I Should Write A Self Help Book

Ten years ago I viewed my life (quite wrongly in hindsight) as a colossal disaster. If the term “epic failure” had been part of the parlance back then, I would have adopted it as my personal motto. The reason for my misery was simple –  I was thirty three and single. Now I’m almost forty three and married with kids I realize that the Single’abulous life style had its advantages. Sadly at the time I made my single status into a drama of Tolkien proportions, as only a thirty something dumpee can.

Nevertheless I was hardly alone in being alone. I was part of a brave new demographic just begging to be marketed to. Sex And The City and Bridget Jones’ Diary were pitched straight at me. I lapped both up shamelessly, it was art imitating life except the art had ridiculously expensive shoes. At the same time the bookstores (still viable businesses back then) were groaning under the weight of texts for hapless women like myself who could not bag a man.

Single Abs was more Nine West than Manolo Blahnik

Single Abs was more Nine West than Manolo Blahnik

I turned to the literature for answers and what I found was dismal. I was way too anarchic to follow “The Rules” as dictated by Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider (Don’t ever call a man? WTF? ). According to “Marry Me – Three Professional Men Reveal How To Get Mr Right To Pop the Question”*, I was destined for a life on spinster hood as a penance for my naughtiness. If you need proof that sexual double standards are alive and well just leaf through this depressing piece of work. It will transport you back to the 1950s faster than the Tardis ever could.

The lamest excuse ever to post David Tennant (but I know you appreciated it - Lara)

The lamest excuse ever to post David Tennant (but I know you appreciated it Lara)

After losing the will to live, I turned to A Round-Heeled Woman: My Late-Life Adventures in Sex and Romance by Jane Juska. This true story tells of how a Jane a divorcee in her mid sixties, placed a raunchy personal ad in the New York Review of Books.

“Before I turn 67—next March—I would like to have a lot of sex with a man I like. If you want to talk first, Trollope works for me.” 

She was over whelmed by the response and got up to some rollicking shenanigans including several encounters with a 35 year old David Duchovny look alike. The latter was something I was definitely in the market for and I cheered her on heartily.

David Duchovny in 2002. Single 'Abulous would not have said no.

David Duchovny in 2002. Single ‘Abulous would not have knocked it back.

In the end it wasn’t the self help writers or even the mighty Jane Juska who inspired me out of the self pitying rut I was in. Rather it was Einstein. These words prompted me to change my approach.

You can rely on a physicist to solve your problems.

You can rely on a physicist to solve your problems.

In another rare moment of clarity I realized that the reason that I was receiving relationship “shit” was not due to me being inferior goods with low sexual capital. It was because I had been accepting “shit”. Cue the strains of Twisted Sisters’ “We’re not gunna take it anymore”. I’d experienced a pathetic parade of losers and players* up until that point and now it was time to stand firm and just say no until I found someone who’d treat me with respect and consideration. It seemed statistically likely that among the millions of men in the world there would be a least one who fitted this basic criteria. I dived into an RSVP dating adventure and played the numbers game until Dadabulous found me. A few weeks in he said ” I want a relationship in my life. Lets give this thing a try and see how it goes”. I may have nonchalantly replied “Ok – why not” but internally a southern gospel choir was shouting “Hallelujah” and “Thank you Jesus!”.

Had I not had this epiphany a decade ago I would probably be blogging about the pitiful man shortage with one hand whilst squirting botox into my face as liberally a poly filler with the other. My advice to all the single ladies out there is that you dont have to look like Beyonce for him to put a ring on it but you do have to say no to crap.

I cant do this but Dadabs still put a ring on it.

I cant do this but Dadabs still put a ring on it.

Around the same time my new attitude helped me take a few big steps with my career but that’s another blog post. Meanwhile “Just say no to crap” is a catchy book title dont you think?  I am sure I could expand upon the concept and come up with a block busting best seller.

Do you have any advice to go into this latest best seller? It could be a collaborative effort.

Love

Mumabulous

*Published 2000 by Bradley GerstmanChristopher Pizzo  and Rich Seldes

* To be fair, there were some nice guys who just ” weren’t that into me”. Luckily that book wasn’t around at the time.

PS: I got an obscene surge of pleasure when I heard that Ellen Fein’s husband of 16 years had ditched her.

34 thoughts on “I Should Write A Self Help Book

  1. I’ve always said to my girlfriends “The 80/20 rule only applies to diets” – you always need to find a way to meet in the middle. Not just one person moulding themselves into the other’s life. Loved this post – and I forgot how hot David Duchovny was and still is!

