Why I will be single and alone this Valentine’s Day… again.
Words by Michelle Andrews.
The entire month of February now induces a Valentine’s Day related panic of “on the 14th will I be sitting at home crying to ‘Teardrops on My Guitar’, or receiving a white chocolate/macadamia cookie cake from Mrs Fields?” (Because receiving a cookie cake is obviously THE ULTIMATE DREAM.)
For twenty years now I’ve been nothing but consistent – I am solely responsible for about 90% of ‘Teardrops of My Guitar’ YouTube hits.
Your twenties are an interesting time to navigate the murky, terrifying world of dating. After you wade through the dickheads who have their own freaking surname tattooed on their chests, leap over the guys who prioritise playing PlayStation as the most important commitment of their week, and dodge the ones who refer to women as ‘Birds’ or ‘The Mrs’, you’re pretty much left with:
- The Unmotivated Man: He who has way too much time on his hands due to general laziness and a resistance to securing any kind of employment/education. This guy is one of the only humans on record to actually upload a Tinder ‘Moment’. Often seen hanging out of his mate’s 2005 Holden Commodore yelling obscenities to any woman walking down a main road.
- The Contradictory Man-Whore: He who will encourage you to have casual sex with him, and when you finally agree, will turn around and label you a Slut to his entire social circle. Often seen sending the “Send me a pic” text.
- The Emotionally Unavailable Twit: He who will lead you on, say all of the right things but follow through on none of them, and then proceed to act as if you are an irrational, unreasonably emotional woman when he discards of you. Often seen complaining to his single mates over beers about those God-damn emotionally-irrational women.
- The Potential Boyfriend: He who realises the colossal power of back-scratches and a goodnight text. Hell, this guy actually suggests something other than “chilling” at his place for a first date. He’s also the guy who never cancels plans you made a week ago with the excuse that he’d much rather take a nap or sit behind a computer screen. Often seen enjoying the company of his sister(s).
Now at this point I should probably highlight the fact that I in no way consider myself perfect, flawless Girlfriend material. I really want to avoid the risk of coming across all ‘Taylor Swift’ to you guys. Believe me, I am well aware of my flaws, and could provide you with a long list of the screwed up mistakes I have made whilst dating. After all, I AM the one who is single, right? So, for anyone who is wondering, this is my category:
- The Hot/Cold Woman: She who fails to conceal any of her thoughts and feelings and will let you know everything she is experiencing from hungry to hormonal whether you like it or not. She also finds significant trouble in deciding what she wants or making meaningful decisions regarding her life. She has been known to flirt with you incessantly but not actually date you for no reason whatsoever, despite you being perfectly lovely and attractive. She instead has a knack for pursuing unattainable men who, despite being awesome guys, are simply not interested in a relationship. Often seen watching The Great British Bake Off whilst eating ice-cream despite swearing she’s “on a diet” and explaining that said ice-cream eating is “a crucial part of a sustainable long-term healthy-eating plan”.
So, yes, I know me being single this Valentine’s Day largely boils down to me being… well, me. I am well aware that a girl whose favourite actress is Sandra Bullock and who prefers to eat pizza with a spoon rather than by hand doesn’t scream ‘Dream Girl’. But the more I experience dating failure, the more I consider myself an expert in what NOT to do when dating/looking for someone who is obligated to cuddle you for the foreseeable future.
And hell, if I can claim expertise in something, I’m going to freaking claim it. It’s pretty close to going on my CV at this point, right under the fact that I am a terrific people person with strong communication skills.
So my first official ‘Do Not’ tip I could give any reader would of course be: If the guy you’re dating requests you not wear jeans around his friends ever again because he “likes your legs” and wants his friends “to see them too”, RUN FOR THE HILLS. RUN WOMAN, RUN! Why? Because this boy will proceed to tell you to wear more pink and coax you into dying your hair the most disgusting shade of silver-blonde. Do not hang around and live through the awkward silver hair phase. Do not start wearing ribbons in your ponytail. Do not remind me that I did both of those things and more.
Anyway, I know that the reason I am single AGAIN this Valentine’s Day is because I still struggle to realise who is good for me and who isn’t. Whilst I am happy to say that the guys I have dated are really great guys, who I am on good terms with, I can’t deny the fact that they were NEVER the right guys for me to date. And I still don’t know whether constantly chasing the wrong men is a case of self-sabotage, or a case of simply not knowing what I want.
What I do know is that I have a fabulous group of girlfriends who are there to listen to all of my dating missteps.
Amazing girlfriends who each deserve a mountain of cookie cakes for all the cringe-worthy dating stories I subject them to on a regular basis.
God bless their souls.