When I ditched the dating apps at the beginning of the year, I told myself that I would have three months off and then I would re-open some of my accounts, potentially explore some different apps and start swiping again. Oh, the delights of dating like a millennial!
Now that these three months are up, I am just not sure I can be bothered. Online dating apps are so bloody boring, conversations can be so tedious, meeting these guys in person can be so disappointing that I just can’t summon up the enthusiasm.
I did have a couple of interesting dates, and an on-off theatre and drinking partner for a bit of last year. Neither of these rendez-vous really led to anything, they were never going to, but if it weren’t for these two guys I would have signed up for celibacy by now. Anyone know of a celibacy cult? I am staunchly secular, so no religious suggestions please.
I am really quite good at being single. I enjoy my own company. I enjoy my evenings when Cygnet is in bed and I can sit with a glass of wine, my blog, a book, my podcasts or Holby City on catch up (my guilty pleasure).
Being single means I can have my dinner with Cygnet at about 6:30pm. We both have a bath. I lie with him until he falls asleep, then I sit down on the sofa in my pyjamas by about 8:30pm. I can’t imagine being able to do that with a partner.
Being single means that my sheets just don’t get dirty. Sharing a bed with a man means you have to change your sheets weekly because they start to smell. Sorry guys! Being single means that I can change them fortnightly or even every three weeks. It’s brilliant!
And then there’s the fact that relationships can be really tough sometimes. Although you may love your partner and can’t imagine life without them, sometimes you might not like them very much. Relationships can be hard work. You really have to put time and effort into them. Being single, I don’t need to do that.
Then we come to Cygnet, the centre of my universe. Cygnet really likes monopolising my attention on the days that we are together. Today, for example, we had breakfast together. We got dressed. He played with his cars in my room whilst I put my make-up on. We got the train and then the underground (his favourite) to London Transport Museum.
We spent a couple of hours climbing on real buses and trains and we had some lunch before getting the train home. We then played football near the garages (I await the complaints from the spinsters downstairs) and planted some broad beans and sweet peas that we are now growing on the kitchen window sill. We came in and I cooked some wiggly worm pasta (which ordinary people call spaghetti bolognese) for our tea. I short, we spent the whole day together, just the two of us. He loves the one-on-one attention and I love it too.
Cygnet is only two and a half and I can see that he really enjoys spending time with me. It is really flattering. I always want to spend time with him. I yearn to spend more time with him. In fact, I often ponder calling in sick at work so that we can spend more time together. I have pulled a sickie on a couple of occasions.
I know that things would be very different if I introduced a new partner into the equation.
Cygnet’s father has just introduced another new girlfriend. The first time this happened, I found the prospect of a step-mother entering the co-parenting relationship really tough, but I don’t think that Cygnet really registered. He had only just turned one.
This time around I am fine with it, we’ve been here before, but Cygnet has definitely registered. Cygnet has registered that there is a woman in Daddy’s bed. Daddy will no longer take Cygnet into his bed when he wakes in the night. Cygnet has been demoted, and although he cannot vocalise it, he knows it.
Don’t get me wrong, Cygnet still likes going to his Daddy’s house (he’s allowed to take a lollipop to bed, what two year old would not like that?), but his enthusiasm has been diluted. When Cygnet returns from his time with his Daddy I get “I love you Mummy” and big hugs and kisses over and over. It feels very special.
I do know that by the time Cygnet reaches six or so, his Daddy will be more important to him than his Mummy. I know that by the time he is ten he will just want to spend time on his video games or with his friends. I suspect by the time Cygnet is a teenager, he will be embarrassed to be seen with either of his parents.
I know that it is a long way off, but I am dreading the time when I need Cygnet more than Cygnet needs me. I know that having a partner would ease this transition. The last thing I would ever want to be is a needy single mother who puts emotional pressure on her son.
I suspect I am worrying prematurely.
I am still pondering the to date or not to date dilemma. Being single certainly isn’t something that I aspire to be forever, but getting coupled again really doesn’t seem like the easy option.
And the dating apps themselves? Well, maybe I just need to look at things differently; they are tedious, they are mundane, they can give you repetitive strain injury from all of the swiping (usually left), but they do at least provide some good stories and anecdotes that I can blog about.
You guys, I am doing this for you. I hope that you appreciate it!