A year or so ago, I read an article on the New York Times about a study where they came up with these questions which, if answered honestly by two parties, would lead to them falling in love with each other.
I found the idea very fascinating, but have not found anyone whom I could test it out without being afraid of it sounding creepy. “Hey, I wanna try this psychological thing to see if you fall in love with me” isn’t quite a casual conversation topic.
I still haven’t found anyone, so I’ve decided to see if I can answer them here on the blog. I might skip one or two if they infringe on the privacy of someone else, but as far as they pertain to me, I’ll be completely honest and open in my answers.
This is going to be long and likely a bit dull too read. If you’re of a voyeuristic nature though, you might enjoy seeing a stranger open herself up so much.
Here we go.
1. Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?
My instinctive answer was Paul McCartney because I adore him, but honestly? I don’t know him as a person, and who knows if we’d even get along in any way.
My more thought-out answer would be an old friend who I haven’t seen in a long time, assuming she’d be there of her own volition. I miss her and would love to hang out and talk again, even if it were just for one night.
2. Would you like to be famous? In what way?
Yes, and no. I love attention. I’m a little bit narcissistic and I really love being in the spotlight. Having thousands of people obsessing over my selfies, listening to my stupid ramblings on twitter? Honey, you are tickling my ego.
However. I’m also a very lonely, private person. If being famous meant I was unable to go for long bike rides, a walk in the city, a visit to my famous restaurants, to the point where the only place I’d feel alone would be my won house with the shades down… I’d probably go mad. So, overall, no. At times it’d be great, but I value my solitude too much.
3. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say? Why?
I do! In fact, I will sometimes rehearse complete conversations. Why? I don’t know. It helps my social anxiety to sort of prepare myself mentally for anywhere a social interaction might lead.
4. What would constitute a “perfect” day for you?
Reading an amazing book, riding my bike, napping in the bright sun with a soft breeze keeping me cool, talking with my favourite people, going to my favourite burger joint, having a pint by myself in the evening.
5. When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?
Well, I uh, danced with my imaginary husband last night? Haha. I stayed up until like 3 am writing my post on fashion tips and at some point my playlist switched to a super romantic song. I was alone in the apartment, so I got up and imagined dancing with an imaginary husband at an imaginary future wedding.
I uh, yeah. Wow. I did not think I would say that to a single soul as it happened. Haha.
Hope that counts.
6. If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want?
The mind. Everyone ages, my body failing me doesn’t worry me nearly as much as losing my memories or my personality. In fact, brain damage or deterioration is one of my biggest phobias. I feel physically uncomfortable thinking about it.
7. Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?
8. Name three things you and your partner appear to have in common.
Well, if you’ve gotten this far then you must like listening to me talk. That’s one thing we have in common 😛
Sorry, this one’s impossible since I can’t see you.
9. For what in your life do you feel most grateful?
My transition. My life isn’t perfect, but it’s infinitely better than anything younger me ever really expected we would get to have. I’m actually living as a woman… wow!
10. If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?
Ha. See above? I would have changed it so my parents didn’t metaphorically try to knock my real self out of my brain with bible thumps, and I’d been allowed to transition young and grow up as a girl.
11. Take four minutes and tell your partner your life story in as much detail as possible.
Okay, I’ll time myself for four minutes and just write anything I can, then link to that.
Here’s the link.
12. If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?
Sigh. Honestly? At the moment I really wish I could have the ability to bear children. I know this isn’t an exclusively transgender problem, but for some reason I’ve been feeling like shit lately about the fact I’ll never be able to get pregnant with my (imaginary) husband and have kids.
Shit got a bit too real there, eh?
This hasn’t been too bad so far.
I can see how these questions would work, though. Ideally, they wouldn’t be like a to-do list you rush through, but more as a general framework for the conversation, allowing you and your partner to explore some questions further, and have really rich conversations about things you wouldn’t normally have conversations about.
13. If a crystal ball could tell you the truth about yourself, your life, the future or anything else, what would you want to know?
I don’t know. As you can probably tell by now, the idea of a future husband has been on my mind a lot lately. I feel tempted to ask when I’d meet him, but I feel like that could be disastrous. Especially if the crystal ball were to answer that I’d never marry anyone.
