I had another lunch with three women I used to work with. All married. All with kids. All of them extroverts. I've not been feeling overly confident lately, and wasn't looking forward to getting together. I dreaded possible questions about my love life. I feel unsettled in my career right now--my business hasn't been very profitable the last two years. I feel I need to be "up" around them. And I know they have no idea what my life is really like. I know they couldn't imagine being single for so long.
One of the women told us about her long-widowed mother who has started seeing someone she ran into at her high school reunion. And I braced myself for what I knew was coming next. One of the other women got a lightbulb over her head and very forcefully told me I should go to my high school reunion because, "A lot of people meet that way!"
I told them that I hated high school and I didn't want to go to any more reunions, which is true. I didn't date in high school, so it's not like I have these old boyfriends I'll run into. Yes, yes, yes, "You never know." But in this case, I think I do. But she was adamant about it, and that's what is so tiring.
Finally the topic changed, but I felt like I just wanted to cry, really. I know they think they are helping. But it mostly just hurts to be the eternally single woman sitting at a table with three married women. I know they must think I have no clue what to do, sort of like if I were overweight, "But have you considered consuming less calories than you burn?" And I know they don't envy my single life, nor would I want them to.
I didn't tell them about the guy I really liked who never called me back in October, nor that I'm on two dating sites at the moment. I just don't want to open it up for discussion, because they will start in with all the usual suggestions. Whatever I do, it will never be enough. I'm not trying hard enough.
On most occassions I'm more gracious about it, but today I wasn't. I thought I would probably cry in the car on the way home but I didn't. I just felt sad. So my advice to coupled women who think they have the answer: stop giving single women adivce. They don't want it. And it hurts our feelings.