Dear Single Women of NYC: It's Not Them, It's You.

The plight of the single lady

At the same time, if you don't want children, then maybe you don't really want a husband, or as one happily unmarried New Yorker explained, "I'd never been really hung up on having kids. It certainly made dating easier, because I didn't have the same timeline some of my friends did. No urgency. The same holds true now that I am dating someone. Whether we get married or not is almost immaterial since we don't plan on having kids. Unless, of course, one of us gets hooked up with really good health insurance. Then we'd get married for sure."

The fertility question is often a tipping point, and definitely "a challenge for women," says Fadal. "Men here are very motivated, and their career comes first. They're not under any age restriction, nor do they face the fertility reality. If that weren't an issue, I think women would keep playing the field, too. I would. But all the technology in the world isn't going to change that." Another married New Yorker agreed: "If you could have babies easily into your 50s, I think you'd go on being single forever," she said. But we can't. This is just a biological fact.

It's also a fact that, at least in the non-romantic portions of life, understanding and expressing what you want makes achieving it far easier, whatever the "it" is. Yet, by and large, New York City women fail to be specific with men about what they really want and instead just go along with things hoping for the best and getting angry when it doesn't work out that way. Or they're so specific, with such intricately wrought lists of requirements for what they will and won't date, that they miss the point altogether—if the criteria is that complicated, maybe they don't actually want to be with someone at all yet.

Perhaps this is changing. I've heard of at least two single New York women who have set their own wedding dates for themselves—minus even a potential boyfriend. Say what you will about the "method," but I think they should be congratulated for having at least acknowledged what they want while so many of us wait aimlessly for a nebulous "Mr. Right" with whom we will fall deeply and madly in love in the kind of fantasy relationship promoted by romantic comedies. When that doesn't happen, because it can't happen—it never happens—we blame the men. But ladies, we are so much smarter than that!

There is nothing wrong with taking your time and sampling liberally from the buffet. As Fadal says, "I caution against trying to settle down before you're ready. Every guy has his purpose. There's the guy who takes you great places, the guy you're sleeping with, etc. If you're enjoying yourself, and if you do it in the right way, there's nothing wrong with that."

And so, the wild and crazy kisser who actually broke your front tooth, which then required dental work; the guy who taught you to always ask for Sriracha in your deviled eggs; the man who introduced you to Wolf Parade; the man who introduced you to really good bourbon; the guy with kids who helped you remember why you do, or don't, want them for yourself; the bisexual co-worker; the "poonhound"; the one that got away; and the one you let get away on purpose—they all have a place in your dating life. Don't regret them.

Once you know what you want, narrow the options, make your choices, and go for it. But until you do, embrace not knowing. Make New York your playground and stop complaining about how single ladies have it so hard in this city. Along the way, remember that men are not the enemy. Many of them are reasonable and good and not at all the brutes we've made them out to be, even if they don't want to marry us (and some of them do). One recently confessed that he'd like to get married in the next few years because "I don't want to be 34 and doing that thing that sketchy New York guys do where they go out and act as though they're 24. I've seen too much of it. . . . It's a real cautionary tale." When I told him that was refreshing, he said, "I think most guys feel that way."

The other night, I had drinks with the ex who'd passed out in that planter underneath the Manhattan Bridge. We hadn't talked in about three months. He bought me two glasses of wine, touched me on the shoulder, and told me I looked "unbelievable." I knew I could do it all again if I wanted to. Options. Drama. Will I? I'm not narrowing them yet.  

jdoll@villagevoice.com / @thisisjendoll

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19 comments
AmericaFounder
AmericaFounder

the premise that girls who hunt for husbands in NYC are aiming high is correct, and to be blunt they all aim too high, unrealistically high (as their opinions of themselves are inflated beyond reality) so that only two sources of pressure can push them to "settling down"  1. their biological clock, and the fact that many or most of their better/attractive/desirable friends are already married.    So only time will force them eventually come to terms with their inflated expectations.

AmericaFounder
AmericaFounder

the premise that girls who hunt for husbands in NYC are aiming high is correct, and to be blunt they all aim too high, unrealistically high (as their opinions of themselves are inflated beyond reality) so that only two sources of pressure can push them to "settling down"  1. their biological clock, and the fact that many or most of their better/attractive/desirable friends are already married.    So only time will force them eventually come to terms with their inflated expectations.

annasadrian
annasadrian

I stopped reading this halfway, the writer sounds like she needs mental assistance. Good luck with this aspiration bullshit when you are old and no one wants a piece. 

jason1137
jason1137

Well with so many women nowadays that like sleeping around, it is really very hard for them to settle with just One Man.

melshutson
melshutson

It doesn't matter where you are, the demand for the most attractive women vastly exceeds the supply!

ppatricia221
ppatricia221

I honestly believe and stand firm on this that it has nothing to do with the amount of women ratio to men, nor does it have to do with where you point the finger to but everything to do with mis communication among any age group and the unfortunate mistake of meeting the wrong individuals during a point within your life which leaves you fear to commit to the next individual totally and unconditionally, yes we all would love to meet the movie character that men portray on television but in real life what every woman needs and dreams about is simply feeling the chemistry knowing that the feelings are mutual and feeling respected, wanted as well as needed.  Sex is something that we all need but it is not the binding ingredient that keeps two individuals together forever and it is not true that men will commit to those that do not give in, it does not really make a difference on how it happens or why, it is something that many have tried to figure out and are still baffled about the ingredients that are needed to make that special combination that pushes you to make the final commitment to that one and only.