I would ask it… what I could do to bring my chances of being a published author as highly as possible. It wouldn’t tell me whether or not I’d realise my dream, but it would help me develop a plan to achieve it, or at least have my best shot at it.
14. Is there something that you’ve dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven’t you done it?
Not anymore ^_^
I suppose maybe going hang-gliding. I haven’t done it yet because I don’t have the money. But it so getting at some point in the next decade.
15. What is the greatest accomplishment of your life?
I’m sure you can guess the answer to this.
Yeah, of course it’s my gender transition. I’m incredibly proud of past me for sticking through so many difficult times to give me such a wonderful present. She rocks, and I don’t know that I’ll ever do anything as great as what she did for me.
16. What do you value most in a friendship?
Trust. Feeling like I can completely trust in them, their words, and their actions. Not that they are perfect and will never hurt me, but that they won’t do it intentionally, and that in their dealings with me they’ll be as honest as I try to be with them.
17. What is your most treasured memory?
Oof. I knew I promised to be honest, but… sigh. Okay. This is something that is incredibly personal to me. I haven’t made a post about it and I probably never will because it feels like an almost sacred memory, but I’ll give you a quick description.
Back in 2010 my senior class and I went to this island on the Caribbean on a Senior Trip. It was a very relaxing, beautiful, and fulfilling trip. The best part of it is that it has given me the most wonderful memory of my life. I was sitting on a boat, softly moving up and down with the waves, gazing out at the sea. It was night, but it wasn’t dark. There were some lights from the dock and a little bit of noise from a movie being played about a hundred feet away, but I felt like all I could see was moonlight, and all I could hear was the sea softly moving. I felt a complete peace gazing out at the ocean.
That one experience is the main reason I sometimes hesitate to call myself an atheist. I think it’s possible to have deep spiritual experiences while not believing in a deity, but I don’t think it’s easy. The memory of that moment is something I try not to bring up too often because I don’t want to wear it out and affect it with my current emotions, but it was powerful. I desperately wish I could feel something like it again.
18. What is your most terrible memory?
I don’t really know, actually. I have this memory of being humiliated when I was younger, or of me being a dick to a friend a few years ago, but both memories are from times of my life that feel so alien, I can’t feel any shame or sadness from them. It’s like they happened to other people. Sorry.
19. If you knew that in one year you would die suddenly, would you change anything about the way you are now living? Why?
Hmm. Maybe. I’d probably look to get a part-time job and move in with someone who’d help me support me, then spend the rest of my time trying to meet new people to know, and spending as much time as possible with the friends I have now. I would also dedicate all my spare time to writing a novel. That’s the one item on my bucket list, to write a novel.
20. What does friendship mean to you?
There’s a Night Vale tweet I love relating to this. Here it is:
Obviously that isn’t all there is to love, but it does touch on what I think is the most powerful part about friendship, and all significant human relationships. Someone can know you, the real you, without the masks or the affected traits. They can see the ugly you, the nasty you. They know exactly what they could say to crush you and break your heart.
But they don’t. They love you, with all your hideous flaws and your imperfection. They protect you and choose to be with you, the real you. That is what true friendship means, to me. Seeing someone as they are and choosing to love them for who they are, allowing them to trust in you, and trusting them back.
21. What roles do love and affection play in your life?
Not big ones? I feel very lonely right now. I feel like I only have one real friend, and she lives over 3,000 miles away. I love being alone, but I spend so much time on my own, without the people I choose to care for, that I feel mostly unloved, without much affection in my life.
Yeah, shit got too real again. Sorry.
22. Alternate sharing something you consider a positive characteristic of your partner. Share a total of five items.
You’re reading my blog, for one 😉
Nah, sorry. We can’t do this one as I likely haven’t met you. Maybe someday.
23. How close and warm is your family? Do you feel your childhood was happier than most other people’s?
Surprisingly, yes. As much as I might have felt depressed by my dysphoria and the terrible way my parents handled it, they were otherwise mostly very good parents, and I’m grateful to them for doing their best, and never making me feel unloved.
24. How do you feel about your relationship with your mother?
Could be better? Honestly, the whole transition thing has made it complicated.
