“Are you swiping?” my best friend asks me over breakfast one morning. I gulp down a spoonful of woefully bland porridge and think for a moment about how to reply.
The answer was no, I wasn’t swiping. But in saying so, I was met with a bewildered expression. I’m reluctant to swipe these days, or just to date in general, due to a long, troubling pattern of power imbalances that have occurred in every single relationship I’ve had since I started dating when I was 15.
Now, at age 30, my status as the perennial singleton is firmly established after taking countless protracted hiatuses from dating. Not because I don’t like the idea of being in a couple, but rather because I find dating really hard. Let’s be real, it’s a truth universally acknowledged that dating is plain sailing for literally no one. But, as a woman who dates men, I’ve found that every breed of relationship I’ve ever had — from casual sex to long-term relationships — has felt completely antithetical to the vision of equality I’ve envisaged for my own life. The lack of agency I feel in my love life made me want to remain single just so I could cling on to any semblance of control. Read more…
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