It’s been a while, dear readers. My apologies for that.
Being newly single (1,5 months is still minty fresh with these sort of things), I have had time to ruminate about quite a few things. And to my great surprise and overall relief, being a free lady after 2-year-long “captivation” is not at all that bad. Not that I have been turned into a sout troll so much by my own experience, but my ponderings about the topic have lead to the following:
1. You probably don’t know who you are yet.
The majority of 20-somethings I know have just recently took first baby steps towards full independence. And those same steps resemble those confused birds you see leaving their nests for the first time. They are hazed and amazed by their surroundings and the taste of freedom (which soon crushes under financial obligations that normally arise in this stage).
Those of us who have chosen an education are considered lucky, having “found out the path” to their future careers or life choices. Sure, for that to happen one must at least have a hint of what they want from life or what they are as persons, but a lot of the same people switch cources or drop the whole I’m-pressured-into-upper-education project after the first year.
In Denmark in particular, a lot of young adults take a year off from secondary school just to work or wander around the world if they have previously spared some cash before graduation. All of that for what? They take time off to figure out who they are and what type of education or career choice would be most satisfactory in the longer run.
A boyfriend who doesn’t know if he’s going to be a rockstar or a podiatrist? No, thanks.
2. Chances are that you travel away after completing graduation.
This argument is a bit shaky, I have to admit that, yet willingness to change one’s geographic location for better/more challenging job affects a relationship from head to toe.
For US-readers I’ll just quickly pinpoint that work mobility policy of the Europian Union allows people to travel freely and stay up to six months in a country if they’re on a pursuit for employment. This means that as a fresh graduate in the EU, one can travel to 28 countries to get that perfect job! Not to mention that the superambitious can find, charm, and convince any employer in any corner of the world.
Given that 20-somethings are going to be the generation feeding the army of retired Europeans + our own old parents, we might as well enjoy our jobs. If I were to be headhunted for a position where satisfaction comes from solving challenges, the work atmosphere sends you off home with a smile and collegues are the people you don’t want to stab – I’ll pack my things ang go.
Sadly, I would not be able to pack my boyfriend into the suitcase unless he’s a contortionist. Or is willing to come with me. Which makes being with someone an very big and unavoidable problem in case of relocating for better career opportunities.
3. We live in a me- me – me type of culture.
In general, we live in times when a lot of attention is devoted to the personal self. Think of all the DYI blogs, self-help/improvement merchandise, the individualistic mentality of Western society (you’re the best! you’re a champion!).
This happens here as well. A big 20-something guy segment of Denmark is keenly interested in the following activities: excessive beer drinking, football (mainly FIFA but on real fields as well), smoking weed and just having a good time. Although these activities commonly call for a group of people, the amount of time spent on just “me – time” among these young men is incredible. What they want is simple fun.*
Relationships require hard work. Time and devotion. Screwing down on the huge ME meter and giving some space and thought to your significant other. The previously presented list items require either a little money beforehand, a controller or a football, and a dealer. One way or another, it’s a list of commodities than can be easily exchanged in short time: work for money, money for goods.
Which one is easier: play FIFA all night with the guys or carefully crafting a surprise date for your girlfriend? Now this is a no -brainer.
Well, folks, this is al for now. I definately had more in my head, but these little thought kernels disappear like popcorn from a bowl before a start of a movie. I might update this as I find more intricate reasons to prolonged and concious singlehood in ones 20s.
Meanwhile, I would like to stress that I do discern that when love happens, none of the previous reasons matter. And I really hope that all you there who are happily in a relationship stay there and enjoy it!
*I know not all the guys in Denmark are like that. I cheer to those who prove me wrong, but so far this has been my experience here.
Hi, dear readers, I’ve thought about you people behind the screens.
I have been in a state of mental emptiness for some months now.
In the core of my essence, I’m an optimist. On the outside, the pessimist tries to fill any available loophole with negativity and scorn.
You probably know from your own experience about the study – work – retire circle. Taking into account that it’s a very broad generalization, it still scares the shit out of me. I don’t want to sound smartassish or know-it-allish, but the feeling of how short life is, has hit me quite young.
I made the socially praiseworthy choice of enrolling into university straight after secondary school. I moved together with my boyfriend not giving it any air after being in a long distance relationship from the start. While the western society sees no flaw in becoming educated, independent and devoted, it has left a dent in my soul.
It’s really hard to describe the feeling of emptiness that has no otherwise trackable source rather than the vague feeling of how short and uninteresting life can be. With little variations such as with whom will you mate to make kids, where will you go on holiday and how much taxes will you have to pay to the government.
This series of thoughts has been crossing my mind in repeated circles and occured while watching something random on the telly today. Note the words: random, telly. I voluntarily let some tv-channel into my mind just to fill it with something. Just to take away this terrible feeling of mental loneliness and overall emptiness.
This realisation flushed me over like a wave out of nowhere. Trivial things around me, washing the dishes, commuting to school, talking about nothing just to keep the words flowing, reading coursebooks, dragging my ass to gym – all of this to keep me from thinking further!
While the 1.3 kiloish organ of grey mass has caused me a considerable amount of mental and physical pain over the most recent past, I still find reasons not to give up on everything. I think, therefore I am. Thus I can pursuit the hunt for the meaning. And not give up even if the dark days happen quite often.
Dear reader, perhaps you have a tip or two about how to get out of this pickle? I’d gladly listen to your advice, be it going mountain climbing or sobbing it out in a corner or, optionally, on my poor boyfriend’s shoulder.
PS! The happy grass for all good purposes and not the ’bad’ ones, is a bad request, as it can only be a tool, not a solution. 🙂
I don’t remember when or how did my first cup of tea happen. I suppose that it was black, heavily sweetened for a child to enjoy, poured from one cup to another to lose the heat. That was a beginning of a lifelong friendship.
But what I do remember from childhood is that teatime was always fun. Teatime meant gathering together. It was a moment for the family to sit down on the couch or in the kitchen, to take slow sips and talk.
My grandfather was the one with the biggest cup and strongest tea. While his cup normally contained near-black liquid, easily mistaken for coffee, then me and grandma prefered our tea of golden brown tone. And although grandpa liked his tea black as tar, he also didn’t miss a chance to dunk at least four spoonfuls of sugar in it. Never less. Grandmother was more cautious on sugar intake, yet she enjoyed a candy or five with her cup o’ tea. And what did I do? Besides risking getting diabetis at early age by pouring tons of sugar in my cup (still less than grandpa), I LOVED to dip white bread in it. I still wonder why I wasn’t a 100-kilogrammish kiddo with such a healthy habit.
When it was time to say goodbye to grandparents and run over the street to get back home, the same thing was repeated with minor changes of surroundings.
The ritual hasn’t changed much over the years. Teatime is still that part of the day when we gather together to chit-chat. Topics vary as much as teaflavours of the world – anything from politics to current everyday life things, from tips on how to polish wood to reminiscing about good old times.
Teatime is the glue sticking our family together. And although I betrayed tea by becoming a coffee-junkie, I am always ready for a homey gathering with tea, biscuits and topics to discuss.