I’m assuming there must be other single 20somethings in the world. It’s just that very few of them seem to be around me.
Do you ever just realise that everyone you know is loved up in a sickeningly happy duo? Like everybody except you?! Rationally, of course, I know I have at least 3 friends who are also single. But irrationally, I am literally the ONLY fish in the sea. And holeyyy moleyyy does that thought induce some anxiety!
Single comrades, how many times have you asked your friends and family the following:
“Why am I still single? What is wrong with me?”
Because surely, to still be single (and to never have had a relationship lasting more than 11 months) there must be something deeply wrong and off-putting about me, right!?
*disclaimer – I realise that travelling for a year and a half was probably part of the problem, see post on love and travelling here.*
And how often is their answer, in all their good intentions, along the lines of:
“OMG nothing! You’re just picky!”
Lol okay. The thing is, you have to have options to pick from in order to be picky! And also, by that logic… anyone in a relationship has either been picky and got lucky, orrrr is willing to simply overlook shitty behaviours of their partner. I guess I’ll be relying on luck then.
I absolutely believe that you need to love yourself first and that you’ll never be happy in a relationship until you can be happy alone. But I’d definitely say I’m in a secure enough place by myself. (Contrary to what my previous blog post might have you believe)! Granted, I’m quite busy and would have to make time for a relationship, but if the right opportunity came along, I absolutely would.
The issue there is the ‘right opportunity coming along’. The way I see it, my chances for making that right opportunity come along couldn’t be more slim:
- I live in literally the middle of nowhere, so I rarely get out and about due to inconvenience.
- My work and hobby are online and/or Australia based. As such, I have no workplace/club at which to meet people.
- I can’t do the online dating thing for two reasons: a) I live in my hometown so far too many familiar faces would show up and b) I’m the world’s worst texter. All my best relationships have started with an IRL meeting.
- And lets not forget Corona… amongst all its many ugly faces, it also happens to be the worlds biggest cockblock.
For any one of these reasons, I’m sure many single people will have their own versions. The result for us? The growing, actual belief that being alone forever is a very possible future.
Seriously, as a naive child and teenager I saw no other outcome to my life than a job I loved, a beautiful home, a husband and two children. It was simply going to happen. The husband part, however, is now not something I am totally convinced is going to happen for me.
The crazy thing with all this? I am only 23!! Why am I soooo stressed about this!?
I think it’s got to do with the media. The constant sharing of #couplegoals pics that make me shudder more than swoon (watch that change when/if I fall in love). Even the more traditional media types play a part – Netflix is swimming with chickflicks and RomComs complete with happily-ever-after endings. And you best believe I’ve watched them all (and wept over many).
Even books actually. I recently read Dolly Alderton’s Everything I know About Love. It is SO brilliant – probably one of the best books I’ve read. Her personal essays gave me such clear gratitude for my friendships. And yet, written by a 30 year old single woman who is both extremely successful and happy, the book still scared me. I related so much to Dolly’s stories, that maybe I, like she, will still be single at the age of 30. (This totally shouldn’t be scary and is absolutely an okay situation, but there we are… I have fear.)
Hey look – I’m not alone. No doubt most of you reading this are single too. (Hopefully). And if you are, I hope any familiarity in what I’ve talked about here comes as a comfort.
We’re actually not alone. We’re all the other fish in the sea. A whole shoal.
Let me know your thoughts please! And hey, if my fish happens to exist and is reading this, let me know you’re out there.
(As if that’s going to happen after pouring my heart out on the internet hahaha).
Incredible photography by Pratik Naik.