As Jason DeRulo put it in his single “Ridin’ Solo”, ‘It’s 2009.’ Way to date your song. I can’t honestly enjoy it as much as I would had he left that out, because it’s as if being single is the anthem to the year 2009, when really that message is relevant at all times. Then again, maybe it’s this generation’s version of Prince’s “1999”, and if that be the case, I’m going to “ride solo” as it were as if it was 2009.
Surely on a website dedicated to dating you would expect an ode to relationships, but nay. Because, as Franklin Slocombe pointed out in his article, b*tches be crazy. Indeed, Franklin. Indeed. Who hasn’t incessantly called someone they were either dating or hooking up with in a moment of drunken insanity? My ex-boyfriend left a party without telling me and I gave him seventeen missed calls in the span of three minutes. Seventeen. That was three minutes of ringing, hanging up, and redialling until he finally answered. Personally, I would have turned the phone off, but unlike the crazy girl following poor Frankin, bless him, I knew my boyfriend’s home address and was a five minute walk away. Shockingly, we broke up shortly after. And by shortly after I mean about a minute into that conversation on the phone.
Two months later and I was a wreck and still listening to Annie Lennox’s “Why” whilst crying and eating ice cream. Don’t act like you haven’t been there. Most of my best mates are blokes, and even they have been there. But rarely two months later, by then they’ve usually shagged their way out of their dumped slump. This is not to say that casual sex with strangers is the best way to get back into your groove, per se, rather casual sex with someone you kind of like but are mostly ambivalent towards is the best way forward. Someone who, after the act, you can turn to and say, ‘Pub?’ Not someone you turn to and say, ‘So … what does this mean for us?’ It shouldn’t have to mean anything but ‘Well, that was fun.’
The in a relationship version of me may as well be called crazy bitch me. In my defence, however, and in the defence of most women (Franklin’s crazy bitch being an example of the exception), it is often the men we love that make us crazy.
By in large I have had no problems keeping relationships and sex separate. My best friend is a lovely and handsome boy, and whilst I am constantly justifying the platonic nature of our relationship, we really are just friends. When Harry Met Sally, No Strings Attached, and now, Friends With Benefits has done nothing for my argument. ‘But you guys will obviously have sex together eventually, right?’ other friends will ask. How is that obvious? My life isn’t some kind of rom-com where one day we’re going to suddenly turn to each other, after years of not feeling sexually compelled towards one another, and realise ‘Oh my God … it was you all along!’ No. This boy is not every character Ashton Kutcher has ever played, so that’s not how this ends. That said, what we essentially have is a relationship without benefits. The pseudo-couple if you will.
With my companionship needs met by my best friend, that still leaves a significant gap in the satisfaction department. If you’re like me, you like sex. I think that will unite a significant amount of us. Sex is fun. But sex when you’re in love can be dangerous. I’ve noticed that there is often a direct correlation between having good sex with someone and falling in love – maybe it’s just that physical and emotional compatibility makes for great sex, I don’t know. All I know is that the dickhead who dumped me over the phone, for all his sins, was phenomenal in bed. Damn him. He was also an alright guy, I wouldn’t have dated him if he wasn’t. I don’t date losers, but he was what I like to call a Sneaky Arsehole, meaning that deep down he was secretly a total dick, but tricked me long enough to believe that I had met The Perfect Guy. Well, perfect for me. Maybe my love was overbearing, or maybe I became what Franklin calls a “crazy bitch”. The latter is more likely than not, I’m afraid.
Sitting in the pub once, the lone girl amongst a table of boys, one of them commented, ‘All girls are mental.’ There were uneasy glances towards me, as if expecting me to flip the table over in retaliation, which would have only validated their argument. I placed my pint down, and said accuser looked at me and said, ‘You don’t count. You’re practically a guy.’ Hm, quite. I can be very “guy-like” in these scenarios or social situations. I am quite laid back, I enjoy beer, I enjoy banter, and mostly I enjoy hanging out with boys because, unlike girls, the topic of conversation isn’t consistently boys. In general, I am not a crazy bitch. I am cool, calm and relatively rational. This is the single version of me.
