I have been single for exactly a year. I’ve been pseudo-single for much longer, because my last relaysh was never “official” as the kids say, but I have been totally on my own with no mans for a year. I feel a little weird. I feel a little sad. I feel a lot reflective. But mostly, I feel good. And I’ve learned a bunch of shit, and it’s all been on my mind, so I thought I’d share
Do not stop dating other people if a guy isn’t committed to you.
I’m not giving this advice for some kind of sexually liberated “if he’s playing the field, you should too,” reason. The point, plain and simple, is that if he’s not your boyfriend, he is not your boyfriend. And if you’d like a boyfriend, you can’t fill all of your emotional and romantic brain space with visions of him. You need to leave room for someone else. This does two things:
- You will be cooler, and less clingy, and less obsessive about a guy if another guy (or several other less important guys) are there to divide your attention.
- You don’t want to put your heart on hold for someone who doesn’t see you the same way you see him. If you two, never get passed that “kind of talking, but maybe a little more” phase, you’re going to be pissed that you turned down some other guy who could have had actual potential to be more.
Don’t listen to stupid dating rules you probably made up in your head.
For some reason, we’re taught that a guy needs to ask us out in advance instead of day of to be worthy of our time. Fucking why? One of the best dates I’ve ever been on was spur of the moment. We were texting, and he just asked “well, what are you doing right now.” Everything I’d ever been taught, told me that this somehow meant he wasn’t trying hard enough, but frankly, I was free, and I looked cute, so I went. We had a great time, and went on a few more dates after that.
Talk about your ex to your friends as much as you fucking want.
Even if you think you should be over him. Even if you weren’t really together. Even if you feel slightly uncomfortable even using the word “ex.” If you feel like you’re talking about him too much, then find a new friend to talk about him with. If you have no friends left, get a therapist. Literally just talk, and talk, and talk, and talk, and talk until you don’t give a fuck any more. Because if you don’t talk it out, eventually, you’ll bring it up at the wrong time. Like when you’re drunk in bed with another dude. Hypothetically.
Do NOT talk TO him as much as you fucking want.
It is so hard to stay broken up with a guy you’re still talking to, especially when the terms of the relationship were never set in stone to begin with. “Talking” (and banging) is all you were doing to begin with, so sliding back into conversation with him leaves you exactly where you just tried so hard to escape. Keeping a verbal connection alive does nothing but keep an emotional connection alive. Sometimes, you’ll be weak, and you’ll give in, but just try really, really, really hard not to. Maybe you can be friends again eventually, but by the time you’re ready to do that, you won’t want to.
Couples are fucking terrible to be around if you’re not in a couple.
If there is one thing that all couples should learn from single people, it’s that there is a STRONG chance that you suck, especially when you’re drinking, and especially especially when there are other couples nearby. Every couple in the world would do well to learn their surroundings and in mixed company, just act like two people, not one couple.
Being single is better than being in an unhappy relationship and way better than being in a fake relationship.
People say this, and when you’re in your unhappy relationship, you never believe it, because people are so damn afraid of being alone. I’ll be honest, sometimes — a lot of times — I’m unhappy being single. But here’s the thing, if being single puts you at ground zero for finding “the one,” being in the wrong relationship puts you in the negative. You still have to build yourself back up to zero before you can be happy again. So I’m closer now than I was a year ago.
If someone is shitty, 50% of the time, that side of them is just as much a part of them as the side you love.
Never, EVER let someone talk to you or treat you in a way that you don’t like being talked to or treated. Ever. Oh, he’s wonderful when you’re alone, but ignores you in front of his friends? Do you know how often in your life you’re going to be around his friends?! A fucking lot! Or he’s so sweet, except when he’s drunk, and angry, and jealous? You’re not going to live a life without alcohol!
Do not make excuses for someone just because they’re in a bad mood, or because they had a hard day at work. Venting to you is one thing. Taking things out on you is quite another. Because eventually, they will have a hard year at work. You’ll grow up, and there will be more permanent stressors in both your lives. And this…shittiness, this shittiness to YOU, is how they deal with it. That’s not okay. If someone makes you feel disrespected or less than, you need to express that immediately. Right away. The very first time. And if it happens a second time after that, you need to dip the fuck out, because this is just a part of who they are. And you do not need to sign up for a lifetime of being someone’s verbal or emotional punching bag, no matter how much you think you love them. I literally can not stress this enough.
You can still fuck around with guys you aren’t going to date, long-term even if you want a boyfriend.
I know this seems counter-intuitive, because that’s what you were just doing, but hear me out. I used to think that if a guy didn’t want exactly what I wanted (read: happily ever after), I shouldn’t waste my time on him (besides my ex, obviously, who could have me anyway he wanted as long as he was in my life). This all-or-nothing mentality, though, just leads to a whole lot of nothing.
My friends still warn me that “settling” for a hookup when I want a relationship is how I’ll get hurt. But the key isn’t swatting away any penis that doesn’t want to marry you. It’s knowing the difference. It’s knowing that this man is here to drink with, and smoke with, and fuck, and some other man will be there to cuddle with, and go to pumpkin patches with, and also still fuck. As long as you are TRULY honest with yourself about what your intentions are with a guy and what his intentions are with you, you’ll be okay. And if you’re not okay any more, then change something.
Dating is hard work, but if you put in the effort, you will meet people.
There was a VERY long time where I complained that I wasn’t meeting any guys, and well, I wasn’t. I told myself I was in my bad half relationship, but if I just magically ~met~ someone else, I would pursue him.
Surprise! There were no eligible bachelors in my ex’s house. Look, I’m not Margot Robbie. I don’t expect to go out and have hordes of men flock to me. So if you want to meet guys, you have to be at least somewhat intentional about it. You need to go out. A lot. And you need to not have your guy friends with you. You need to not have your entire pledge class with you. You need to not have boring bitches who want to leave and eat pizza with you. Go out with your cute, single, girl friends who want to meet guys. Wear cute shit. Party. Go to the postgame. The postgame is ALWAYS where the magic happens. And don’t just tell yourself “well, at least I have this terrible monster who makes me feel like shit” to fall back on. Because it always seems that this “backup” plan, is actually just your main plan, whether you realize it or not.
And if that doesn’t work? Then wow, you’re so lucky, there are apps. Which make it easy. And I know, they are annoying, and time consuming, but if you check them every day (I know! It’s a lot!), you will find a dude and build up your roster before you find THE dude. And all the attention from these other dudes will be at least somewhat distracting from the attention you wish you had from the bad dude.
Being single is its own kind of freedom.
Never having to worry about what someone else wants to do. Never having to check in with someone. Never having to tell someone where you are. Never having to explain yourself for having fun. That shit is nice. Real nice. You don’t realize how much you have to clear by somebody else until you’re on your own, and you can just do whatever you want, whenever you want. That’s kind of fucking awesome.
He was not the one.
Even though I really thought he was. Even though I wanted him to be. Even though fate brought us together. If he was the one, we’d be together. If he was the one, it wouldn’t have been so…bad all the time. A million little “signs” might have existed that told me this was it, but I could make those signs with anyone if I wanted. I’m crafty AF, and slightly insane. You can’t rely on some mystical force to dictate your life. Your life isn’t a movie. More than likely, you’ll only know it’s perfect somewhere along the way, when you wake up, and suddenly realize you’re just ~living~ the perfect life, not because you both grew up on Main Street in different cities or you both have fathers named Jim.
After a year of being on my own, I just have to say, happy anniversary to me..