I don’t know what’s worse: being single or receiving the most terrible advice in regards to being single. While the advice that’s been given to me has been all over the place, the majority of it has been pretty bad. Whether they’re demanding I go through his phone or switch up my wardrobe, every bit of it has been memorable.
After an absolutely dreadful first date where the guy basically told me he was planning our futures together (creepy, much?), I totally shut it down and went about my day. What’s the point of dating if your whole relationship has to stick with this little timeline? Everyone thought I was crazy for turning down some guy who “obviously cared about me.” Unfortunately, I have to disagree. After the first date, that guy didn’t care about me at all – he cared about the idea of me. Those are two vastly different concepts. Caring about me would be trying to get to know me, understand me on a deeper level, and wanting the relationship to flow at a natural pace. Caring about the idea of me means that he’s not really interested in a mutual understanding, he just wants to jump head first in a relationship and drag me around his family parties like a show pony. No thanks.
The thing about dating is that it really is a game of hit-or-miss. I once went on a date with a really awesome guy. He was smart and funny, I just wasn’t into him. That’s a totally reasonable excuse to not pursue anything further. I was utterly shocked when I was told that I had set my bar too high and that maybe I was just being shallow. If there isn’t a connection, there simply isn’t connection. You can’t force yourself to be interested in someone. I don’t think there will ever be a more blatant example of setting yourself up for failure than this right here. Human beings aren’t designed to be attracted to everyone! If we were, really shitty genes would get passed down to future generations. I will be more than happy to wait for someone I have real chemistry with.
One of my favorites: “You should start dressing nicer and maybe you’ll meet someone.” How could I have been so blind before?! If only I showed up to my 8:00 class looking like I’m headed to a five star dinner, men would flock to me at every turn! While part of me understands that first impressions are everything, the other part of me really doesn’t understand why there is such a social obligation for me to look like a Cosmo model when I go grocery shopping. Clothing is an extension of expressing yourself, and if a guy doesn’t like my combat boots, then it was simply for the best that we never dated.
Even when I was in a committed relationship, I still managed to receive some of the most mangled and dreadful advice ever. I’m sure everyone has heard this tidbit: “Why don’t you just go through their phone?” Jealousy can lead a person to do some cray-cray things, but sneaking a peek into their cell is breaking almost as many privacy rules as their secret conversations . Once you get the crazy urge to act on this God awful advice, you need to take a step back and initiate the conversation. No one is saying it’s easy to sit down and talk about your suspicions, but it is necessary to preserve as much trust as possible. Once you betray his trust and sneak through his phone, it will be hard for him to forget that. If you find any questionable convos, it will be hard for you to listen to what he has to say. Needless to say, this bit of advice did not do me any good…seeing as we are no longer together!
Perhaps one of the best of the worst pieces of advice would be to always offer up a second chance. In some situations, this might actually work! Like, if he forgot your birthday or moved to a different state. There could not be any worse advice to take if he cheated on you or was abusive in any way. I’ve slipped up and accepted an unworthy ex back into my life, but when the damage is done the relationship will always fail.
Needless to say, not all advice is created equal. Actually, more often than not, advice in regards to your romantic life tends to be pretty terrible. The only person who can give you advice about your own situation is you. Accept the bad advice with the good, but stick to your guns and do what’s best for you.