There Is Nothing Wrong With Taking Dating Seriously

Shani Silver
4 min readOct 22, 2020

Don’t fake casual.

Photo via Shopbop, shirt by Off-White.

You aren’t too much. The existence of you is not an imposition upon the world. The space you take up, the desires you have, the facts of you—it’s all meant to be here, because it is here. Something that already exists doesn’t need permission to show up. You don’t have to apologize for what you naturally want, not even when the world makes you feel uncool for it. There’s nothing wrong with taking dating seriously, and you’re allowed to be fucking done with those who don’t. You don’t have you change what you want to fit people who aren’t actually your options. The right people for you will want you, will want like you. You don’t have to accept their lessers.

I’m sorry we’ve built a dating culture that punishes us for our certainty. I’m sorry that “knowing what we want” has been painted across us as intimidating, as opposed to what it really is, helpful. I’m sorry we live and interact in a world where the most nonchalant among us are prized, while the most solid of us are made to feel like needy, desperate, crazy, fun-ending human plagues. You are not a plague, you are perfect. You’re the truth.

You are allowed to take dating seriously, you are allowed to take yourself seriously. You’re allowed to approach relationships and partnerships with intention. You don’t have to approach them pretending not to care. If you care, you care, and that’s allowed, because it’s true. Caring is not a negative, but we’ve been encouraged to think that it is, by those who themselves don’t care. We don’t have to adjust our wants and needs for the most confused among us. Not caring won’t make you more marry-able. Not caring when you do care only makes you a liar. Don’t lie for these fuckers, they’re not worth it.

You aren’t uncool for wanting a future. Or a marriage. Or a family. You’re allowed to stop wanting a fucking boyfriend, and start acknowledging for yourself that there’s nothing lame about you for wanting a husband. The word “situationship” does not have to exist in your vocabulary. You don’t have to be okay with kind-of. You can walk away from what is not enough for you, because not enough is not all that will ever show up.

You are worth more than crumbs. You deserve more than tiny encouragements evenly spaced. You don’t have to be…