  2. Hmm, what about the one called ‘Why do you need to keep getting cheap thrills out of pictures of David Tennant when you’re a happily married woman’? I think maybe there’s a market…me! The self help book is such a curious creation. I suspect many of the authors could certainly write a book about how to make lots of money out of insecure people, if nothing else. I was even lamer than you in my single days though and swung between psychics and hard core diets in a bid to meet Mr Right. Not sure which one was a bigger waste of money! If I can teach my girls anything it will be not to be so damn desperate! I don’t know why I always felt so ‘incomplete’ without a bloke around – even when I was doing OK with work/study/travel etc. Maybe I just never had the right shoes?

    • No – you could not have been lamer than me ;-) But I’m feeling inspired – How about “I’m OK, You’re OK but Michael Fassbender is freakin’ hawt!”

  3. I love this” it was art imitating life except the art had ridiculously expensive shoes.” You should call a book that! I’m too clumsy and too poor for ridiculous shoes….

  4. Having become engaged at 20 and married at 20, a mother at 21 (not shot gun, not that it should matter but for some reason it does to me) and then another 20 years of raising 4 kids I cannot fathom being 33 and having only the responsibility of ‘me’ . I am shaking my head in wonder right now.. do I miss what I had? Well I never had it.. do I wonder what might have been different if I gave myself time to grow up… yep ! Still love my life, but some things may have been different

  5. Last time I had the responsibility of just me I was a 16yo. I would have had sooo much fun and did so much stuff if I was legal age to do it! Just remember YOU had fun and did stuff just for you.. legally!!! That’s a dream to me lol

    MC x
    #teamIBOT

    • Yes its true. Although I’ve had my heart smashed into a thousand tiny pieces I did have fun and I did do some stuff. I’m greedy however and I wish I’d had more fun and done more stuff. Dadabs and I shall be whooping it up in our 60s – if he ever retires.

  6. I barely had a few single-lady months from age 16 onward. I know everyone says the dating days were mostly a bag of shit but for some reason I often wonder what a handful of extra dates might’ve been like. I married my fourth serial boyfriend!

    • Well done you – I couldn’t get a boyfriend in High School due to the winning combination of me being a competitive study nut and a try hard gothic with cropped bleached white hair. Also I cant remember who my fourth serial boyfriend was ;-) I think it was a lovely chemical engineer…

  7. It’s funny, when I was young, up till my mid 20′s I would have bet money on not wanting kids, but by the time I was 27 invasion of the body snatchers had taken over and my clock was ticking madly. As it is, I am now just exuberant that they are 16 and nearly 13, and when I see little kids I give them a big smile and think “Oh thank gawd I’m past all that now!”

    Also, well done on inserting David Tennant into the equation :)

  8. You know I SHOULD have written that book – he’s just not into you – so stop stalking him, calling and GET THE FUGGING HINT! I just didn’t get it, that people would string me along, despite being nearly 30 and single I was like surely NOT! Thankfully something clicked on day and I just had a brain snap and then a few weeks later I met the man of my dreams, and the rest is history and stretch marks! :) xx

  9. I was already pathetic barely into my 20′s, let alone if I had been single in my 30′s. I once dated a guy nicknamed Walrus. Because he looked like one. Classy. I ended up getting married fairly young at 24. Sometimes I wish I’d waited a bit longer, but then I realise I just would have dated more ‘Walrus’ type guys. I’m also glad I was hitched before the internet or I might have dated more losers I’d met that way. I’m glad you were able to meet Dadabs that way, though. And I think you’re on the right track about that self-help book, or else using those single years as fodder to write a chick lit novel that will rival Bridget Jones and catapult you to fame as an author. Yep, DO IT.

    PS. Forgot about David Duchovny for my celebrity crush post. PWHOAR. Thanks for the perve. xo

  10. I didn’t have much of a single life ever – with someone from age 16 to 30, then found the right guy almost immediately after the split. Now a couple of years away from 50 (aarrgh!) sometimes I feel like I missed out on something but I think I was better off after some of the stupid stuff I did in my teens/twenties WITH a partner. I would have been way worse without one. But I really did enjoy my 31st year, felt like I was 16. Once the kids are pushed out the door (estimate about another 7 years), I’ll become a teen again. Hopefully my body holds out!

  11. I knew there must have been a reason I stayed up and freaked out with episodes of x files by myself years ago, sexy dave. Those episodes would seem perfectly lame these days.

  12. Along with these books, I totally lapped up “The Rules” Pah! How pathetic was I? I would totally buy a book with the title, “Just Say No To Crap” because it sounds much edgier than “He’s Just Not That Into You”
    I have an idea for a book but I’m going to wait till the next time we meet and we can discuss it over Cosmopolitans :)

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