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The Struggles of Living with “Grass is Always Greener Syndrome”

Definition: “Grass is Always Greener Syndrome” – the inability to appreciate your current personal situation at any given point, ever.


Ever been in a relationship and wished you could be single? Or then been single and wished you were in a relationship? Any of your friends ever tell you that you never seem to know what you want? You might be like me.

So there you are having a nice catch-up over coffee with one of your bezzas, when you decide to ask that all-important question: “how is it going with *the boyfriend*?” Then, suddenly, out-of-nowhere and, to your utmost surprise, she reports that things are going really well. It appears that this girl sitting before you has absolutely no qualms whatsoever about said-boyfriend and does not require hours of lovingly prepared support and advice from yourself.

If you’re anything like me, you’re the sort of person that spends single life lusting after a relationship and then relationship life wondering if you’d be having much more fun if you were single. And it’s not even like I’ve been dating horrible guys. I’ve been lucky enough to have a couple of really great relationships yet, someway or another, I always manage to convince myself I’d be much better off if I were single. To me, there has always been something really appealing about being single, with no relationship responsibilities and being able to live in true -“I don’t need no man”- independent-woman style.

But then you break up, and it turns out you’re not as much of an independent-woman as you’d originally hoped. Turns out you actually would quite like someone to cuddle up with at the end of the day, and the whole “independent woman” thing you’ve been pursuing has got a bit boring. So one day you find a new guy and he’s really great. It’s all going perfectly well, you’ve even told your bezza it might be the real deal this time. Until, alas, your “grass is always greener syndrome”, starts kicking back in and you go running for the hills screaming the lyrics to “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun”.

The way I see it, I can’t even decide whether I want salt or sweet popcorn at the cinema, how on earth am I meant to know if this is the guy I should be with right now or if I should even be with anyone at all? You hope it’s all just a phase and part of the growing up process, until your mum turns to you and says “God help me on your wedding eve”. This is when you start to worry you will actually be struggling with an overwhelming indecisiveness concerning your relationship status for the whole of your life.
Unfortunately I have no great pearls of wisdom as I continue to struggle on, weighed down with a severe case of “grass is always greener syndrome.” However, I would hope that recognising this condition is half the battle to overcoming it.

So to any of you out there that feel the symptoms I have described could lead to a self-diagnosis of your condition: why not take a breather before jumping in or out of your next relationship? Consider whether this is what you actually want or if, like me, it could be simply a strong, yet sometimes unreliable, belief that you would be infinitely happier under any set of circumstances other than your own.

When all is said and done, the standard piece of advice issued to those suffering from indecisiveness is to “go with your gut”. To those advisers out there I would just like to ask, what do you do if your gut doesn’t know what the f**k is going on either?

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