Relationships

The Man Factor

Since my last relationship ended in August of last year, I decided to take a time out from dating for a period of time. It turned out to be one of the best decisions of my life. I began to fall in love with myself, something that is more important than having an ‘in a relationship status’ on Facebook or a Man Crush to post about every Monday if people even post about them anymore.

During that time, I embarked on a journey of self-reflection and growth – kind of like Eat Pray Love without the travel. I learned to be okay with going to coffee shops alone, I learned to go on long hikes with only my iPhone for company, and I began to expand my social circle. I joined a book club, meet friends through a local worship service, and just became comfortable with who I was as a person.

This sounds cliché, but it was just what the doctor ordered. For the first time in my life, I can honestly say that I am in a place where having a boyfriend is nothing but an extra, not something I need like oxygen. Truth be told, I don’t need a guy to feel awesome. And, that is everything.

Right now, I’m in a place in my life where I want to enjoy every second that I can. I want to wander through unknown territories, I want to try new cupcake shops, and I want to enjoy the people I spend my time with, whether they may be friends or lovers. It’s not like I’m chasing away the idea of having a boyfriend – I’m learning to live life in a way that he’s dessert, not the main course.

And for those who ask me to the question don’t you want a boyfriend, here’s my answer: I’m not waiting around for Prince Charming to get his act together, and ride his white horse. Sorry.

However, there are some people who think that just because you don’t have a boyfriend, a pending relationship, or even someone that you’re ‘talking’ to, it means that you are missing something in the equation. And, for some, that may be the case. But, for me, not so much.

Throughout my time alone, I’ve given a lot of thought about the type of relationship I want and the type of guy I deserve. I’m going to share those thoughts with you now, in case you’re interested.

I am looking for the best and nothing less. Why? Because I deserve it. I deserve a guy that will bring me flowers, one that isn’t afraid to pick me up at home and shake hands with my mother. I deserve a guy that takes me to the movies, to dinner, anywhere pretty much that’s not his bed. I deserve real dates, not just a Netflix and Chill session in your bed. I deserve someone will treat me like I am the best damn thing that happened to me, because trust me, I am. And, I am not afraid to ask for it.
I’m also not afraid to demand what I want. I want someone who respects me, and my friends. I want someone who is not afraid to proclaim his feelings for me. I want nights of great conversation and to spend a good length of time getting to know this imaginary Prince Charming before committing. I want someone who makes me grin like an idiot, and someone who makes me laugh.

And, I’m going to hold out until I meet this person, because not only do I deserve it, but I respect myself enough to not settle for anything less.

At the end of the day, I’ve learned to not be afraid of being alone. I learned not to be afraid to tell someone what I want. And, most importantly, I learned that I deserve to be happy more than I need to find someone to call bae.

Relationships

Honest Thoughts About Dating

Let me be bluntly honest by stating that I freaking hate dating. I hate the awkwardness of first dates, the whole DTR (defining the relationship) concept and the rules about what is okay to do at what given stage. I find it both crazy and confusing, and I graduated college with a 3.0 GPA, so I am not that dumb.

Now, I have written a lot about dating and my opinions of it on my blog and other places throughout my career as a writer thus far. I probably will end up repeating some of the things that I have mentioned in those posts, but hopefully whoever is reading this can find some humor in my opinions.

I am currently single, in case you all were not aware. As a single woman in my early 20s, I have friends that are committed in relationships (which I am happy for by the way), and even know a few that are even married. I see these couples, both online and around me, and I can not help but feel like I am the lone single girl (a little melodramatic, but you get the idea) who whines where’s my guy?

While I do crave a relationship some of the time, my current state of mind most of the time is that I am not interested in dating. It is not although I want to remain single forever. It is not that I want to say “fuck you” to the opposite sex and want to never get married or anything like that. It is just that for right this second, I do not see myself dating someone. And, I think that is perfectly okay.

