I'm 27 and i'm tired of being single. I'm also tired of people asking me whether I fight guys off with a stick, or if I turn a lot of guys down, or if I date a lot of basketball players (because I'm 5'10"), or if i'm single because i'm focusing on school right now. I'm tired of those questions because the answer is an enthusiastic and universal, "NO". Today a lovely married mamma slapped that paper-cut of a sore, when she made a comment that I had also heard too many times: "well you're a catch and maybe guys are intimidated." To that I responded, "well isn't it a shame that a catch should be off limits." I had already been thinking recently about this phenomenon of the beautiful, successful and involuntarily single woman. I think I have been inducted into this sisterhood by default. I am 5'10", with a lion's mane of dark curls--that everyone seems tempted to touch, a ridiculous amount of facial freckles, a modelesque body, enough brains to be a doctor in T minus 6 months, risky yet fabulous fashion sense and an opinion on everything. Oh yes, and drum roll please.....I'm single, go figure.
To the surprise of many, i've been more single than anything else since i've been an adult. Only three boyfriends in over a decade, for a cumulative total of less than a year of my life EVER spent in a relationship. A natural assumption would be that I'm hard to get along with, which is why I am single, despite possessing several attractive qualities. I could vouch for myself and say I'm very easy-going, but maybe that would seem like I was partial to myself. So, instead, I'll give the testimony of my own brother, who enjoys having passionate debates with me, and would be the first person to say I was difficult, if in fact I was such a thing. He once told me that he would love for me to marry a man from a certain ethnic background (which will go unnamed), because he wanted such a man to have the privilege of a woman who was not nagging and negative, like he thought too many women from that group were towards their men. So there, i'm not difficult. To be honest, I am probably too easy-going and do not have enough expectations for the guys in my life--maybe that is what allows them to feel comfortable with me. If I had not ended every relationship that I did not think was the right fit for me, the guys I was either talking to or dating probably would not have broken things off with me. Honestly, i'm really easy to love. And yet... and yet.
So that brings me back to this intimidation issue. Why should a man be intimidated by a beautiful woman who is successful at her endeavors? What part of the equation makes the woman intimidating, her beauty or her success? Is success really the issue or is it that she seemingly does not need a man? Are men only attracted to women that they think need them? I don't know, but I wish I knew. When I gave my universal "No" answer to the older gentleman who asked me if i dated a lot of basketball players in Miami, he followed with this question, "are they blind?" To that I replied, "I don't think the guys of my generation have courage anymore". The word courage seemed to resonante with him, and he needed no futher explanation. What do I mean by courage? It is the guts to risk your pride to make it obvious to a woman that you only have eyes for her; to make the first move; to approach a woman who seems independent, not being nervous that she won't need you, because you realize the asset she is to any strong man. Courage is Barack approaching Michelle, before he was Obama. Too often the only guys who seem to have the guts to risk their pride are those who are shameless. Like the guy on the street who cat-calls to anything with a vagina and legs, or to the guy that could be my dad's uncle's age, and you can just tell he's got a lot of baby-mama-drama in his life. But what about young professionals or young men of integrity? What is their deal? Honestly, I think many of them are lazy. Many are waiting for a good woman to find them. Well, if he is waiting for this catch-of-a lady to vy for his eye, he's just going to keep on waiting. Which stinks for him and also stinks for me.
I don't think i'm old-fashioned to believe that a man should be the one to pursue a woman worth knowing; rather, I'm biased by my own experiences. I have three brothers who are all exceptionally good-looking. When I was in high school, the house phone rang non-stop with teenage girls calling for my brothers. I heard how my brothers treated those girls, what they said within my earshot about them, and how they were nuisances. I also saw one brother chase after a girl, not because she was cute, as my other brother quickly pointed out, but because this girl had not given my brother the time of day. So to all those guys who say they like women to make the first move, I say, "you're full of it. Tell the truth and shame the devil. You know that in the end you are going to end up with the girl you pursued. Everyone else might just qualify to be kept around for fun or for a booty call."
Not every beautiful and successful woman gets inducted into this involuntarily single sisterhood. I have a friend who is sexy along with being very successful, and she can't go a day without being single. She once told me she did not understand why some women were single and could not land a man. For her, the phone does not stop ringing. Now that I think of it, maybe it's like the phenomenon of Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Aniston. Both successful, both stunning, but the one that oozes sex appeal never sleeps alone and the other is involuntarily single. Am I a Jennifer? And if so, what is wrong with that from the man's perspective?