Q: Dear Nedelle,
I am a 33 year-old male. I like to meet new people and go on dates. Recently, I came to the realization that I enjoy dating and meeting new people more than I enjoy attempting to “find the one.” I fundamentally don’t believe that there is a “right one” for anybody——in every aspect of our lives, from careers to education to hobbies to where we choose to live, to the friends we make, we’re given latitude to explore and always keep changing.
Yet, in love, we’re told that you should find only one person and stick with that person for many decades. How does that make sense? Why should we not have the same openness and exploratory sense for love as we do for any other aspect of our lives?
It’s not that I get bored. I also never cheat on anyone that I’m seeing (I have strict rules for myself). I have also become close friends with pretty much all of the women I have seen more than 4 or 5 times.
I guess my question is this: is there something wrong with me? Am I just an anomaly in a world where most people want (or *think* they want) only long-term relationships (especially once they’re in their 30s)? Also, I would not describe myself as polyamorous, because that still usually presupposes a “primary” partner, or effectively becomes an “open-relationship.”
A: Hi There! I think now’s a better time than any to question the stale stranglehold that monogamy has on our culture!
I’m totally into the idea of people creating their own relationship paradigms, (there might not be a term for your type, but who cares?) and as long as everyone is forthright with each other, (which is difficult, and more so when sex is involved) then what’s the big deal? Sounds like you are playing by some fair, self-imposed rules, and that’s admirable.
In a way, we are all doing what you’re doing, it’s just that the majority of people are looking for the Wizard of Oz at the end of the dating yellow brick road.
I have to say, just because someone wants to be in a long-term relationship, doesn’t mean that they aren’t open and/or adventurous. This, to me, really illuminates your opinion on long-term monogamy. You think it’s a one-way trip to snoozeville, but let’s be fair- that’s not necessarily the truth of the matter. It’s just not for you!
Your archetypal soul brother might be Giacomo Casanova! His memoirs of amorous adventures filled 12 volumes and over 1000 pages. Wikipedia says he recounts over 120 adventures with women. You’re already at 130! (I jest.)
To answer your question in all honesty, I really don’t think you’re abnormal. I think that you seem really level-headed, and maybe this is one reason why you’re not gaga over falling in love and finding “the one.” Who knows, maybe you will fall hard one day, but maybe you won’t. Maybe more and more people will join you in your lifestyle, since we are seeing a trend of marrying later, having kids later, or not at all, etc.. The state of the world is so desperate right now I wouldn’t be surprised if the traditional family structure broke down. That doesn’t mean love won’t exist!! (That would actually make me very sad.) To me there’s no need to qualify someone’s life. As long as there’s no maliciousness and honesty is the policy, I think we’re all good here : )
Song Recommendation: Casanova by LeVert