It is not the money, the job, or what you can offer it is the sparks that we feel for the individual we are with and want to spend the rest of our lives with.

Yes once the sparks are there then of course having the other important factors in place make it that much better, but truly men and women waste too much time with games and lies and in the interim end up losing many great friendships, perfect lovers and future soul mates and all due to listening to stupidity that others tell us or how or why things happen.

When a real relationship is meant to be it will be against all odds and if it is not meant to be it is not.  I lived most of my life in New York city and I have met plenty of assholes as well as many wonderful and extremely respectfully, smart and successful individuals regardless if they were date or platonic friends these men do exist and they are real you just have to know how to get to know them for who they are and then let nature take it's course.

If a man asks you on the first date how many dates you need to have before you can have sex and constantly complains about their financial status then you know that this guy falls within the assholes category and that he is simply waiting to see what he can get out of a date and move on so according to these experiences that most women had men are being viewed under an extreme tight scrutiny as well as the one men are using in screening their dates.  So dating is not an easy thing to do at any age, it is easier to fall in love at a younger age only because we have experienced less heartache and have a more open mind to it, but true love is experienced regardless at what age and it can happen in a split second of your time taking your breath away without realizing and it can be done by an individual who is not famous or rich because love has no meter control at all and it has no pattern or rules.  New York City has always gotten a bad rap for having the rudest people, the least caring and the most problems, could it be that we get a bad rap due to the fact that we are a great city, we do have the greatest, smartest, wisest ,caring and creative individuals as well?

ppatricia221
ppatricia221

I honestly believe and stand firm on this that it has nothing to do with the amount of women ratio to men, nor does it have to do with where you point the finger to but everything to do with mis communication among any age group and the unfortunate mistake of meeting the wrong individuals during a point within your life which leaves you fear to commit to the next individual totally and unconditionally, yes we all would love to meet the movie character that men portray on television but in real life what every woman needs and dreams about is simply feeling the chemistry knowing that the feelings are mutual and feeling respected, wanted as well as needed.  Sex is something that we all need but it is not the binding ingredient that keeps two individuals together forever and it is not true that men will commit to those that do not give in, it does not really make a difference on how it happens or why, it is something that many have tried to figure out and are still baffled about the ingredients that are needed to make that special combination that pushes you to make the final commitment to that one and only.

It is not the money, the job, or what you can offer it is the sparks that we feel for the individual we are with and want to spend the rest of our lives with.

Yes once the sparks are there then of course having the other important factors in place make it that much better, but truly men and women waste too much time with games and lies and in the interim end up losing many great friendships, perfect lovers and future soul mates and all due to listening to stupidity that others tell us or how or why things happen.

When a real relationship is meant to be it will be against all odds and if it is not meant to be it is not.  I lived most of my life in New York city and I have met plenty of assholes as well as many wonderful and extremely respectfully, smart and successful individuals regardless if they were date or platonic friends these men do exist and they are real you just have to know how to get to know them for who they are and then let nature take it's course.

If a man asks you on the first date how many dates you need to have before you can have sex and constantly complains about their financial status then you know that this guy falls within the assholes category and that he is simply waiting to see what he can get out of a date and move on so according to these experiences that most women had men are being viewed under an extreme tight scrutiny as well as the one men are using in screening their dates.  So dating is not an easy thing to do at any age, it is easier to fall in love at a younger age only because we have experienced less heartache and have a more open mind to it, but true love is experienced regardless at what age and it can happen in a split second of your time taking your breath away without realizing and it can be done by an individual who is not famous or rich because love has no meter control at all and it has no pattern or rules.  New York City has always gotten a bad rap for having the rudest people, the least caring and the most problems, could it be that we get a bad rap due to the fact that we are a great city, we do have the greatest, smartest, wisest and most caring individuals as well?

ppatricia221
ppatricia221

I honestly believe and stand firm on this that it has nothing to do with the amount of women ratio to men, nor does it have to do with where you point the finger to but everything to do with mis communication among any age group and the unfortunate mistake of meeting the wrong individuals during a point within your life which leaves you fear to commit to the next individual totally and unconditionally, yes we all would love to meet the movie character that men portray on television but in real life what every woman needs and dreams about is simply feeling the chemistry knowing that the feelings are mutual and feeling respected, wanted as well as needed.  Sex is something that we all need but it is not the binding ingredient that keeps two individuals together forever and it is not true that men will commit to those that do not give in, it does not really make a difference on how it happens or why, it is something that many have tried to figure out and are still baffled about the ingredients that are needed to make that special combination that pushes you to make the final commitment to that one and only.

