Addicted readers, in case you havent cottoned on yet (such an underused turn of phrase) I am single. A state I’m in apparently of my own making.
My whole life i’ve been told “don’t cut your hair too short, boys won’t like you” or “don’t be such a party animal, you’ll never find a boyfriend that way” or “men are initimidated by your job/jobs/car/apartment, don’t show those things off.” Lately it’s been “don’t spend so much time with your male friends, other men will think you’re not available.” It generally comes down to a huge list of don’ts that, summed up, define my entire existence and lifestyle.
Of course, being the kind, gentle soul that I am, I immediately acquiesced to these terms. Not.
I think the larger question here isn’t the length of my hair or the make of my car, or even my uncanny ability to pound back straight brown liquor. The question is, Who are these men? Are they in this city? do i know them? Have I met them? Have I already slept with them? WHO ARE THEY?
That is where “the nebulous man concept” comes in.
I define the nebulous man as “the concept of a man that a woman should aspire to acquire.” He’s the mythical dream husband or boyfriend. He’s the man that you’re striving to make yourself good enough for by changing all those things about yourself that you or those around you are telling you are going to surely be off putting to said man. He’s the man that I frankly no longer give a F**k about.
In my more youthful and naive days I would take boys into consideration when making life decisions. I put off getting braces for over a year worrying that it would be off putting to men, and when I finally bit the bracket bullet I found that to be total fallacy (hint: you can still get laid as an adult with braces). It was that experience that really made me see that putting anything off, or changing anything about myself for, not even a man, but the IDEA of being more palatable to a whisper of a dream of a man, is completely stupid.
Women everywhere are being chastised for their behavior, and asked to limit themselves for the sake of the nebulous man concept. What’s worse, is that women are actually complying and changing and adjusting themselves for the sake of these men that may not exist and that they may never meet. Why? Because, apparently, that’s what all women should list in that coveted top spot on their “life goals” lists. Because being yourself means nothing unless a man has put a ring on it. So ladies, you better get to smoothing those rough edges, you want to catch a man don’t you? Right? Wrong.
My point that I’m finally getting to is: LADIES. DON’T! That goes for men too actually. Don’t, just don’t. Be yourselves. Live your lives. Style your hair how you want. Party how you want. Spend time with the friends you love. The right person for you will not only understand but love all of those things about you because that’s part of who you are. But most of all, don’t even think about that right person. Just think about you, and the things that make you happy. Everything else will fall into place.