Yes, you read that correctly.
I, Seren, got a boyfriend and it was nothing like I expected.
You see when you have been single for three years – you are very used to doing things on your own.
You handle life and everything it throws at you. From stress to health problems. Even just having to keep on top of life duties by yourself is exhausting. If you know me you’ll know that I hate, with more passion than you can imagine, folding my washing.
But listen, you can’t sleep next to a pile of laundry when you have your boyfriend coming over for the night.
At times I thought I didn’t have space for a partner. There were so many moving parts of my life that I knew it would be hard to find a man who could keep up.
It got to the point that I wrote in my Hinge profile “I am looking for a man who can keep up”.
If you pick my lane we are going fast and not slowing down.
But he changed everything. He asked me if we were going fast enough together.
Getting a boyfriend was far more soppy than I thought it would be. Quietly the world changed and it took more than a long hot second for it to sink in.
I think I said “what the fuck” about 23 times when we became offical.
You see, I spent so long processing how it feels when it doesn’t work out that I had no idea what it would feel like if it did work out.
It was safe to say I was completely overwhelmed.
There were things that I actually never thought about till I had a boyfriend.
Because at one point or another I never thought I would get there.
I chose to share my private life with you all on here. My tales of trying to find someone to call my partner and now I have one.
Yes this dumb dumb did it. Who would have bloody thought?!
Clearly not me. Which is kinda sad actually.
I have always stated that whilst I write these very funny and shocking stories, I do intend to write my success story.
So often I get asked if I go on dates to just be able to write stories, but that is never the case. I go on dates because I want a relationship.
You see I want to write the story of how I met him, our first date, when things just fell into place. I have always wanted to give you guys a happy ending.
You have been there with me, along for the ride, every step of the shitty date way.
But now it was real life, there is another person. Him. My boyfriend. Would he want to be known to the public from the blog? Would he be comfortable with the fact that I wanted to write all about him over the internet?
It’s beginning to sound like I am famous or something which I am most definitely not.
I just knew that changing my relationship status would absolutely cause a ruckus because I have been writing about my single life for so long.
We were officially together for a week when my father asked ever so nicely but in true boomer fashion “why isn’t it Facebook official?”.
Because y’all are a curious bunch and this sort of ‘announcement’ needs to be agreed upon. I had to have a very awkward but frank conversation about taking our private lives public. In short we decided to keep our socials on lock so we could just feel it out.
After all, the blog has never been in real time.
So congratulations to me, the dating apps finally worked.
Here I am, publicly announcing it.
I, Seren Powell-Jones, am a taken woman.
Yup, who would have thought. I was being introduced as his girlfriend and well honestly, it was a dream.
I finally had my person and they had me. It was a really nice feeling. A feeling I had spent a long time waiting for.
When we first started dating he was only going to be in the country for 6 more weeks. He said, and I quote, “I am looking to date but I am not looking for a relationship as I am leaving”.
But why was he on a date with me if hes leaving so soon?
He loves to eat out, having company and great conversation.
Whilst it was a gutting moment, ever the optimist I wondered.
What if we fake dated for six weeks.
What if I dated him like an experiment and get as close as I can to figuring out what I really like in a partner and what I can’t stand? Either way he’s leaving to another country and well, then I will have obtained all this information for my future endeavours.
So the plan was hatched between us. He wanted to experience some of Auckland’s top restaurants, I, a woman who lived and breathed fine dining for two and a half years, would educate him. In turn I would live my best life and really enjoy the act of proper conversation. It was a win win.
In that time we experienced four top restaurants, many drinks and he stood by my side at events and parties. It was a stunning match where we both played the part for each other.
But then we had a small pandemic and he was delayed in leaving. In fact that happened four fucking times.
During this time I was strung along for the ride holding on to the fact that maybe it would work out.
Yeah. I am a dumb dumb.
However, after every hurdle that we faced and climbed over, we would always find ourselves back at square one.
We tried pseudo dating.
We tried just being friends.
We tried just being friends with benefits with clear lines in the sand.
You too can laugh at that one.
I even called the entire thing off and cried for three weeks.
But nothing stuck.
Drawn to each other, like stupid fucking magnets.
Stuck in the same country, in the same city, where we had absolutely fallen for each other.
We were 8 months down the track when reality found us.
That is because he was now actually going to leave. For real this time.
Not that the other times weren’t real, but this was different because we were post pandemic.
Things were more certain.
There I was finally standing in front of a man who had the capacity to love me and he was leaving the country. I was helpless because there was nothing I could do.
He had three months till he was due to leave.
And there is nothing like a countdown to having your heart broken to push you to throw all caution into the wind.
So I yeeted all caution to the wind.