The in a relationship version of me may as well be called crazy bitch me. In my defence, however, and in the defence of most women (Franklin’s crazy bitch being an example of the exception), it is often the men we love that make us crazy. They trick you into a false sense of security until you finally let down your guard and then it happens. The balance of power shifts dramatically from one to the other and you’re left wondering, ‘How did this go from you badgering me for sex and a relationship to me suddenly being the one pursuing you?’ You start feeling needy and insecure, and that’s when crazy bitch mode kicks in. Digressing into this version of yourself rarely works out well for anyone. Especially not for me.
The problem I face is that no matter how sane I am when I go into a relationship, I can’t find a way to stop the crazy bitch from rearing her mental head as soon as there’s a hiccup. Unfortunately, it’s often when other girls are involved, and poor girlfriend management on the boyfriends’ sides. Rumours of cheating, actually cheating, emotionally cheating … in my experience, it has all come down to a sense of betrayal, a sense of, ‘Why aren’t I enough?’
As I mentioned, what unites most people and myself, is an unashamed liking of sex.
Well, as it turns out, I am enough. I am enough for myself. The biggest part of being successfully single is genuinely liking yourself. If you’re going to be spending the majority of your time alone, it’s best that you feel that you’re in good company. And luckily, I feel that I’m my own best company. This isn’t to say I don’t enjoy the company of others, or have emotionally satisfying relationships with friends, and physically satisfying relationships with acquaintances, but at the end of the day I’m not filled with an overwhelmingly gloomy sense of, ‘Is this it?’ More like, ‘THIS is it, I’M it.’ I don’t believe people should be looking for someone who will complete their lives; rather, we should look for someone who is going to compliment our life.
I feel that people are often dubious of singletons who harp on about how happy they are to be alone, especially as said DeRulo-wannabes end up all loved-up and happy what seems to be moments after a sermon on the joys of being single. I have seen this happen, but what I rarely see happen is someone complaining about being single and complaining about other people’s love lives actually finding love themselves. And if they do it’s often a letdown, because they have put so much pressure on one person to meet all these needs that they don’t realise that it’s an impossible role for one person.
For these reasons I have compartmentalised these roles we usually place on one person and delegated them to various people. I’m quite lucky in that I have more male companionship in my life than I know what to do with and, unlike most women’s magazines, I don’t try and villainise men. They aren’t an enemy to be conquered, or a puzzle to be solved, in fact they’re quite straightforward and easy to understand. They aren’t the jedi mind-tricking creatures women often make them out to be. If a man says something, rarely is there hidden meaning behind it. This is why, for the most part, my immediate circle of people involves a lot of dudes. They slot easily into most roles, and for the heterosexual female, are quite necessary for one role in particular.
I have written over one hundred blog entries worth of stories based on my sex life. As I mentioned, what unites most people and myself, is an unashamed liking of sex. Sex is fun. I don’t have time in my life at the moment to complicate sex with a relationship, which is why when it comes to sex, it is largely a friends with benefits/no strings attached kind of relationship. This is not a contradiction of my previous statements about my best friend, with whom I have invested years of partnership in crime with. He and I are thick as thieves, whereas the boy I’m currently sleeping with has good banter, is a bit of laugh, and decent in bed. I could take or leave it really. In a sense, I’m not really riding solo as it were, rather I ride with a menagerie of boys. I don’t try and complicate sex with companionship, just as I don’t try and complicate my friendships with sex. The two are different, and for the time being never the twain shall meet.
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is anyone ever really solo……?
My recent post TELLING TUESDAY: in trouble….
"If a man says something, rarely is there hidden meaning behind it. " This is what makes men so easy to communicate with. Once a woman understands this, a lot of things become easier.
I also like what you said about compartmentalizing the different roles that would normally belong to one person. This is a good idea even if you're in a relationship, so that one person doesn't have to play every part of every person you were ever close to.