I get it a lot… Why are you single? You’re attractive / funny / smart / etc, how come you’re not married? You’d be an awesome wife / mum one day.
“That’s sweet of you to say,” I reply. It’s not for a lack of trying, but I must confess finding love is not high on my list of things I must have in my life right now. Also this is pretty accurate:
After my last relationship ended in 2014, I knew dating wouldn’t be easy and genuinely was not looking forward to the prospect. This was mostly due to a lot of trepidation around the fact I didn’t want to make the same mistakes again: losing myself in someone else, giving my love to someone who doesn’t care, wasting my time and energy on a dead end relationship (pretty sure you’re nodding your head here), so I made a very conscious decision and promise:
Not to sleep with ANYONE outside of a serious relationship.
Now, you’re sat there thinking that it’s not a big deal sleeping with someone casually (and probably rolling your eyes – yeah, I would have done that too!), but there’s one thing I learned – if sex is involved, someone always gets hurt. And I’ll be honest, I was going to make sure that no one hurt me again if I can help it. But also I didn’t want to be the hurter, it is and will never be my intention to put someone down for my own personal gain.
You’re probably sat there thinking that my decision was a pretty unnecessary one; but I honestly am grateful I made that promise to myself. My thinking is clear;
I genuinely feel empowered by taking my sexuality into my own hands; that’s not to say I don’t miss the shared intimacy or the pleasurable experience that sex can be. But in all honesty, I feel sexier and more confident now than I have ever been before.
Online dating has always been a turbulent environment to be a part of, it is filled with people who aren’t always honest, genuine or with the greatest of morals. Whilst I like to think myself as savvy with being able to spot trouble, there’s some things you can’t avoid; people who are looking for a quick conquest is one of them. And trust me, some of them were tempting.
By feeling empowered, I was more assertive with what I want. I whittled out time wasters, I turned away from pressure and I fought for my dignity. That’s not to say I didn’t go to second base with a couple of guys… I am, afterall, a girl with needs.
But in the whole year of dating I have so far survived; no one made me cry out of anything other than frustration, no one broke my heart, and no one damaged my self confidence beyond repair. I might have been bruised… but I’m still standing tall and strong with some stories gained along the way (and probably more to come!).
Anyway, I think I’ve gone on enough for an intro to Dating, or as I fondly call it… the dirty “D” word.