I don’t know if it’s because it’s the end of summer or what. but everyone seems to be coupling up right now. Joyously, as The Girl Who Writes The Books, I appear to have been appointed to the position of Sage Giver of RelationShip Advice. I have no idea why, really – shoe advice, yes. Boy advice, nuh-uh. My pearls of wisdom just aren’t reliable. One day I’ll be gunning for you to make the grand romantic gesture and then the next, I’m the girl telling convincing you that you’re going to die alone. Maybe with a cat.
But people keep asking and so I keep smiling and nodding. The one topic that keeps coming up is How Do You Know When It’s Right? So many of my friends are at that point where they’re just not quite sure whether or not to take the leap and they’re panicking and it’s hard and scary and I wish I had better advice for them, but I don’t.
Not long ago, I was talking about my own sad boy sitch to someone who really does have some good advice, my mum. She was telling me how sorry she was for my generation, that things were just so hard for us. I countered with all opportunities we had, all the things I’d been able to do that weren’t even an option for her – going to university, moving to London, coming to New York, meeting people from all over the world – but that’s when she rudely interrupted and pointed out that was our problem. Our worlds were so big, we had too many options to choose from so we just don’t pick anything. Making one decision meant making a hundred sacrifices and we were so used to getting our own way, that was just too hard. Once I got off the phone, in true Carrie Bradshaw stylee, that got me thinking. Is that the problem? Do we have too much choice?
New Yorkers can have anything they want, 24 hours a day, exactly how they want it, delivered wherever they want and if it’s not right when it arrives, they send it back. But that’s not the way relationships work – they take hard work, commitment and compromise, things a lot of my friends don’t seem to have the time and energy for.
But if we didn’t have all of New York laid out in front of us, would we have made our choice years ago and settled down with 2.4 children by now? It’s a scary thought. The more choice you have, the harder it is to make a decision, and the longer you take to make the decision, the scarier it gets. Don’t get me wrong, I would never, ever say that you should settle for something that’s not good enough – been there, done that, wasted seven years – but maybe there’s a point where you have to find the balls to say you’re going to commit to what you have because every moment you’re wasting, worrying about what you could be missing out on with someone else, you’re missing out on someone who loves you. And if you know in your heart of hearts that it’s not right (and I think most people do) get out. Don’t waste your time, don’t waste their time and end it.
So basically, the next time I’m asked, my advice is going to be you can’t know if he’s Mr Perfect. You just have to be brave, take a chance and trust your instincts then work hard, make compromises and put someone else before yourself. Pish, easy. Next question?
I hate it when my mother’s right.
*FYI, I was going to use a picture of the Mr Men Mr Perfect for this post but google image search brought up the late, great WWF wrestler which I considered to be a sign, so I ran with it.http://0