I’m single. Yes, that’s right. I am single. No, I’m not dating. No, I’m not on Tinder, or Match.com, or Plenty of Fish, desperate to find the man of my dreams. No, I don’t flirt with my co-workers or ask my friends to set me up on blind dates. I am single, and I love it.
Okay, maybe that’s kind of strange in this day and age. Everybody seems to be with somebody. Many couples aren’t even happy, putting up with dishonesty and lying and cheating because they don’t want to be alone. Or there are the singletons who jump from relationship to relationship, or just from bed to bed, craving intimacy yet unwilling to commit. I just don’t understand any of it. I don’t want to settle. I want a perfect love, with somebody who I can trust and who thinks I am the best thing since sliced bread, as besotted with me as I am with them.
Unfortunately, I know this isn’t something I am going to find anytime soon. It is difficult enough just to find somebody to trust these days. The perfect love is an illusion to people like me, and continues to elude me. I’m not willing to settle for second best. And as I don’t believe in casual sex, I will remain single and celibate.
I haven’t given up on love easily, I hasten to add. It is the result of a lifetime of bad choices and lying bastards. I have been in love (I think!), I have been completely besotted, I have imagined I found a soulmate. And what have I received in return? I have been lied to, deceived, cheated on, and taken for a fool. I have had my heart trodden on and torn apart with little or no regret. I have been used and abused and rejected too many times to count.
It hasn’t been a nice experience. After much soul-searching, I decided that the fault must lie with me. I have made the worst of decisions. I have taken my heart and soul and willingly handed them on a platter to the wrong people, on more than one occasion. I have been pathetic, over-tolerant, blinkered, and I have probably deserved everything I got, just for being me.
But there comes a time when you have to say enough is enough. When you receive the wake up call that you sorely needed. When one too many bad decisions opens your eyes to how stupid you have been. I have constantly chosen the wrong men, given up my control far too soon, trusted people I barely knew to treat me with the respect I felt I deserved.
The problem was, I had never learned to respect myself. My first boyfriend had cheated on me and eventually left me for his ex, which had broken my heart from the off. This coloured every relationship I attempted to embark on after that. I set myself up for the fall time and time again, chasing the unobtainable and then pushing them away, knowing that they would eventually leave.
And leave they did.
So now, I offer my heart to nobody. It remains, cold and impenetrable, behind a wall of granite that I have yet to meet a man brave enough to scale. Am I happy? Right now, yes I am. I have my son, I have my family, my pets, my job, my writing. In all honesty, I have no time for anything or anybody else. For now, I am resolutely single. And I love it.