Failing At Dating Helped Me Find My Greatest Love
Hi! It’s me, your favorite single girl, Mimi! The last seven years, I’ve built a career openly talking about my dating life and my dating fails. At this point, I laugh about everything I’ve been through, but getting to this point hasn't been anything but easy. I mean, getting stuck in Los Angeles for four months during a pandemic over a man I met on Tinder? Or thinking I had a boyfriend for two weeks, without him knowing?
For years, I was the “pick me” girl. The one that is in love with love. The one that waits with her phone on her hands for a text back and makes excuses like “Oh maybe he is tired/busy/afraid of dating or getting hurt” for not getting a call back or not seeing that person. I’ve never expected roses or gifts from anyone, not because I don’t think I deserve them, it’s just I had a super low bar that I thought that giving me the bare minimum (aka talking) was enough.
Now that you know all this, you can imagine the kind of men I’ve been into. Men that think I’m pretty, smart, sexy...you name it, but “unfortunately”, they are not interested enough in me, because “there are more options out there”. It sounds sad, but instead of blaming myself and throwing a pity party about it, I realized all these men I’ve liked and dated, have been a blessing in disguise, because now I know what I want, what I don’t want and the most important thing, I know how to protect my heart.
I remember the first time I was in love and it changed me forever. It was with a person 12 years my senior, whose idea of “taking me out” was taking me to McDonald’s, while I paid for the food for both of us and we made out in his car outside his mom’s place. I liked him because “He made me feel sexy and empowered, just like Beyoncé” and all of this made sense in my head, until one day I was crying, because I couldn’t leave him. A very wise and smart friend asked me “Do you think Beyoncé would accept this? Do you think Beyoncé would be with someone that wants to see her once a month, to go to McDonalds and doesn’t respect her?”. Still, I was in love, and it took me a lot of pain, fights with my mom and my friends to open my eyes.
Also, I remember the time I LIKED, but when I say LIKE, I mean it, a sexy man I met in my favorite city and with whom I had an amazing story with. Unfortunately, I had to come back to where I live, but for months, my heart was hoping that someday I WAS GOING TO BUY A TICKET IN THE MIDDLE OF A PANDEMIC to visit him, and once I was there, we were going to be on his convertible car, singing a song by Aaliyah at the top of our lungs and having cozy dinners at his place again. I daydreamed about it, and I even had a playlist full of EDM for our car rides. I completely ignored the fact that I was the one Facetiming him, texting him and trying to get to know him, while he was seeing and dating hot models that wore Gucci and Christian Louboutin's, with boobs three times my size, at his city.
Finally, I think of the time I met a cute English man, that I didn’t like the first 30 minutes of the first date, but while we talked, I found myself feeling mentally and physically attracted to him. I mean, super tall and smart guys? HELL YES! While he was here, we spent a lot of time together and he treated me like a queen. He showed me that when you want to see someone, there are no excuses, and that you always make time for people you like, but once he left, he never wanted to call me or Facetime me. Then, he started comparing me with his “evil” ex and criticizing everything I loved. Ariana Grande? He hated her! Content creators? A disrespect to society! Los Angeles? Such a basic dream of living there! My latest article? It was nice, but it had mistakes!
It’s funny that I share these stories, because I’ve built a brand based on female empowerment and self-love, but my dating history says the opposite. However, all these stories have taught me how to love myself and how to stand up for what I believe and what I want.
When my first love left me, I realized I had to love myself first and put myself first, because when I tell you I was being treated like crap, I’m not lying. With the guy that dumped me after buying a plane ticket to visit him (and then I got stuck in the middle of a pandemic in Los Angeles), I learned that it takes two to tango, and that I can’t keep compromising myself and giving my 1000% if the other person just doesn’t want to be with me. With the hot man from my favorite city, I lived for a bit the dream and I still remember how happy I felt with him while we were driving around Mullholland Drive and Zedd was the soundtrack of our rides, but I learned that I want a partner that makes me feel like the most beautiful, smart and funny girl in the room, something I couldn’t feel with him once I got back to my country, and all my insecurities came out, and finally, with the English man, I learned that I want to be with someone that accepts me the way I am, with my pop culture obsession, my quirks, my dreams of empowering women, my sense of humor and how chatty I am.
I look back and I’m thankful for each one of these stories, because everything happened the exact way it had to happen and it made me a better (and grown up) woman and finally, I’m SO thankful that all these adventures and drama ended up leading me to my greatest love: MYSELF.
Now my heart is happy and even though there are days I wonder if I’m ever going to meet someone or I feel sad by being the last single girl from my group of friends, I’m embracing this gift of being single and being selfish with my time, my dreams, my money and my plans. For the first time, since I was fifteen, I’m enjoying being by myself and I’m becoming my own best friend. I’m learning how to be kind, how to be patient and how to not be too hard on myself. I haven’t lost hope that my person is out there and he is going to be amazing, I just know it! But I also know that I can’t rush life’s perfect timing and that I need to stop waiting and start living.
Finally, I know that I don’t have to compromise myself, my beliefs and my standards to try to be with somebody. I don’t want to feel like I need to be less loud, more quiet, more sexy, less opinionated, more pleasing, less focused on my career, etc to be with a man. I just want to be me, and be loved for the person I am, because I DO LOVE THE WOMAN I’VE BECOME. I REALLY DO.
Mimi Alas is a bilingual freelance writer located in El Salvador. She has experience writing for digital magazines like Thought Catalog, Your Tango, and guddi. Learn more about her and her lifestyle blog here!