One of the secret joys that I derive from being single and dating in Toronto is shocking my coupled and married friends. I can understand their surprise: when you’ve been off the market for a while, you probably haven’t noticed what a shit show modern dating has become. Text breakups, ghosting, dick pics and everything in between, these are the kinds of things we’re dealing with these days. To those who’ve been dating even just a little while, it’s still alarming. And for my friends who found their partners before online and app dating, it’s downright appalling.
While us singles are trying to navigate these new rules of engagement, we share the stories of our trial and tribulations with our coupled-up friends. And, more often than not, we’re offered advice from the wifed and husbanded, whether we ask for it or not. And while I know that these words of wisdom are almost always accompanied by the best of intentions, sometimes all I’m able to do is shake my head at what I’m hearing and reading. And I’m not the only one.
After telling yet another married friend the story of my most recent relationship attempt up in flames, and hearing things like “well did you try texting him?” (duh) and “have you checked his Facebook/Instagram/twitter to see what he’s been doing” (what am I, an amateur?), I found myself envying the naiveté that can only come from being secure in one’s relationship. So I did the only thing a modern woman seeking to commiserate can do: I took to Facebook, where I polled my single girlfriends to see what well-meaning but annoying dating advice and platitudes they’ve heard from their married/taken friends. Here are some of the gems they shared.
Don’t worry, you’ll find someone someday!
Thanks, I’d given up hope entirely until you said that.
Just relax, it’ll happen for you one day.
Except then they always say:
You’ve got to put yourself out there more
But aren’t I just supposed to wait and he’ll turn up?
You’ll find someone when you stop looking/as soon as you stop looking he’ll appear
But if I’m not looking, how will I see him/her?
You’re too intense, try to tone it down
You’re too loud and opinionated
Maybe you did something to scare him away
Is that why they call it ghosting?
You spend too much time with your friends, a guy will think you won’t have time for him
You should spend more time with your friends, maybe you’ll meet someone through them
I know, I’m confused too.
Lower your expectations/sometimes you just have to settle/you’re too picky
I wonder if the people tossing this one out took their own advice.
Try working on yourself more, you have to be happy with yourself before you can find someone
This is a very sensitive. While I read it as, adding a partner should be the gravy to a life you already love, some may not. As a dear friend of mine who works in the mental health industry told me, it’s not fair to dangle the carrot of romantic love and happiness in front of someone who’s struggling with loving themselves for their own reasons. So before you dispense this one, consider your audience.
Date outside your “type”, give other guys a chance
Because I’m purposefully picking guys who will treat me poorly?
You’re too picky
Because I should have a higher standard for shoes than for a mate?
Have you tried dating a shorter guy
Any woman over 5’6 has heard this one.
There are plenty of fish in the sea
By the way, are you on Plenty of Fish?
Have you tried Tinder/Bumble/Happn/insert other new-fangled app/website here
You’re just afraid of commitment and guys can tell
Not true, I’m very committed to myself.
Huge THANK YOU to the smart and sassy single gals that contributed to this piece (you know who you are!)
To anyone else who has received annoying advice, tweet it at us at @weraddicted today!