Psychology Today’s Are You with the Right Mate? is appealing. It’s a question we all ask: Is there something better? Homebuyers wonder if they’re picking the right house. Renters who double up wonder if life would be sweeter with a different roommate. Employees wonder if they should stick with their current job’s stability or accept a new opportunity with better pay or a better work environment.
I recently returned from a Chicago stay at the Hotel Felix where a friend and I overheard a 20 something dude in the lobby bar ruminating about his love life, sloppily debating whether or not he should leave his 34 year-old girlfriend. “I’m 28. I don’t have any kids. I’ve never been married. I own my own business …” Dumbass, I muttered under my breath. You think you might be able to get something better because you’re a catch in the Midwest. In Manhattan, I can’t go to a party and spit straight without it hitting at least a dozen guys kind of like you except they would be richer and hotter. If you truly love your girlfriend — and, more importantly, if she’s good to you — keep her. For now.
I’m a fan of casual sex, fucking around, and having tons of experiences with a lot of different people when you’re single. New Yorkers live the hell out of life first, then settle down (if ever). I’m in my 30s, single, never been married, and I don’t have any children. I was frustrated with the Hotel Felix lobby bar guy because I wondered: “If I ever move back to Chicago, will all the good men my age be already married? Would I be stuck dating someone like this guy — a 20-something blabbing he wanted to dump me?”
Read this. It’s from a couple years ago, but I still feel the same. I miss the Midwest like hell, and I’ve contemplated moving back. Not tomorrow. Someday. I’m noncommittal about longterm plans. I could own a pad in River West, Wicker Park or Humbolt Park in 2016, or I could remain on the East Coast forever. It’s like that old adage: The grass isn’t greener on the other side, it’s greener where you water it. Today, I’m watering the grass in New York City. If I ever decide to move, I’ll water the grass somewhere else just fine, too.
In any case, I will always love New York. For your viewing pleasure: “Never A Dull Moment On the NYC Subway” (via the lovely and delicious Jonathan Fields)
“Sooner or later there comes a moment in all relationships when you lie in bed, roll over, look at the person next to you and think it’s all a dreadful mistake,” says the Are You with the Right Mate? article. Finding happiness isn’t about chasing the next best thing. Regardless who you’re with now (or are seeking), there will always be someone hotter, richer, smarter, thinner, curvier, less challenging, more challenging, more fun, more something. If you believe your personal happiness is what matters most and you would be happier without your significant other, it may be time to figuratively “water” the relationship a bit more. However, if you’re already doing that yet grass keeps dying anyway, it may be time to reevaluate.