It fit in a way that made me smile. I would have to go braless or wear one of those stick on bras (which I didn’t currently own) but I could see myself wearing this dress just for the fun of it.
Which was pretty much how I lived most of my life now. For the sheer joy of living.
The salesgirl’s voice interrupted my musings.
“Oh he will propose for sure when he sees you in that!” She smiled brightly at me.
“Who will?” I asked wondering if she had mistaken me for someone else.
“Your boyfriend silly,” she giggled conspiratorially. “No more waiting for that ring!”
I laughed out loud now certain she had mixed me up with another shopper. “Oh I don’t have a boyfriend!” I turned back to the mirror still enjoying the look of this dress.
“Oh, I just always assumed that you…” her voice trailed off. “Well never mind’ her tone back bubbly again ‘you’ll catch one for sure in that dress!”
I turned away from the mirror again. Now confusion on my face. “I’m not looking for a boyfriend.” I started to turn back around.
The girl chuckled nervously. “Of course you are hun. We all want a guy to take care of us.”
I froze. Now staring at my bewildered face in the mirror as I heard her voice as though from a distance.
“All girls want a boyfriend, marriage, kids…right?”
Like a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming truck, the question hit me square between the eyes. Is this what all girls want?
And if so, why don’t I?
Science tells us that evolution is dependent on the survival of the species. And to do that we must mate and procreate. But humans have evolved (I hope) way past the grunt and grind of our most basic instincts into intellectual beings capable of forming a variety of healthy connections.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love a good rough and tumble, and I ADORE my male counterparts. But to assume that EVERY woman wants to partner up, shack up, tie the knot, jump the broom, and pop out little mini me’s seems to be taking the concept a bit too far.
Why on earth would I have to want a boyfriend?
And is there something wrong with me for not desiring one?
My dating history is like falling through the pages of an adventure novel. I don’t do apps, abhor blind dates, and if you tell me you have someone who would be “perfect for me”, I might just get up and leave the room, or the country. (Seriously. It wouldn’t be the first time.) Stuff like that doesn’t appeal to me at all.
Now no shade intended to those who like those types of interactions, it just doesn’t feel natural to my way of living. I tend to meet people in real life random moments, and have hopped planes (or they have) to have romantic weekends together. My life doesn’t follow the traditional layout society seems to expect, and I’m okay with that. More than okay. I love it this way.
I also have no checklist of things I must do. You know the one we women seem to be taught as kids: School, serious relationship, marriage, first home, career, kids, retirement, etc. I have done some of these things, and no my little busy bodies, I’m not telling you which ones. That’s private.
But I will say I didn’t do the things I’ve done because I was following a life plan. I did them because, at the time, I thought of it as another adventure. And it was. Until it wasn’t and I moved on to the next adventure.
I also avoid the stereotypical first date in a restaurant like the plague. There is nothing worse than sitting down to a nice meal and suddenly have the person across from you start firing off questions as though you are on a bad interview:
“What was your last relationship like?”
“How long did it last?”
“Why did you breakup?”
“What are you looking for?”
Nausea usually sets in around this point as I push the now congealed food around my plate and try to change topics to something more interesting. But often the drive to FIGURE ME OUT pushes the man to get me to open up.
It never goes well for him when this happens.
“I was hoping to find out if I liked the way you smelled, tasted, talked, before I decided what I might want for the rest of our lives…and if I wanted to talk about my ex, he would be here with us.”
I’ve been told that in the rare moment when I fire off comments like this, I sound like a gunslinger facing off in a duel. Bam. Bam. You’re dead.
It’s not an inaccurate description. For a girl with a lot more tact and finesse and a belief in treating others kindly, you can tell when I am just beyond annoyed. Who thought these types of dates are pleasurable?
So I have banned them from my experiences. I’ll go to dinner with you, AFTER I have spent time with you and know that you are NOT going to interrogate me like a prisoner of war to divulge all my secrets.
I’m actually laughing now thinking of this. Because in truth I rarely “date” anymore. Instead I seem to simply meet the man (or men) I connect with instinctively, and then organically fall into some type of something with them.
Notice I didn’t say boyfriend/girlfriend.
Because in fact it is rare that I call anyone by that designation nowadays. I have lovers, partners, sweethearts, and playmates. But boyfriends? That seems to be reserved for the couples looking for the white picket fence experience.
