Until approximately eight months ago my friends asked me for relationship advice. Being the proud maintainer of a relatively long-term relationship, I felt hesitantly able to at least voice an opinion. Retrospectively, that was over-confident and stupid.  After breaking up with my “better” (haha!) half, I now feel that lots of the things I splurged out were incorrect, and I’d love to rectify them. Moreover, after repeating “how could I be so stupid?” and “why am I such an idiot?” constantly for approximately 2 months, I feel older and wiser, if slightly (considerably) more cynical. That’s why, at the grand old age of 21 and a quarter, I thought I’d list the things I now know about relationships.

#1. Ignore every film you’ve ever seen, love is not that great.

I’m the first to find the phrase “I’ll never love again” heartily amusing. So instead I’m going to go for “I’m going to try really really hard to never love again, and if I do feel like I love someone, I’ll never ever admit it, and possibly even kill one of us”. There. That’s far less naïve. Love is something best saved for oneself, shoes and pets; things that can properly love us back. I watched a great stand up by an American fat guy (his name escapes me) who said that liking someone is SO MUCH better than loving someone, you should be upset when you realise you love them. He didn’t say this, but the logic is clear; if they turn into a zombie, it’s far harder to spade them in the head if you love them.

#2. Bleach is no one’s friend

If you do finally (after many years) get round to cleaning their shower, you should both probably call it a day. If you stop gazing into each other’s eyes long enough to spend the evening performing unpleasant domestic tasks, you’re done. Finito. Finished. I’ve recently moved in with a friend, and do you see me cleaning our shower? No sir’ee. We’re going to have to napalm our bathroom as it’s quickly becoming a biohazard, but I’ve learnt my lesson. The moment a guy clocks eyes on you cleaning their shower, you suddenly turn from a half respectable human being into their poor, under-appreciated Mum.

#3. When in doubt, delete their number from your phone. You can always add it back later when their lame excuses prove to be true

He’s just not that into you. Go watch the film. Say it a couple of times. Tell your friends. It’s nothing to do with how great / sexy / intelligent you are: He’s. Just. Not. That. Into. You. That’s why he hasn’t text. Whether you’ve been going out with the guy for years or you’ve just met, if he doesn’t seem that bothered with you… he’s really not. And it’s ok. You’re not that into him either, you just don’t know it yet. We women have a habit of convincing ourselves we like the guy despite his “interesting” fashion sense, football hooliganism and crippling obsession with online gaming. We like to realise we’re just not into them later on, at less salvageable moments, like whilst kissing, or when we’re married to them. That’s just our prerogative. But on the plus side, we don’t keep anyone constantly checking their phone.

#4. Be trigger happy

There is nothing to fear but fear itself. What this overrated quote is trying to tell us, is that even though the concept of breaking up may bring tears to your eyes now, you will actually be ok. You’re a strong *ethnicity removed for PC reasons* woman who don’t need no man. (Or man who don’t need no woman. Or man who don’t need no man… etc…) So unless someone makes you feel so damned appreciated your face feels like it’s going to explode with happiness, shouldn’t you consider the possibility that you deserve more? I mean, don’t all go dumping your loved ones, but it’s easy to forget how genuinely ok being single is. You have no one scowling at your best friend, you have more time to work on being awesome, you don’t have to worry that if you got amnesia you wouldn’t necessarily still be in love with them. Moreover, you don’t have someone complaining that the new lipgloss you bought is too “sticky”.

In conclusion, go forth and embrace your newfound love, but don’t ask me to vouch for it. If it were a film I’d give it 2/10; a great beginning, but retrospectively you wish you’d left the cinema before the end. Also you wish you hadn’t eaten all that junk food.

 

Image from www.skopjecitymall.mk