I learned these things the hard way.
I’m single. Not because I can’t find a guy, not because I got dumped, not because “I can’t keep a man,” but because I want to be. I feel good about my life right now, and I’m enjoying all the freedom that comes with not being in a committed relationship. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not anti-dating or anti-relationship, but there are certain things I won’t do just to have a man in my life.
1. Change for a guy
Who hasn’t pretended to be something you’re not for a guy? You learn early in your dating life that this is a lose-lose proposition. It’s not fair to the guy who thinks he’s getting someone different, and it’s not fair to you. If you can’t be your authentic self in a relationship, then what’s the point?
2. Ignore red flags
You saw them; you didn’t want to believe them, so you ignored them. And what happened? You were heartbroken when the relationship ended. I’ve learned not to ignore the signs that are right in front of your face, no matter how much you like someone.
3. Pressure Date
If you’re single for more than a couple of months, I sure you’ve experienced this. Friends pressuring you to “Get back out there.” Your family looking at you with pity “You’re so smart and pretty, why aren’t you dating?” No more guilt-trip dating for me.
4. Think I can change him
No, you can’t! When you meet a guy who has characteristics you don’t like but date him anyway thinking you can change him is a recipe for disaster. I don’t have time to waste trying to get someone to change into the person I wish him to be. He is who he is.
5. Give second chances
In the past, I would give second chances. Sometimes third or fourth chances only to end up in the same predicament. I no longer give someone another chance to treat me like crap. People see second chances as permission to f*ck you over… again.
6. Lose who I am
I refuse to put my hobbies, my ambitions or desires on the back-burner for a guy. His life priorities don’t take precedence over mine. I’ve learned that you can’t lose who you are in a relationship because when the relationship ends, it takes too much time to find yourself again.
7. Blame others for my choices
If I choose to get into a relationship with someone who turns out to bad for me, that was my decision. Not the co-worker, family member, or friend who introduced him to me. I am responsible for my choices. Blaming someone else for my bad dating experiences doesn’t negate the fact that I said “yes” to the date.
8. Be miserable
I refuse to let my relationship status determine my happiness. Being single doesn’t mean living a boring, miserable life. Explore new things. If you don’t like doing things alone, enlist your family or friends. You don’t need a significant other to live an exciting life.
It’s more acceptable today to be single than it has been in the past. Woman have come to realize that having just ANY man in your life is NOT better than no man. Thankfully women are learning these lessons at an earlier age, and don’t waste as many years of their lives in bad relationships.
The truth is until you’re comfortable with who you are and have the confidence to say “NO” to things you don’t want in a relationship. The longer it will take you to realize that being single is so much better than a dysfunctional relationship. – Tina T.