Before the Pandemic, I Thought I was Happily Self-Partnered

Now, I don’t even want to masturbate anymore

I’ve just fallen out with my right hand and my left digits are so clumsy it’s like being fingered by a paperweight.

RIP, self-partnership, I’m officially breaking up with myself.

Damn you, Emma Watson, for giving millions of lonesome folks the hope self-love could ever be enough. Sure, I’m cool with me but it’s not like I’m my own Superwoman or anything. I give myself pretty good foot rubs but that’s not the same as having someone you love do it for you, is it?

Also, there’s only so many times a day I can hug myself without cramping plus lockdown has made me so needy I literally cannot stand me anymore.

Seriously, there are only so many times I can declare my flame for myself. Or kiss the mirror that my entire face cannot even reach because I live in the land of very tall people. It’s all really rather awkward.

In the love roulette, self-partnership was the participation trophy for those who had no people yet still needed something to boast about so they wouldn’t feel left behind.

Or even attempt to crack the mystery that is one’s singlehood by taking a long, honest look at one’s personal take on humanness, acknowledging the good, the bad, and the fugly.

The pandemic has made millions of singletons consciously uncouple from themselves in an orgy of self-partnership dissolutions.

Because you were duped and it was all a con, again.

Rebranding lovelessness as a choice didn’t survive first contact with the real world and it was brutal. When an entire planet needed a hug, we had to acknowledge and accept we, regrettably, were not the exception and needed a hug too.

Even those who normally can’t stand people began to understand that having no deep, mutually nurturing bond to rely on was a one-way ticket to hell.

The lucky few who thrive live with others and have realized it doesn’t take much to be content: As long as you have presence and human warmth on tap, you’ve got everything, anything else is bonus.

Even the folks who have a pet or a kid understand that, even if they have no other people. Cat snuggles, dog walks, a mini human you can devote your attention to because you’re home together.

But to have zero presence but for soft blankets, sex toys, one’s hands, and perhaps the odd vegetable is the least enviable relationship status in the world, whatever your kink.

No amount of marketing is ever going to spin self-partnership into the success story that makes sologamy look like a lifestyle choice.

It’s as unnatural to us as wearing a face mask.

The difference is that a face mask has a function and a purpose while self-partnership has neither but sells you both. The cult of the self is the leading religion online right now and we all want to be seen, we all want to be known, and we all want the big bucks just for existing.

But we’re so bitter about relationships with other humans we know now we’re the only ones who can stand ourselves.

Incel isn’t a lifestyle choice, this is a worst case scenario with a dude bro sales pitch that requires you to sign away all future hopes of companionship, even when it’s delivered with someone with bumps on the front like Em’.

You identify with her because you are your own celebrity too — minus the online blast radius — so you ride the coat tails of Em’s whimsical idea by turning it into a personal update. It’s trending.

But for originality, leadership, and credibility, you had a lot in common with Emma Watson. Copy paste someone else’s life onto your own when you have none.

Social media has made many of us a bit weird. Your life is your brand, your brand is your content, your content is whatever is trending. We’ll count ourselves out if there’s ever an honesty appreciation day then.

Nothing we write happened yet all of it is true

After hawking yourself around one brain fart, one outrage, one trending topic at a time, you probably don’t have a clue who you are anymore, do you? Every single life is worth writing about when you have perspective, even yours. Or imagine something different, like Emma did.

Then own your creativity and wear it like a badge of honor to illuminate the darkness of dumb that surrounds us.

Infiltrate ignorance with the tools of ignorance by subverting them as you connect dots no one expected you. The truth is everyone loves it when another human flips their pancakes in the morning.

We are all tiny sparks and we’re at our best when we empower each other so how about we do that? Can we stop pretending we can go it alone when we would prefer not to have to? We’re jonesing for connection; this is a clue

If we must be capitalists, let’s make one another stupendously happy, not miserable. We weren’t designed to hug ourselves or self-reproduce. Yellow squash wasn’t designed to be looked at in a non-culinary way either.

I’m a French-American writer, journalist, and editor now based in the Netherlands. To continue the conversation, follow the bird. For email and everything else, deets in bio.

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