“Life is about adjustments and changes, you will figure it out.” – Rhea

Rhea! Friendships are just as important as romantic relationships. Rhea is one of my single, beautiful and fun-loving friends. Our friendship has expanded over 14 years. She even sang at my wedding (I should mention she is an amazing lyric soprano). Rhea is one of those friends that you just enjoy. There’s always lots of laughter, truth, realness and wisdom whenever we meet. We’ve had several conversations about being a single person, what that means and how she shares her love. Please enjoy.

Woo Forever: Love is?

Rhea: Love is work; it’s an anomaly. I have not been in love romantically but I experience love from my family and friends. The love I get from family and friends is because I make the effort. It takes deliberate effort. I put stakes in the ground so that there’s not too much time that has passed before I touch base with them. Life gets complicated and if you haven’t maintained your relationships it is harder to find support when you need it.

Woo Forever: Describe dating.

Rhea: It’s a minefield. It takes a lot of effort to not become jaded. Only my younger girlfriends seem to like it, but they are also the target age for many guys my age. I don’t think there are no good men out there- but there are a lot of good people who are making short-term decisions with potential long-term people. It seems that good guys let good women go because they think they can just meet another one. When I was younger I was told, make sure you are an awesome person and someone will see it, be thrilled and singleness will be over! Modern dating has shown me that’s not true. There are men that want to set-up the construct of a relationship but don’t want the actual relationship. It leaves me with my guard up.

“Nothing can mean anything anymore.” – Rhea

Woo Forever: We live in a world of instant everything. We are instant friends and then instantly we are not. How do you deal with that?

Rhea: I’m a cautious person who attracts cautious people, so I don’t worry about that. I’ve learned that one of the best tests of character is seeing how people react to being told ‘no’. ‘No you can’t have my number without introducing yourself.’ ‘No, I don’t want to meet you this evening when we just started interacting this morning.’ Fascinating and informative responses come from giving simple boundaries.

Woo Forever: How do you deal with the hard part of dating?

Rhea: The hard parts are all I know. I’m not interested in spending time with people whom I am not interested in. I won’t go out just to go out. I no longer go out to meet people, which I realize is a defense mechanism. My size used to be a big impediment but it’s not anymore. I use to be invisible and now I’m not so I have to figure that out.

Woo Forever: Why are you single?

Rhea: That’s a good question. People insinuate that something is wrong with you if you are single. Part of my emotional work is knowing that there is nothing wrong with me. The reality is a lot of guys are really looking for long-term relationships but they want to be tricked into it. They don’t want to make the choice because they don’t want to be responsible for their choices. When I first meet someone I try to figure them out not entice them. I find that if someone is disproportionately affectionate it seems false.  

Age also matters. I’ve been dating for 21 years. There’s a lot about me that I’ve already figured out. I know who I am. I’m an observer and take my time. I have more courage now than I did 15 years ago.

Own who you are and where you are.” – Rhea

Woo Forever: What do you value?

Rhea: Commonality. The ability to be myself right away. Consideration, I need to be considered. Someone who treats me how I treat people.  

Woo Forever: What kind of relationship do you want?

Rhea: I want someone who I can have a friendship with along with the chemistry. Faith is important.

Woo Forever: What would you say to other singles?

Rhea: Learn to recover quickly from passing rejection. I realize it’s not about me but emotionally it can still hurt. Guard your heart, so you don’t bring baggage. Hope is scary. The longer you are by yourself the more elusive it feels. Know you are not by yourself. Find people who understand the challenges of being single beyond the age of 25.

Rhea’s Final thoughts:

Many single women are used to doing for themselves and need some time to get used to having someone new in their lives. Allow for a learning curve so as trust is built you can become more open.

Woo Forever final thoughts.

Dating and falling in love takes courage and commitment. Having self-awareness, getting to know someone like Rhea, being fully engaged, and selfless can lead to a wonderful relationship. Thank you Rhea for sharing a part of your story. May you continue to feel the love of those around you. May you find the romantic love you always wanted and so deserve. Love is treating others how you want to be treated. Woo Forever.