Day Seventeen   /   lettering by Anisa Suthayalai

Jessica Walsh

Did you see Timothy today?
Yes.

What did y’all do together?
We had our weekly therapy session with Jocelyn.

Did anything interesting happen?
I talked to my personal therapist about Tim’s fear of trying this with me, despite his obvious interest. My therapist reminded me how insecurity is at the core of the fear of commitment. He suggested that I could try being completely open with the reasons that I like him, which might make him feel more secure. He quickly followed this statement by warning me that this plan very well might backfire!

I used our couples therapy with Jocelyn as the time to try this. I put it all out there: I think he is good-looking. He is fun to hang out with, and we always have a great time together. He’s as spontaneous and silly as I am. He’s as crazy as me, but in different ways. He’s honest, open, and kind. He makes me laugh! I respect him and his work. He is interested in self-growth. He’s sensitive and smart. He understands my passion for design, but we don’t need to talk about it all the time. Last but not least, we work great together creatively. It’s very important to me that I find someone that I can collaborate with, formulate ideas with, and just make shit with. I also know how rare it is to find this.

After I told him all this, Tim seemed genuinely confused and taken aback. He asked me how I could possibly like him considering everything that has happened, considering his past, considering his reputation, considering that he has blonde hair and that he’s not my usual “type.” I told him that besides his serious commitment issues and all the shit that goes with it, I think we could be a pretty good fit.

Did you learn anything new about Timothy?
He said he is concerned about what people will think of him if the relationship becomes intimate. He’s worried about falling back into his old habits and hurting me. Jocelyn reminded him that all relationships are a risk. I reminded him that I understood the risks, and thought that we were both over thinking things. Lets just try this out.

Did you learn anything new about yourself?
After all the discussion today about commitment-phobia, I read a few articles on the topic. Tim definitely meets most of the criteria for being a commitment-phobe. And I definitely relate to that last line!

commitmentphobe7

How do you feel about this relationship/project right now?
He knows all my feelings about him now, so the ball is really in his court. I am interested to see how this will unfold.

Is there anything that you want to do differently?
I want to have fun with this all, no matter what happens.

Additional comments?
While I am still not feeling well, I’m realizing how much a positive outlook can help. I feel optimistic today.

Day Seventeen   /   lettering by Joon Mo Kang

Timothy Goodman

Did you see Jessica today?
I did.

What did y’all do together?
Weekly therapist appointment.

Did anything interesting happen?
We talked about Jessie quitting the experiment, and what happened a couple days ago. Jocelyn talked about how vulnerable we are to our friends’ opinions. Ultimately, some of the things our friends are saying are a mirror of what we’re actually feeling. That’s why we don’t like hearing them.

We also discussed the idea of taking our relationship further and what that could mean. Although nothing has become physical yet, she said we’re both doing what we always do in relationships: Jessie wants more and more, and I pull away more and more. Now, it’s up to us to tackle this. Are we going to fall into the same habits, or are we going to switch up?

Did you learn anything new about Jessica?
Jessie got rest! She’s upbeat, positive, and full of life. She’s like a completely different person. I love this. Also, lately she’s had her glasses on and her hair up, which I’m a sucker for. Who doesn’t like the sexy librarian look?

Library

Did you learn anything new about yourself?
We discussed what her quitting means to me. Jocelyn brought up an interesting point: How often do you ever get to hear what people really think about you? Everyone has a reputation in one way or the other, but do you ever get to hear about yours unsolicited?

How do you feel about this relationship/project right now?
Jessie was very open today about being interested in me. I feel bad that I’m confused about what I want, but after what happened the other night, I’m even more defensive about it. I feel like we’re just going in circles with this. If she could just ease up on the gas a bit, then I’d be more willing to come around.

Is there anything that you want to do differently?
We need to get back on track, and take it slowly.

Additional comments?
I had dinner with a good buddy of mine tonight. He’s in a serious relationship, and during our conversation, something dawned on me: All my friends who are in serious relationships think being single is just NON-STOP fun. I guess they believe this because, (1), it’s been so long that they forgot what it’s like and, (2), they’re only hearing the highlights.

For example, if I can use the “Baseball Metaphor” in a different way: watching baseball is long and boring and the excitement spreads over 9 innings, but if you catch the highlights on ESPN then you get to see all the action jammed into a two-minute span. My friends only hear the highlights once a month, but they don’t hear about all those long, tireless innings full of eating bad food and drinking beer alone in the stands.

If Jessie and I were using a scorecard for the first 17 days of this project within the “Baseball Metaphor” rules, it would be wildly uneventful. Remember: First Base is kissing; Second Base is hands under dress; Third Base is hands in the pants; Home Plate is sex. This is how my scorecard would look.

Baseball