This is quite a cringe-y and somewhat personal blog post to write, but lately I’ve been thinking a lot about my relationship with boys and how that relates to my core values. I dated a boy in 2013, was single for three years, and then entered two relationships in the past half year, jumping from one to another immediately. My point is that during those years I was single, I was happy. Sure, there was the odd moment where I’d maybe watch a TV show and see a cute couple being cute and envy the love they had for each other. There were (rare but existent) times I wished I had someone to be physically affectionate with, or someone who would always be there to support me emotionally through rough times. But those moments came in flashes and vanished as quickly as they came. I accomplished a lot of things those three years:
- I became extremely focused on my goals ~
I wanted to do well for IGCSE after the most academically challenging year in Sec 3 when my grades were the lowest they’d ever been. I wanted a perfect score in IB—yes I was genuinely aiming for this I’m not ashamed to admit this anymore—and I might not have achieved that (lmao), but I’m satisfied enough with what I got. I wanted to get my research paper published, which is happening soon. I wanted to get into a good university, and now I’m studying at my dream school.
I’m not saying that relationships mean you have to be less focused on your goals, but it happens a lot of the time and you lose sight of what genuinely matters.
- I developed self-sufficiency ~
I learned how to be happy without needing to be in a relationship. I mentioned earlier that I would sometimes want a relationship so that I’d have someone who would always provide emotional support. Well, I did have that person—Vic. I also journaled a lot which would calm me down and help me sort through my feelings. I developed a lot of emotional stability and was able to be utterly and completely happy without the need for a romantic partner.
- I developed self-respect ~
This was when I really started to learn about myself and what was important to me. I got super into feminism and read up a lot about that. Also, this sounds stupid but I also developed a lot of self-love—I really started to love myself and all the values I held dear to me. I took pride in never wishing I had a boy/girlfriend, because I was already so happy just being by myself or having friends like Vic around.
I know that I sound preachy and overly-wise; I know that I sound very proud of achieving something so basic (self-respect and self-sufficiency are the most BASIC things a person should possess). But I do think that being happy being by yourself is something that we should all be reminded of every once-in-a-while. Wanting to be with somebody may not be at the forefront of our minds all the time, but I’m sure that a lot of us may subconsciously want to find that person who’ll be our other half and complete the missing puzzle piece and make us happier and more fulfilled than we would be if we were just on our own. I can’t even emphasize how problematic this narrative is.
I wrote this blog post mainly for myself (and a little for Vic—she knows why). Recently I’ve been feeling like I’ve kinda regressed a little from those years of single-ness. I did move from one relationship to another so quickly, and sometimes I wonder if I should have waited a little longer. I ask myself if it’s because I was scared of being single—I’ve come to the conclusion that no, that’s not the reason, I just really liked the guy.
The bigger thing is that I feel like I’ve been on an emotional rollercoasters of sorts—the guy I’m currently with has been able to make me feel so happy but also so sad sometimes, but I don’t think anybody should be able to affect me like that. I occasionally find myself being insecure and wanting reassurance and validation from him. This SHOULDN’T BE THE CASE. I wrote this to remind myself that I don’t need anyone to say things to boost my confidence because I’m already confident just being the person I am. I wrote this to remind myself that I don’t NEED a relationship to be happy; a relationship is just icing on top of the cake. I think that always possessing this mentality will make me even happier than I already am.