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Dear Sallie: Stuck On A Fantasy

Updated: Feb 22, 2023

All your life’s questions answered by Sallie, The Saint’s delightfully mysterious Agony Aunt. Submit your questions anonymously to Sallie on our Instagram or our website!

Dear Sallie,

I keep playing therapist to my friends about their relationships, while I’ve never even dated anyone. Thanks to rom-coms, my standards are way too high — how do I find someone for myself?



Dear Stuck-on-a-Fantasy,

It's probably true when people say that comparison is the thief of joy. It must be hard not to compare your own singlehood with your friends’ relationships. Don’t they seem so happy? So (sickeningly) in love? But just remember, everyone will have a different path to finding love, and sooner isn’t always better. Anyway, here’s some advice on finding a paramore in our strange, insular little bubble:

1. If you’ve got someone special in mind:

Just talk to them! It can seem daunting, but you can’t get to know someone if you never speak to them. Organise something with a group of your mutual friends, like a dinner party, and make sure to seat yourself next to them. The less party-inclined could also try asking them out for drinks or coffee. If you don't want to seem too forward, you can get to know them as friends first, then see how it goes.

Making the first move can be scary, but better that than to pine endlessly after someone, just waiting for them to profess their undying love for you. Who knows, once you get to know them, you might discover you don’t really like them all that much, and are then free to move onto greener pastures! As with most things, Stuck-on-a-Fantasy, honesty is the best policy — and a crush can sometimes be just that: a fleeting fancy.

Rejection isn’t necessarily a bad thing altogether: you deserve to be with someone who wants you back. If that happens not to be the case, then you’re probably better off without them anyway. It can definitely sting in the moment, but at the end of the day, you’re one step closer to finding the person who’s right for you.

2. If you're looking for literally anyone:

Try putting yourself out there a little more! The people on dating apps might seem a bit… questionable, but there will definitely be some diamonds in the rough. If you’re looking to meet someone in the real world, you could try getting chatty with the people in your lectures and tutorials! You could also make it a goal to talk to at least one person you don’t know at each party (especially if they're cute). Get involved with things you’re interested in, and you might meet someone with a lot in common with you. You could also try getting your friends to set something up, if they’re good people, chances are their friends will be too!

In all these scenarios though, try and actually talk to them, don’t just hover near them — because that is definitely weird. But, honestly, if you’re just looking for literally anyone who will have you then...

3. Try and be happy on your own:

This is, of course, much easier said than done, and you’ve probably already heard this ad infinitum from your happily coupled-up friends (and your mum). But it’s definitely possible to be happy and fulfilled when you’re single.

If it makes you feel any better though, the best things in life often come when you aren’t looking particularly hard for it. Just as a watched pot never boils, you shouldn’t put too much pressure on yourself to find “the one”. They might even be waiting just around the corner...

All my love,


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