I’ve Never Been in Love

NOVEMBER 4, 2014

Photo: Emily Long

I’ve never been in love. In fact, I’ve never really, properly, been asked out.

Men don’t seem to feel like approaching me unless they are either drunk out of their mind or divorced dads with kids my age. I’m the girl with the online dating profile who gets nothing but creepy messages. I’m the girl who has always been single. This is not for a lack of trying. I’ve done the online thing. I’ve been honest with people and allowed myself to be completely and utterly vulnerable. I’ve even done the eye contact, arm brush at the bar. I’ve walked the clothing line between sophisticated and slutty. Still, I always end up with nothing.

I’m the girl hanging out alone at the bar while her friends are in close conversation with a guy. I’m the awkward girl at the party. I’ve searched my mind for years to figure out where I’ve gone wrong, placing the problem solely within myself. At times, I have given up completely and tried to accept that I could be alone forever.

Sometimes, I think I’ll be more proactive but, truthfully, I’ve run out of ideas. I’m just single for now. The past two years of my life have been full of change. There’s been heartbreaking loss, grief, dropping out of a graduate program that wasn’t right for me, planning adventures on my own, and a general reconnection with parts of my life I had to let go of for awhile. All in all, I’ve changed a lot but being single has been the one constant.

I go back and forth between being super optimistic about future relationships and completely hopeless. I always say I’m fine being single but deep down I’m not. I feel like I would have a lot to offer someone but, maybe I’m completely wrong. Ultimately, I’m tired of trying to meet people and I’m tired of getting my hopes up only to be disappointed. I have accepted that no matter how much work I’ve done on myself (hello, therapy!), I still want to share my life with another person. No matter what point I’ve been at in my life, I’ve always wanted this one thing that just hasn’t happened. They say it happens when you least expect it, but I’m never expecting it and it still hasn’t happened.

And now, I admit that perhaps this line of thinking is not the healthiest. I know that I can be obsessive and ruminative, and this is something that matters to me so, of course, it pulls on that tendency. I also admit that because it’s been so long I tend to immediately think, “Why would anyone be interested in me?” I write off everything before it can begin because I don’t give myself enough credit.

So…I’m changing my outlook. I’m going to get dressed up and not care if I’m alone. I’m going to let myself cry about it when I feel like crying about it. I’m going to walk into a room and internally declare, “Why not me?” And, we’ll see how that goes.



  • Mika 3 years ago

    This is eerie because as I was reading this I thought I could’ve written this myself without knowing it. I am in the same boat as you and I’ve always thought of myself weird because I seem to have gone a different path than what normal women go through. Everyone seem to have a love story to tell. Me I have snippets. The sad thing is that most of the romantic part came from my overactive imagination and how I interpreted what was going on at the time. It’s sad.

    Right now i’m in a path of working on myself. To be the person that I always dreamed of becoming. Slowly i’ll get there. I am a bit busy now, eliminating some of the time that I spend thinking and eventually formulating negative thoughts. I’m also keeping my doors open just in case that person do come along. But for now I refuse to feel like shit about myself because i haven’t been in a proper relationship ever in my life. I’m 30 by the way.

    • Emily Long 3 years ago

      Mika – I love the attitude! Why should we let our relationship statuses define us? Go show the world how awesome you are. Oh, and you’re definitely not weird or alone in this.

  • Rebekah 3 years ago

    You are not alone! I’ve been asked out but I’ve never been in a proper relationship either. I used to be super obsessive about it but then I joined a recovery program and that’s helped sooo much. At this point I’m enjoying my life, my friends, my adventures, and I’ve made peace with the fact that I’ll be OK no matter what (i.e. I may be single for the rest of my life or I may meet someone in the next few months and either option is fine). Also, our society talks about dating like buying a pair of shoes, but really it’s not the same. There’s a bit of magic and mystery involved and when/if I’m supposed to meet someone, I will, and not a minute before. I can’t force this stuff no matter how hard I try (and believe me, I’ve tried!).

  • Nika 3 years ago

    I read this and it just felt like I could have been the one who wrote it. I always felt like I am the only one and the pressure that comes from society somehow made me feel like I have to find someone and that there really must be something wrong with me. This whole thing sometimes just stresses me out so much. I am 23, I have never had a boyfriend, I have never gone further then a kiss and I kind of believe this is what is keeping me from just meeting someone, just flirting. I am so scared that that person just might not understand. I have days where I really don’t care and enjoy the single life I have always lived, but I have days where I just wan’t to have that someone. I love the idea of thinking when/if I am meant to meet that special person it will just happen, I am just not very patient. I just want to know how that kind of love feels….

    • Kate 3 years ago

      Wow! Like the others said I feel I could have written this. Nika I am 26 but other than that you could have been describing me. I have faith that it will happen but sometimes, like now, I search for answers. I am thankful I came across this post and know that I am no alone in this feeling!

  • Regina 2 years ago

    I was also single my whole life and now i’m kind of afraid, i wouln’t even know what to do if i found someone. But i will not let this bring me down because i’m sure, he is out there and soon we will meet! You should always try to be the happiest you can be despite every situation you are facing. This is the only why to change it. Try the “law of attraction” . i just found out about it and it already helped me a lot to understand. I know it sound like cheap advertisment but im serious just google it, it was on Opra! Hang in there girls, we can do this and we are all woth of love :)