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When you're looking for love...

There are plenty of fish in the sea. Don't wait for the right one, start catching already, writes Judy Balan.

brunch Updated: Jul 03, 2012 13:47 IST
Judy Balan
Judy Balan
Hindustan Times

'Whoever said that plenty of fish in the sea thing was lying. Sometimes, there's only one fish. Trust me.' - Ally Mcbeal

A long time ago, someone told me that this whole idea that there is someone for everyone was hogwash - because according to his totally baseless theory - there were about five or six women for every cute, single guy though statistics indicated otherwise.
When I rolled my eyes, he asked me to think of any guy I had been really attracted to and I found that every time, there were at least four or five other women trying to charm him at the same time.

FishI've been testing this theory ever since - across cultures, age groups (28 and older) and social backgrounds - and I've found that it is true almost all the time. Wherever there is a cute guy (and I use the term cute very loosely), four or five women will attempt to snag him. When I saw how similar this was to Ally's fish theory, I decided that I had only two options - fight for the one fish or settle for the one nobody wanted.

Since I'm simply not wired to settle, I always ended up in competition. All those movies I watched on true love only spurred me on to fight every time, for the guy whom I sincerely believed was The One. Most of the time, I got the one. But then to my great disappointment, found that it wasn't what I wanted at all. So I threw it back in the pond and there was always someone to pick it up immediately. This opened my mind up to a whole new theory - 'For every fish that is being caught, there are several more back in the pond.'

This was a liberating thought - There was really no shortage at all. I've just been at the wrong pond the whole time! But then again, if this is true and you're well past your twenties, it's possible that someone else took your fish by the time you made it to the right pond. And this once again, leaves you with a choice - will you wait for said person to realize she's with the wrong one or will you give up and settle for second best?

I was recently in that place - I believed that someone else had my fish. Because believe me, I looked in several ponds. But I decided I didn't have the energy to fight. And even if she did drop what I thought was mine, I didn't want to pick it up.

I have a new theory now. If you've looked long enough, waited long enough and not tried to be greedy and grab what was never yours in the first place, then consider the possibility that your fish does not live in a tiny pond. Maybe you're going in circles - trying so hard to catch a gold fish - when somewhere in a faraway ocean, a beautiful humpback whale sings a haunting love song just for you.

And that one fish that everyone thought they couldn't live without? I have a feeling it died alone.

Judy is a compulsive theorist and dreamy single-mum. She believes in serendipity, The Butterfly Effect and is pop-culture-crap intolerant. She is also the best-selling author of Two Fates - The Story of My Divorce

First Published: May 23, 2012 19:09 IST