them to bring me down there, but I don’t remember agreeing to go. I don’t remember anything except the heaviness of my rain soaked clothes, and the blisters the wet flip flops were giving my feet as I trudged along with an RA I barely knew to the office.

They make the decision to have my parents come get me. When my father arrives, he has no idea what to say to me and it’s ok because I don’t want to talk. There’s nothing to say. My best friend is dead.

Her death weighs heavily on me even now, but when it first happened it shattered me. The guilt of putting off that final visit to Thursday, when I could have gone sooner, should have gone sooner, broke me for awhile. Nevermind that I could have spent those final weeks with my friend, instead of on a stupid vacation, with a stupid boy who would never be able to get past his own demons enough to be there for me like he should have. But I suck at love, and not just romantically. I make bad choices and I have to live with them.

Losing Heather made me realize that life is too short to feel anything less than happy. And that realization made me leave If Things Were Different… because things never would be.

IF THINGS WERE DIFFERENT – PART TWO PLAYLIST

REALiTi – Grimes
9 Crimes – Damien Rice
School Night – Ani DiFranco
Hear You Me – Jimmy Eat World
I Don’t Feel It Anymore – William Fitzsimmons

 


How I Figured Out I Suck at Love

As Rebecca Wells so brilliantly put it, “There is the truth of history, and there is the truth of what a person remembers.” I’ll try to bridge that gap as I tell you the story of how I eventually figured out I suck at love. Come back weekly for new installments.

Check out more from How I Figured Out I Suck at Love on TDQ…


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Tara Talks: Episode Fourteen (The one with What I Really Mean)

(Image Credit: Tara Robinson / The Daily Quirk)

(Image Credit: Tara Robinson / The Daily Quirk)

We all have those moments when we say something just to have someone stop talking or just because we don’t want to tell them the truth. Here’s a few things I’ve said to people and what I really wanted to say them instead.

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How I Figured Out I Suck at Love: If Things Were Different – Part One

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When I was 13 I met a boy on vacation, and that moment, though I did not know it yet, would have an impact on the rest of my life. He was sweet and funny, and waited ’til we were at the tippy top of my very first roller coaster ride to take my hand and say “I like you.” No, I’m not about to tell you about my first kiss or teeny bopper romance. I’m going to tell you about If Things Had Been Different. Continue reading