It is not the money, the job, or what you can offer it is the sparks that we feel for the individual we are with and want to spend the rest of our lives with.

Yes once the sparks are there then of course having the other important factors in place make it that much better, but truly men and women waste too much time with games and lies and in the interim end up losing many great friendships, perfect lovers and future soul mates and all due to listening to stupidity that others tell us or how or why things happen.

When a real relationship is meant to be it will be against all odds and if it is not meant to be it is not.  I lived most of my life in New York city and I have met plenty of assholes as well as many wonderful and extremely respectfully, smart and successful individuals regardless if they were date or platonic friends these men do exist and they are real you just have to know how to get to know them for who they are and then let nature take it's course.

If a man asks you on the first date how many dates you need to have before you can have sex and constantly complains about their financial status then you know that this guy falls within the assholes category and that he is simply waiting to see what he can get out of a date and move on so according to these experiences that most women had men are being viewed under an extreme tight scrutiny as well as the one men are using in screening their dates.  So dating is not an easy thing to do at any age, it is easier to fall in love at a younger age only because we have experienced less heartache and have a more open mind to it, but true love is experienced regardless at what age and it can happen in a split second of your time taking your breath away without realizing and it can be done by an individual who is not famous or rich because love has no meter control at all and it has no pattern or rules.

WestSide7
WestSide7

Bad news for you women in NYC ….it IS you. Too many women in this city are terribly impossible to please, gold-diggers, hypocritically self-righteous, and misandrists.

Absurdities I’ve encountered (BTW I’m 6’1” and pretty good looking, and yes single)

  • I make well over a $100k but still have been told because I’m not a hedge fund guy, they won’t be able to quit their jobs so I’m out.

  • Others are in their 40s and state they still want to have kids ‘someday.’ Ha laughable. You wasted your youth too focused on your career and not settling down with one of the 10 good guys you’ve come across in your dating over the years and in your 40s you honestly think it’s still a real possibility. Get a clue! Time is NOT on your side (or the man's...believe it or not some of us really do want to have kids soon).

  • Hygiene and grooming? Been out on dates with women who chew with their mouths open, have hairy moles on their face or arms (see a plastic surgeon already and get that eyesore removed already)! Caked on make-up! Oh and the overweight self-acceptance movement is absurd. Too many women in this city you can tell don’t work out or enough.

  • Girls who expected me to pay for everything and others who were insulted when I would let them pay halfsies. Which is it?

  • Constantly giving conflicting messages and then being mad at the guy for not always know what to do or so like the women who told me date 2 she wanted to straddle me but then date 4 lying in my bed became a prude. Stop being so asexual...enjoy your youth!

  • Lacking manners. Flaking out just hours before a date (has happened to every guy) and selfishly ruining that guys plans. If you make plans still to them. Take some damn responsibility for others feelings. Yes most men do have feelings.

BTW there is NOT more women than men in this city. The only place in NYC I’ve seen that honestly has more women than men is the UES. Go out in any other neighborhood and you see men outnumber women 2 to 1. Where are all these supposed surpluses of women!?

Stop blaming men for not being some fake movie hero and take a hard look in the mirror!

Shreya123
Shreya123

I think it is quite true, although choices are there if you want to meet single men , the difficult part is to search and find what you have in mind, while you may want to try what comes your way but in such a journey there may be too many ups and downs to your liking, I would say dating meeting sites like MeetOutside, do present a way to filter out and find the sort of men we want to date, so this can be looked into.

ariannahiggins
ariannahiggins

Some of us natives aren't obnoxious transplants with ego problems but nice girls born in the wrong place. The real reason truth, that no one will ever admit is that there arent enough hetero white men in this city. 

ariannahiggins
ariannahiggins

Why no discussion of the *quality* or treatment within these "dates". What is actually *going on* withinthese relationships we're all so desperate for?

Ask yourselves that first. 

jacap-mahboubi
jacap-mahboubi

I'm a men looking for relationship with serious women I don't want any kids for know I'm hard worker I live in New York City I'm looking for a nice women between 25and 31 we work to gather we can live better life

brooke194
brooke194

We should go out... Honestly that was damn refreshing! {*+*}

... I workout and am a happy gal.... Best blind date choice my friends say. Oh yeah!

industrialdiamonds
industrialdiamonds

@ariannahiggins Very accurate! i was born here and I am shocked at how the men act. They only check you out if your not looking at them or if they have on really dark shades. They are prideful and full of their large ego's, it stupid!

 
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