Sorry about that non-answer at the end there. Like I said, I want to respect other people’s privacy.
Some of these questions are getting very personal. I hope this post isn’t so long no one has gotten here, and that I haven’t been so honest I’ve scared everyone away.
Okay, last time in, then we’re done.
By the way, bit of a TMI warning for the very last question. It’s ugly personal and you might want to skip that?
25. Make three true “we” statements each. For instance, “We are both in this room feeling …”
We’re both on my blog?
Sorry… Again, can’t do this one without knowing you.
26. Complete this sentence: “I wish I had someone with whom I could share …”
…my insecurities and fears about the future. My loneliness, and the stupid little things that make me happy; I wish I had someone I could cry with, but also someone to take to my secret favourite place in the city.
27. If you were going to become a close friend with your partner, please share what would be important for him or her to know.
I can get needy. Really needy. Clingy, too.
If it starts to happen, you need to tell me. Limit our time together. If it gets worse, cut me off for at least a year before trying to be friends again.
I lie about random shit, and tell tall tales sometimes, but I do not lie about big things. If I promise you something, I mean it. If I ever lie to you about something big… there’s something wrong with me. Please forgive me.
I need plenty of alone time, so please don’t feel too bad if I don’t talk to you or don’t want to spend time together. I can be surprisingly social though, so paradoxically as it might seem, don’t be surprised if some weeks I try to schedule time together every single day.
28. Tell your partner what you like about them; be very honest this time, saying things that you might not say to someone you’ve just met.
29. Share with your partner an embarrassing moment in your life.
When I was about 7 years old, I performed this dance in front of my school. Everyone mocked me for it, it was terrible. I ended up hiding inside a chimney.
30. When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself?
I last cried by myself about an hour ago. I was playing my ukulele and I thought of someone who isn’t a part of my life anymore and had to allow myself to have a good cry.
Last time I cried in front of someone was about a few weeks ago when I thought of the same person at work and started tearing up. The girl in front of me noticed and just gave me a big hug, which was great. Have I mentioned how much I love the casual affection common between women? It’s fuckin’ wonderful.
31. Tell your partner something that you like about them already.
32. What, if anything, is too serious to be joked about?
Rape. The holocaust. Child abuse.
33. If you were to die this evening with no opportunity to communicate with anyone, what would you most regret not having told someone? Why haven’t you told them yet?
Nothing, I don’t think. Perhaps not trying to make up with an old friend. I haven’t yet because I promised them I wouldn’t attempt to contact them unless they spoke to me first. I am doing my best to keep that promise.
34. Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you have time to safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why?
I have this notebook in my drawer with notes the friends I’ve cared the most for throughout my life have written me. It means so much to me, and even though I have digital copies of all the notes, it’s still special to have the originals. They mean so much to me, and are a great reminder that I am lovable.
35. Of all the people in your family, whose death would you find most disturbing? Why?
My little brother. He’s so young, and he’s probably the person in the world I love the most.
36. Share a personal problem and ask your partner’s advice on how he or she might handle it. Also, ask your partner to reflect back to you how you seem to be feeling about the problem you have chosen
I’ve been feeling a lot of dysphoria about my lack of reproductive female organs. I’ve never really had that kind of dysphoria and I don’t really know how to handle it besides cry about the fact I won’t be able to get pregnant. I probably can’t even afford surgery ever.
I never cared about this ever, but for some reason I do now and I hate it. I’m also feeling awful about not having a vagina, and being unlikely to afford surgery.
Yeah. TMI much?
I believe you’re supposed to stare at the other person’s eyes for like 5 minutes at this point, but we can’t do that so we’ll end it here.
I liked the last set of questions, despite the fact they were the worst ones to do in this format. I love the idea of temporarily turning your filter completely off and just being completely open with someone else about what you think of them. It’s such a vulnerable yet empowering thing to do, if you know what I mean.
Anyway. This post was immensely long, and I don’t know that anyone will find it particularly interesting, but I wanted to do it. So here we are.
Hope y’all are having a great start to the week. Thanks for reading, if you did. Feel free to comment below about anything related to this post or what I’ve said on it.