Sunday 10 February 2019

Nerd Church - Rebel Valentine 3: Revenge of the Roses

Is it just me?

No, really, is it me?

Is there something fundamentally unlovable about me? Am I undeserving of romance or love? Is that why no-one’s ever been ‘in the picture’?

Am I broken?

These thoughts are, of course, utter b*llsh**.

But part of me still kinda believes them.

hand-drawn red heart with arrow on white brick wall

Welcome to Rebel Valentine 3!

If you’ve read previous Rebel Valentine’s posts, you probably know where this is going.

If not, buckle up and prepare for potentially TMI. (I’ll try to keep it lowkey, but no promises!)

For the previous two years’ Valentine’s posts, I’ve basically thrown a tantrum about the way society views love, coupling off, and expectations of ‘normal.’

I see no reason to break with tradition now.

Related: Nerd Church - Rebel Valentine, Nerd Church - Rebel Valentine 2: Return of the Candy Hearts

Objectively, I know that my worth is not determined by my relationship status (or extreme and long-lasting lack thereof.)

Objectively, I know that if I was in a relationship with the wrong person, I would be utterly miserable, and it would Not. End. Well.

Objectively, I know that there’s nothing ‘wrong’ with me, and it’s all down to not meeting the right person at the right time.


Social expectations have clearly warped my brain.

Subjectively, I’m sure that it’s somehow my fault. That I’m not pretty enough. Not sexy enough. Not social enough. Not good enough.

Which is a totally sucky feeling.

Subjectively, part of my brain - which refuses to knock off except when I’m towards or fully at the Aromantic part of the sexuality spectrum and honestly don’t give two f**ks – is convinced that I can’t be happy without a Significant Other.

Never mind that I know that the wrong person would be disastrous for my mental health and the feelings of literally everyone involved.

Nope. Part of my brain has bought the line that I need to be paired off in order for any happiness to occur.

If I gotta buy myself flowers, then I must be a loser, right?

Which, again, and it’s important I remind myself this as much as you, IS UTTER B*LLSH**.

While we’re at it, I’d like to add a brief tirade against the ‘you have to love yourself or how can you expect anyone else to love you,’ brigade.

I only just about like myself. I have Depression and Anxiety, which makes even liking who I am something of a struggle.

That doesn’t mean I’m undeserving of love.

(...Even as I say this, Depression pipes up with ‘yes it does.’ But Depression is a f**king liar.)

Related: Nerd Church - A Letter To My Younger Self

So society, if you can kindly f**k off with all this determining people’s worth based on their love lives and ignoring them as people?

And you seem to double this pressure for women. #JustSaying.

Cos guess what? It’s no-one’s ‘fault’ that they’re single.

For some people it’s intentional, for others it’s just the way things have turned out right now. It might change in the future, it might not.

And that’s OK. Of course it is!

My worth is not dependant on whether or not I have a love interest.

And neither is yours – and f**k anyone who makes you feel like this, dearest nerdlets.

You are worth it. You are deserving of love of both romantic (if that’s what you want,) and non-romantic types alike.

You’re amazing.

And society can, objectively, pi** the hell off!

For what it's worth, Happy Valentine's Day for the 14th, dearest nerdlets.
I love you! 💖

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Last updated: 16th Feb 2019


  1. Ugh, I feel this on every level. My mother is always telling my sister and I how everyone always asks her: do your daughters have boyfriends yet? I don’t know why that is a requirement as soon as you enter university, nor is it anyone’s business. It’s also very heteronormative.

    1. I know the feeling. I saw the mother of one of my old school friends this morning, and instead of asking me 'how's the business?' or 'how are you?' she asked 'So, are you with anyone yet?' ARGH! *face-palms*

  2. Biology must have a role to play in this feeling that happiness only comes from being coupled up. I'm glad you recognise those feelings of inadequacy as 'b*llsh**'. It's a shame society tries to convince us all that our ultimate goal in life should be to settle in a monogamous, hetero relationship and have 2.5 kids. That's not what everyone wants and it isn't even guaranteed for those who actively seek it. Being single isn't a failing. There are so many other routes to happiness.

    1. So true - happiness doesn't look like one idealised picture!

      Biology might have something to do with it - attraction and all that jazz, wanting kids, blah-blah-blah - but we're also tuned to try to seek validation from conforming to society, and this in itself can make us feel like society's version of happiness is what we need.

  3. Single people - including single women, who like I said, seem to get the worst end of this deal - can totally be happy! Like, if we find the right person then great! If not, then it's not the worst thing in the world, y'know?

    I prefer Dydd Santes Dwynwen (St. Dwynwen's Day,) who is the Welsh patron saint of lovers, and wished that all *true* lovers find happiness - especially when faced with adversity :)

  4. Haha well said! It's amazing to me sometimes how MUCH society's expectations affect us, or how much certain assumptions are drummed into us from such a young age.

  5. It can be really hard when single in a world which is very catered towards everyone being in a relationship. And even if some people aren't really intentionally just following how life has taught them to be, the constant questions of 'seeing anyone' and so on can be a bit weighty. But I feel like with books and such the game is changing little by little and hopefully people will be able to see your self-worth isn't measured by whether you're with someone else or not.

    1. I hope you're right! Unfortunately there's still a lot of re-enforcing of those ideas!


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