I’m Not Afraid of Commitment, I Just Don’t Like It

People seem to think that if you’re single by choice, it must mean you’re either way too picky or terrified of commitment, but that’s not always the case. It’s possible to just genuinely not like the idea of being with just one person long-term — in fact, that’s exactly how I feel. It’s not that I hate commitment, either — I just don’t like some of the things that come along with it.

I’ll commit to the right person. I’m not afraid of commitment in the sense that I’d run in the other direction rather than settle down if I happened to meet the right person. I’m just not interested committing unless it feels right and I know it’s what I want. I’m not going to commit just because that’s what you’re “supposed to do.” I want more than that for myself.

I don’t like rushing things. Being slow to commit doesn’t mean I’m afraid, it just means I’m smart. There really is no rush to make things exclusive and committed. I’d rather take things slow because if I’m committing, it means I’m interested in the relationship lasting a long while. That means I’m not going to go down that road with every single guy I date.

Breaking up really sucks. Call me a cynic, but the reality is that most relationships don’t work out. The more people I commit to, the more I’m inevitably going to have to break up with. Instead, I want to make sure I’m only committing to people who are worth the risk. There might not be as many of them out there, but I know they exist.

Commitment means expectations. Once I’ve committed to being someone’s girlfriend, I’m going to be expected to do girlfriend-esque things. I’ll have to go to his parents’ house for weekend dinners, try to be friends with his co-workers’ girlfriends, and remember his birthday. Not that there’s anything wrong with those things, but I’d rather hold off on that becoming my new reality for as long as possible.

It’s hard to allow myself to be that vulnerable. Committing to someone means trusting them not to hurt me, and that’s not an easy thing to do. It takes time to feel that way about someone and admit to them and the world that they’re important to me. I’ve always had a hard time with that, maybe because I’m private and don’t want many people knowing how I really feel. Therefore, letting someone get that close is a process — a lengthy one.

I don’t like being dependent on someone. Even if I have plenty of my own friends and interests and I maintain my independence, there are certain things about being in a relationship that I’ll just naturally come to depend on. I’ll always have a plus-one and someone else to cook for me sometimes. Those things are nice, but sometimes I think it’s easier to just be on my own and avoid all that.

Just because I’ve committed doesn’t mean the other person has. A relationship working out is never a sure thing. It depends on both people wanting the same things, and those things could change on a whim. That means commitment is a two-way street, and I can’t control how someone else feels. It’s not exactly a road I want to go down unless I’m really sure about someone.

Commitment is rarely simple. Everyone hopes for the kind of relationship where you never have any doubts about being together and everything runs smoothly from the beginning. But it rarely works out that way. Committing to someone is about more than saying the words. I might not want to do that just yet, but that doesn’t mean I won’t want to when the time is right.

I don’t need commitment to be happy. For a lot of people, finding a long-term, committed relationship is a top priority — a necessary piece of the happiness puzzle even. Of course I want to find love, but I’m not convinced commitment has to be part of that. Until I figure that out, I have plenty of other things going on in my life to make me happy.

Commitment means sacrifices. Being in a relationship means you have to think about someone’s else’s needs as well as your own. I’m not afraid of that, per se; I just want to make sure I’m ready for it before I commit. That way I won’t end up resenting him.

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