Ian Pike noon, Dec. 8
I took a hiatus. Rather, I started a blog about my single life in San Diego then met a man who I have now been dating for about two years. I stopped writing because I thought it was the polite thing to do…and I was no longer having varying dating adventures full of mysterious hilarity. I was just dating the one guy that I actually cared enough about to get to know and that’s not really that funny or interesting…well there was still comedy, but I needed to focus on actually getting to know him before I started writing about him. Anyway, it may have taken two years, but I have decided he knows me, he knows my writing and he knows my sarcasm, so I can now carry on and keep talking about my love life. I am, however, changing things up a bit to tell stories about my relationship as well as the stories of some of my still single girlfriends who can provide the interesting mystery from the other side.
For the record, at the age of thirty-three, my single girlfriends have dwindled to only one or two. I know it is a temporary state, because the years to come will bring again the break ups, the divorces and the new couplings. Even I, in my fledgling two year relationship, may find myself single again at any time. I knew this, but, with the power of hindsight, I have now truly come to understand that singleness is an ongoing affair to which we often do not give the appropriate amount of respect. Instead we fear singleness and embrace the relationship. We treat the world outside of a relationship like an unwelcome surprise guest. This is a weird perspective that gets us nowhere. Perhaps and instead, the single life is a recurring theme just like the lifelong string of relationships we engage in without anxiety. Both have the same ups and downs and lonely nights. Both are fickle. Just when you think you are comfortable in either space, something changes and you find you’ve lost the comfort of either relationship or single and traded it for the new other world. This dance goes on forever until death. Does it have to be so depressing and black and white?
We should consider halting our need to run towards a relationship like it is a much safer animal than the single life. We don’t need to run into the arms of our new love, holing up together, avoiding eye contact with singles and only speaking in “We”s. People call this the honeymoon stage but I consider it a desperate attempt to forget the days, weeks, months or years that you spent without the false security of statistically temporary love. In a relationship let’s not create events that only allow for other couples to gather. We don’t need to participate in double dates with other relationship friends, pushing out our singles. In fact, we are missing out on the lessons of the rich single world in which we will likely find ourselves again at given moment. We need to stay current with that world in the same way that we study magazine articles about relationships when we are not in one.
I vote to accept that being single is as constant as not being single. We can all hang out, singles and couples, as life changes and roles switch so we are prepared for either state. We can celebrate the goods of both and be the ying yang of happiness and sadness in either group. Let’s find a more balanced space because when we talk about relationship or single we are not talking about love or the lack of it. Love from friends and family is the love we consistently have. If we continue to privilege relationship over single, people don’t get invited to parties or we find ourselves stuck in an endless stream of couple events where everyone just talks about how interesting their partner is. Please spare us all. Don’t continue to punish your friends...those who are single and left out nor others who see the balance. Especially don't forget the friend who had to mourn the loss of the single life even though she met and continues to date an amazing guy.