One Is the Most Annoying Number


By: The 4-Way Panel

Dear 4-Way
I am a terminally single woman in her thirties. I live in one of the most exciting cities in the world, filled with smart and interesting people, and I cannot find someone to date. I have done everything possible to meet people—the Internet, weddings, friends, bars, Whole Foods, taking classes, writing a list to the universe, caring and not caring about finding love, riding the bus, and just living my life, and nothing is working. I am not bitter or jaded or giving up—mostly I feel annoyed. People fall in love every day—why can’t I? Any advice on how to find my soul mate? Please no clichés! I have been single for three years so I love myself, have been through therapy, have left it to fate, etc. I want some practical advice here.—CT, New York, New York

  The straight woman’s perspective: Rebecca Brown

Wow, I feel your pain, CT, especially since I’m living your exact life on the left coast. Yes, it would be amazing to find love (a soul mate seems like a tall order), but come on, being single isn’t all that bad. You could be like the millions of people in uninspiring relationships on the road to nowhere who are afraid to end it simply because they’re too afraid of being alone. Since when did being alone get such a bad rap? Sure, I’d like to have some Clive Owen-ish man around to kiss me and talk to me at the end of every day—maybe even cook me a meal or two and caulk my tub or some other manly task. But until then, my life belongs entirely to me; nobody tells me what to do or when. I don’t have to share a bed, I can watch Bravo TV all day long if I want, and I can drop $300 on a pair of shoes and not have to explain myself to anyone. (For the record, I don’t have $300 to drop on shoes.)

I commend you for all that you’re doing, but I want to share two sayings I’ve heard that might interest you; for me, they get scarily more relevant every day. “The right person will come along when you least expect it.” That one really pisses me off, because I’ve “not expected anyone” for about twenty years now. But what if we took that saying at face value? That would mean that instead of waiting around for love, we could all use our lives as an excuse to do the things that bring us—and others—joy, whatever those things may be.

The second saying is the one I really like: “Be the person you want to find.” So … are you? It’s not a bad thing if you’re not, but I have a feeling all those trips to Whole Foods, lists to the universe, and classes will help you get there, so keep on keepin’ on. Good luck to you—I really do hope you find love, but more importantly, I hope you find happiness and peace of mind with where you are right now.

Check back tomorrow for the gay man’s perspective by Darren Maddox.

The 4-Way is published monthly. If you have a question for our 4-Way panel, please send it to them in care of the editor at To read more of The 4-Way columns or to listen to our podcasts, visit The 4-Way now.

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