Many of us have desires of attraction, albeit of different levels. At times we get annoyed by them or chuckle at how they control our daily lives, but at one point we grow to accept them. I’ve constantly struggled to accept the fact that it is futile to try to manipulate emotional urges that lay outside of the control of my logical conscience. If you happen to feel awkward, guilty, or ashamed by your impulses I wish to ease your burden by listing some amusing things I can’t control.
1. Holding back a smile
When walking from class to class across my college’s campus, I’ll frequently spot a cute girl or two. Without fail a smile will cross my lips, but I’m too embarrassed to just let it show as I take a glance. I’m too afraid to display the tiniest sign of attraction and it results in a smile that lasts a microsecond, only to be held back as I bite my lip. It really doesn’t help that my campus has a 60-40 female to male split among the student body. So this is quite the common occurrence. I’ve gotten much better with meeting someone’s gaze (this is just in general), but the second I have to hold back a smile I try my best to focus my eyes elsewhere.
2. Crushing on random girls in class
Now I would like to mention that this is not an actual crush, but just an extension of the smiling dilemma. If an attractive female happens to be in my class, a whole new level of complexity arises. My professors usually walk from side to side as they lecture or utilize all areas of the marker board. In addition to that my classrooms are quite small, holding a maximum of 30 people on average. It starts with an observation that a cute girl exists within the classroom as I’m following the professor and the class discussion in general. Then it proceeds to me observing the girl’s voice, hair, makeup, posture, etc. For the rest of class I’m desperately trying not to look in her direction or my cheeks will actually start turning red. Then the fact that my cheeks are red leads to extra redness in general due to my internal embarrassment/frustration. Its kind of funny because in general no one knows what I’m thinking. Just the thought of anyone really knowing what I’m thinking is causing all this trouble.
3. Frowning or applying RBF
Some girls have a habit of being rather demonstrative of their cuteness in public. This may occur while I’m waiting for friends to arrive in the social hall or by the entrance to the cafeteria. Singing, dancing, squealing, and flirty gestures aimed at no one in particular are all very problematic to me. My reaction goes beyond just a smile and I repress my inner satisfaction with a rather unpleasant frown. I have mastered the art of forcing my brows together while keeping a completely blank face with slightly puffed cheeks. I will have to admit that most of this reaction is more out of impulse than design. It represents my feeling of being overwhelmed by the natural impulse to just recognize their cuteness out in the open. I would ideally simply state, “you are so cute” or literally giggle at her cuteness with reckless abandon. Then the frown settles in as I become disappointed with my illogical behavior. I rationalize that she would probably become creeped out by a rather large male human being giggling and smiling freely at such expressions of cuteness.
4. When someone actually flirts with me
Now if you haven’t caught on to the trend so far, this doesn’t go super well. It really doesn’t matter that this girl happens to be super cute and took the initiative to start a conversation with me. I immediately start frowning and avoiding eye contact as I’m simply incapable of just displaying my true emotions on my face. From there my voice gets very gravelly and monotone as it does when talking to strangers. Honestly, if I approached someone in a charming manner like that I would probably immediately start thinking that they have absolutely no interest in me. How counterproductive is that? In reality the answer is yes – I would like to keep talking to you and yes – I am extremely lucky you came over and started talking to me with little to no effort at all.
On a side note it is rather comical when some girls actually realize my dilemma. I’ve had several appointments at the writing center where the frowning, gravelly voice and all that kicked in, but somehow the girl I was tutoring picked up on my awkwardness rather than seeing rejection. They start playing with their hair, giggling at me, smiling excessively, or constantly adjusting their leggings. Kudos to all of you, you guys are mind readers. However, that was sheer torture in the moment, not fair.
Small disclaimer: Most of these experiences have happened while I’ve been in a relationship. I’m quite satisfied with my relationship and that simply further demonstrates the true fact that I have natural impulses. I would just like to emphasize that all of these reactions are pretty superficial and (1) I don’t like recognizing I can be superficial (2) I’m fighting who I am rather than simply accepting myself. I would also like to mention that this is proof that small flirtatious gestures really don’t mean much. I have quite the appetite for cute things (including girls), but I really don’t want anything more than a glance or a conversation with these girls. Think about that the next time someone is hitting on you (goes for both genders).
Honestly my girlfriend always loves hearing these stories and giggling at my expense. If you have trouble facing your impulses, just remember that you don’t control them. You wouldn’t call them impulses if you could.