What Single Feels Like


After 3 years of flings, FWBs, hook ups, one night stands and open relationships I am finally 100% unattached and alone. I finished school, moved cities, started a new job and left all my college boys behind.

After my final big break up with the most important relationship of my life I’ve I miss the comfort of having someone I could always rely on. I miss lying in bed next to him. I miss the way he made me feel – the strangest paradox of confident but vulnerable, sexy but goofy.

It’s been two months now and it’s funny – I forgot what it was like to be really and truly alone. Being single is a roller coaster of its own kind, is so much more intense than any of the drama I had in my relationship.

Single feels like losing all control of emotion, for a while. I never cry. But I cried when things started to fall apart. I cried the first night we really talked about ended things. He held me in a parking lot and I collapsed in his arms and wept into his jacket. We fought for hours on the phone and I cried myself to sleep.

But it fades into a deeper sadness that goes beyond tears. The sound of his voice doesn’t make me choke up anymore. I can look at his pictures. I can mention his name. I haven’t cried over him, but the thought of him makes me feel cold and guarded.

Single feels like every chick flick ever made, on the surface. Yes, I ate ice cream. Yes, I wore sweatpants… a lot. Yes, I creeped his Facebook.

I threw myself pity parties. I gossiped over drinks (and more ice cream) with each and every one of my girlfriends about the asshole who dumped me. I went out for girls night and flirted with other guys.

But it was all half-hearted and only half-honest. I did the things I thought single girls are supposed to do. I pretended to be angry because it’s easier than admitting how I’m heartbroken I really am.

Single feels like starting all over again, with less optimism. I’ve started going on first dates. Blind, awkward, online dates. I dress up, I flirt, I say all the right things. I even went home with one of them, and had what was objectively really good sex.

But it feels hollow. I couldn’t care less if I saw any of them ever again. The whole time I compare the new dates to my ex – they never stack up. Or I compare them to my ideal partner but I’m starting to think that he doesn’t exist.

Single feels like ups and downs and questions and doubts. At my best, I take solace in the fact that I am young and have lots of time to date and find someone. I remind myself that I have years until I want to be married or have children and that my love life will work itself out before then.

At my worst, I lie awake at night and wonder if I will ever met anyone who wants more than just casual sex. I wonder if the fact that I’ve never had a “serious relationship” means there is something inherently wrong or unlikeable about me, or if it is just a product of my age and generation. I wonder if I will ever know what love actually feels like.