Because dating in your twenties is both exhausting and amphibian filled.
1. I’m 25, that’s halfway to 50 which is halfway to death. I am going to die alone.
2. I need a drink. And Taylor Swift.
3. How young is too young to join Match.com? I think it’s time.
4. I really need to start meeting people in real life. Where do people meet people?
5. Why aren’t my friends replying to my messages?
6. I might as well adopt a few cats.
7. I am allergic to cats.
8. Fuck I’m drunk.
9. When did my life become a plain-shoed parody of SATC?
10. Ben and Jen broke up!?!?! How am I supposed to believe in love now?! If Chris Pratt and Anna Faris break up I am done.
I can be alone without Yoko, but I just have no wish to be. There’s no reason on earth why I should be alone without Yoko. There’s nothing more important than our relationship, nothing. And we dig being together all the time. Both of us could survive apart but what for? I’m not going to sacrifice love, real love for any whore or any friend or any business, because in the end you’re alone at night and neither of us want to be. And you can’t fill a bed with groupies. It doesn’t work. I don’t want to be a swinger. I’ve been through it all and nothing works better than to have someone you love hold you.
A rite of passage in the dating game is having that “What was I thinking!?” relationship. You know the one – thoughts of him embarrass you, thoughts of you with him ranges from violent conniptions to flat out denial.
In the early stages of getting to know someone it’s easy to be swept off your feet and dismissive about certain behaviour. Are you really going to end things because he mentioned his ex on a date? So you ignore your intuition. Until one day when your suspicions from that first date is confirmed and you realise that yes; he is still hung-up on his ex.
But now it’s too late to walk away because you’re emotionally invested.
Ladies and Gents, welcome to Red Flag dating. Red means STOP AND GET OUT. No excuses. No benefits of the doubt. Learn what your own personal red flags are, and save yourself a screening of Love Actually and that tub ice cream. Diabetes is not cool, okay?
Common red flags include, but are not limited to:
Including disrespecting you (duh), women in general, your family, waiters and beggars. Just everyone okay?
…early on in the relationship. Except if you’re looking for a rebound, or a good serving of sex sorbet.
Saying I love you too soon
Love is far too serious a thing to be frivolous about. This is a “mean what I say, and say what I mean only” zone thank-you very much.
Pushing your boundaries
This is a biggie. We all have certain “hard boundaries” – things we are not willing to compromise on. This can include views on infidelity, sex, drugs, religion – whatever. Figure out what your hard boundaries are and when Prince Charming comes along don’t compromise on them. If he oversteps your boundaries (or attempts to repeatedly) he is obviously an icky frog.
But perhaps the most important red flag is feeling uncomfortable. If your spidey senses are flaring up – trust them. You don’t need to justify your feelings to anyone but yourself. Intuition is a real thing.
Because breaking up is really really hard to do, you guys.
Ajahn Brahm is pretty much my favourite person on Youtube. His videos are inspiring and accessible, and if you haven’t seen any of his videos yet I highly recommend them. I was recently watching his video about letting go. We all have our challenges, and being able to move on and let go of grudges and pain is important to living a happy and successful life. The one challenge I think everyone can attest to experiencing is letting go of love.
Getting over a breakup is hard. But with a little help from Ajahn Brahm and yours truly, I hope I can make the journey a little more bearable.
Ajahn Brahm’s 4 principles of letting go:
1. Throw things away
Quite literally, make the conscious decision to let go of your relationship. We all have our burdens to bear, but a failed relationship is not one you need to carry with you through life. Imagine yourself filling a balloon with all the hurt, pain, joy and love you felt in your relationship. Feel the good and bad memories of your love leaving your body and inflating your balloon. Then imagine you letting go of the balloon and watching it float up into the most beautiful sky you have ever seen, getting smaller and smaller until it vanishes into nothingness.
If you ever find yourself dwelling on the past – whether it be good or bad memories – inflate a new balloon.
2. Be Content
Understand and believe that where you are at this moment in time is exactly where you are meant to be. When you find yourself fixating on the could have, should have, and would have’s of your relationship, stop your thoughts and repeat, “I want to be here, wherever here happens to be”.
Remember that you broke up for a reason. Maybe you weren’t ready for a relationship. Maybe you wanted different things or shared different values. Whatever the reason, there is a reason. Take this time to grow as a person, and work on aligning who you want to be and who you are. Because when you like who you are, everything else has a funny way of falling into place.
3. Give without expecting anything in return
Demonstrate kindness and love towards your former partner without expecting anything in return and with having absolutely no expectations or demands from them. Think for moment what this means. If you’re tempted to call/text/tweet or even like their status, stop and think why you are doing this. More often than not, it is to benefit yourself. The best way to love them right now is to give them the space and time they need to heal.
Be generous with your time and love towards your family and friends. Work on building a better relationship with yourself, and be grateful for the gifts of life.
4. Have a Teflon mind
Like the non-stick frying pan, don’t allow criticism or compliments to stick in your mind, giving you an inflated or negative sense of self-worth. Be present in the moment and try not to think too much! Easier said than done, I know. I recommend visiting Headspace or the Vajrapani Kadampa Buddhist Centre in Johannesburg if you find yourself overwhelmed by your thoughts.
And my own tip: Love unconditionally.
This is not to say that you should love someone so obsessively that your own cup runs dry. But rather, love your own imperfect being so much that your cup spills over with joy and happiness, and then share that love with others around you. I cannot stress how important it is to love yourself. Take this time to look after your body and soul. This can mean going to the gym regularly, starting a new hobby or taking an active approach towards working on your self-esteem or commitment issues.