Love can suck it…
I hate to say it but I’m one of those millennials- advertising doesn’t faze me. It’s the same with most millennials- traditional ads don’t have an affect on us. I’ve been in the ad business for sometime now and I know a ton of marketing tricks- product placement, influencers, DOOH, geotargeting… my eyes glaze over posts when scrolling social media accounts. I may look at an ad for a nanosecond but then the message flies out of my brain and I immediately forget the messaging. I installed AdBlocker on all my devices so I don’t have to bother with someone trying to sell me something. I don’t mean to be jaded about it advertising- or maybe I am? I guess you can say the same thing about love…
Let me introduce to my friends- Friend A, Friend B, Friend C and Friend D.
Friend A– Single. Desperately wants to be in a relationship. Plays by the “rules.” She’s on a bunch of dating apps and receives many messages (in one day, SIXTY messages!) But then is often ghosted or stood up on their first date. Is she acting too desperate?
Friend B– Single but wants someone special. Frequent Tinder/Bumble/Hitch user. Meets guys offline for drinks but always goes back to ex-boyfriends (and their beds). There is too much former temptation.
Friend C– Recently divorced. Was happy to get out of her failing marriage and is ready to swear off men for the rest of her life (“thank God for dildos,” as she puts it) unless the perfect man (i.e. Channing Tatum) comes into her life. Every guy she meets is a quote-unquote dirty bag.
Friend D- Single for a year or two. Is currently dating couple of guys but hasn’t experienced any sparks. The men she’s meeting are nice but they aren’t exactly who she’s looking for. She wants to give up.
I would like to introduce you to my Jaded in Love friends. We drink way too many brunch mimosas as we talk about our favorite subject: love and all that comes with it. It’s amazing what my friends think about the L word and relationships. They are strong, smart women who have been burned by men and are having difficulty finding quality me to date, let alone marry. Lately, they have been chatting about never finding anyone and settling down to a life of singlehood (um… nope). Me, being the relationship Pollyanna, try to give my friends advice. Get off the apps, I say. When you’re supposed to meet someone, that someone will turn up in your life. Paradoxically, when you stop looking, the right person turns up. Or- pick one and see what happens (I’ve had this exact conversation before, minus the Elmo and Cookie Monster voices- “just take a bite!”). I know that there are a TON of options on OkCupid but you have to choose one. Despite my efforts, my friends leave the bar refusing to go to any more weddings of happy couples, looking down on themselves and feeling alone.
I hate that my friends were screwed over and I get it- dating, relationship, it all can be awful (been there, done that plenty of times). They can suck. You’re tired of trying. You’re tired of getting hurt. You’re tired of being unappreciated and giving your all especially if you realize that your partner isn’t in it for the long haul. You’re burnt out and when you are, it’s hard seeing the good in people. It’s hard being vulnerable. It’s even hard to put on lipstick and a cute dress when you know it won’t impress. So, how do we get rid of such feelings?
The thing with being jaded is that you’re fixated on past pain- and that’s what I tell my friends. Being jaded is a defense mechanism that helps people rationalize their bad dating life and relationship experience. I feel like my therapist when I tell them to dig deeper into their dating psychosis. That includes the pain. You can notice it, acknowledge it and move on. The past is in the past. And this is coming from someone who is always living in the past. What is responsible for those issues- an ex? Daddy issues? If you’re still hurting over an ex, try to appreciate what you had while you were together. It was one part of your life that you should be grateful for- find the learning lessons (but remember that he’s an ex for a particular reason). Break down those issues.
You will find your Ricky.
There are good people out there. Sometimes, they’re not online. They’re your friends. Your coworkers. Your next door neighbor. Get out of your shell and get out there. But don’t rush things. My mom once said that love is like cooking arroz y gandules– you need to let it simmer before it gets tasty. And remember that people different- one may think that “all guys are dogs” but there is a single man out there who is kind and generous and wants to give someone like you the world. We also put so much emphasis on the total package- looks, personality, security. Believe me, Channing is nice to look at but that guy at the end of the bar will always make you laugh and buy you your favorite flowers. Give him a chance, too. Be open and just try.
And remember that dating is supposed to be fun. Fun, I tell you! If it’s not, then you’re doing something wrong.
To my friends- you will find that love you so deeply desire soon. I promise. Stay hopeful- love comes when there’s hope. Until then, I will continue to buy y’all champagne and orange juice.
Are you jaded over love, dear reader? What else are you not feeling?