How I Learned To Be OK With The Fact I've Never Had A Boyfriend At 23

by Anastasia Robinson

I'm 23, and I've never had a real romantic relationship. OK, well, I'm almost 23. But, what are a few more months going to do?

I'm a college graduate, and I'm working a full-time job. It's not anywhere close to my field of study, but which job is these days? I'm also perpetually single.

I haven't had one romantic relationship in my life. Sure, I've flirted with flings, gone on terribly bad blind dates and even tried some dating websites. (No, I don't mean Tinder. Although, I will admit to thinking about it in my dark moments.) Yet, I can't seem to find someone who I actually have enough interest in (or vice versa) to go on more than one date with. I'm stuck.

Now, no one can say anything to me others have not said, or that I haven't told myself 1,000 times before. There are the positive reinforcements from family and friends, like, "Oh honey, guys are just intimidated by you," or "You're just going after the wrong kind of guys."

Then, you have the misguided, but well-meaning people who say, "I don't know how you are single. You would make an awesome girlfriend." It takes all I have to just shrug it off while my inner monologue is screaming, "Well, geez. I haven't thought about the million reasons I am single. Thanks for pointing them out."

Then, of course, you have the mean-spirited comments. I'll admit those are mostly from the evil little voice inside my head. They say, "It's because you're ugly and fat," or "You are far too annoying for anyone to want to spend extended periods of time with you."

For years, I tried to find the answer to the question, "What is wrong with me?" I couldn't fathom why I had never had a boyfriend at 17, 18 and now 23. There must be something I do or part of who I am that is so repulsive to the opposite sex that no one will go near me.

But, I was asking all the wrong questions. There is nothing wrong with me. There never was. I am single for a reason. Maybe I haven't fully figured out that reason just yet, but I am not going to stop looking.

I am independent. I always have been, so I don't need a relationship to survive. Would it be nice to have someone there while I am feeling alone? Absolutely. But when — and not if — I find someone, I know I will stay with him because I want him in my life, and not just because I need someone.

That is the most important thing for both me and others like me. We are comfortable and sufficient while we're single because we have to be. But the truth is, I haven't met many people like me. I can barely think of one or two people who have gone this long without even the hope of a significant other. I know there must be people out there, but I hadn't found any.

Then, I thought, "Well, why don't I bring it up?" I never speak out for the small population of men and women who feel as if they aren't worthy of love. Why don't I change the fact that the only time this is brought up is in order make fun of it, instead of actually discussing how it makes people feel? Why don't I reach out to those who think they are alone?

So, here I am, writing this while I watch the rain come down. I'm hoping my words will find someone and let him or her know he or she is not alone. Although society tells us we're strange and begs us to find fault in ourselves, I want to try to let these people know it isn't true.

Just know there is something better out there. Maybe being single is going to save you from terrible heartbreak. Maybe your great love just isn't ready to meet you yet. Maybe you need to follow your dreams wherever they take you.

You never know. But, don't give up hope you will find happiness, with or without a significant other. I will never stop believing I'm single for a reason, even if it's just to tell others they are not alone.