30) What I Did When a Hot Relationship Became Suffocating

In the last post you read about some trouble Priscilla and I caused in San Francisco. In this post you will read about my new realization that my relationship with Priscilla has become a real downer and what I tried to do about it.

Priscilla and I had made the trip together from Minnesota to California. This was not a vacation but journey inward to figure some stuff out for myself.

A Big Problem

During the next year or so this discovery process continued. I learned that I didn’t want to work in retail, fashion, food service, bars, craft stained-glass Tiffany lamp shades or be a kept man. Slowly, and unfortunately sometimes using others along the way, I was sifting possibilities and deducing how I might fit into the world. I had a long ways to go. I sure didn’t know I was only in first 20% of this process.

I felt I was a good person, an energetic, curious, serious, warm, open and funny person, just terribly unprepared for to take advantage of any opportunities that were all around me.

Process of Extraction

My relationship with Priscilla, after just 18 months, had unraveled. Her white-wine habit and live for the moment philosophy was exhausting. I was only now discovering we weren’t compatible. I told her she must leave.

Priscilla returned to Minnesota but came back again to San Francisco about three times during the year of 1974-1975. The first two times I lacked the will to send her away. The third time she wouldn’t leave and after getting her away, she stalked me for what seemed like a couple of weeks.

Extraction Completed – If Sadly

I felt really badly for her but came to realize her desperate financial situation was causing her to go places and be with people who put her at great risk. In the end, I felt I had to get away, no matter what. Cruelly, I sent her away by saying some things I knew would make her hate me.

Asking how she was able to follow and track me down in San Francisco. “I just hitch-hiked and let guys do what they wanted with me,” she said. “How many guys,” I asked, horrified. “how many?” “I don’t know.” she said.

Priscilla’s Desperation Fueled by Addiction

Weeks later, this whole conversation still cut through me like the edge of a serrated knife. Not because I felt sorry for Priscilla but because, in my mind, her behavior confirmed my suspicions she had never hesitated to offer herself to feed her addictions.

Regaining my Footing

I hadn’t heard from Priscilla in several weeks. With her no longer in my life, I slowly began to refocus on becoming more self-sufficient, although at times this became self-indulgence. Like San Francisco – and I suppose the 70’s culture that was taking place at the time – Priscilla had pulled me in to a lifestyle of excess and aimlessness. I needed clarity and control in my life. I hated that with Priscilla, I was out of control. I was determined to regain control over my circumstances. Even if that meant a kind of selfish and extended personal introspection. I  began to regain my footing after what seemed like years in The Priscilla enigma.

Did you ever want to leave a lover but couldn’t?

Next: Crummiest Job I Ever Loved

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