One of the things I find most irritating in life being single is when I haven’t seen people in a while and the FIRST thing they ask me is whether I am dating ‘yet’ or am I ‘still’ single.
It’s like I am being defined for being single. And I have traditionally always responded quite defensively and almost as if I am apologising for the fact.
I was reading an article which recommended a book called A Single Revolution, Don’t look for a match, light one by Shani Silver. I went for it and oh my goodness was this the book I never knew I needed.
It’s not a self-help book about ‘being single’ – it’s not a self-help book at all. It’s written by a 39-year-old woman who has been single for many years and who, like me for a while just focused their energy on meeting a man – the partner for life. She did the dating apps (waste of time – see my previous blog) and just spent every moment thinking about what she wore, getting to the ‘right’ places, being ‘out there’ (because if you don’t put yourself out there how will you meet anyone -sigh) and just putting incredible pressure on yourself to meet someone. The effort is exhasusting.
The essence of the book is not about finding someone, it’s not about giving up meeting someone, it’s about just enjoying the time until you do meet them – because the reason you haven’t met the person you’re going to spend the rest of your life with is quite simply because you haven’t met them yet. On top of all this the book is laugh out loud funny!
I have friends who have quoted The Rules at me. Don’t have sex on the first date. Don’t respond before x time. Don’t do this. Don’t do that. Make your profile say Z.
You know what this is? Pandering to the man. And in this day and age, men don’t rule. We are equal. If I’ve got a busy day and I’m walking Rex wearing leggings and my glasses rather than contacts, perfect hair and a smart outfit so be it. When I have a date and it’s clearly not going anywhere, I cut it short. I am working to my agenda and my new purpose in life that I spend my time to add value to my life.
If the random guy who walks down the street looks at me when walking Rex and I am without perfect hair, make up and wardrobe despite offering a friendly smile and a hello and he thinks no she’s not for me. Well, my love, you’re not for me either. That doesn’t mean I don’t make an effort ever, of course I do, but the reality is, when you are in a relationship you need to be yourself so why do we go over the top at the start? The effort of writing the perfect online profile – desperation to make yourself liked by some random – hey, in person I do stand out. I just want to meet someone who likes and accepts me as I am. And until then, I’m enjoying life on my own, with my dog and my friends quite happily thank you.
I’ve been told I’m too fussy or should lower my standards. Errrr… if I am going to spend the rest of my life with someone damn right I am being fussy and having high standards.
A few weeks ago, I was asked out by a gorgeous girl. I had to tell her no because it’s not the way I flow. A friend asked if I’d considered ‘going gay’ and I thought what? Because I’m single? No! This is what single women have to deal with – why can’t we just be single, successful and happy?! Why doesn’t anyone attached believe I can be single, successful, and happy?And let me tell you now, I am single, successful, and happy – it would be nice to meet someone but it’s no longer the focus of what I do. Why spend hours swiping when I could actually be out having fun in person doing quality things with quality people and again spending MY time where it adds value to ME.
Anyway – back to my original sentence. Are you dating yet? Well what if my first question to you is how’s your sex life with your husband? Because that’s what they’re really asking me or they’re feeling some strange pity or feeling that I am a lesser person without someone by my side – and you know what – I’d never ask someone that. I know there’s much more to them than the relationship they are in (or not in) and I want to know that stuff. Of course we all have the SATC chat but not as often as Carrie and co. Rest assured when I do meet someone worth mentioning I’ll let y’all know.
But right now, the better question to ask is ‘hey, what have you been up to’ because I will share several things that are going brilliantly in my life which I would hope friends and contacts would be more excited about and have a much bigger priority than swiping and attempting to be something I don’t want to be.
I am not defined by being single.