I’d Like to File a Missing Persons Report

You guys, he’s gone. I don’t know where he is I don’t have any of his friend’s phone numbers and he’s not on Facebook. What if, like, something serious happened to him, y’know? And I didn’t know about it? Oh my god, I’d be, like, the worst girlfriend ever. But seriously, it’s been two weeks and I have no idea where he is. I need more wine.

I spend a lot of time protecting myself. I like to think that my anger takes the shape of a cute little porcupine in a red cape who comes to my rescue every time my soft, squishy, beating heart might be exposed and make me look vulnerable. She sounds a lot like Louise from ‘Bob’s Burgers’. She’s a yeller. I talk about this a lot in therapy. It’s one of the reasons that I do comedy. It’s the perfect defense mechanism that lets you talk about serious stuff without sitting across from one of your friends at a coffee shop, crying and making them really uncomfortable. But I’ve done that too. Sorry friend I made feel uncomfortable, I know that was messy and really ugly, but your makeup looked so good. Feelings are real things, you guys. It’s just that being vulnerable is one of my least favorite. I refrain from opening myself to people and handing them my insides. Most of the time I feel like it’s just easier to take care of things myself. So I do.

I don’t fall in to relationships very easily because of this, too. I’m usually waiting for that moment when I’m about to get fucked over. And when I do, I always say, “You’re better off alone.” Ugh. I need more wine. I’m so gross and whiny. But I’m jealous of people who can open up and do. They open themselves over and over again no matter what happened the last time. Me? I’m like, “Let’s talk about how I wanted to fucking murder so and so…”. I’m hyper guarded and when this comes up, people usually want to know, “Who broke you the last time?” Or, geez. Pause. Just ‘geez’.

Recently I’ve been dating someone. I can’t say that it’s going to be anything permanent, but it’s going well despite a lot of the conversations we had to have very early on. I struggle with anxiety and depression and he understood that, so I thought, on some level, I had found someone who was a kindred spirit and not afraid of me because I’m on anti-depressants. I have found it difficult to explain this to people that haven’t experienced that kind of thing, so having someone that already gets it really took care of a lot. This has been going on for a couple months and some weeks. We are calling each other boyfriend/girlfriend. He’s talked to me about moving in together “I could totally live with you”. He’s picked me up from the airport “It’s a nice thing to do.” He’s into me “I’m not going to say it until you do.” He is dedicated to breaking down my walls “I don’t know what kind of skinny jean wearing douchebags you’ve dated in the past, but geez.” Just ‘geez’. I like(d) him.

I call a friend, fucking terrified about what was happening to me and she told me that everything was going to be ok, he was just poking at my heart in a way that it hadn’t been for a long, long time. Basically an eternity. We have jet packs now. Breathed a sigh of relief and assured myself that I would take things day by day. One thing I was missing, though, was that giddy, stupid, OMFuckingG he’s so totally great and I’m so into this. What was holding me back? Was I really struggling this much to just let it all hang out? Maybe I’m more of a slow burn kind of girl, but I also really started to trust him.

Here’s the thing: something might’ve happened. It’s totally possible. If it did, though, I think I would’ve heard about it. I haven’t heard a missing person’s report, either, but he’s missing. Like seriously. Dropped off the face of the planet. DID HE GET ABDUCTED BY A PACK OF WOLVES IN THE NIGHT? DID HE GET HIRED TO GO ON A SPECIAL, TOP SECRET MISSION TO FIGHT SOMALIAN PIRATES AND COULDN’T TELL ANYONE OR LEAVE A NOTE? BECAUSE THESE ARE LITERALLY THE ONLY TWO THINGS I CAN THINK OF. But seriously guys I have no clue and I love mysteries so this is all very frustrating. There have been no responses to phone messages or texts. Are we breaking up? I have no idea because I haven’t talked to him. Are we still together? I don’t know! Should I keep looking at one bedroom apartments in Bensonhurst with a washer and dryer and move in, get a dog and wait for him? You’ve got to be fucking kidding me. Again?

It should come as no surprise to anyone that this happens a lot. One guy I dated made me feel like I was doing all the driving in the relationship, so I handed him the keys to the car and as far as I knew he crashed the car and ended up naked in a ditch somewhere outside of Florida. His body was never recovered and a missing persons report was never filed, but then I saw him at a Memorial Day BBQ so I guess he’s fine now.

Everyone, this is not ok. Guys. Gals. No one should be doing this. Even if using your words to say that you’re “just not interested.” No one can argue with you. Seriously. It usually ends up being more of a “thanks for telling me” kind of thing.  And what in God’s name makes you think that it’s easier to just not respond? We are fucking grownups you guys, and I don’t want to put out a mother fucking Amber Alert every time one of you goes missing. That would be abusing who it’s actually for. Children. It’s actually for children. For something serious. Not for you not answering a text message. This is breaking people. Literally breaking them down. It’s not a respectful way to treat people. It’s cowardly and it makes people go banana phone. Ring! Ring! Hello? No one loves you CLICK. Stop pranking me! Instead of pushing people deeper and deeper into their insecurities like being vulnerable and asking for help, FOR EXAMPLE, why don’t you just tell me what you would like to say. Because if you don’t, I will find you in 6 years for our wedding. Our dog, Ghost, is the ring bearer. I named him after you.

