“I mean, technically they’re still married. But he was cheating on her the entire time.”
Wow okay what the f*ck am I supposed to do with that information? I mean, I’d been talking to this guy for a day, and only happened to find out because his first tagged photo in Instagram was an engagement ring…
Turns out I have a friend that knows his wife. So of course I was going to ask her about him – it’s called girl code, duh. (I mean seriously dude, did you really think no one would find out?)
It was then that I affirmed my status as “self-partnered”, immediately deleting Hinge and unfollowing most of the guys I’d been talking to on Instagram – until they ghosted me.
This has also happened to two of my close friends – except they found out when they were three months deep. One of the guys was talking about getting engaged, according to his girlfriend of 5 years – yeah, B (let’s call her that) dobbed him in.
In the age of Tinder, Bumble and hinge, dating is honestly a bit of a nightmare. Bonnie Tyler had it right when she asked “where have all the good men gone” ‘cause I’ve been asking myself that everyday since I was broken up with while I was lying in bed with food poisoning (and literally thought I was dying).
My mum keeps saying “surely there’s a better way to meet people”. Well, mother dearest, maybe there is but what is that?
No one approaches you in a bar or smiles at you in the coffee shop before approaching to ask what you’re reading, and I can’t even remember the last time a guy (that wasn’t my boyfriend) even slid into my dm’s.
I’ve been ghosted three times in the past month (granted it was spooky season) by men who actually asked me out to drinks, and then never replied when I followed up – or cancelled on me hours before we were to meet and never messaged again. So, like, what are our options really?
I’m seriously vibing Emma Watson’s self-partnered concept right now.
Zoe Foster Blake’s Break-Up Boss taught me to treat my singledom as a relationship with myself. At first I thought that meant buy the shoes you’ve been swooning over but can’t really afford and send yourself those flowers because why the hell not. But I realised that treating myself came in so many different forms – that wouldn’t make me avoid looking at my credit statements.
Nourishing my mind and soul through writing was a treat in itself, fostering self-love and confidence like I’d never known it before. I’d written so many letters to my ex when we were together that got no response (And more recently wrote a “let’s be friends” e-mail that has also been ignored while I’ve driven myself crazy) because I longed for that kind of romance.
There’s something about the written word that screams love – and so I decided to change the story. I now write love letters to myself – and other young women – in the form of prose (check them out on my Instagram). I’ve discovered that love, especially that you find in yourself, is more than just an emotion. It’s a power.
So I’ve learnt to look at these past two months as a blessing. I’ve discovered so much about myself and found a new purpose to focus on – shoutout to Peta Kelly for the inspiration (everyone needs to read Earth Is Hiring ASAP). I’ve been pushed out of my comfort zone and lost the feeling of control I’d been craving – and that’s okay because I’ve found peace. I often hear people say they “lost a part of themselves”, but I feel like I’ve found a part. Don’t get me wrong a I was (and still am) devastated to have lost the one. But for now, I am right where I am meant to be.
This journey has come with countless sleepless nights, anxiety attacks and self-doubt so severe that I almost gave up writing all together. But it has led me to now, where I am the most whole and at peace I have ever felt. So I think self-partnered is the way I’ll be staying – at least for now.
Main Image: @giuliajrosa