I feel like dating is similar to shopping for the perfect pair of jeans. Sometimes, you get lucky and the first pair that you try on is the perfect pair for you, the kind that fits in all of the right places and makes you look thin. Other times it can be a trial and error process of going to several different stores, and spending several hours trying on different colors and sizes before giving up because you spent the entire afternoon at the mall looking for it, and just want something to eat.

The same rules apply for dating. Sometimes, the first guy you meet after ending a relationship who is the person that makes you laugh and makes you grin like an idiot whenever you think about him/her, and ends up being the next person you are committed to. Other times, it takes kissing several frogs before you find the one, and even taking a break to work on yourself by meeting new friends and trying new things. And both scenarios are perfectly okay.

In the novel “You Are a Badass” by Jen Sincero, Sincero writes that in order to get what you want, you can not force or chase it. I believe that is true. So, I am taking the lunch break before finding that perfect pair of jeans, or in my case, my Prince Charming (who is a tall, nerdy guy who has both brains, a sense of humor and is a sweetheart) rolls up in his white horse.

Now, I can probably hear my friends out there say no! Don’t give up! Keep on going out on dates.  To shut them up, I can assure you that I am not giving up. I am just taking that lunch break, because I am frustrated with trying on several different guys that do not feel right.

Let’s face it, dating is stressful (mostly for me, as dating me is the best experience that the guy can ever have). With that being said,dating is about the only way to try people on, just like the only way to get clothes is to face the harsh lights of the dressing room to try everything on. Both scenarios are stressful, but to get what you want, you have to deal with them.

With that being said, I am 22. I am still young, and have another 20 years before I need to take up knitting and adopt a bunch of cats. While I wait for my next boyfriend, I plan to hang out with the community of good friends, family and my dog. I plan to read all of the books I can get my hands on, I plan to explore and truly learn to be happy. I feel like there is a huge empathsis on dating, on having that relationship, that we often forget the most important thing is to love ourselves. That way, the relationship will be a healthy one, which is the kind of relationship that I want to have.

I don’t know when my next relationship will be, as my Magic 8 Ball refuses to tell me no matter how many times I shake it. But, util then, I loudly and proudly to Beyonce’s ‘Single Ladies’, and spend Saturday nights curled up with my dog Maggie (who is currently looking at me as if to say ‘hey sissy, are you almost done writing your blog entry?’) reading chic lit novels and living vicariously through their protagonists.

Relationships

A Single Girl’s Input on National Boyfriend Day

Yesterday was National Boyfriend Day, and suddenly, my timeline was filled with pictures of cute couples, all accompanied by a paragraph explaining why they are so lucky to have their boyfriend in their lives.

As a single girl, one would think that I would want to stay off Instagram or be salty about the fact that I don’t have a boyfriend to post a selfie of. However, that couldn’t be further from the case, as I am happy for my friends who have found that special person that makes them happy, because they deserve to be happy with a great person.

In fact, I believe that having someone that makes you happy, supports you and is someone that makes you a priority is something that should be celebrated, and appreciated. I hate that we live in a society where people in relationships fear that sharing it can be overkill or too much. People in relationships shouldn’t have to feel that way just because they worry that they will become that person. Instead, they should be more focused on sharing that something good that they have found.

And as for us single girls, I think that instead of looking at this day (or even Valentine’s Day for that matter) as something that is excluding us who don’t have a boyfriend, we should instead focus on the fact that we will eventually find someone. We just haven’t found that boyfriend that makes us feel the things that our friends have yet. And, that’s perfectly okay. We’ll get there eventually, so there’s no reason for us to hate on those who already got there.

But, before I forget: happy National Boyfriend Day to the boyfriends out there who are not only are supportive of their girlfriends, but are the reason why this day even exists. You guys are awesome, and deserve to be celebrated. In fact, I hope to find someone with your qualities out there for my own boyfriend.

*Header photo credit