Last Sunday was Valentine’s Day. The night before I was with some friends, I imbibed some alcohol, I complained about boys. I came home and I wrote the following Facebook status: “I’m a woman. I’m single. I love it. Deal with it.”
I woke up the next morning, looked at said status and initially felt a twinge of chagrin. Oh, no, I thought to myself, how embarrassing and desperate and– Then I stopped. Because you know what, it’s true.
I do love being single. It’s something I haven’t had a lot of experience with. I made an attempt from the year 2014-2015. I tried to be single for the duration, and while I counted it as a win at the time, I’m gonna go ahead and say, this was not the case. Whether or not I specifically called it “dating”, I was involved with people during that year. Welcome to being a millennial. No one is going to say what anything is, and everyone is going to be pretty upset about a lot of nothing.
Anyway, the point is, I really like being single. It gives me space to do and be a person all on my own. Which is an amazing and life-affirming thing. I get to think about what I want to think about. Whether that’s suddenly getting very into whale noises or obsessing over Adam Driver. I get to go down that rabbit hole without worrying about who I am or am not neglecting. I have room to stretch my weird little mind. And I’d like to take said space to talk about relationships and not-relationships.
Being in a relationship is not winning. Because interacting with other human beings is not a game. If you’re “playing” to “win” and are frustrated because following “the rules” isn’t getting you anywhere… I maybe found your problem.
No one is an object to be achieved. As many movies as exist that cast (primarily) women as the trophy, women are in fact people with lives of our own and no time to sit around judging you on your strengths and weaknesses and deciding whether to place you in an imaginary sexist creation called “the friend zone” or not. That doesn’t exist. If someone says they want to be friends it’s because they don’t want a relationship with you, for any number of reasons. They don’t owe you anything. Move on.
Being single isn’t losing. There’s no timeline for when you should have dated someone by or married someone by or whatever else you’re aiming for. There are only messy people living out their messy lives and hopefully doing their best to love and respect the people around them. There shouldn’t be pressure to be in a relationship (or for that matter pressure to not be in a relationship). And, yes, rejection is frustrating, but it isn’t the end.
Sometimes I’ve been asked how or why I’ve been in “so many” relationships. And honestly it’s because I make a fool of myself over and over again until something sticks. That’s it. That’s the secret. There are no rules I follow, nothing particularly intriguing about me. I just ask people questions, fall for them, ask them out and get turned down. Simple as that. Occasionally some weirdo says yes.
Be honest with people. Be vulnerable with people. Be yourself with people. Don’t let anything force you to be what you don’t want to be. And enjoy the precious time you get to spend with yourself. You are truly amazing all on your lonesome, just as you’re truly amazing in context with others.
Me? I’m a woman. I’m single. I love it. Deal with it.