SO SUCK IT, XIYUAN.
You know what’s more fun than getting a divorce? Getting a divorce, but having a set of two friends you’re unable to divide up, and their stupid kids keep stupid getting older.
Luckily, Aileen hasn’t been left alone entirely. She has me, the benevolent maker! She also has Shu, who absolutely adores his dad and wants to be just like him in every conceivable possible way.
So, this is where we start our story: what promises to be a long and arduous process of healing and self-discovery for Aileen. Or, she’ll wallow in despair until she dies. It’s kind of a toss-up at this point.
Did you think the title was Aileen venting? No, it’s just that Kendra’s birthday party technically never ended. Aileen and Shu were having a blast in the Jeong-Espinosa house and stayed long after the hosts had gone to sleep; Xiyuan similarly overstayed his welcome, but while thoroughly avoiding Aileen. Maybe they feel more comfortable with friends right now—or are they just raiding Claudia’s fridge?
They stayed so long that Mike woke up, and his only reaction upon learning Kendra’s party guests decided to wreak havoc around his house all night was to offer his old roommate some breakfast pie. As one does.
The Jeong-Espinosas are awake and going about their day at 10 A.M.—at least I think they are, because no one is coming to whack Shu for waking them up with his ungodly screeching.
And if they had stayed, my tale would have never ended. They did leave around noon, but only to scrub all traces of Xiyuan pink out of the house and replace it with shades of grey. (If the term “Xiyuan pink” doesn’t make sense, wait till you see his apartment.)
Aileen can’t get a post-breakup pixie cut because her hair can’t get any shorter. Luckily, she’s a Sim, so post-breakup medium bob is also an option.
However, Aileen’s main challenge isn’t the divorce: she was thrown into a set of best friends and colorful characters, and, as a result, didn’t develop her own identity. “Single mother” is all she has.
Figuring out Aileen’s personal preferences is a start. She seems to be fond of San Myshuno, so she’s going to use karaoke as an excuse to drag herself away from the computer.
Aileen (sans Shu) was back the next night at the same karaoke bar. It goes without saying that she’s on the prowl. I mean, she can’t be seen wandering in her ex-husband’s new neighborhood alone while he’s busy chasing translucent tail. She is going to find a man, a good one, and RUB IT IN HIS FACE. I mean work on loving and respecting herself before dating and RUBBING IT IN HIS FACE. No, that’s not it; I mean build positive relationships with the people around her and hopefully one blossoms into romance SO SHE CAN RUB IT IN HIS FACE. LOOK AT HOW GREAT I’M DOING WITHOUT YOU, YOU BASTARD.
Tonight’s man is personal trainer Bennett Good, one of Aileen’s best friends who just so happened to have two free nights in a row and he is so sad to hear about the divorce, just SO SAD, dear, does she need a shoulder to cry on? Is it alright if it’s just us? Ok, see you at 7.
Aileen, having been a random townie, hasn’t had to deal with the realities of dating yet. She’s spared the dick pics and nice guys, but is falling into the same trap Claudia did: it’s possible to find Sims who are attractive, have good traits, or are compatible with you, but not all three. Her best option would be to stay at a social venue past closing, when all of the Maxis-curated Sims have gone home.
Another “option” is Don Lothario, who would prefer to corner Bennett in the bathroom:
Don breaks one of my cardinal rules, which is to not impose artificial sources of conflict. This doesn’t mean she can’t hook up with him! Or everyone!
Bennett invited Aileen to the street fair the next day. Not one of her other friends, no, the only one who seems dead-set on spending as much time as possible with her once she became single. Too bad Aileen doesn’t see him that way, and his attention span isn’t long enough to actually make a move. The only person who got something out of the outing is Shu, who seems to have finally picked up on the fact that his mom might be seeing other people and his dad isn’t coming back.
What you’re seeing here is the beginning of a long-running trend in which my Sims replace therapy with basketball.
But there’s one thing we haven’t addressed: does Aileen really need a date? What kind of heteronormative social pressure bullshit is that? She should probably start learning to love herself instead. She needs outlets. She’s started attending yoga classes frequently and is developing a strong practice. She started learning two new creative skills, writing and singing.
When Aileen writes, she is channelling her rage, fear, and frustration. She doesn’t quite yet have the words for what she’s feeling. Luckily, 127% of all songs are breakup songs, so someone else might have found them already. Better to go through the entire songlist just in case.
On the other hand, focusing on self-care doesn’t mean she can’t window-shop.
There are a couple cute guys Aileen keeps seeing at karaoke. They’re two of the canned City Life Sims; let’s call them Manbun and Ginger. Ehhhh. Both of them have some kind of shitty trait like Non-Committal, Hot-Headed, Evil, or Gloomy. We were just about to give up, for good, when…
Let’s see. Cute! Likes her! No bad traits! HE’S AN ASTRONAUT OH SHIT AILEEN LOCK THAT SHIT DOWN
AAAAAAAAAAAAH I’M FREAKING OUT
What’s the hot take, pancake?
Next chapter is kind of a doozy. Brace yourselves.