I have recently been experiencing a phenomenon that I have invented a name for – douche transference. Transference is a term commonly used in psychology and social work. Transference is when a person unconsciously transfers their feelings about a significant person in their life (usually a parent or someone from their childhood, according to Sigmund Freud) to another person, often someone that reminds them of the original person. It’s usually talked about in therapy, like in situations where a client treats their therapist like their mother, or something like that.
So, sometimes I meet a guy that reminds me of a previous douche I have dated or known. And I become inclined to treat this new douche like the other douche I used to know. In Denver, you get a lot of douche archetypes (yes, even more Freud for you, look at me go!) so this happens pretty often. I see a douche walking down the street wearing a similar or even exactly the same Rockies hat that a previous douche I dated used to wear. Boom! I make all kinds of assumptions about this person, even if I don’t speak to him. That stupid hat… He must be really into taking pictures of himself in that hat and posting them on facebook.
Sometimes douche transference has to do with a smell. There seem to be surprisingly few cologne options available in Denver, nay, in the United States, for douches who like to wear a lot of cologne. Ugh, I still will get massive douche transference from my very first Maryland bro boyfriend, he used to wear so much cologne, and apparently whatever kind it was is still used by the douches of today. Pretty much any sniff of a dude wearing copious amounts of cologne just gives me flashbacks of regret after sleeping with dudes who make my entire room smell like gross cologne. I was thinking about this today when I was in the elevator at my office and there wasn’t even a person in there, just the leftover cologne smell from someone who had been in the elevator previously! If you are like Pigpen on Charlie Brown but with a cloud of cologne following you everywhere, it’s not a good look.
Douche transference can also have to do with actions. In some instances, I can predict (or maybe create a self-fulfilling prophecy, I’m not sure which sometimes) the behavior of current or future douches based on the behavior of past douches in similar situations. This douche is looking at me in this particular way, he is getting really into me. Better break up with him! Or this douche is bringing his friend on our date (this has happened to me on more than one occasion), he is uncomfortable with me and is going to stop calling me in about three dates… Unless I choose to stop calling him first. This douche just tried to pick a fight with me about being a feminist, I am going to incorporate all the anger I have from past douches doing similar things into my response to this particular douche… Great plan. Sometimes the douche transference can have the effect of multiplying my reactions to things because of past stored-up emotions from experiences with douches past. This douche tried to get me to have sex without a condom… The next thing he will say is “I just don’t usually use them, I don’t like the way it feels.” Great. That one kills me, there are so many dudes out there trying to have sex without condoms, I don’t know how the Colorado STD and STI rates aren’t worse than they are! Ain’t nobody got time for diseases! You telling me you don’t “usually” wear condoms really makes me want to get added to the list of girls you have had unprotected sex with… Anyway, I used to just tell the douches that no condom means no sex, but maybe next time I will also make them go home.
Or here’s another one… This has actually only happened to me once; this douche is taking me on the exact same date another douche took me on two years ago, sort of like that episode of How I Met Your Mother where they go on the same date years apart:
So, next time you meet a douche that reminds you of another douche you know (or used to know), just know that you are experiencing douche transference!