Time to turn to a much lighter and juicier topic - men! Well, more accurately, preparing myself for men after my divorce. This month, for the entire 30 days of June, I will be taking a man-cation.
What’s a man-cation you ask? Well, it's known by a lot of names. Some call it a dating break or relationship cleanse, while some even call it a love detox. At first, I was calling it a man cleanse. Until one of my friends said it sounded like I was going to sacrifice a man for cult like reasons! I certainly didn’t want that. So another friend suggested the term “man-cation” and I liked it. It's essentially taking a break from romantic and intimate relationships with men for a period of time.
What are the rules of this mancation? The rules for such a break tend to vary. But after some thought, I’ve decided to (a) not text, call, email, FaceTime, DM, etc. any man (b) that I had or want to have romantic interaction with (c) for a period of 30 days. This, of course, does not include family or co-workers. Though with male co-workers and strictly platonic friends, I won’t initiate conversations nor communicate after business hours.
Why would I do this? Well… well, let’s get real friendly now. There have been men in my life since my marriage ended. Seriously. Let me tell you about it (because that’s the fun part!). My marriage ended in November 2016. And without intention or anticipation, I met Contestant #1 in January 2017, when I went to switch one of the utilities from my ex’s name to mine. I met Contestant #2 in April 2017, hoping to get honest advice about Contest #1 (why didn’t y’all tell me that would blow up in smoke?!). I met Contestant #3 in December 2017, at a friend’s Christmas party. I met Contestant #4 in November 2018, though I had known him for a while, just not romantically. I met Contestant #5 in March 2019, after being told he’d had his eye on me for quite a while. Then, I met Contestant #6 in April 2019, after seeing him around for a while and exchanging pleasantries.
Now, I didn’t actually go on a date with all of them. In fact, I’ve only been on dates with two of them. Mostly, I just entertained them, probably for far longer than I should have. I would allow them to text me “Good morning beautiful” (you know they’re good for that!), or “what are you working on today?” (I love when men take an interest in my day), or “you aren’t texting anyone else right?” (because what woman doesn’t want a man wanting her sole attention), or sending the emojis with the hearts (what? I’m a sucker for emojis). I had conversations like that with my ex from the first day we started dating and all throughout our marriage. Then I jumped right into having conversations like that after he and I’s relationship ended. And I’ve had them almost every day to this day. I realize now that I’d become dependent on these types of conversations - this form of emotional intimacy - to feel heard, seen, and validated. So I want to take a break from it and get back to being present in and enjoying each moment of my day.
How will I make it? I had a friend ask me this. First, I am committed to growing in this way. Second, I have a busy summer planned with meaningful work projects, exciting blog additions, and adventurous travel plans. Third, I intend to do something each day for myself. (You can hear daily recaps on my blog’s Instagram - @grabyourlightwithlauren.)
Have you done this before? Do you have any thoughts?