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Delaney Rowe On Embracing The Joys Of Being Alone

The American content creator reveals the thrills of solitude – even when the whole world’s watching.

I’m sitting at Marvin [a French bistro] in West Hollywood on a Sunday night. [My friend] Sloan and I have hastily cleared two bottles of wine and are having groundbreaking insights about life that only surface when you’ve cleared two bottles of wine on a Sunday night. Can’t wait to not remember this.

“You know, sometimes I will actually cancel plans just to hang out with myself,” she says. I’m laughing, or maybe I’m crying at this point? I ask her what she means. “I mean, I’m dating myself.” Huh.

“Tell me more,” I slur. “Let’s get another bottle.”

delaney rowe
Delaney Rowe has more than 1.1 million followers on TikTok. (Credit: Supplied.)

I’m Delaney and I make comedy videos on the internet. I’m watching the numbers climb one afternoon. 900,000 views. 1 million views. The dopamine rush is insane. Better than drugs. So I’ve heard (for legal reasons).

I’m suddenly aware that, despite what my follower count might suggest, I am, in fact, sitting here all alone in my apartment. But not in a Carrie Bradshaw way. In a Girl On The Train way. This is the first place I’ve ever had to myself. It is a dark little spot painted every shade of green you can imagine and the “sexy library” aesthetic I’ve tried to cultivate is giving more “does she need professional help?” vibes these days.

In the last eight months, I’ve transitioned to a full-time content creator, which, as it turns out, is the loneliest job in the world. Except for maybe a lighthouse keeper. But at least that’s erotic. I’ve also been navigating a break-up with such spectacular inadequacy and chaos that I’m basically ready to write a memoir called How I Ruined Everything And Looked Terrible While Doing It. I have never been more alone in my life. I’m dating myself.

I’m ashamed to admit that my work days often look like waking up in boxers and a comfort sweater (unlawfully acquired from an ex), filming and taking meetings in that same outfit, and then going to bed completely unchanged. Who’s gonna make me change clothes? I’m dating myself!

Delaney Rowe
Delaney Rowe: “Being a full-time content creator is the loneliest job in the world.” (Credit: Jonny Marlow.)

Days will go by where I don’t use my voice except for when I’m talking to myself in a video (unhinged) or on a call with my manager (my therapist?) likely crying about how stressed I am about money and time and men and my perpetually aching wisdom teeth. I really need dental insurance.

Then there are good days. Days where I remember that sunlight and dinner parties and crushes and clean clothes exist. And friends. Friends who paused their lives for me when I found out my ex had a new girlfriend. Friends who took me out day drinking when that information ended up on the internet. Friends who comment on every single one of my videos. Every single one. They’ve seen me swarmed by neurosis and anxieties the same way a tree is devoured by moss. And I’ve never laughed more in my life. I think I’m also dating my friends.

The de-centering of romantic relationships in my life has been challenging in a world that is set up for parties of two. But solitude is also thrilling. The possibility of reinvention. I joined a runners club (for three weeks, haven’t worked out since)! I also discovered you don’t need to wait for someone else to tell you the things you really need to hear, like “You’re sexy,” or “I’m proud of you,” or “I love you, dearly,” or “That rash will go away all on its own, you don’t need a doctor.”

If you are learning the art of being alone—of singleness, of oneness—here is what I know for sure: anything you need at any given moment already exists inside of you. Just sit for a second. You will be so proud of the person you’re dating. I am.

​This story originally appeared in the January issue of marie claire Australia.

Marie Claire’s January 2023 issue. (Credit: Beau Grealy)

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