Dear Red: I'm a Reader, and I'm Awesome

Dear Readers of Dear Red (and this here blog),

Today's Dear Red is in dedication to all of you out there, sneaking a read of this blog at work, checking it out on your phone, or simply trying to explain to your mom why "The Naked Redhead" keeps popping up in your browser history.

And lo, I declare you all awesome. Heroes, even. Um, which is why this post is filled with the ridiculous pictures you see here.

Seriously, you challenge me, humble me, and get me all teary sometimes. And I'm not a crier! I'm not!

But instead of yammering on about it, how about I share some of what you've shared with me that inspires, encourages, and of course, makes me laugh?

This came in from a reader after Monday's post on singlehood and gender roles:

What if a “partnership” means that both people in the partnership embody both “typical” masculine and feminine traits...

I actually already have that in my current relationship (something on the order of 8 years now I think? Close to that now, and we've known each other for nearly 10). But then, neither of us is quite "typical". I've got quite a few masculine traits, he's not afraid of his feminine side, we seem to compliment each other well that way (most of the time).

Chores were sort of divided up at random. Except the cooking... because I SUCK at cooking and he's amazing at it. So naturally dinner is his domain.

He also generally does the laundry. I fold it.

I load the dishwasher (is it wrong to love an appliance?).

We both take out the trash, sort the recycling (he does the cans and I do the paper, because I have skinny little chicken arms right now and can't crush cans like he can LOL).

He can be very sensitive and attentive (and in fact when we're not under stress this seems to be his default), I can be pretty coarse and brusque. That's only barely scratching the surface.

But yeah I always found it weird when people treat "single" like a disease. Especially when they think anyone who is attractive must have a partner, because, well, everybody wants them! I say, if everybody wants you, you can afford to be picky. What, there's something wrong with saying no? Or, gods forbid, having fun just browsing the menu without having to settle on anyone for any length of time.

And this came in from a married reader who says: here now...enjoy who you are, and if you find yourself accompanied by someone delightful and lovely during some or all of your journey, then lucky you. And if not, and you're not wasting a bunch of perfectly good life agonizing over where the hell you're ever going to find a companion ("Hey you! Get over here right now, and share this journey, stat! But change a whole lot of shit about yourself first, because jeez!"), then lucky you, too.

And this from another reader:

I don't see the need to focus on the why not or what isn't in your life. Often, the answer ranges between boring and tragic. Why not focus on what IS going? A dating show, or a bunch of dinners with tall internet hunks: That's where your life is. It should be what's interesting.

You all make my day! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Sloppy virtual tongue kisses to you all! Even the ladies!

OK, I'll stop now.