All the single ladies, now put your hands up! whoa, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh! Sorry, had to be done. Extra points and a golf clap if you sang it in your head. I’m proud of you.
I’d like to raise my hand and say, yes, I am single. I have been single for quite some time. And no, I am not cruising bookshops or cafes like a creep looking for the perfect Rom-Com cute meet to tell my grandkids about. That’s not me.
I decided after the last guy I was involved with (long story) that I was in fact better off and stronger alone. Wish I could say it was a decision based on an empowering moment. But let’s be honest, it was based on selfish and lazy reasons. Sorry feministas, gotta let you down on that one. Here is the kind of thinking that lead me to my current head space:
I can’t be bothered rewinding all the time. Let’s try the pause button.
Every time you meet a guy (or girl for those who date girls) you basically have to go through everything from the start in order to connect and see if there’s something there to warrant a relationship be it compatibility or spark.
While the getting to know each other phase is great I just don’t think I have the emotional energy for it right now. Because you’re not just retelling your story and putting in time and effort with someone new, you’re also getting attached and drawn into someone else’s world and everything that involves (opinions, likes, dislikes, values, baggage, history etc). And that can be emotionally exhausting. Especially if you go through all that only to walk away. Or be walked away from. And once you’re involved with each other on a relationship level it’s no longer just about two people. Which brings me to my next point.
It can get messy.
All of a sudden (or in slow increments?) you’re meeting each other’s friends and famly. Now you’ve got multiple people to deal with. And by deal with I mean get to know and leave some sort of impression with. Because friends and family impact any kind of relationship one way or another.
Then if things go wrong (or in my case when things go wrong) and the relationship goes down the drain you have to say “see you never” to all these additional people you’ve made room for in your life. To vaguely paraphrase Sex and the City, when you break up with one person you are breaking up with their family and friends too. And if the split isn’t amicable it just makes it awkward. Who needs that?
I like my freedom more than I like coffee. And that’s saying a lot.
This is my main selfish reason. I like doing what I please without having to factor anyone else into my plans or time frames. I could spin it as a fierce independence but really, I just don’t like being told what to do with my life or having too many restrictions. I also really enjoy my own space so I struggle with relationships that lean toward the needy side. “What? You want to hang out? Didn’t we just see each other like 3 days ago?”
My friends have reasoned that I just haven’t found the one yet. The infamous, magical one who will forsake all others and give me tunnel vision, where no one and nothing else matters. The core shaking one who will see me abandon my own dreams and adopt new ones without batting an eyelid. The one who will make me say silly things like “my life would be empty without you” which is pretty much a slap in the face to your current friends and family who have been there for you every step of the way. Please. If that happens call the cops, because I’d have been Stepford Wived.
Maybe my friends have been brainwashed by Disney more than I have. Either that or I have a stronger affinity with the villains than with the original Disney damsels… I mean princesses. Do we all really need to have a prince charming galloping in with confessions of love, a marriage proposal and a baby plan to make us feel validated? Can’t we be our own hero? Or at the very least, feel like a whole person without a significant other reassuring us that we are unique and fabulous? How insecure are we?
If I was approached by a fairy godmother one day and they said to me “here, I will give you the perfect marriage, the perfect house with no mortgage to stress over and easy to raise children who will give you very few problems. No backsies. Enjoy” and then bibity bobity boo that was my life, I would probably hyperventilate. Sounds dramatic, right? But if I was told straight up “hey this is your future, your whole plan from now until forever with no big changes allowed” (because perfection is the end game here, and I’ve just been handed everything people apparently aim for) I would get restless and perhaps a little resentful. Besides, that much instant change would cause me to curl up in a ball on the floor and rock back and forth.
It always ends. I am in no hurry for any more heartbreak or awkward goodbyes.
This one sounds defeatist. I know. It’s like why try if you know you will fail. How negative of me. But hear me out. While I know every relationship is different I also know I am not. The common denominator in my dating history is me. And that won’t change. I will usually pick the wrong guy. And if the odds are forever in my favour, and I happen to find the right guy for me, I won’t be the right girl for him. Or the chemistry will be missing. Or I’ll lack an emotional attachment. Or I’ll be ridiculously shy and miss my chance because I didn’t speak up. Or my pride will block me from sharing any kind of vulnerability. The list goes on.
There will always be something to work at or work through. And one day I will have the willingness and motivation to try. But for now I do not. I haven’t given up on the idea of love. I just feel, for now and the foreseeable future, I need to be on my own. Even if it means being the awkward single person in a roomful of couples or having to ignore the pity in my non single friends’ eyes when they ask if I’ve “met anyone yet.”
Because, no matter how many people reject me or walk out of my life, regardless of who they are and what role they play, I will always have myself to turn to. For comfort. For reassurance. And for a stern talking to when I’m being an adult sized brat. So, until I can be happy with myself, what right do I have to try and convince someone to be happy with me as I am?