Why I Don’t Date

I love being in charge of my own happiness.

20180127_175927I’m single. Very, very single.

For most of my adult life, I was married—happily at first, and then not. Now that I’ve settled into being single, I want to stay that way forever.

Not because I’ve given up on love, not because I don’t think I’m worthy of it, but because I need time. I need time to read and think and walk. I need time to be completely myself.

Society doesn’t want to grant me that time. Words hover around me. Words like isolated and lonely. Words like worry. My sister asked if I hated eating alone. (Answer: no.) Some friends are shocked when I tell them I’m planning a solo vacation. People ask me point blank when I’m going to start dating again. It’s always a “when,” not an “if.”

Perhaps it’s assumed, since I was married for over twenty years, that marriage is my natural state. What people don’t know is that I was never more lonely than when I was married. Ironically enough, I feel more connected to other people now—my children, my parents, my siblings. I’ve made lots of new friends. I go to more movies, more book readings, more community events. I go to the library and the coffee shop. I eat lunch with my writer buddies. My life is so full of good things I just don’t see a way to fit a man into it.

I choose how much to save and how much to spend. I decide when to do laundry and how late to sleep in on Saturdays. I don’t share a bed or the TV remote. I make my own decisions about big things like what car to drive and small things like how often to have tacos for dinner. (Correct answer: twice a week.)

This is threatening to some people. I’m the source of amusement on good days and naked hostility on bad ones. Our society doesn’t like to see a woman in charge of herself. Who am I to drink an entire key lime milkshake and call it dinner? To buy jewelry I chose myself? How dare I spoil myself in any way?

20180127_180014Sometimes other words hover around me. Words like bitter and frigid. What can I say, except I don’t hate men, I find a lot of them quite sexy, and I’m still not going to date anyone. Ever.

The world keeps telling me, over and over, in big ways and small, that I should be paired up, or at least striving to be. But I refuse. I’m never again going to live on the edge of someone else’s life.

I’d rather live at the center of my own.

About the author: Alex Kourvo writes science fiction short stories and novels. She is happy in her own company.

 

One response

  1. Jocelyn Ethridge | Reply

    Slay, queen. Slay.

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