Facing Crushing Fears

Initially a few former crushes were going to be interviewed this week, but alas at 29-years-old I completely chickened out in telling the guys I liked in elementary and middle school how I had crushes on them once upon a time. I had reservations about admitting to my most recent, but since this was about crushing as an adult – I figured my childhood and adolescent affections did not need to be made public. At least that’s what I told myself as I debated with shooting them a quick Facebook message that in my head would have been just as humiliating as if they knew years ago…So instead just one note was sent and it was to a guy I worked with about four or so years ago.

There were a few handsome fellows hired alongside me at this contract job that wound up feeling more like a work/summer camp than it did a job. As towards the end we did very little work and played Apples to Apples, but as my eyes gazed upon the two musicians in the bunch – they both seemed too LA-I’m-a-musician-so-you-must-be-attracted-to-me, so instantly I was like, GROSS. With that my eyes fell upon Cameron. A cutie pie from the Midwest who seemed new enough to the city that it’s horrific qualities hadn’t rubbed off on him quite yet. I was smitten, he was clueless and I was scared/shy to even say hello for like six weeks.

Finally we talked and at the time I had absolutely no clue how one talks to someone they like to hint at anything more. So friends it was. After the job ended though I did get the courage to ask him to a taping of Jimmy Kimmel Live! with me. He said he had to work and well, that was that. I’d tried but alas we weren’t meant to be…so all these years later, with no more feelings left in my hormones for him, I got the courage to message him via Facebook once more and alas – he was flattered I had a crush on him back then, and was open to doing this interview, phew! Do you know how pissed I would have been if I’d got the g-g-g-GUTS! and he had said, nah…? Very. Thankfully though, four years later and the nice boy from the Midwest still lives on…

Kendra: Looking back I think teasing is the reason we don’t make our crushes known when we’re younger but rejection is the fear that takes over as we get older. Agree or disagree?

Cameron: I think rejection has always been the main fear for me. I guess it depends on how young you are talking, but middle school was when I’d say I started having crushes, so at that point it wasn’t “taboo” to have a crush. The main reason that I would hold out from telling was always that if I never said anything, the hope could remain. I was also a bit too influenced by the idea of two best friends falling in love, so my plan was always to spend YEARS developing a friendship and then blowing their mind with the news that I had crush, then they would say “MEE TOOO!” and it’s all happily ever after from there on.

Kendra: Would you say you were better at dealing with crushes now, when you were a teenager or when you were a mere child?

Cameron: I think as I’ve gotten older I lost the fear of rejection, which has been good. But that means there really hasn’t been the space for a crush to develop. For a while there I was actively looking for a girlfriend, so anyone that seemed like a possible match I would’ve approached, so there was never the time/space for those feelings to simmer and turn into a full blown, “I hope she likes me!” crush. I’ve spent enough time not telling people how I feel about them and I think the lesson that I’ve learned is that that is waste of time and energy. And most of all, it fuggin’ hurts.

Kendra: Were you aware I had a huge crush on you when we worked together?

Cameron: I had NO IDEA and was pretty shocked (and flattered) to hear that, to be honest.

Kendra: Would you have been weirded out if I’d asked you out when we worked together (given you broke my wee heart and said nah son – not for me – because that’s my favorite phrase and therefore what you’d say to let me down)?

Cameron: I would’ve been surprised (see above), but definitely not weirded out. I would’ve appreciated you saying something. Personally, I think it’s REALLY cool when girls are the aggressors. The only thing that would’ve been confusing is that I was trying super hard to get hired there and would’ve possibly thought that dating someone on the team would jeopardize that.

Kendra: Awkwardly moving on…have you had a crush as an adult and how did it play out?

Cameron: I’ve had one crush since being an “adult”. I did tell her that I liked her early on, but the romantic feelings weren’t mutual. But we still hung out as friends, which was unfair, because in my head I was playing out the whole RomCom, we become best friends and then take it further. I convinced myself that she secretly liked me, but that never panned out. I eventually moved on (only took a few years) but the lessons learned were great. I currently have a crush on my girlfriend (the feeling is mutual!)

Kendra: Should we be less fearful when it comes to potential romance now that we’re older?

Cameron: TOTALLY! I think that everyone should be less fearful because a) No one dislikes hearing that someone likes them, b) worst case scenario you get rejected and can move on (and maybe write a good song or poem or something), and c) best case scenario the person likes you back and you don’t waste time tiptoeing around the issue.

Kendra: Lastly, what’s the biggest high and lowest low of crushing on someone as an adult?

Cameron: Biggest high – Being free to do whatever the hell you want with your crush. Biggest low – thinking that you are running out of time to find someone or that “all the good ones are taken” (never true).

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