Settling Down: Is It Just Me Who Almost Fears This?

I think I am a bit of a commitment-phobe. I walk around arguing with both the world and my loved ones about how everyone else has someone, and I cannot seem to find anyone. At all. Ever. Except I can. I just don’t think anyone has caught my fancy for long enough to want me to really want to commit. As a result, at the first little almost ‘normal’ dating behaviour – like people living their own lives, and doing something other than making me the centre of their universe – I argue they aren’t really into me, and so probably aren’t true long-term potential, so I shouldn’t bother. Ergo, commitment-phobe.

I also feel – and this could actually be because I’ve not found anyone who I vibe with enough to then decide I’d want to change my life for – but I feel as though I’ll be missing out. Now I don’t mean this by way of choice of men, or what’s out there, but missing out on life experiences. While this may sound terrible – and by no way at all hold the tone of entrapment – but I am in love with the belief that I can walk out of my door tomorrow morning, and not come back. I could board a train or a plane at the drop of a hat and have no one to worry about pissing off because I’m not committed to anyone (well except my mum cause I still live at home, but excluding her…).

I could go and work abroad. Or live abroad indefinitely. I wouldn’t really have to think about anyone, or about there being any repercussions on my relationships with people, or with a particular person. I could travel the world with my backpack and a go pro and keep the world updated via Facebook and a Skype call.

Is the idea of the white Pickett fence still a good one? Where I am in my life right now, it sounds a little more like a prison sentence rather than the dream for the future, or the next logical step because that’s what we are supposed to do and supposed to want. Millennials were the ones being told to dream big, think crazy, and to aim to achieve the impossible. To live a life that makes you happy rather than a life that’s okay, or leaves you saying ‘meh, its life, it is what it is’.

Now I’m not saying that the white Pickett fence life is a bad one – it’s not at all. I know lots of people who want that, and lots that don’t. What makes me fear this life is that the world is then telling me that this is what I should be doing at my age. I should be in a relationship. I should be thinking about kids. I should be committing to a long-term job and a mortgage and health insurance and pensions and whatever else you should be doing at the grand old age of twenty-seven…

Currently the supposed to route feels both like entrapment and suffocation. Okay a bit extreme, but you get what I mean. I think a lot of millennials see the world differently now. More so than we used to. More millennials than we thought feel this way too. Globalisation and the internet has highlighted that personal growth now no longer has to be contained to one place, and millennials are – naturally – the first to embrace this. Yet, can this be done when settled down, especially if it means settling down so early?

I also don’t feel as though I can bring enough to the table yet for a potential life-long partner – and this I feel is probably my deciding factor for this illustrious feeling of entrapment and suffocation that I keep mentioning. I have a far more modern view on long-term relationships. I would like things – as much as possible – to be equal. I cannot yet bring the financials to the table that will allow myself and a future boyfriend to equally put a deposit down for a house. To take him for dinner when I can, just as much as he can take me. To be able to both take a few really nice holidays or trips out and not worry about the expense, or the fact that the same person is having to constantly flip the bill.

You might say my outlook can be seen as somewhat bleak, and one that could potentially have me missing out on someone great, because I don’t feel as though I am in the right space in my life. True, but I’m also not closed to someone amazing that may cross my path either. With everyone I’ve met so far however, the resentful feeling of giving up my life as I know it, before being in a place I am happy enough to share my life with, is scarily ever-present…


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