Spinsterhood: A Personal Choice

Yes, that is correct, I am destined to be one of those women. Feared by children and cats for companions (of course my personal choice would be books and alcohol instead of animals, not so high maintenance), I am only one more lovable feline pet away from becoming a Spinster.

I am 20 years old and I have never been in love, nor have I any desire to one day marry or bring children into this world. After much consideration of past relationships and basic encounters with men, I have decided that the only way to lead my life now is to become a Spinster.

Of course I’ll still maintain relations with men, but I’ll know that only the physical side of things will be involved.

By now, you probably think I’m some cold-hearted cynic, but I assure you I’m not. I am a genuinely nice person.

I’m also not gay. That is not denial. I’ve already been through a phase of questioning my sexuality.

This epiphany occurred to me one Saturday while walking to town for an unplanned window-shopping excursion. I had my usual inner monologue running in my head, which was mainly about the events of the previous night. It had been a usual Friday night and the beginning of the long awaited Easter weekend. The agenda for the night was to begin the weekend with a small pub crawl. The final stop of the night was at The Canterbury Tales, which is the last pub to close in town. We were enjoying ourselves, drinking and conversing the night away, when suddenly out of nowhere a group of in-line hockey boys surrounded us.

They initiated their way into the group with their witty conversation starters consisting of their disgust of us being Literature students in comparison to their pretentiously mighty Science degrees. Of course, this was accompanied with their travelling hands and wandering eyes. The one American guy made a bee-line for me and when I brushed off his advances his other friend tried his luck. I had made my mind up at this point that they were all pretty much a bunch of sleazy arseholes, a theory further proven when one of them called me ‘easy’ because he found out I was an ex-catholic school girl.

My experience of men thus far has either been with sleaze-balls, like the above, or moderately nice guys who I have had to force attractions with; only because I genuinely felt bad that I didn’t feel the same way as them. I feel like I’m numb of any kind of emotion. I have been in relationships, just nothing serious or meaningful, and none of them lasting long enough for a one year anniversary to be celebrated. The ‘L’ word has never been uttered by myself, nor have I ever felt that way towards a man. However, a friend of mine brought something to my attention once, during a night of one too many pints:

Me: “All the guys I ever truly like are either taken or gay! It’s just not fair!”

Friend: “Maybe you are only drawn to them because you know that if you truly had the chance to have something serious you would just run away.”

Of course I denied it to her and to myself at first hearing, but then I realised that there might have been an ounce of truth in what she had slurred to me that night. Her words got me thinking about this guy I was once seriously infatuated with during my first year. I think something serious could have happened with him — if only I had let something happen. He made his moves and I brushed him off. I got scared.

I got scared of what it may have led to because I liked him so much. I knew there was something between us and I knew I would have to let my guard down for him. That scared the sh*t out of me. He was 4th year and has since left, communications were lost and I had forgotten him for a little while, but last weekend I saw him. He also saw me, and he looked away and pretended he didn’t even recognise me. I confess it did hurt, but I couldn’t lament and complain because it was my own fault.

The worst thing is it’s been a week and it is still haunting me, even my dreams (I know it’s cliche). I had dreamt that I hadn’t walked away from him and that I had actually allowed something to happen, and it made me happy. But I reminded myself that it was just a dream and the reality is that I suck at relationships.

So thus after much thought and consideration I have decided that I will never know if I will ever find someone who I can genuinely love. But at the moment nobody has moved to change. So I proposed to myself that instead of wasting my energy lamenting on what I haven’t got, that I focus my energies on what I already have.

Things that are important to me right now, like school, my personal aspirations, friends and family, are what I have. Maybe love will come and maybe it won’t. Maybe all my relationships won’t ever reach anything serious and will just become strings of sexual dalliances. But it’s okay, and I’ll be okay. I am content with this decision. I am not going to search for the One.

I am twenty years old and I’m happy for my friends who have found love and found those who they want to be with for the rest of their lives. It will happen if it is meant to be, because I know that when I do find it I won’t let slip away again. I may find or not find love with someone, but I won’t let it take over my life.

In the words of Kimya Dawson and her song Tire Swing:

‘If I’m a spinster for the rest of my life

my arms will keep me warm on cold and lonely nights’

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