Birthdays are like the Dickensian times. They are the best of times, they are the worst of times. They are the times of excessive attention and 200 Facebook notifications and Instagram collages created for hours by your smartphone-illiterate friends; they are also the times of evaluating your life accomplishments and cross-referencing them with your childhood dreams and expectations. (I was supposed to become an actress and receive my first Oscar by now. Instead I write a blog about my flailing love life.) They are the times of realizing that you no longer give a damn about half of the things you used to be so concerned about (namely what other people think about you), they are also the time of acknowledging the family of asshole-like crows feet taking up permanent residence on your face, forcing you to consider allocating some of your shoe budget towards Sisley creams that equal the GDP of Zimbabwe (not exaggerating, check it out.) If you are en couple, it is a time of romantic surprises and Cartier boxes (the imagined grass is always greener), if you are single, it’s a time of a whole lot of other trouble.
Having recently celebrated my 28th birthday, I decided to round up the main romantic birthday dilemmas that most of us are all too familiar with.
1. The Birthday CTA
The dilemma: You’re casually dating a guy for a couple of months. As much as you want to be the cool about it, the psychobitch in you knows that his actions on this day will define where you stand and whether the relationship has any sort of future. I remember many years ago my ex, whom I had just started seeing, had an enormous production of flowers delivered to my parents house on my 23rd birthday. The diameter of the arrangement was the same as that of the Christmas tree, next to which it stood proudly for months, as our cute little our relationship blossomed. (After this one grand gesture, he took a permanent break – I spent the following birthday at In n’ Out.) On the contrary, I recently saw a friend get broken up with on the week of her birthday, and, let me tell you, the travesty that ensued wasn’t pretty.
Yoda says: Chill the f*ck out. I’m not telling you to sell yourself short, but some people simply don’t see birthdays as a reason to throw somebody an annual parade. As long as he acknowledges the momentous occasion with dinner and some flowers, I wouldn’t put much pressure on it – nothing is worse than a birthday Nazi who expects the world to stop for 24 hours, or even the entire week, to celebrate their existence. Said advice does not apply if he forgets your birthday – in this case, you have full right to clock him in the balls and bounce. (28 is making me feisty!)
2. The Ex Text
The dilemma: If you recently ended a relationship, the birthday is one of the most sensitive moments A.R. Will he call? Will he e-mail? Text? Snapchat? (Omfg, imagine..) The tricky thing here is that the first person to congratulate the other one usually sets the pattern. I remember spending an hour composing the perfect birthday email to my ex on the year we broke up (it was during Hurricane Sandy, so there was a “please don’t die” somewhere in there). Having set the example for a textbook polite & sweet message, I received something similar in return a month later, and continue to receive them to this day.
Yoda says: Chill the f*ck out. If he ignores your birthday altogether, this is further affirmation that you dodged a giant bullet. If he does write, don’t read too much into his words or dwell on love life past. Birthdays are about moving forward, not backwards, so try to see it as an opportunity to meet somebody new!
Which leads us to…
3. The Birthday Boyfriend
The dilemma: There you are, happy and single and completely unconcerned with your relationship status, when your stupid birthday rolls around and you suddenly not only feel single – you feel like the most single person on the face of this planet! A couple of weeks before the wretched day, you attempt to recruit a faux boyfriend just to have somebody to invite to your birthday dinner and follow up with some birthday sex. The problem is, you usually start exuding desperation and fail miserably.
Yoda says: Chill the f*ck out. I went to such far lengths to solicit a birthday boyfriend last year, that the desire was practically gone by the time this December rolled around. Instead, I decided to throw myself the most debaucherous birthday party known to man, the majority of which was planned in the Red Light District of Pigalle. Oh, I did auditioned a beautiful male model for the birthday boyfriend role, only to have him run away at the stroke of midnight, like a terrified Cinderella. On the upside, I can officially say that I celebrated my 28th birthday in a sex shop. En lieu of an Oscar, I got a Lelo. By the way, we have plenty of party props left over, so holla!
Also, if you want to win a date with me and enjoy more of this 28-year old Yoda wisdom, click here!
Winner gets a free Dbag Dating post!!