Where is My Special Someone?

Couple / Photo by Lisa Bekyan / Unsplash

Like no other time of the year; the Christmas holidays bring out our yearnings for love and prompts many of us to ask, “Where is my special someone?” Implied in our questions are feelings of discouragement and resignation since our particular special someone has simply not showed up. If you are in this fix, realize you are not alone. In fact, over the holidays, many of us lose our sobriety and otherwise medicate our feelings, in a desperate attempt to hide our own misgivings over relationships. Some of us in coupled relationships might despair more during the holidays since what we already receive from our partners is less than fulfilling or authentic. If you choose to be single, realize there is nothing wrong with who you are simply by being single. At least going solo holds the promise of meeting someone special. You’re already off to a good start by acknowledging you want more out of life.

However, let’s be smart. Change involves more than yearning. It involves motivation, a paradigm shift, and follow-up behaviors. It is an active process with no room for pity or helplessness. In fact, it’s never too late to seek that special someone. Loving partners exist for each of us throughout our lifetimes if we choose to find them. Indeed, each of us can considerably benefit from the process of seeking a caring partner. And who knows? By next Christmas you might even succeed at finding that special someone! What pains you now can lead you to bigger and better things if you have the courage to face yourself more authentically. After all, what do you really have to lose by risking more for love?

Motivation

So many of us claim to be eager for love, but our actions say otherwise.Single people make two kinds of mistakes when it comes to finding a loving partner: They either say they really don’t care about finding someone special when they really do, or they overtly claim to want a partner when they really don’t. So many of us deceive ourselves when it comes to love. Katie, a semi-retired nurse, kept telling herself and all her friends that she is happy being single, that men are only trouble, and that she doesn’t need a man to be happy. While all of that is well and good, Katie’s actions were saying something quite different. She regularly asked her friends about their single male acquaintances, she surfed  the net for suitable dating services, and she always warmed up to her male friends and their buddies. Somehow fearing heartbreak again, Katie maintained a passive stance in dating men by telling herself she really isn’t interested in guys. If she were really honest with herself she’d have to take the risk of getting closer to men and dealing with her lifetime of heartache. While the risk of emotional intimacy is considerable, it might be less than losing our dreams. To have loved and lost is often better than never to have loved at all.

On the other hand, some of us are constantly in unstable relationships and we make no headway in being with that special someone. We might tell ourselves and everybody we are ready for Mr. or Ms. Right, but in fact we consistently pick Mr. or Ms. Wrong. Phil, a rather wealthy computer analyst, decided to be scientific about picking a mate. He bewildered his friends by designing a questionnaire that he gave to every new woman he seriously dated. Of course the women who were more interested in Phil’s success answered the questionnaire to his liking and he soon had many unsatisfying relationship experiences. Little did he know that his method of screening dates might in itself give the wrong message and inadvertently turn off loving women who could value Phil for who he really is. So many of us claim to be eager for love, but our actions say otherwise.

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Certainly we make legitimate life choices when we choose to be single or coupled. However, it’s best if we do so with less self-deception.

Paradigm shift

Most of us single people who wish to be partnered tell ourselves, “I just haven’t met the right person.” The reality is that we have not allowed the right person to meet us. The ones who have the most to offer us are exactly the ones we run away from the fastest. Most of us aren’t aware of how we unconsciously sabotage real love from finding us. In fact, there are many people out there who can love us. Probably many already have but we were either too asleep at the wheel or we shut them out from caring for us. It’s not other people who are holding up love in our lives. It’s ourselves. Indeed, to meet that special someone, we need to take an honest look at ourselves in a mirror and ask, “Am I really ready for love?”

If the answer is no, pat yourself on the shoulder. At least you’re being honest with yourself. Relationships are not for everybody. There are many ways to be happy in life besides being coupled. You can always change your mind later.

If the answer is yes, take heed. Although you have much to gain from being authentically loved by another human being, you are staring into the eyes of the dragon. Many of us gain from actively seeking a lifemate. But in the courting process we must also endure considerable repressed grief over past relationship efforts. The bad always comes with the good. After years of being chosen by less-than-desirable men, Maria finally had had enough. She decided to introduce herself to a warmhearted and attractive man, Sammy, who sang in her church choir. After several special dates with Sammy, Maria always found herself crying and wanting to run away when Sammy held her in his arms. She felt like a wreck until she realized her own father had never held her and all the men she settled for were very much like him. She and Sammy changed each other’s worlds forever but first she had to endure old heartache. It’s the old heartache, not the new love possibilities, that causes many of us to stay single.

If your answer is, “I am not sure,” ask yourself the following questions: Are you willing to admit your part in pushing available partners away or not challenging yourself by meeting people who already have much to offer you? Have you made a decision to stop settling for undesirable partners who might be exciting but have little to offer you in the long run? Are you willing to regularly put yourself in respectful situations for meeting suitable partners and take the risk of being rejected? Your answers to these questions will tell you how you really feel. Most of us are ambivalent about meeting available partners. We like the benefits but are afraid of the risks.

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Follow-up behaviors

The real key to being loved by that special someone is for you to be open to people loving  you. Authentic romance occurs in the context of allowing many people to become important to you. As you open your heart to friends, trusted relatives, caring neighbors and goodhearted people, you become a different person and give off the message to a potential real lover that you’re ready for business. In fact, no special someone can fill the gap of what you haven’t already done about accepting love in your life. We meet who we are ready to meet.

Probably the best love choices are people who have warm hearts, a strong sense of personal responsibility, and you’re attracted to.Alas, wisdom is required for meeting your special someone. Probably the best love choices are people who have warm hearts, a strong sense of personal responsibility, and you’re attracted to. If you get scared being around such people, you’re likely making good choices as you’re being challenged. It’s best to not get overly excited just because you’re getting the attention of someone who appears ideal. Indeed, to really know what a person is made of, you have to go through many ordeals and disagreements with him or her. Often this process takes more than a year. Don’t assume someone is really interested in you just because you’re really committed to that person. It’s best to be yourself and see how your partners handles your rough edges. Don’t make it easy for him or her. The best time to let someone take your breath away is after a long and careful courtship, but most of us never do it that way. If you’re continually stuck in a rut of making bad love choices, consult a professional helper and receive the care and wisdom of that relationship.

Also, effort is required. God helps those who help themselves. You will need to find ways of regularly putting yourself out there for available people to meet. Give yourself forever to meet the right person, as it will feel like it takes forever. Don’t waste your time with deadbeats. Read, Keeping the Love You Find by Harville Hendrix, Ph.D. for making informed choices. Consider joining a singles social organization or a singles volunteer group. Get involved in whatever way that suits your style. Joining is a way of admitting need and makes you a bigger person. Just do it!

Finally, realize that simply allowing yourself to seek more in your life with enable you to discover hidden strengths in yourself and ultimately you will meet that special someone — yourself. You can’t go wrong with that!


John H. Driggs, L.I.C.S.W is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in private practice in St. Paul, MN and co-author of Intimacy Between Men (Penguin Books, 1990).  

This article first appeared in the December 2004 issue of The Phoenix Spirit. We may earn a commission via some of the links on this page, at no cost to you. Thank you for helping to support the website.

Last Updated on May 25, 2024

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