As good as It gets (crazyhecallsme) wrote,
As good as It gets

Welcome to hell

In my 2 years spent as a 30-something single woman, I can't say I recommend it. If I could time travel and talk to myself, I might have urged 20-something Alisha to focus on finding a partner. I would have told her that  "better" wasn't coming down the road, and that I would never be more attractive to men than I am at the moment.  But, to my knowledge time travel is still only the province of fantasy, and I'm left to try to course correct after years of getting things so wrong.

After spending 3 years of my early 20's in my first and only monogamous relationship, I was happy to be single again. I was eager to see what else was out there, and I promised myself I wouldn't tie myself exclusively to one man, unless I could see a long-term future with him. Since then I've been "single, but dating". For me, this means that I am always "technically" on the market. In practice, that's not exactly true.  I've dated some men who I saw regularly for extended periods of time, and while seeing them I neglected to meet and date other men, so I've been monogamous in practice, if not in spirit.
Personally, I might have been happy remaining single if not for two things: One is that many of my friends are in some sort of serious relationship.  That means that while I still see my friends, I see them far less, and usually in contexts where I'm less likely to meet single men or have wild and crazy nights.  Secondly, I don't feel like it's as easy to meet men these days.
I can't pinpoint exactly when or why it became harder for me meet men.  Here are some non-conflicting theories:
- I don't go out as much.
- I don't hang out in hookup or meet-up spots as much.
- I'm not as pretty as I used to be.
- I'm not as young as I used to be.
- I'm not as patient as I used to be.
- Most of the age-appropriate men are already paired off.
- Single straight women outnumber straight men in the city where I live.
- Dating technology makes it so easy to assume that there is always someone better around the corner.
Last year I completely neglected dating, telling concerned or curious friends that I was just going to die alone.  In reality, I wasn't determined to die alone, I was frustrated by how fruitless online dating seemed. More recently, after a few more engagements and another friend moving from NYC I realized that I was literally going to die alone, unless I put myself out there again.  And where, exactly, is "there"?  Apparently it's the hell of dating while in your 30's.
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