tag urself: julio-claudians
Can I tell you a secret? You don’t have to be in a relationship.
I mean it. I know they force it down your throat until you choke on it. Girls aren’t pretty unless they’re wanted. Boys aren’t men unless they’re having sex with someone. People aren’t lovable until they’re dating someone.
But a relationship won’t always make you happy, and as wonderful as romance is, it isn’t the only love that exists. I have seen friendships that are deeper and more pure than couples who swear it’s forever – and yet the friendship is the one people ignore.
I have heard so often “nobody loves me” out of the mouths of people who are single. And it kills me because if you ask them: where are your parents, your teachers, your classmates, your pets – they say, yes, okay, but it doesn’t count. Of course it counts, love doesn’t diminish just because someone doesn’t want to have sex with you. In fact, doesn’t it sort of make that love more real that they want nothing – not even a date – out of you?
It is pretty to be in love. It’s magical, I’m sure. But it’s also wonderful to stop for ice cream in your prom dress with six other girls. It’s also wonderful to go visit the world with nothing but a bunch of buddies who are really excited about learning.
The problem is: we’ve made everything about “the one”. But maybe “the one” is just you, loving yourself, having fun, and being happy. Maybe instead of looking for our other halves, we should be piecing ourselves together.
Maybe I wasn’t born unfinished. Maybe I am the one who makes myself better.
Gillian Anderson photographed by Dave Wise.