This blog entry was not planned, I kind of “stumbled across” this concept last night while I was on Facebook. A good friend of mine was contemplating online dating and I proceeded to tell him that sometimes it’s best to just take yourself off the market, like I had done in 2009-10, and live for yourself, and make yourself happy and productive.
Then I realized what a hypocrite I am.
Since I turned 18, I have spent roughly 12 years in miserable, unhappy relationships with various women and 10 years as a happy and contented single man. And there is NO question, on any level, regarding whether my life is happier single, or taken. None.
My stress level when I am in a relationship has pushed my body to break down in numerous ways. Heart problems. My hair falling out. Ulcers. Migraine headaches. Being more susceptible to airborne illnesses and taking longer to recover. Inability to sleep. A consistent bad mood. Overeating. Twitching eyes. I am quick to anger and this makes not only me unhappy, but those around me who have to deal with my very short fuse.
When I am single, it’s a different world. My stress level drops enormously and everything else starts to come together and I get healthier and happier. And it’s not a subtle change; it’s overwhelming. I really feel like life is worth living again.
I’m going to be honest about something I have never admitted to publicly and only a few close friends are aware: I have had two episodes of suicide contemplation; the first was in the fall of 2009 and was due to me feeling trapped in an unhappy relationship. The second was in early 2017 and was due to me feeling trapped in an unhappy relationship.
Everything I had suggested to my friend, I realized I was not doing. I wasn’t living for me. I was doing the exact opposite. I was spending hours talking to this girl or that girl rather than unplugging myself completely and doing things that I enjoy doing. I was ready to wrap myself up in another round of unhappiness and there was no reasoning behind it.
Some people have questioned me over the past several months about why I consistently either turn down or blow off women who are interested in meeting or dating. I think I had already made up my mind to avoid relationships without admitting it to myself.
Part of this comes from societal pressures. If you’re not in a committed relationship, you should be. Regardless of whether it contributes to your happiness or misery. It’s more about the reaction and approval of others than anything on a personal level. That’s wrong. It doesn’t matter how you slice it, you have to live for yourself, no one else.
So, in the tradition of “physician, heal thyself,” I realized I needed to take my own advice. Which means effectively taking myself off the relationship market. Leaving myself open to make similar stupid mistakes to ones I have made in the past wouldn’t help me at all.
My decision-making processes where women are concerned have not been good. It’s not just that if I had two to choose from, I would choose the wrong one; when I had close to 30 to choose from, I still chose the wrong one. And when I say wrong, I mean WRONG.
I think anyone who has gotten out of a long-term relationship needs to take an extended break. A year, if possible. And if the relationship was an unhappy one, or as miserable as all of mine have been, maybe longer. Maybe a permanent vacation could be called for.
And yes, I know that admitting that every relationship I have been in was soul-crushingly unhappy makes it look as though the problem may be on my end. And I admit as much. And that’s even more reason to remove myself from the dating pool. If I know I am gonna be miserable going in, there’s hardly any benefit to going ahead and doing it.
I just want to be happy. And enjoy myself. And from my personal experiences, I have to be single in order to do that. I can do the things I enjoy doing and I don’t have to compromise anything. I can do what I want, when I want, where I want, and I don’t have to answer to anyone. Why jeopardize that just to make someone else miserable and myself miserable at the same time? That has accomplished nothing for anyone involved.
I have been anti-marriage as long as I can remember. That will never change. I can’t even imagine how miserable marriage would be had I ever been stupid enough to try it in any of my past situations. But now I am as close to anti-relationship as I could get. And let’s face it, a relationship is nothing more than a gateway to marriage. That’s a fact.
So, for at least the rest of 2018, I am “single, not available.” I wish Facebook had an option to make that your relationships status. It’s not all that far-fetched, as AOL used to have that option available for profiles. And if things work out as well for me as a single man in 2018 as they did in 2010 or even 1996, this may be my permanent status for the rest of my life. As the saying goes, I don’t need anyone to complete me. I’m a complete person.
I am going to live for me. Do the things I enjoy and live my life the way I see fit, not the way someone else decides I should do it. This is my life, and I will do with it what I feel is in my best interest. And for now, that’s being single. And there’s a chance that may never change. And if that’s the case, so be it. No regrets. It’s my life. I just can’t justify putting my life, happiness and enjoyments in the hands of someone who has no right to them. Will some people disagree? Of course. But you do what’s best for you, and I’ll do what’s best for me, and avoiding relationships in general is the best thing for me right now.
And for those who understand, and support me in this decision, I thank you. My closest confidants have told me that this was the right move for months. And I finally have to admit that I agree, and admit its good to have people who care looking out for me.
In conclusion, 2018 is MY year. And if I wake up on New Year’s Day 2019 and I am unhappy, I may re-evaluate my life’s decisions. If not, the status quo can remain in place. But until that day, my #1 goal is to avoid relationships and if anyone thinks they can or need to change my mind, rest assured, it’s not changing. I am committed to this to the point that I will completely disconnect from anyone who wants to push the envelope. I’m as close to completely happy right now as I have been in almost eight years. I’m not willing to give that up for anyone or anything. My life is not for sale.