Can.I.Rock.it?

Memoires of a Successful Singleton Continued: “The Stalker Syndrome”

In I am... on August 24, 2010 at 10:40 am

I haven’t always found success being single. I once went to a nightclub with the sole purpose of finding the guy who had just played me like a lottery scratchcard. There I was, standing with an equally clueless friend by the bar of the most likely place I could run into him on a Tuesday night. The look on his face when he saw me should have been enough to make me swing right back around and run in the opposite direction, but after five rounds of cocktails, a little show of deterrent body language unfortunately wasn’t enough to point me towards the nearest exit. To this day, I’m still unsure of whether I did or did not actually click my fingers at him like a drag queen with attitude but 100% certain that my brief confrontation was absolutely ridiculous– nothing about it said “successful singleton”, I can assure you of that.


More often, calling someone a “stalker” is just a bit of a mean way of describing someone who has tried their hand at dating and quite monumentally, gone and mucked it up. At one time or another, we’ve all come down with a case of the “Stalker Syndrome”, whether it be fishing for information through someone’s friends, scouring the far corners of social networking sites and clearly my personal favourite, staging the classic, “Fancy meeting you here!”. I know a girl who once dated a guy for over a year just to be closer to the real object of her affections– his best friend. I was genuinely shocked when my close friend told me that the first time she got dumped, she unhinged the wing mirrors on her ex-boyfriend’s car.

I’ve come to the conclusion that women are generally, the more unbalanced sex when it comes to dating. Our struggle not to be overcome by our relationships with men is highly transparent and I find it draining nowadays to pretend otherwise. We keep busy and try our best not to get carried away– that’s ‘the big secret’ if there is one.

Well aware of the behavioural traits on my side of the fence, I’ve been intrigued to find out a little bit about what the boys get up to.

Cityboy opens up about his own dating past in a blackberry chat from his workdesk on a Thursday afternoon.
“Sending ‘accidental’ texts to provoke a response. I nearly did it once,” he says referring to his top five classic symptoms of the ‘stalker syndrome’.
Sensing he might reveal some secrets of the brotherhood, I probe further and ask,

“Do you troubleshoot with your group of guys about why a girl hasn’t been in touch?” (When women get together, theorizing on the various tragic accidents that could have left a man without the use of his thumbs for texting or calling, is one of our favourite past times).

“Are you kidding me?” Cityboy beeps through on my blackberry screen, “Guys seek advice from each other about this stuff all the time. Especially about texting girls; what we should say, what a hasty or delayed response time really means– all of that.”

“Oh you do??” I ask, feeling like I’ve unearthed some information that a lot of girls would love to sink their teeth into.
“Hell yes! If we’ve been out of the game for a while, we start to second guess ourselves. My friend used to make rough drafts of his texts to a girl and then consult me before he sent them. With the way you women analyse everything, every word counts!”
I had little to say in our defence.

The problem with all this business of stalking and over-obsessing is that it can become a bit of a bad habit. Behaving like a bull in a china shop when you first get in the game is all well and good, but as time goes on, one really wants to nip these kinds of mind-numbing activities in the bud.

Using the world wide web (e.g. Google, Facebook, Asmallworld) should not be used as a catalyst for getting to know someone and reading their horoscope will not bring you any closer to finding out whether they actually like you or not. Playing games in relationships provides rampant breeding ground for stalker activity– you’ll be adding fuel to your own fire.
Be open with your friends about the moments when you’ve caught yourself acting like a stalker (highly amusing over a glass of wine). Just hearing yourself say it out loud will be enough to make you kick the habit. The secretive element of stalking is definitely the creepiest thing about it, so don’t be a ‘closet stalker’. Sometimes, if you’re brutally honest about your admiration for someone, they just might find it surprisingly endearing and somewhat flattering.

However, at some point, do come to the realization that if you feel like you’re stalking someone, it’s most likely not a match made in heaven. The more we try to manipulate something, the less meaning it will have in the end if nature was not allowed to take its course. Dating and relationships will always be a struggle, so do yourself a favour, just sit back and RELAX!!!

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