In the fourth series of regular columns about modern gay life, sex and relationships, Anthony Gilét celebrates the single (and simple) life…
They say, “only God can judge me”, and as I sat grotesquely hunched in one of his pews, no underwear, four hours sleep, and hiding behind my crooked sunglasses, I’m sure he was. And he was probably saying, "get out of my house of worship, whore".
It may not be deemed “appropriate”, but the real crime here was having to attend a church service after spending half the night having sex in a hotel. And on the hottest day of the year, too. I was sweating like… well, like a whore in church.
You see, there’s a common misconception about single people; that we’re all eagerly waiting for Mr. Right to burst into our lives, sweep us off our feet and take us off into the sunset... We’re not. At least, not yet
In fact, the only thing I am patiently waiting for is Britney’s Billboard performance.
My case in point: Were you ever about to embark on the walk of shame and said something throwaway like “speak soon”, or “well, you have my number” as a polite departure?
Only for him to turn around and bark, “Yeah, sure… I’ve got a very busy work week” or some shit. Well, this is what had happened that very morning.
So colour me confused. Why is one’s work schedule any more relevant to me than, say, the offside rule?
Oh wait, he’s already making an excuse to not call me, before he doesn’t call me? Some people’s organizational skills blow my mind; I couldn’t even find my y-fronts.
Who, dear? Me, dear? Waiting by the phone, dear? I’m afraid you have me horribly mistaken for someone else, dear. Yeah, so if you could kindly back the fuck up until you hit the ‘Reality Check’ sign, that’d be great.
This comes a few months after a casual encounter ushered me out of his apartment when I already had my coat on. I hadn’t actually planned on hanging around like a fart in a sock, so not entirely sure why you’re manhandling me like a skinhead Geordie bouncer called Steve.
And yet still, every time I decline when an over-zealous family friend asks, “so, are you seeing anyone?” I receive a sympathetic head nod as if I’ve just told them I have a terminal illness. The only thing that’s terminal around here, is the delusion that we’re miserable without men.
Where did this disillusion that single people aren’t happy arise from? Anybody who’s been hurt enough times knows, sometimes there’s nothing less appealing than speeding into the next big emotional car crash.
When you feel pressured to settle down, dating becomes a chore. I’ve got enough deadlines at work, cheers, don’t need one on my future fella too. And it’s not that independent singles are opposed to falling in love, we just don’t fall head over heels every time we trip and land in someone else’s bed.
And this is why dating and relationships get complex, because people think that sex means more than just sex. When quite frankly, they probably weren’t even thinking about you when they climaxed. Everything rapidly becomes simpler as soon as you realize that most men have sex because they’re horny, not because they want love.
In a nutshell: sex and emotions often don’t mix – not at first anyway. Which is why if you think a guy has actual potential it’s worth thinking about keeping these two entities separate for a bit. Or at the very least don’t be shocked when he falls off the face of the Earth the second he pulls out.
People get so wrapped up in the idea of having a husband, that they forget it’s hard work, compromise and a shit load of energy. So it’s no wonder that people plodding along in relationships often envy our single shoes.
Not to mention that real life kind of creeps up on you; one minute you’re in school faking your own death just to get out of PE, the next you’ve got a ball-busting boss, bills and bed-hopping boyfriends, and need two bottles of white just to make it through a Tuesday.
We all know that one person who alienates all of their friends for a relationship that was kinda over before it began. And while that’s OK for them, the independent single is happy finding themselves first; whether that’s in another country, chasing their dream career, or in getting rogered in bush on Clapham Common.
The thing about the ‘independent single’ is that they’re content because they don’t rely on a man - not for money, not for companionship and certainly not for post-sex pleasantries. And that’s not to say we should burn our briefs and go collecting STIs like Pokémon, but it doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate being single while we still are.
So rather than wishing our life away, here’s to us independent singles, living in the moment, before we’re shackled down by mortgages, kids and intrusive in-laws; making it on our own, and running free in a world that often doesn’t see how fabulous we are.
Anthony Gilét is a London-based writer, blogger and YouTuber – follow him on Twitter @Anthony_Gilet.
More from Single & Fabulous?:
'Why it's time to dump your sack of relation-sh*t'
'How a lonely Valentine’s taught me a valuable lesson in love'
'Why are we so perfless to resist certain men, even the wrong ones?'