A BIG CUTIE:
My life is fulfilling: I have a great job, I'm working on a book, I have great friends, and I live in LA aka the best city in the world. However, beyond a few (read: two) months in high school, I have never had a real, Come Over on Holidays, Invite on Family Trips, Bring Soup Over When You're Sick boyfriend.
Feminism works hard but the patriarchy is paid more for the same labor, and sometimes despite the good things I've mentioned, I still feel my life will never be complete until I've "found" my significant other. What's the best way to beat those blues?
A shift happened a few years/decades back in an attempt to help women break free from the idea that they require men and marriage and romance, and it was a lovely concept and then society took it really, really far and, per usual, bungled the whole thing. Now we have songs and TV shows and books all encouraging women to be independent, to be “badass,” to be without vulnerability. A lot of the messaging now is that simply expressing that you might want to be with someone romantically is a sign of inherent weakness. Of course, most people who are smart understand that romance and love are thrilling and crucial and fulfilling parts of a full human life, and that vulnerability is tight as hell (duh). However, women have been subtly manipulated into not EVER talking about the desire for romantic love lest we be deemed pathetic or desperate.
My point is: it’s very incredibly normal and human to desire romantic love. And not just because you feel left out of what other people are doing. It is human of you, so go easy on yourself. It’s not anti-feminism to want to be dicked up well by a guy who will also sit and talk with your mom about her new hydrangeas, ok?
The question is, what can you do with this want? Frankly, very little. You have to wait it out, unfortunately. It’s some real bullshit, but you cannot make the timeline speed up on finding someone. You can’t put yourself out there more to the point where you happen to find a person you’re uniquely suited to bone and love for all of time (or 3-5 years of serious dating). You can’t. It’s not actually a numbers game; it’s not like if you meet 572 men the 573rd will be a cool dude. It could be the 17th! It could be 1,248,248th. Bullshit. So you’re relegated to waiting.
And while you wait, I would strongly, strongly, STRONGLY ARE YOU LISTENING?!!?!? recommend that you enjoy yourself as much as you can. Book a hotel one night in your own city by yourself just for the hell of it (if you can afford it). Read a book in the park. Visit home extra while you don’t have to split holidays with another person. Savor the flirting that you do with strangers that you might feel less inclined to do if you were dating someone. Relish getting home at 2:16am and not having to tell anyone what you did that night. Take risks. Make some dumb choices. Agree to go on a date with someone you don’t think is going to work. Have an inappropriate crush! Give yourself a wacky haircut that kind of sucks without thinking of what anyone else likes.
Become as close to who you want to be right now as you can be. Because as soon as you date someone, you become influence by them; even in strong, healthy relationships you don’t stay entirely yourself. You consciously and subconsciously pick up on the person you let into your life. So you want to be as much yourself now as you can.
And then you just wait it out. It sucks. You can’t hurry it along. Some days you’re going to be really sad about it. You can hang out with friends as much as you can and it will not fill that hole every single time. That’s ok. But that doesn’t mean you’re doomed to feel this way forever. And when you meet your hunky dude who brings you soup when you’re sick, you’ll be exactly who you want to be. You’ll be ready. And you won’t accept anyone less than a hunky dude who brings you soup when you’re sick.