As a single woman over 30 I'm often bombarded with the inevitable, "so, are you seeing anyone?" question, and right now I have to stop myself from saying, "I just can't be bothered with dating right now" because I don't think people will understand (especially Grandma- you know how Grandmas are). Maybe it's the Holiday hang-over, I mean, you can only be asked if you're dating someone so many times by so many people at so many parties before you start to think, "maybe I should date more?" Even if you're quite happily not dating.
Because let's not forget: dating isn't easy, and dating with a chronic syndrome like Fibromyalgia is less easy still, but between all well-intentioned questions and the "New-Year-Means-I-Must-Make-Changes-Fever" going around, I found myself tossing around the idea of maybe trying online dating again (I've tried online dating before [for about two weeks, two different times], and I live in a small town and have very few friends as I only moved here last year, so online dating is pretty much my best bet to meet someone, especially as I don't get out much because of Fibro) but I just can't get excited about it!
Both times I tried online dating in the past I found so few people that seemed actually interesting, and so many guys that were actual douchebags it just doesn't seem worth it now that I really think about it to try again if I'm not really into the idea of dating right now (and if we're being honest, I just don't think that being annoyed with people asking you if you're dating is enough of a reason to start dating), so if you like me, can't be bothered with actively dating right now- know you aren't alone!
Not only have I not been really intrigued by anyone I've found online (even the ones I ended up going on dates with, as it turns out- granted, I've only tried like 4 apps, all free, and maybe I should try others, or a more vigorous screening process, I know, I know), but dating itself takes a certain amount of mental, physical, and emotional energy- energy that I'm not interested in spending on anyone other than myself at this particular moment, and I do NOT feel bad about that.
I have a job, manage an online community, write a weekly blog, and on top of that I have other commitments, hobbies, chores, priorities and goals, plus family and friends- and thanks to Fibromyalgia, a lot of symptoms but NOT a lot of energy. I'm a Type-A personality with a lot of drive in a body that needs constant maintenance and rest, which means that I spend pretty much all of my energy on me, and frankly, I just can't get excited about giving that energy away to swipe through people, talk to people, potentially go out and meet someone I probably won't find that interesting when I could do something to better my career, or help manage my health, or do something I'm ACTUALLY interested in. Dating seems to be a numbers game (accompanied by a lot of unsolicited pictures of genitalia), and right now all I can say is, "Thanks, but no thanks. Maybe later?"
Maybe if I wasn't so satisfied with my own company, or so busy, or if I didn't have serious personal goals, or maybe if something happened to Netflix or my book collection I'd feel differently, but I honestly enjoy spending time alone, and with my other relationships I'm lucky in that I find that I don't really get lonely - so now I'm wondering why I even thought about re-downloading those apps in the first place.
At this point, I feel like I need to say that not having an online dating profile doesn't mean that I'm not putting myself out there somehow (the last person I went on a few dates with I met at an event- yes, real life!), or that not actively dating makes me less of a woman somehow, so what was that even about when I'm perfectly happy using the energy that I have on me and my needs? I'm open to meeting someone, but I'm not willing to chase it or expend energy I don't have to do it. I don't really like online dating, so why would I go out of my way to do something I don't like?
I know there are a lot of "Own Your Singledom" articles out there, but I wanted to add my thoughts to the mix. I want to remind you that it's okay to be selfish. It's okay to put yourself first. It's okay to use everything you have on you to just keep going, and anything that may be left over to better yourself or see your friends instead of go on a date. It doesn't mean you're closed-off. It doesn't mean you're not "open" or "putting yourself out there," it simply means that one aspect of your life isn't as much of a priority right now as other things are- and that's okay.
P.S. If you decide you do want to put your energy into dating, that's okay too. (Just be sure you're doing it for you, not because other people expect you to.)
-FSC Founder and Fabulous Fibro-Fighter-