I’d Like to File a Missing Persons Report

Aren’t there rules or something?

Let me begin by saying that I love kids.  Really.  I do.  I think they are lovely people, and it’s an incredible thing to watch them discover the world around them.  It’s amazing to see a baby smile.  And it’s a miracle to see a child form their first words (however, not a miracle to help a kid who’s not yours pull out their first tooth when their parent isn’t there.  Bad miracle! Bad miracle!).  I like movies with kids in them, sometimes I think they’re better actors than adults; it could be honesty or they just deliver their lines cuter, I don’t know.

I’ve liked kids my whole life.  At my parent’s work barbecues, or dinner at a parent’s friend’s house, I could be found with either the child or the family pet.  I just found them more interesting or we had a similar mindset.  Seeing a beagle eat a cat’s poop out of the litter box is disgusting and fascinating at the same time, it’s just not something to brag about.  So it was only natural that I took my Red Cross babysitting course at the age of 12 or 13 to start taking care of something I already liked for money.  Not a difficult job.  You just basically have to make sure that no catastrophe befalls the innocent, and you will get paid.  I was taught, however, that a babysitter doesn’t just “babysit”, but make sure they brush their teeth, make sure they get to bed at a decent hour, make sure they don’t watch too much tv, and make an effort to tidy up the mess that you or the kids made before the parents get home to hide the evidence of the macaroni and cheese with mustard and french fries disaster that happened earlier in the evening.

In college, I had returned from a semester in Costa Rica, I wanted to move out of my parent’s house, so I needed a job. Babysitting skills and years of experience with children translated into a nanny position.  Ladies and gentlemen, I got spoiled.  I was getting paid to take care of a sweet kid and teach him everything I know.  I’m not saying there weren’t challenging moments, and it definitely provided an excellent form of birth control, but more importantly: the parents and I were on the same page as to what was acceptable and what wasn’t acceptable. And, to be completely honest, I found this with most (there are bratty kids in Denver, too) of the families I would sit for.  Just so there’s no confusion, I made up a list of things that were and were not acceptable:


1. running

2. jumping

3. playing

4. legos

5. singing

6. dancing

7. napping

8. sitting quietly while I check my email


1. ripping up the pages of a library book.

Fast forward a few years to moving to New York…Ho-ly shit.  There’s stuff that would NOT HAVE FLOWN when I was a kid.  For example: I was expected to be on my best behavior in restaurants.  If not, I would be removed from that booth booster seat faster than you could blink, and I would never see those restaurant crayons or coloring- book style placemat ever again. I understood that what I had done was unacceptable.  I was to always use please and thank you in my own home and, especially, if I was company at someone’s house.   And if I was being taken care of by a babysitter it was a privilege…not a right.  Maybe my parents were disciplinarians, but their kids didn’t become brats.  When I first started seeking out a nanny job when I moved to the city, I was appalled.  I interviewed with one family on the Lower East Side, whose mother told me that, “If Uma wants to climb and play on the [dinner] table, she can.” Play doesn’t mean sit in a high chair and do finger painting, it means run back and forth along the length of the table.  My mind fast forwarded about ten years, to a kid with pig tails, screaming, running up and down the length of the table with both parents in various states of hair loss. I didn’t take the job.  There were a couple kids I took care of in my neighborhood for a while, but eventually had to stop because I started to lose my voice from trying to get the message across to these kids to get them to do what their parents had asked me to do.  I should’ve taken the cue from the first time I went there when the father started screaming at the kids while the mom sat by rolling her eyes and trying to laugh it off.  Um, I don’t think that works… I felt that a lot of that could’ve been resolved if getting their kids to respect their parents at an earlier age might’ve been helpful.  What are people thinking? “My two year old doesn’t understand what “no” means.”  Newsflash! They do! There’s even a “no” song on Sesame Street.  Why parents don’t think it’s necessary to give their children consequences for their actions is beyond me.  I’m no expert on the subject, but I might put the pieces together and say that a child without this kind of structure has difficulty in school and has consistently bad behavior making it difficult to make friends or keep them, and falls into a lifetime of drug and alcohol abuse.  Ok that last part isn’t true, but you see where I’m going with this.  They just become increasingly hard to handle, and no one likes to be around that.  There has to be a point, as a parent, where you realize that your kid is not the angel you once thought s/he was. Of course, it’s different when they’re yours.

Maybe I take my job too seriously.  I have to accept that I may not be able to change someone’s behavior in a four hour period, but it sure would make them easier to be around if they weren’t acting like they were feral and just recently emerged from their home in the forests of the Amazon.  I babysit now because I need the money.  Not because I want to. I’m good at it.  I’m reliable.  But it sure makes the job easier when your kid isn’t acting like a total brat.  It also makes me want to be a repeat babysitter, and not go spend all the money I just made babysitting on getting drunk from the forty I buy at 7-11 as soon as I leave your house.  It has gotten to the point though, where a lot of times, I just won’t even argue.  You don’t want to brush your teeth? Fine.  You’re the one who’s gonna have to deal with your breath smelling like ass in the morning.  You don’t want to go to bed? Fine.  Stay up until your parents get home.  I don’t care.  You don’t like me? That’s fine, I have other people in my life who validate my existence.  Goodnight.  Click.

Aren’t there rules or something?