I and my single, female equivalents are facing a rather large life dilemma these days; especially those of us who have been in this ‘singles’ saddle for an increasing number of years.

Our bums are starting to take on a more leathery ‘texture’ and our walks are morphing into lone ranger swaggers!  We are one step away from spitting tobacco onto the ground beside us as we singlehandedly break up bar brawls and try to avoid being scalped by red Indians…

Forced by a single status to adopt approaches, mindsets and inner resolve gritty enough to winter lonely aches and voids, we live with pets or house plants as opposed to warm-blooded, safe, dependable men.  We come home to what feels like a chest freezer at times, as the emptiness of our flatlets knock us squarely in the solar plexus.

All our feminine dreams are suspended as we are forced to think on daily bread, securing our jobs, becoming productive and happy and accomplished AND more attractive and spiritual and hardcore enough to say we are ‘OK’ despite not being able to nurture children, love on someone else, or give of ourselves in an unguarded, feminine manner.

The dilemma comes in the fact that men do not necessarily like woman who swagger.  Men do not necessarily like woman who match them stride for stride because they are jolly well learning how to!  Men first have to get over the tobacco chewing, the muck on our shoes, the hardened glint in our eyes and the rifle at our side before they might approach us to consider having anything close to a relationship with us.  They also need to get over the fact that they might need to ‘up’ their own Indian scalping game to catch our attention.

What are the solutions to this dilemma?  How do you keep polish on your nails and change your tyre or mow your lawn at the same time? How do you stay soft and attractive in demeanour when life asks you to be hardcore?

I think that the kindness I ask from people this day is that you don’t point out the obvious to us leathery types.

Don’t tell an older single lady that she will never get married because she is too hardcore for a guy.  Why not just hand her a bullet for that rifle and tell her to get on with it?

Don’t casually crush her dreams underfoot because you don’t fully comprehend the rock and the hard place she finds herself in.  Your telling her to be less hardcore will not take away the reality that she just jolly well has to be!

Im not asking for condescension or to be patronized in it.  Some kindness and tongue biting would just be grand is all…


7 thoughts on “Hardcore

  1. Congratulations, Jean, on a well thought-out, personal and beautifully worded post.

    I was hesitant to try to respond to your post because I am male, and I have been married for a very long time. So what can I add? First, I do not intend to offer any sort of platitude or sympathy – single women have already heard them all – but to offer some perspectives from someone who is in a very different situation to the one you describe.

    I was 30 when I met my future wife. Before that I had gone through a few inappropriate and emotionally disastrous relationships, which served only to highlight the empty years between. My most vivid memories of those times are of exclusion, of not being part of something. Watching good friends disappearing for ‘couple time’; being aware of functions to which I was not invited because of my single status; coming home to a dark flat after work on a long, long Friday night.

    My single female friends (how I wished they would notice me instead of holding a candle for that good-looking doctor/surfer/musician/pastor) would give me a negative cheering-up.

    “Don’t worry, you’re a man, you can do as you want”. “You’re a man you don’t have a biological clock”. “You’re a man, you don’t have a right to be unhappy”. Rubbish.

    As men we are trained to mask our feelings, to talk rugby instead of heart. And that makes it worse. Without a confidante to share with, our feelings feed upon themselves and can lead to acts of desperation – for me it was the constant seeking of love.

    So my philosophy developed into:
    – I am in some way different to, and less attractive than other men
    – I am a rock, an observer, I don’t need relationship
    – God wants me out of the way so that He can fulfill his plans in other peoples lives.

    Anyone who knows me well enough will see these ideations in me to this day. We can apply our negative thinking in any context.

    Joan and I have been married for 13 years. And yes, marriage is (can be) wonderful. To quote the wisdom of Cat Stevens:

    I’m looking for a hard headed woman,
    One who will make me do my best,
    And if I find my hard headed woman
    I know the rest of my life will be blessed — yes, yes, yes.

    That’s my soulmate. That’s Joan. And I’m still me, still waiting to become a Real Man and be free of my ingrained uncertainties acquired all those years ago.

    So for the unwanted free advice (indulge me here, I’m still learning it myself): Be who you are, be who GOD created you to be. It’s OK to be secure in yourself. And don’t let any magazine, doctrine or friend persuade you otherwise.

    ** OK this was much longer than anticipated. I’m not trying to hijack your thread. Feel free to delete if you think I’ve missed the point.

    • Hi James! It is refreshing to hear about a longsuffered single status from the male perspective, so thanks for sharing 🙂

      PS. you write well 🙂

  2. A good post. I dont think real men have any problems with this type of woman. Its called maturity and confidence. Men and woman both need to have it. I wouldn’t want to be with someone who wasn’t mature and able to handle things on their own, even if they let me do things for them just because its nice (for both ppl involved).

    Chin up… It just means you are looking for a man and not a boy. A good place to be. 🙂

    • ah, nice one doof. Insecurities do prevail in prevailing single-land, so that is a nice reminder:’it just means im looking for a man and not a boy.’

  3. Hey Jean, it is so very true what you say, i at this point is tired of the single status and the singleness, for some it seams to work out pretty well being single that is but for a select few being single is just not enough anymore. Being mature and knowing what you want in life is utmost important.

    I was once very insecure and would date just for the sake of dating irrespective of the consequences that would befall me, But now since finding myself through Christ and Theology i have matured as a Christian and as a person and all that you inscribed on your blog is so very true and thank you for posting some words of wisdom….
    God bless


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