I'm sad to report this is my final column as Y Me?. It has truly been a pleasure bringing you along on my romantic misadventures and filling your heads with half-cocked wisdom. But my circumstances have changed.
My name is Eric Griffey, and when I started this column a little more than a year ago, my personal life was in a state of chaos. I'd just ended a long-term relationship, and had decided to start dating again. At the time, it seemed as if every date I went on was comically traumatic. During a story meeting with then-associate editor Christopher Kelly, I shared some of my more harrowing dating experiences. Always fans of schadenfreude, Kelly and Rick Press suggested I write down my tales of dating woe, and the column was born.
It's been a really fun experience. I've gone on a lot of dates, met some cool people, and found out a lot about myself. One of the benefits of writing a first-person dating column is that it has forced me out of my comfort zone and into the world.
I went to gay bars, dance clubs, hit on women I would have never otherwise approached, connected with ex-girlfriends and all kinds of other stuff. After those experiences, I emerged a wiser and more confident man.
But I can't do the column anymore, mainly because I am off the market. I've been in a monogamous, blissful relationship with the woman of my dreams for about eight months now. It just seems a little disingenuous to go on writing a column about my calamitous romantic life, when there's nothing calamitous about it. Frankly, I feel far too happy and optimistic to do this column justice anymore.
I'll leave you with one last bit of advice -- and not the shabby, poorly reasoned, dysfunctional advice you've all come to expect from me.
Dating is awful. It just sucks having to re-explain yourself to a new person, and having to deal with that person's quirks. It's unpleasant, awkward and often expensive. But most of us go through it because we're searching for some promised happy ending that only exists in movies. When things aren't going well, we tell ourselves, "love happens when we least expect it," or "when we're not looking." When we know we're with the wrong person, but are too scared to let go, we think things like, "love is blind" or "opposites attract."
Those are just ways we comfort ourselves so we can continue searching and hoping. I found love because I was finally honest about who I am and what it was I was searching for. I've done a lot of soul searching over the last year or so, and I think it's no coincidence I found love when I stopped behaving like a cartoonish party boy and took responsibility for my own happiness.
The great search was an often bumpy road, and I've been hurt my fair share. But it's totally worth the effort. And make no mistake; it takes a lot of effort.
I'd like to thank former Editor Christopher Kelly for sparking this idea; the Editor-In-Chief Rick Press for making me look good every week, staffer Heather Svokos for all of her suggestions and edits; all of the frequent e-mailers, commenters, Facebook and Twitter followers, and of course, you, the reader.
I can't tell you how much fun this has been to write every week, and I'm very sad it won't be a part of my routine anymore. While I never strived to give good advice, I'm satisfied with my legacy as an advice columnist. And we did give one contest winner a free sex toy through this column, so you can't say no one ever got anything out of it.