Sometimes when I don’t date for a period and I start getting anxious, I tell myself: Look, there’s *actually* an excess of men in the world. Even discounting the gay, the committed, the underage, the incredible trashbags etc, no one’s running out of supply of men anytime soon. 1/
It’s possibly the greatest gaslighting achievement of patriarchy to make us believe that men are at a premium.

Yeah, no. Plenty of men out there.

Taking care of yourself, earning enough, emotional fulfilment, safety: those things are at a premium. Work on achieving those. 2/
And men don’t always function the way you hope them to, especially if you expect those other things from them. In fact, mostly they don’t.

Those things are best sorted out on your own, and suddenly the world will seem full of more dating options than you’ll ever need. 3/
“There are many men but not many dateable men” is NOT the right way of looking at it.

The right way is that there are many men and any of them can *choose* to become dateable and *work* at it and succeed, so really it’s up to men to do better and measure up. 4/
It makes ZERO statistical sense that the group that already has fewer members than the demand for it (women) has to compete within itself to fit an even narrower set of standards.

Men really have no bargaining chip in a society where women are financially independent, socially
secure, allowed to be single if they want, and *shudder* occasionally even date themselves and are fine with it. 5/
Most of these things are old, even outdated theory, entirely cis-focused, but I have to remind myself of them because I was raised within a framework where no matter how accomplished I was, if there wasn’t a man to validate it I‘d be nothing. My mind keeps slipping back to it. 6/
When I look at my friends who are getting married, having children etc, a primitive part of my brain still chides me about how I’m a failure who has made all the wrong choices in life.

How I maybe shouldn’t have left that guy who said he loved me but also destroyed my life. 7/
Sometimes my brain even twists the several violent dysfunctions of that man into inadequacies on *my* part—I didn’t deserve better; he’d have been nicer to me if only I behaved differently; I was a fool to reject that love, such a fool, serves me right I’m growing old alone. 8/
I never want to date anybody again who will only love me “if I behaved differently.” My life is already pretty good. I don’t need to put anything on bargain.

I need to keep reminding myself that, because the temptation of that narrative is so strong. 9/
I will also never date anybody again who isn’t simply a complete joy to date.

I don’t need anybody’s money or status. I’m not here to do free therapy. I’ll do things for my partner out of love and loyalty, which they have to inspire. No other obligation. I’m ok being single. /10
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