Of which I am DEFINITELY not.
Actually I am never looking at all. And that seems to be the most confusing thing for people.
Take this past summer when I had gone into a local bar to listen to the live music. I ordered a drink, chatted and smiled with the bartender and people around me, and then sang along happily to the band’s tunes.
I arrived alone. I love to go places on my own. I get to BE in the experience without having to worry about entertaining someone else who is there for me, when I am there for the music.
But as I shifted on the bar stool that night, I realized I was stuck. Literally. The guy next to me with his friends had rested his foot on my stool and pinned my long skirt to it.
I tapped him on the shoulder. “Excuse me, you’re on my skirt.” He turned around, his whole face lighting up when he saw me. (No vanity here when I say I looked cute. I like getting dressed in pretty clothes. FOR ME.)
I pointed to his foot and he quickly laughed and apologized. He began alternating talking with the couple he was with, and me. Even offered to buy me a drink as an apology. No harm, and I said yes as it all seemed friendly.
“So are you waiting on someone?”
“Nope. Just here for the music.” I replied with a smile.
“No seriously,’ he interjected ‘did you get stood up - although the guy would be a fool.”
“No, I really just came for the music.” I smiled and thanked him for the drink and turned back to the performers.
“Wait what? You came here alone?!” He kept going on and on, questioning me for a while in that vein, but you get the point.
I get this reaction A LOT.
It’s as though people, and NOT just men, cannot possibly believe that I would go OUT on my own. Sans wing person, sans male “chaperone”, sans group, sans girl tribe. It’s like I cannot exist without someone there to KEEP an EYE on ME, or show that I am part of something. Nor is it within the realm of possibility that I might go out WITHOUT an ULTERIOR MOTIVE.
Like to find a MAN.
It often surprises people to find that I am not looking. As though it is unwomanly, unnatural, and unacceptable for me to adore my life as is, without a serious and committed partner in it.
Incidentally, I’m not opposed to having one. I just have no interest in “finding” one. Life is awesome with or without someone by my side all the time.
It also confounds people when I say I am not lonely. After all, I don’t have a man to come home to. So therefore in their eyes I must be pining away eating pints of ice cream and watching girly romcoms each night.
(Note: I don’t own a TV, I don’t have any subscriptions to TV or movie sites, and I don’t eat tons of sugar since I’m hyperactive. So sorry folks, that little sad girl fantasy you’ve created of me doesn’t actually exist in reality.)
Now I’ve lived with partners before and it was nice. But I also love my freedom and my space. Plus even when I go out alone, I meet people, have vibrant experiences, and am fully immersed in my community. I don’t need to be in a relationship to have someone to do stuff with -if I so desire.
It’s also not in dispute that I adore the male species either. If you are waiting for a man-hating diatribe to start you’ve come to the wrong place. It’s true I would rather pick my vibrator and a good book over a bad date, but that’s just good sense. Who wants to waste an evening off with someone they are not interested in being with?
And for those who are interested (which seems to be a lot of you), yes, my sex life is active and healthy and thriving. (Safely of course.)
When I CHOOSE to share my bed, my energy, my passion, I have no lack of offers. I will admit that 99.9% of those offers I politely decline, as I treasure my body and energy too much to play with someone who I don’t feel some type of real connection with - casual or serious. But that’s just a sign of respect to myself, and to someone else. I wouldn’t waste their time and energy either.
Furthermore, I am fully capable of providing for my needs, wants, desires. I may be a bit of a princess but I slay my own dragons, create my own little kingdom, and don’t need rescuing from any white, black or purple people eater knights in shining whatever.
In short, I am completely perplexed by why anyone would look at me, at my life, and assume it is lacking or that I need to have someone by my side to make it be “complete”.
So back to the dress from the beginning of the tale. Standing in front of that mirror, listening to the shop girl yammering on to re-assure me that “someone would see me in it and sweep me off my feet”, I came to an important realization.
Perhaps she was right. That IS what every GIRL wants.
But I am not a girl. I’m a woman. And what I want is to continue to live my life, on my terms, as I have always done.
I bought the dress. I wear it for me, and it feels FABULOUS against my skin.
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Tink, world traveler, positivity muse, and adult entertainer, has also freelance written for a number of companies as their ghostwriter. Now talking directly to YOU on this platform, she is also writing two books at her community's request.