I guess this piece is going to start with an anecdote about something that happened to me. Nothing negative, just something eye opening.
Okay so, the other day when I was working at a retirement home (because let’s face it, this comedy career isn’t really taking off) I overheard two residents talking and after hearing an amazed “wow”, I was called over only to find out that one of the residents and her husband will have been married for seventy years later in the month. Of course I congratulated her and then I was asked: “could you imagine being married for seventy years?” It only took me a moment to realize “no, I can’t imagine being married for seventy years.” Mainly because this woman was barely twenty one when she got married. Of course that’s where the generation gap shows. When she was eighteen she started dating this man and then three years later, they get married. Where as if I started dating someone when I was eighteen, three years later we would probably consider moving in together or decide to spilt up because we are in school or want to be single and travel the world before settling down with someone.
The unfortunate reality is that I was born into the generation of careful wanderers. We are the generation that has been hurt way too many times at way too early of an age causing us to be more cautious when wanting to enter the new adventures of our adult lives that we’ve been waiting for most of our childhoods. But, the biggest one that we are trying to avoid is dating.
From recent experience, all I have been hearing from every girl I meet is “I just want to be single” and from every guy all I hear is: “I don’t date anymore”. And it’s because they have gone through way too much in their early 20's. Hell, I’m in my early 20s and have reached a level of “romantic” maturity that I shouldn’t understand until I’m in my early 30's.
I don’t think anyone is to blame, really. People in their 20's just want to be able to travel the world and experience one hell of a life before “settling down”. The tragic thing is is that sometime during Generation X and the Millennials the way of experiencing life has changed. Back in the age of my parents, experiencing life was going to school, getting your education, finding someone you loved and then living on the rest of your days with said person doing everything you have ever dreamed of. Now a days, the thought of meeting someone and actually being with them, physically and emotionally is the last thing on the list.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun being single. It gives you a chance to discover who you are and figure out what you really want but, it’s tiring being surrounded by people who are all stuck in the same train of thought. Everyone out there is hopeful but have no hope in finding someone that makes being single sound like an awful idea.
I know I said that there isn’t anyone to blame for why we think in this way but, I do believe that my grandparent’s generation had something to do with it. Not putting on blame though because it is something that was completely out of their control.
We grow up idealizing the relationships of our grandparents (or depending on your age, your parents). They have been together through it all. 50 to 60 years of new adventures and experiences together. It’s an amazing thing to hear about and to actually see it in the flesh.
Fast forward to Generation X , my parent’s generation. The generation where statistics started to change. Divorce rates were starting to get higher, the ages of getting married started to get older and even the number of children per house old were growing smaller. Although it is nice to see that more people are focusing on having careers of their own, it is taking away the ideals of romance. It was the generation that started to appreciate independence and we should appreciate independence. It’s a nice feeling to be able to support yourself and do what you want by yourself but like everything else, it can get lonely.
I believe in romance. After all that I have been through, I still believe that two souls can meet, fall in love and live out the rest of their days with each other and experience a life that others would dream of. That my kids would look up to. But after all that I’ve been through, I have now become so emotionally damaged that I’ve gained an instinct that makes me aware if I’m with someone who is worth it or not. In a way, yes, it is helpful to have that instinct. If I’m not with someone who no longer makes me happy then I should leave instead of staying to see if my mind will change.
I’ve seen families fall apart, including my own and even though we are a family that loves each other, I was still affected by everything. It caused me to fall fast and hard only to ensure that my heart would be broken 10x worse than it should.
I know that I will never have a relationship like my grandparents. I know that I probably won’t have a relationship like my own parents. I was born into the generation where there are more toxic relationships than healthy ones. Where everybody wants to fool around and have fun and no one wants to even think about committing to anyone.
I know that I am young. I’m not looking for marriage. I don’t even know what I am looking for but what I do know is that I am tired of being the girl that attracts the guys who just got out of relationships. I am tired of being the girl that is only there for the fun and I am tired of being in the generation where I have to choose to be completely celibate just to avoid being screwed over by yet another guy who spends his time searching for a girl who is “more than a one night stand” just to see if he can actually make it for a one night stand.
Basically, I am tired of being in the generation of f*ckboys, social media flirting and where “how many people have you slept with?” is still a question people ask the ones they are sleeping with.