It got to the point that I said to him, I would rather have an actual boyfriend for three months and then watch you leave. Rather than to be stuck in this limbo of purgatory of thinking “what would it have been like if it had worked out?”.
After all, he said we were perfect together. That we clicked like you wouldn’t believe.
But then, because there is always a ‘but’.
Which is when he took this moment to remind me what he said on our second date. “I am looking to date, but I am not looking for a relationship as I am leaving”.
But things are different now and way more complicated. I kept asking myself, what happened? How did we get to this point? Did I miss when he reminded me time and time again that he didn’t want a relationship?
Did he say something to me when we went on day trips? When we were staying at each other’s houses four nights a week? When he picked me up from work because I was too sick to drive? When he sent a photo of us to his parents? Did he say it before or after “I love you”?
No Seren, you dumb dumb.
He had never reminded you.
We had fallen for each other, head over heels love.
So I challenged him on his thoughts of not being in a relationship. All he could say was “it’s not you, it’s me, I don’t know why I don’t want to be in one”. And like the stubborn and stupid human I am, I wouldn’t accept that answer. After everything I thought I was owed an answer to why.
We walked away from that conversation with less clarity on what we were going to do for the next three months and more emotions on the table than before.
God dammit I almost screamed “if you love me then love me”.
And then before we could recover from exploding with emotions his boss called him and threw yet another curve ball.
For the 5th time, he had his life turned on his head. His boss called told him “sorry but you are to stay here in New Zealand, in Auckland”.
He took it all in his stride, water off a ducks back. I took that news like I had just been slapped in the face by a seagull.
He is no longer going overseas. The pandemic was going through its second wave in many countries and it was too risky to send him.
As soppy as it sounds we had experienced the universe giving us more time and now after so many setbacks he was no longer leaving the country.
He was staying and it was going to be permanent.
We could actually have a happy ever after.
He stood in front of me and told me about all the things hes excited for now he is staying.
The topic of ‘us’ wasn’t on that list.
Honestly I felt like an after thought and when I brought it up, he told me that he needed to think about things. Because he thought he was broken because he didn’t want to be with me.
I said he can have time and no matter what I will always be here to talk to him and hear him out.
But I knew he would friend zone me.
Because if you are not all in, you are all out.
Being an afterthought isn’t my vibe.
The only thing that was clear was that he and I don’t work as friends. I don’t even know what a friendship between us would look like.
About a week later he messaged me.
He had just moved into a house he had bought.
In the seven days that had passed, I had made peace with the idea that he would never chose me. That despite being a picture perfect match he was about to crush the last tiny bit of my heart that seemed to love him so much.
He invited me to come round to celebrate with a bunch of his friends and family.
Yes, I was going to meet his parents for the first time and they knew exactly who I was.
He had proudly sent photos of us to them after one of our dinner dates.
I’d just like to take a moment and ask what the actual fuck is the logic here?
Why would I go?
Because I knew it was ending and I wanted to walk away knowing I did absolutely everything I could. That me turning up meant I never wavered on the idea of being by his side.
If you need to know anything about me, it’s that I need closure.
It’s my biggest downfall.
So I was going for closure.
But not the pretend type where you fuck your ex for closure.
Rather the ‘ah yes, this is what your happy ending looks like and I definitely do not fit here’.
But good to know you will be happy, I can take peace in that knowledge.
I said I would only come if I could bring a friend, I also had an early start the next day and we cannot stay late. Always have an escape route.
How hypocritical of me.
Him and I found ourselves sitting watching everyone eat and getting to know each other when he said we should properly have a chat at some point.
I said now’s good for me.
Why? Because I am not going to waste any more time on a guy who clearly cannot figure his romantic life out, but can buy a house in Auckland.
He was shocked and turned to me, putting down his dinner plate.
“I have been thinking Seren”
From his tone, his body language and the fact that I had been left on read for a week, I knew this is where it was going to end.
As he was talking I was mentally disassociating.
In fact I was counting how many steps it would take to reach the fridge and pick up my drinks, nodding at my friend to indicate it was time to go and then ordering an Uber and counting the steps out the front door and down the driveway when he said “I love you and I want you to be my girlfriend”.
“Sorry, can you say that again? What did you just say?”
He now had tears streaming down his face, he was turning away from the party so no one would see.
“I want you to be my girlfriend, it makes sense, I love you Seren.”
I grabbed his hands and said “I love you too and yes I will be your girlfriend”.
I spent a long time waiting for this moment. But I never dreamed it would be like this.
Especially when I thought I was about to be friend zoned.
It was like being back handed by the same seagull again.
Kissing him on the cheek and wiping away the tears he pulled me into a hug and, for the first time in what felt like a lifetime, the world had come into focus and things were finally going my way.
That night, even now feels hazy. I can still hear him introducing me to his friends as “this is Seren, my girlfriend”.
