I love all my friends dearly. And while I know they never mean any offense, I’ve received a few comments lately that stung something fierce. So here is my personal PSA of what not to say to a single someone without a certain someone in their life. Ahem.
1) “You know what you need? To get laid.”
I’ve heard this one twice in the past few weeks alone and both times I winced. (Also, I have had sex within the last few months, so cut me some slack). It should be noted that both offenders are over-the-moon in their relationships. In all honesty, I couldn’t be happier for both of my friends, but like anyone else who ever navigated their way through the dating pool, they each had to kiss some frogs before meeting their Prince Charmings.
It’s not like I pull out my finest muumuus to hit the clubs or that I’ve been hiding under rocks waiting for my knight in shining armor to come find me. Dating is hard. And getting laid? Even harder. I have prospects, but I don’t think getting laid is the answer to all life’s problems. If you’ve been following me for some time, you know I’m not exactly one foot in a monastery, but my search has taken a bit of a turn lately. I want to find something a bit more substantial, so saying something like that is mean and a bit self-righteous.
2) “You should find yourself a boyfriend.”
I’m sorry, did I miss a sale at the Men’s Wearhouse? Or maybe I didn’t RSVP in time for the Available Boyfriend Convention? Perhaps I should head down to the docks and see what Male Imports have arrived.
3) “Maybe you are just too picky.”
Right! I suppose you mean to tell me that I should have given crusty horse penis guy a second chance. How about the stalker who asked me to move in on our first date? Or the guy who cut me off after our second date? Sometimes a mutual attraction just isn’t there and I have to live with that, but accusing me of being the one to let all the good ones go is unfair. I firmly believe I’ll know when I meet Mr. Right and no, I will not settle just for the sake of having a relationship…any relationship.
4) “Maybe you’re not looking in the right places.”
I hate to admit this, because I know they say it happens when you least expect it, but I’m always looking. In line at the health food store. On the path train after a hectic day at work. In my bikram yoga class (though I’m not sure I want to meet someone when I drip sweat from my ears), and on the Internet, since I signed up with OkStupid months ago.
But when people say this, it again fills me with insecurity and sometimes self-doubt. It makes me feel I’m to blame for not hanging out where all the men are secretly hiding. Seriously, where else should I look? The Apple store? A biker bar? Rush concert?!
5) “This is a great wedding! There’s only one thing missing: [name of ex-boyfriend].”
I wish I were kidding about this one. What makes this even worse is that it came from a family member. Though I’m sure he meant well, he suffers terribly from foot-in-mouth syndrome and I had to let it slide. But throughout this entire exchange I stared at him like a deer in headlights while my brain screamed: “DON’T SAY IT! DON’T SAY IT! DON’T SAY IT!”
Mentioning the ex’s name to someone clearly dolled up at a wedding (or at home stuffing her face with peanut butter cups) is a complete no-no. DO NOT remind your single friends of their old flames while they are trying a new normal on for size.
6) “I know what you should try! SPEED DATING!”
I wrote a particular post about this once. Of all the ways to discover other fish in the sea, this one probably interests me the least. I just imagine myself lying in a puddle of sweat or hyperventilating in a brown paper bag at the end of the last round.
Also, if you are in a relationship, please refrain from giving those of us NOT in a relationship unsolicited advice on where to meet men. I shave my legs more now than I ever did when I had a boyfriend–just in case–and I feel like that should count for something.
And don’t you dare tell me I just need to get laid.