I can see what's coming but I'm not saying it

In case you've lost track, the boy and I are on take 3. Yes, really, take 3. You'd think I'd have learned my lesson by now. Apparently I'm a glutton for punishment.

Now, I'm not going to lie, the boy is kind of an asshole. He's not a "nice guy" but he's also not a total douchebag idiot. He's the charming variety of asshole. And I'm nothing, if not a sucker for charming assholes.

Mr. Darcy? Capt. Malcolm Reynolds? Han Solo? Any character Robert Downey Jr. has ever played, but especially Tony Stark?

Yes, please.

The last time I talked to him in person was Thursday. Friday he ignored my attempts to contact him. Saturday he sent me a text saying he was annoyed that I had come over while he was at work without asking and we could talk about it when he was sober. The reason I went over to his house? I was dropping off a can of coffee that he had asked me to refill for him. His roommate and some friends were over so I stayed and talked to them for a while. I also did his dishes. And cleaned his disgustingly crusty stove. It's been about a month since our last relationship crisis, so of course the boy's reaction to this would be that I'm a needy, interfering, terrible girlfriend. At least, I can only assume that's his reaction since he hasn't made an attempt to talk to me and, presumably, he was sober at some point in the last four days.

Now let's backtrack a bit to last weekend/the beginning of the week. I was in the process of moving. I had no bed for a few days so I slept in his. Did he mind this encroachment into his space? No, not in the least. In fact, he was being ridiculously cute and not letting me take my toothbrush home and insisting there was no urgency in setting up my lovely room in my grandparents' barn. He snuggled close and got me whatever I asked for when I woke up at 6 am with a migraine and every time I opened my eyes it was to see him smiling at me. He kissed me sweetly on the cheek anytime either of us shifted enough to wake the other in the night. He reminded me he still needed to meet my grandma.

 If we rewind a bit more we get to a conversation wherein he suggested that we find somewhere to live together so neither of us had to live on our family's properties (this was a conversation I wanted to continue in the light of the cold, sober morning but never quite had the nerve to bring up). Around this time is also when the "l word" started to lightly pepper our conversations. All signs point towards "w00t," right? Am I crazy?

Obviously, I should've been totally aware that it was time for him to find something to freak out about so we could break up for a week and then I could wait until he thinks of an excuse to see me. So far excuses have included seeing Star Trek (he later 'fessed up it was his second time seeing it, he just really wanted a reason to see me) and asking if I wanted to come over and pick up a cookbook on a weekend he knew I would be up this way. I have yet to even see said cookbook.

It's oddly fascinating to date somebody who goes back and forth on the issue of commitment vs. freedom even more than I do.

So why do I keep dating the boy that actually asked me one night why I liked such an asshole?

My response to him was "In case you haven't noticed, I'm kind of a bitch".

But in all seriousness, that's part of it. I'm ok with him being somebody that states his opinions a little too forcefully, judges people a little to harshly, controls things a little too tightly, because it's all up front. It's all brutally honest and it all could just as easily describe me. At the same time, I know he's a sweet, loving person that would do anything for his friends and puts other's needs or wants in front of his own to the point where he's run ragged. He may be an asshole, but he's an asshole who (most of the time) I can respect.

The other part is that I'm happy when I'm around him. I want to be a better version of myself. I can relax. The power balance shifts back and forth and it doesn't pain me to let go of the reins.

I stay with him because I know what he's going through. I stay with him because I know I'm not the easiest person to date either. My emotions rollercoaster, I blame others for my own inability to commit, I use stupid things as excuses to push people away. I flirt and I tease. Sometimes I'm overly guarded. I really like domesticity but want to be able to live my own life and make my own decisions. I'd rather push myself past the extremes of my capabilities than ask for help. I'm harsh and prideful. I'm damaged goods.  I'm a person and I'm not perfect and, for whatever reason, I'm ok with him seeing those parts of me. I'm not ashamed.

There are parts of our relationship that I'm not happy with. I don't remember when the last time we went on a date was. He's willing to make plans with everybody except me. How much he's been drinking lately kind of freaks me out. I'm never entirely clear on how serious a relationship he wants because I don't think he ever is for more than five minutes.

And of course, every time he's annoyed with me, he doesn't tell me, he just doesn't talk to me for a few days.

I must be crazy.