“Why you no have girlfriend yet?”
This is the second most popular question that I get asked every time I have to deal with some distant relatives or when they have to deal with me. The most popular one (of course) being: “Why you no married yet?”
Of course, to save my mother’s face (to not embarrass my mother), I would have to come up with generic half truths (a.k.a blatant lies) like: “Oh, I’m still searching for the right one!” or “Oh, I wanna earn more money first before I look into serious relationship!” or even “Oh, I was seeing someone, but I ditched her because she is not good enough!”
To be honest, I can’t really tell for sure why I am still single today. But I am having a rather frustrating week at work, and writing a bunch of crap is one of my ways to release steam, so here I am writing another piece for the “Why I…” series to further embarrass myself because I think people love to read embarrassing things about other people.
I shall attempt to break down to a few reasons as to why I do not have a girlfriend (yet).
My Past Relationship
Not many people know this (not even my family), but I used to be in a serious relationship when I was a college kid. Many people asked me whether Love Story is something real or fictional. It is 80% fact and 20% sensationalized cheesy scenes, but otherwise yes, it is a real life story. We were together for 2 years give or take a bit, and then on a LDR for a few months before we ended things on a friendly note. And then an incident happened that would ensure that we can never get back together ever again even if I had wanted to.
That incident changed me. Something happened between us shortly before the incident. I cannot help but feel that I was indirectly a cause for that incident to happen. For more than two years, I felt a crushing guilt within me. I was very sad and I did not want to be around people, especially people who keep telling me to cheer up when I did not want to cheer up at all. For two years I kept minimal contact with my friends, not wanting to deal with their worry and their advice. For two years, I was insufferable. Of course that also meant I did not try to meet new people (new girls).
It took two years for me to slowly get out of my self-imposed social exile. People say time will heal emotional wounds. I think those people are people who have not yet experienced loss in serious relationships a.k.a love. If you know what you are talking about, you would not say that time heals. Time does not heal an emotional wound. What time does is give you enough practice to numb out the wound and get on with life while carrying that wound.
Anyway, I started to interact with people again after almost two years. Then I started to take note of girls again. The problem was, I kept comparing all the girls with her, and all of them came up short. I don’t mean to say all the girls out there are crap, what I mean is that I was very compatible with her, and we complemented each other perfectly. Maybe I am being unnecessarily stubborn trying to look for similar characteristics in other girls, but no two persons are ever the same, so (naturally) I could not find any.
I did try to pursue a girl actually. In fact I persisted for two years, but nothing happened and she is now happily married to someone else. I think she didn’t like me enough to agree to be my girlfriend, but I also think that I probably did not like her as much as I should because she was different compared to her, so I did not invest as much emotions as I should have, and she could probably feel it.
I’m trying to condition my mind to really move on from this comparison thing, but I don’t think I am doing a very good job because I have not completely purged that mindset even today. That’s why I’m not even actively trying to look for a girlfriend. I believe I need to set myself straight first.
I’m Fine Being Alone
I guess this is a byproduct of the reason above. I spent too much time isolating myself that I have already gotten used to it. I am perfectly comfortable being alone. I sometimes go to lunch/dinner alone, I sometimes go to the movies alone, I sometimes go to Starbucks alone and tuck myself away in a quiet corner, and I feel absolutely zero awkwardness like how most people do. I was not like this 5 years ago, but I am like this now.
Sometimes I feel like I really need to get a grip and really go get myself a girlfriend soon, but at the same time, I am worried at the prospect of actually having a girlfriend. I have become a man of few words, a man who is very comfortable not talking, and I am worried that I have to constantly maintain a chatter with a girl. After all, when you ask most girls what they want to find in a man, it is mostly “must have a good sense of humor, must make me laugh at all times“. Hearing this statement sometimes gives me cold sweat.
I’m Too Lazy
Every time I go home, my mom (and sometimes sister) would launch into a barrage of comments on how horrible I look. I don’t pay attention to what I wear, I don’t shave, I don’t style my hair, and to make matters worse, I am too fat. Mom is always concerned that I would never be able to attract any girls the way I am.
You know what? I actually agree with her. In fact, when I saw this in The Oatmeal, I thought that it is a very good depiction of me.
I know I should pay more attention on my appearance. I know I should pay more attention on my wardrobe. And I know I must get rid of my tummy and lose weight. I know I must put in more effort to at least look not horrible.
But I am too lazy for these. Again, because I don’t think I am actively looking for a girlfriend, I don’t think I need to do all these. Why spend extra money buying expensive and trendy clothes when most of them are not really comfortable to wear? Why spend even more money buying expensive hair products and visiting the salon frequently when I can get a simple haircut at a much cheaper price? And most importantly, why subject myself to a rigorous diet plan when I take much pleasure in eating bacon?
I know it is wrong to think “I will groom myself better when I find the girl that I want to impress” because it will be too late to do so by then, but I think that anyway, especially whenever I want to try to make myself work harder on my appearances. So, the way I am right now, I am not actively looking for a girlfriend, but girls will probably not want me to look at them either.
I used to spend too much time working. I stayed in the office till late night, and I go back to work over the weekends. I had no life.
Today, I don’t spend as much time in the office, but I am still hard at work. I get home and continue working on my own side projects of blogging and freelancing and writing my book. None of these are small apples by any means. I spend my weekends grocery shopping, sometimes catch a movie or have lunch with friends, and then I would be cooped up at home continue working on my side projects.
This is another reason why I am not so eager to look for a relationship to jump into. I need to stay focused with the things I am working on until I am satisfied enough to take a back seat, and a girlfriend would be the ultimate distraction to all these.
I mean, if I get a girlfriend and refuse to let her be my distraction, you know all hell would break loose, right? Worst case, she would quickly ditch me for not loving her enough to sacrifice my work time, and then I would be heart broken for many months again and not be productive. So, better to prevent this potential lack of productivity if I can help it.
There’s probably a few more reasons, but these are all that I can think of at the moment. My mom actually hopes that I would be getting married soon at my age, so she is quite pissed off that I don’t even have a girlfriend to show. She always threatens me with words like: “你是要等到我死了也不给我抱孙是不是?! (You planning to see me die without giving me opportunity to hold my grandson, is it?!)”, so she must not read this piece. Fortunately, I don’t think she will. She only reads my cooking posts because there are food pictures, she doesn’t read all words posts, I think…
Anyway, after reading all these crap about me, you probably think that I am an absolute nutcase and that I seriously need help. Sometimes, I think so too, but I am too lazy to do that…