I excused myself to the bathroom and pulled out my phone. I took a deep breath and went onto my Hinge profile where we matched and deleted my account.
Taking a screenshot of this momentous moment in the hopes that I would get to share with you all. A very small but mighty victory of overcoming the algorithms and finding love.
I deleted the app off my home screen and came back out to the party.
To my partner who kissed me on my forehead and asked me if I was going okay.
This dumb dumb was for once was okay.
Then he broke up with me a month later.
Yup, you read that completely right.
He broke up with me in my bedroom on a Sunday morning.
Only after he slept with me.
Like the absolute gentleman he was.
I can’t believe this is even our story.
He had confessed the night before that whilst he is unbelievably happy when he is with me, he is just not happy in a relationship. We talked for hours about changing the way we communicate, doing things differently, taking a whole different course to this relationship thing.
In the end, I had to spell it out for him by asking him if it was over.
Because he couldn’t spit it out.
He didn’t cry because he was sad. He cried because I was sobbing.
He was just about to leave my house, when he said I need to remember to take care of myself and that he needs to hear from me soon.
That he needs me to be his friend.
Because we were best friends.
But I said I need an unknown amount of time before we can even approach that. I can’t be his friend right now, it’s too painful. I had barely stopped crying.
He said he would always be there for me and if I needed anything I should just ask.
I wasn’t sure if I wanted to cry till I dissolved or scream into the wind and fly to a different country. That tiny fragment of my heart that had finally started to regrow was now obliterated.
I was blindsided and utterly exhausted.
Whilst I stared at the man who is now my ex, I then realised I had to be at brunch in 10 minutes.
The world really doesn’t stop when you have your heart trampled.
I am such a dumb dumb for ever thinking it was going to work out.
But also where are my sunglasses because I look incredibly sad and can’t face the world like this.
I could have canceled. But how do you construct a message about your boyfriend of just a month breaking up with you?
It’s fucking embarrassing.
I was embarrassed for being proud of my relationship. I felt like I was an oversight, a decision that was made in haste. That he just wanted to give me what I wanted and then immediately regretted it.
Which I can assure you does amazing things for your self esteem.
Two weeks later I still hadn’t spoken to him because I was still crying on my way home from work everyday. RIP to anyone who made eye contact with me at the traffic lights. In my head I was wondering how he was going with work and if he had done any more work on the house.
He watched every single Instagram story I posted and I thought a lot about the day when it would not hurt to think about him and the time we spent together.
During a catch up with a friend that weekend, who is also a reader of the blog, she asked me when this had all happened.
I explained the dates when she said “I really don’t know how to tell you this…”
She said she turmoiled over telling me because it might be nothing. She had taken screen shots and then deleted them because pulling all of this up is clearly painful to me.
I had finally managed to stop crying. An accomplishment I tell you.
But there are no secrets in my friend group. Even if they will hurt you.
She said that three weeks ago he came up on her dating app. Three weeks ago was when we were still very much together.
In a committed relationship.
To each other.
She thought it might be one of those cases where people’s profiles come up but they don’t use them.
That’s where I stopped her.
I had moved off Tinder, off Bumble and all the way to Hinge because of their algorithm. It only ever showed you people who had used their profile in the last 72 hours. That’s how they ensure you get more matches.
Go and google it if you don’t believe me.
That night he asked me to be his girlfriend in his bathroom. I deleted my profile that had been inactive for 9 months.
My boyfriend, the guy I was in love with, the person I finally chose to be with.
To stand by my side and be so incredibly proud of.
The person I really thought I could write the success story about to people who live in over 100 countries and allow me to close the chapter on Tinder Stories.
The man who said he would take a bullet for me and would seriously consider putting a knee in the dirt for me.
I shit you not, he said that to me.
Was discovered by a reader to still be active on a dating app whilst we were very much officially together.
I wish I was making this up.
That it wasn’t true and I could write something else.
But this is the truth.
The heart wrenching, very harsh reality of dating.
I found out and thought about confronting him.
But what is that going to achieve Seren?
We can never be together.
We can never be friends.
There is absolutely nothing left to fight for or save.
Maybe me three years ago would have popped off.
But Ive learnt that doesn’t need to happen.
So to this day he has no idea that this dumb dumb knows the whole truth.
I was head over heels, madly truely in love with a man who turned out to be a dud.
For the record he will never get a name.
Not even a fake name.
There is no excuse in the entire world that could ever allow him to crawl out of the bin I have put him in.
Please note that this bin is on fire.
And even if we take away the active dating profile, which really is the kicker here.
I dated a guy for ten months only to have him waste my time, leave me single and now with a super spicy amount of defensiveness.
Don’t love that for me.
The final thing to note is he read the entire blog and quoted it to me on our very first date.
I am almost certain he’s reading this one.