22
Aug
09

Don’t Stop Believin’…? Really?

Last night I went out with a group of friends, including a friend of B&C’s who I’ve gotten to know over the last few years. CS has either been single, or in a relationship with her off/on boyfriend for as long as I’ve known her. The last few years – she’s been mostly single. I loved when she would come out with the group of us because not only was she another single person, but she’s super outgoing and lots of fun.

About a year ago, CS met D. They had both went to the same high school at the same time, but didn’t really know each other. Well, years later, they ran into each other at a bar here in town, and started dating. Recently, they got engaged. Last night, CS was asking me about my dating life and how things were going. I told her that I was on a break from dating and ready to give up on the whole thing. She told me that she knew exactly how I felt, because she had been there only a year ago. But she said, “I am honestly so lucky to have met D., and I never in a million years imagined that I could be this happy. If someone had told me 5 years ago that I was going to meet “the one”  and here’s when, I wouldn’t have spent the last 5 years worrying so much about how I was never going to find someone. You just never know the day it’s going to happen….”

Alright. Fair enough. But here’s my issue with this. I don’t believe that everyone is going to find someone. And to be honest, that worries me, because I don’t want to be one of those people who is alone for the rest of my life. Believe me – I wish I didn’t care whether or not I was going to be one of those people. But the fact is, I do, and I’m terrified. With all the people in the world, and given how hard it’s been to meet someone to-date, it just doesn’t seem feasible or realistic to think that everyone is going to find someone that they want to be with.

Now, I recognize that I’m too young (27) to make a sweeping assumption like that, but at the same time – I haven’t met anyone in the last five years that I’ve even wanted to date/have a relationship with. I mean – how hard is it to meet someone that you could maybe learn to like?? No one around me seems to be having this problem. Sure – I have 2 single friends, but both have had at least some resemblance of a relationship within the last few years, and I have not even felt like I’ve met someone I’ve wanted to have a relationship with. (This make me sounds incredibly picky, but I’m confident my expectations are reasonable). Everyone I know keeps telling me that it’s going to happen for me, that I just have to be patient. But how do they know? They’re not looking into any crystal balls. And they’re not the ones who experience this excrutiating loneliness on a daily basis, with the overwhelming fear that it could turn into a never-ending condition.

So, is it more dangerous to continue believing and have false hope in something that’s not in the cards for you, just to be disappointed and angry later? Or is it best to have low expectations now, so that you’re pleasantly surprised? Who really knows…

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6 Responses to “Don’t Stop Believin’…? Really?”


  1. August 23, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    27 and haven’t met anybody interesting in five years.. Ouch.

    I had turned 30 before I first met somebody I genuinely thought I could spend my life with. They might not be easy to find, but they ARE out there somewhere.

    Hang in there!

  2. 2 Mel
    August 23, 2009 at 8:39 pm

    Oh, I know just how you feel! I am far too logical to just believe the old cliche of “there’s someone out there for everyone”. The sad fact is that some people do end up alone so it seems like a sensible thing to prepare myself for that outcome. On the other hand, it would be nice to think that this is not it for me.

    On the plus side, you are still on the right side of 30. I’m 34 now and judging by the people I’ve met, it seems as though if you’re single in your 30s, there’s a reason. Although I guess it would be unfair of me to say that and not put myself in the same category! And forget about trying to feel normal amongst my old friends – I went to a baby shower yesterday (is there anything worse??) and felt like a sideshow attraction. Or perhaps a cautionary tale…

    Anyway, really all we can do is keep hoping – after all, what is the alternative? You are far too young to give up (and dare I say, so am I?). Best of luck.

  3. August 23, 2009 at 11:40 pm

    It’s true that not everyone will get married, and, of course, not everyone who gets married will stay married. In the end, even happy couples don’t live out their last years like the lovers of The Notebook, dying in each other’s arms. One goes first, and the other (often the woman) returns to single life, sometimes for decades. No one can guarantee that you’ll find a husband or that, if you do, you’ll end up together forever. It bothers me when coupled people make statements to the contrary, but I try to remember that they usually just want to comfort and encourage, and anything else is unintentional.

    It can feel really disempowering to know that we can’t control things like who we meet, when we meet them, and how long we’ll be together. One possible response to this is to spend some time thinking about what life might look like without a partner. What are the things that we fear, and what is the likelihood of those things happening? What is the chance that the things we fear might happen whether or not we’re married? A good book on this subject is Singled Out by Bella DePaulo, a sociologist who specializes in research on singles. Her book refutes a lot of misconceptions about what life is like for long-term singles including the popular myths that they’re less happy, less healthy, less socially active, less responsible, less everything than married couples. Finding out that a lot of what we fear about singleness is untrue or exaggerated can help us to accept–and dare I say like?–being single for however long that turns out to be.

  4. August 24, 2009 at 7:37 am

    Thanks for the response and the book recommendation, Singletude. I might check it out. You nailed it when you said that it’s so disempowering to know that we have no control over things like this. I definitely fear the loneliness – no question. And I wouldn’t even say that marriage is the end goal for me. I want to meet someone I love, and want to commit to, spend my time with etc., If we get married great – if we don’t, no problem. But knowing that there’s someone there at the end of the day to provide company, and companionship is what I crave. Having someone to share things with, and experience things with. No matter which two ways I look at it, I just don’t find it’s AS enjoying to do those things alone…

    BUT – I’m trying to get there; to a point where I can be just as happy being alone, as I am if I’m with someone. It’s part of the reason I’m on a dating break right now. I don’t want to meet someone and get fooled into thinking that “I’m happy now!” just to be depressed when I end up alone again. I’m slowly making progress…

  5. 5 oneluckybreak
    September 10, 2009 at 6:09 pm

    I completely relate to this post! That’s all. 🙂

  6. September 10, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Thanks for the comment luckybreak. Always happy to write things people can relate to!


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