33F, don't honestly feel like dating, but feel like I should.
August 12, 2014 11:06 PM Subscribe
I am sitting here with a poochy belly over my underpants, having just eaten a forbidden snack, writing this question at 1am. My apartment is usually messy, and I don't look or feel particularly attractive (though I can clean up well). I don't have many friends in this city, so I don't go out very often. I'm also midway into 33, female, almost 2 years single (except for one "fwb" that's been over) since my last long-term relationship ended, and feel this immense pressure to DATE. RIGHT. NOW. before it gets *really* tough to find someone.
But the thing is, I don't really want to date right now (I could happily spend another year alone), and I can't see why anyone would want to date me once they see the real me as described above.
The good news is, I've used my single time to explore who I am, and I've never been more comfortable with who I am, my likes and dislikes. I trust myself. I have a creative hobby I am passionate about and working on almost every day, which I never thought was a point I'd get to (I had a decade-long creative block which I finally overcame). I'm proud of myself and how much I've matured since 2 years ago.
But that's different from feeling like an amazingly desirable creature. Sure, my online profile depicts a flattering photo and I come off as fun, driven, and intelligent. I get enough attention from men online. But it just feels like dating is going to be a series of performances, after which the guy will eventually see the real me, fall out of love and look for someone who's *always* good enough to show off. Someone who doesn't need makeup to look beautiful. Someone who cleans her house like an automaton. Someone who's always a joy to be around. And frankly, I can try my best, which I've always done in the past, not that it worked, but right now that seems like too much effort, and I would much rather spend that energy on my hobby.
But the pressure of being 33 is telling me I have to go on dates, I have to act a certain way, I have to sell myself as best I can, otherwise I will be doomed to never find the great love of my life. And then I look around and feel like no guy would want to be with me the way I am. And I don't just want any guy either... I've always held myself up to high standards about certain things, and the same goes for the guys I choose to date. It's probably too much pressure for most humans.
What am I doing wrong here? Which thought or behavior should I reassess? I feel better about myself when I've exercised and am on a roll with healthy habits. Is that the issue here -- I've fallen off the bandwagon on a few things that I didn't think were crucial but which actually are? Or am I just honestly not ready to date? Maybe I really need to see a therapist? Thank you.