I’ve never been lonely as such. I’ve always been surrounded by family and great friends who make my heart so full. But I’ve also always been single. 21 years old and perpetually boyfriend-less. I’ve seen boys here and there, but never for longer than a few months, and it has always been in a casual ‘friends with benefits’ context, with no emotional attachment (at least not on their behalf anyway). I’ve quite often viewed my never-ending status as a singleton as a negative thing. I let it influence the whole “I’m not good enough” notion I’ve got going in my head, which I know is bad and I really need to change this. I came across an article called “Do Not Let Your Loneliness Convince You To Settle for Less Than You Deserve” which I will link here. It really resonated with me, because it made me realise that sometimes loneliness does influence me to compromise who I am and what I know I’m worth.
I do settle for less than I deserve, because in my head ‘it’s better than nothing, than being alone’. I have let boys disrespect and take advantage of me in ways I wish they hadn’t. There have been times where I’ve looked at my friends who have boyfriends, and have told myself that I should start acting more like them so that someone will like me. There have been times where I convince myself I like a boy, when in reality I don’t – I merely like the idea of having someone there to numb the loneliness. At times it has made me bitter and cynical towards the world. It has made me jealous. It has made me these things because I am insecure about being lonely.
“When I get lonely these days, I think: so BE lonely. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it for once in your life. Welcome to the human experience. But never again use another person’s body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearning.” – Elizabeth Gilbert
Looking at my single status from a more positive perspective is something I’m really trying to work on. Yes it’s not always easy being single, but neither is being in a relationship. I can be grateful for the fact that I only have to worry about myself; I can focus on my goals and what I want. This is one of the only times in my life where it can be all about me, no partner, no children. I am blessed to have this time for myself, to learn and grow and experience.
Something that the article said about loneliness was to “Let it empower you to be someone who knows how to fight alone and someone who knows how to survive. Let it be your shield and your armour in those cold and dark nights when most people do not know what to do or who to run to, but you’re not scared because you have yourself and you know you can count on it.” I loved that. Because looking back on everything difficult I’ve faced in my life, I didn’t have a boyfriend through any of that; I got through it on my own.
Being lonely, feeling that emotion, and embracing it (no matter how awful it may feel at the time), is such an important part of growing up I believe. I know people who jump from relationship to relationship because they simply do not know how to be on their own. At least I know I have the capability to feel lonely and get through it.
“If someone does not want me it is not the end of the world. But if I do not want me the world is nothing but endings” – Nayyirah Waheed
(sorry if this post feels rushed, like I said I won’t have time to make these ones as polished as my usual standard. I hope this still give you some food for thought though).
All my love,
p.s. any ideas for this coming week of blog posts are welcome!