Totally Different in Person

I met him online. He was 28 and I traveled all the way from Florida to Arkansas just to meet him. Mind you, I have never done this for anyone in my life ... travel all those miles, but I thought he was my carbon copy. I felt we were in a relationship already; he was very serious about me and let me know it. He wanted to have a long term relationship with me. I chose to go to him because I knew that he could not afford the time off work and, let's face it, where I work I am the boss. In our conversations, I learned so much about him. I really thought ... well ... when I arrived he was a completely different person. The look in his eyes was as cold as his embrace when I hugged him hello. I asked him if I was every thing he expected and he said yes. Still, I felt a strange distant energy about him. Not the person who I had been talking to. I knew he was struggling financially, but I never really expected what I saw when I arrived. He owns 6 acres and two horses. What I saw was land that looked like a junk yard and horses that were way too thin, or they needed to be wormed, I also noticed he was much thinner than his photos. His refrigerator was empty and his house (trailer) was in need of a woman's touch. It was my original plan to go there to spoil him, because I knew a little bit about his life and just felt he deserved to know what love is supposed to feel like. He knew I planned to spoil him and asked me to bring all the love I had. When I saw all of this my heart just got bigger ... one of my assets that is often my downfall at the same time. My heart started working on the spot ... then he informed me that his brother was going to be staying there at the same time. His brother overdosed on drugs the week before. My face must have turned white as a sheet or something. I did not say anything at the time and just blew it off. That first night we went to dinner and shopping and picked up some movies. When we arrived back, his brother was not there, and I figured that he had been courteous enough to give me and my boy some private time. Anyway, all evening, I felt like I wanted to touch him, something as simple as hold his hand, give him kisses or something like people do on the first date. When I did give a little touch to him, he was so non-responsive. I was really unsure what to think about it, so I just figured he was really shy. I had promised him a massage all this time because he had never had one. So, I gave him one for about an hour and then I lay down next to him and we fell asleep. I had no intention of making love to him that night; our first night together. Still, as we slept he put his arm over me, but not as if to hold me close. It was so strange to me. Still, in looking at his environment, I just felt he was just shy because he at least verified that I was what he was expecting. I figured that it was difficult for him to show affection at first. The next day, I continued with my plan ... he went to work for the day, and I went shopping. I filled his refrigerator. I had something special planned for him ... something not sexual, but very sensual, something he had never experienced before. I cleaned his home and even managed to remove the rust stains that devoured the tub and the toilet. I had to buy him some pans so that I could cook for him, he had only one pan. Everything was almost ready ... he was about to be spoiled like he had never been before. Finally, he arrived. I was still cleaning the bathroom and he surprised me. I jumped and screamed and laughed and walked out to the living room to see him. There he was, and there was his brother too. My mouth dropped, I think ... I said hello and sat down. I did not say anything yet, but I was getting upset, because he knew I had something special planned for him. His brother was staying and all my plans went up in smoke! As soon as his brother stepped out to walk the dog, I expressed my feelings. I did not yell or anything. I just told him that I was very sad because I had something very special planned and now I could not do it. I also expressed that I traveled all those miles to see him alone, not his brother. I was really confused as to why he could not ask his brother for some time for us to be together. I felt he could have gone to his mom's house or something, but he said that his mom and everyone turned her back on him and he just could not do it to him too. He apologized and I said, "That's ok, I am just sad, is all." Then, I went into the bedroom to lie down and think about it. From the experience the night before and his lack of emotion toward me, I wondered if he wanted me there at all. He came into the room and I simply said, "Just let me get a good nights sleep, and I will leave in the morning." He was feeling like I did not accept his apology, and he apologized once more. Again, I hugged him and said it's ok, that I was just sad that I could not do what I had planned for him. Then, I asked him if he wanted me to stay ... he said not if you are going to be upset. I stopped him twice and said, "That is not what I asked you. I asked you if you want me to stay." He could not say. The phone rang and, while he went to answer it, I jumped up and started to pack my things. He came back in and asked what I was doing and I said, "All you had to do was say that you wanted me to stay, but you could not." He then said, "You could not accept my apology." I did, but I was just trying to figure out what to do, based on everything going on. By then, I was more upset and crying and expressed to him again that I came all these miles to be with him, to spoil him, to give him the love that he wanted. I said, "I put everything on the line: my heart, my time, my money ... everything! And nothing is what I have gotten from you since I set foot on your land. You are not the person that I have been talking to and I did not come all this way to spend time entertaining your brother." Then I calmed down; way down. I said, "Look, I realize that I can not do all that I had planned with you, but I will and I can forget about it and make the best of things how they are, if you want me to." He did not want me to and asked me to leave. He said I rejected his family ... his brother. I tried to explain to him that I did not reject his brother, but I rejected the situation. It was not a personal thing, just not a good situation. He refused to accept my apology and I was still in tears as I tried and tried to fix things. He was not willing to fix things, he was not willing to fight for us, and this guy that I thought was my carbon copy was so not a carbon of my heart. He made me leave; I had no money left because I spent it all on him. I had to call my mom to run out and put some money in my account so I could get home. Before I left, I had to verify one thing ... I asked him if he were attracted to me the night before and he was surprised that I asked. He verified that yes; he was way attracted to me ... as in like, wow! I then told him, "Really? Because I could not tell at all." He said he takes a while to warm up to people. I left; I slept in my car, got a ticket, and washed many toilet seats along the way. I have never been treated so cruel in my life ... and, to top it all off, he did not even thank me for driving all those miles to see him. He did not thank me for filling up his refrigerator and he did not even acknowledge or thank me for cleaning his home. He was so not the person I had gotten to know.

— Pauline, 27

Love Library: Featured Articles