I'm 27 and I don't want a partner
August 13, 2013 5:59 AM Subscribe
At 27 years old, I really should be 'out there,' looking for a partner. So why does the mere thought of dating fill me with utter dread?
posted by winterhill to Human Relations (39 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
I hope I word this reasonably well! It's something that I've been thinking (and worrying) about for quite some time. Apologies in advance for the special-snowflake-ness of it.
I'm male, twenty-seven years old. I have a reasonably good life. I have my own house and live alone, my own car, a full-time professional job, a healthy set of interests outside work and all the usual bits and pieces. I'm not trying to blow my own trumpet, just saying that I'm not some guy posting on MeFi from his parents' basement! There's absolutely no reason why I couldn't find a romantic partner if I wanted to, and if I put in the effort. There are no 'show stoppers' which would stop people from being interested in me in that way. I'm just a normal guy.
But, I just don't want a girlfriend or a partner. The thought of 'putting myself out there' fills me with dread and anxiety. I don't want to put myself 'on the market' in that way. It makes me feel like a piece of meat. I want even less to have anyone new in my life as anything more than a good friend. I don't want to open myself up, make myself vulnerable to some girl. I've had relationships, brief and not-too-serious, in the past and while they were fun, it was fun in the same way that having a very close friend or a 'partner-in-crime' is fun, and I didn't feel any fireworks or butterflies or any of the other stuff you're meant to feel.
What troubles me most is that I want to want romance in my life, if that makes sense. Isn't falling in love, loving someone and being loved a universal human desire? What's so broken about me that the very idea of it makes me feel anxious instead of excited? If it was something else, like vodka, I'd just accept that I don't like vodka and that'd be it. But because it's love and romance and sex, things we are supposed to want and value and treasure over everything else, I feel utterly broken.
I just don't know what the root cause of this is. I had a wonderful upbringing with loving parents in affluent rural England. Even though I don't live with them, I am still very close to my family and I love and cherish my friends utterly. Platonic and familial love are second nature to me. But romantic love just... eludes me. People tell me that "when the right person comes along, you'll feel it," but I don't want the right person to come along. I don't want to date anyone, and I can't feel it ever changing. At 27, I'd have felt something for someone by now, don't you think?
Thank you in advance for any thoughts, advice or criticism. :)