I started noticing that, throughout the book, there were little mentions of how French women don’t mind being alone sometimes, be it on park benches, at cafés, in bars, wherever.
The biggest test, though, came one night when I decided to take myself out to an early dinner.
I’d done this before, but I usually opted to sit at the bar so that I’d have people to talk to.
Do not be naïve there are still people who feel what you are doing is wrong.
Prepare yourself by listing all the challenges you will face and all the benefits you will gain from the relationship.
Once, after a friend turned me down after I invited her to go see an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, she offhandedly suggested that I go alone. I became a total hermit — I’d spend Friday nights reading, or scrolling through Tumblr, or watching Netflix.
Eventually, I got to be okay with the idea of spending time alone — as long as no one could see me., and came across a passage called “Off The Radar.” It talks through a pretty romantic-sounding scene of a woman sitting alone in a café with her coffee.
But after spending a good deal of my 20s alone, I came to realise that my reluctance to step through doorways first stemmed from a bigger fear I used to have: being alone in a crowded room.
Or worse, having people assume I was alone, and then feeling bad for me.
Dating app burnout is a real thing, and I hit the wall hard.
But the void that was left in my life — one that I used to fill with mindless dates with men whose faces started to blur together — was one of the scariest things I’d ever faced. But every so often, there’d be a day when everyone had plans, and I’d be left to fend for myself. “I can’t go to something like that alone.” The thought of being seen standing by myself in a crowded museum was enough to make me panic. I picked up a huge stack of books and started spending my down time reading alone in my apartment.
(I’d like to take this opportunity to point out how absurd it is that a book romanticising French women was what inspired me to change my thinking, but at least I’m self-aware.)I started off small.