1. “[Your ex] didn’t deserve you.”
Yes, that’s true, but I am still in love with him. Or, at least, have been completely unable to replace him in my life since. So I guess I’m just in love with someone who is way beneath my fighting weight, and am unable to find someone who actually does deserve me to take his place. In fact, I’m not really sure what it means to deserve someone at all, considering it was he who dumped me and I who begged to get him back. If we’re talking about who deserves what, maybe we should start with the idea that no one deserves to feel like you feel when you’re dumped, but it still happens every day anyway.
2. “Don’t ever settle!”
I have the vision in my head of my fairy tale prince who looks exactly like Chris Evans and works at some job which simultaneously makes him enormous amounts of money, leaves him ample free time to make love to me, and is richly fulfilling on an emotional level. He spends his spare time putting casts on puppies with broken legs and telling me how ravishing I look in my ugly old house dress. Even though I suppose they’re fairly high as far as ideals go, you’re all telling me to reach for the stars and go for what I “deserve” — there’s that word again — so I guess I will just keep looking until I find him.
3. “You gotta get back out there and meet people!”
Okay, so I should just abandon my standards and accept a date with whatever rabid opossum comes up to me off the street for the sake of “getting back out there?” The dating pool is not an actual pool, and I don’t need to be constantly treading water to stay afloat in it. Sometimes you can just be by yourself — particularly if you are constantly being told to never settle for anything less than what you really want.
4. “Take this time to work on yourself.”
What does this even mean? Like, as soon as you get into a relationship suddenly your ability to focus on anything internal is completely vaporized, and all you do is stare longingly into one another’s eyes while contemplating the philosophical implications of their freckles? And then, when you’re single, you break out some magic toolbox of emotional development and — do what, exactly? Find a dynamite job? Travel the world? Start a non-profit organization and go on MSNBC to pimp it out? Maybe, I guess. But what if your life just continues on normally, only without a significant other? Am I still working on myself?
5. “My aunt never got married, and she is perfectly happy!”
Thank you for confirming that my interlude of singledom immediately leads you to imagine me at the age of 70, completely surrounded by old newspapers and cat food, just like your spinster aunt. I appreciate the thought.
6. “Dating is so overrated anyway.”
Yeah, I should probably just ignore every single sign in society which points me to the fact that I am not complete without someone else. This whole “love” thing everyone keeps talking about — you know, the thing that is the basis of endless movies, books, conversations, and the vast majority of pop music — it’s whatever, really. I’m just gonna forget about trying to find a partner altogether and return to my true calling, looking at shit on the internet alone in the middle of the night for hours on end.
7. “You won’t be a third wheel, don’t worry!”
Can’t wait to be on edge until I find out if this is going to be an “awkward bickering that I should not be witness to” or “constant footsie and lovey talk which makes every moment unbearable” kind of night. And then I can’t wait to decide which one would actually be worse!
8. “You’ll definitely find love!” [Embraces current partner]
As much as I love being told that I am going to find my mysterious happy ending by some couple who is so in love that they can’t imagine that everyone else in the world isn’t as happy as they are, they have to know that that kind of talk is just an eensy weensy bit condescending. Yes, I’m sure my prospects look really good from your position. And I know that you are both officially cheerleaders for Team Love. But it’s hard to get excited about my life when I’m being told that I just have to keep looking by someone who clearly already found it a long time ago. I don’t need your optimism rubbed in my face, I’m trying to do the mature thing and stay negative. Go away.