Welcome to my digital scrapbook. Wait, is "digital" still a thing? I stopped reading Wired like fifteen years ago. I have no fucking idea what is going on.
golden needles and poisoned pools
Since my last relationship ended about a year and a half ago, I’ve thought a lot about my dating history and why it has been such a gawddamned disaster. There have been two things in particular that I’ve turned over and over in my brain, trying to make sense of them…and I think maybe I have figured things out.
First thing: I’ve been in kind of a lot of serious relationships, and I have ended every one of them. I’ve never been dumped. I’ve had people shrug their shoulders about me dumping them (generally followed weeks or months later by a request to reconsider). But I’ve always been the one to pull the trigger. I’d like to think that this is because I’m just sooooo amazing, but actually think that it’s more about my standards vs their standards.
Second thing: the people I date always end up being super broken in one way or another. And not just in the sense that nobody is perfect and everybody has baggage. In the sense of serious untreated psychiatric illness, being an intractable liar/cheater/abuser, and/or totally lacking the ability to function as an adult in really basic ways. This isn’t everybody in my life…I have lots of friends who have their shit together. It’s waaaay disproportionately the people I’ve dated who are fucked up.
The conclusion that I’ve come to is that my culture has poisoned my dating pool. I’m a fat chick, and nearly* the only people who date fat chicks are people who feel like they can’t do better. Because I believe that I am valuable and deserve good things in my life despite not being a “pretty girl”, I have been a bit oblivious to the fact that only losers have been willing to date me. I have chosen people from the pool of losers who do a better job than most of appearing to be good, decent, healthy people, but when the truth eventually comes out and I finally accept that it has happened again, I then break up with them. They don’t break up with me for the same reason they were willing to date me in the first place: they don’t think they can do better.
And maybe I can’t do better than them, either. The difference is, I’d much rather be alone than settle for somebody I don’t really want for a partner.
* I do believe that there are good people who don’t buy the cultural obsession with thinness and beauty as symbols of status and as the source of a person’s baseline value. But they are golden needles in huge haystacks, and I ain’t got time to dig through that shit anymore. I have a proven lack of ability to tell the good guys from the fakers, and I’m awfully busy building a beautiful life for myself.
By myself. I think I just have to keep doing it all by myself, quite possibly forever. And you know what? It’s ok. I’m fine.