“Are you dating anyone?”
“Who is that guy? Are you together?”
“When do you think you’ll be ready to get married again?”
“I know just the guy for you …”
“Can I set you up?”
And, my personal favorite: “Don’t worry, you’ll find someone.”
I’m not worried. I’m really not.
In our society, we tend to treat being single like a disease. Everyone’s got a cure. And if there isn’t an immediate solution to the problem, your acquaintances are quick to assure you that someone will come along.
We view being part of a couple as normal. If you’re not in a couple, you must be terribly sad and lonely – and dying to find someone to couple with.
There’s nothing wrong with being in a relationship with someone you love and trust. A good partnership is nothing to sneeze at.
However, it’s also ok to be single and loving it.
Being single ≠ being lonely.
The biggest myth that comes with being single is the idea that you must be lonely all the time. In my case, it’s relatively impossible to be truly alone because I live with a teenager.
But it is possible to miss the company of adults.
However, just because sometimes I like adult interaction, it doesn’t mean I’m a lonely person.
In fact, it’s hard for me to be lonely because I:
- am involved in the community, so there’s almost always something going on
- have great friends who meet me for lunch, go to movies with me, help me with what needs doing, and are willing to hang out with me at home or in other places
- spend time with my family.
The good news about being single is that it doesn’t have to mean you don’t hang out with people. You can still go out and enjoy time with family and friends.
On top of that, I actually like being alone sometimes. I go to movies by myself. I enjoy a lunch date with just me, myself, and I.
And heaven help you if I’m deep into a book and you try to spend the evening with me. The thicker the plot, the less I want you around.
There’s so much happening in my life as a single person that it’s practically impossible for me to feel lonely. I can’t imagine trying to manage it all and have to manage a boyfriend or husband on top of it.
It’s possible to be fulfilled in many different ways. Being part of a couple and being a parent are ways to enjoy life. Being single doesn’t preclude you from doing interesting and important things. Look for activities that give you purpose and people who you enjoy being around, and there’s no reason you can’t be fulfilled as a person.
Being single is so much more convenient.
The more people involved in a decision, the more complicated things get. I like my ex-husband a lot. We get along great, and we still enjoy fun family vacations. However, I can’t help but notice that things are simpler with only one adult involved.
From grocery shopping to travel, the only person I really have to consult before making a decision is me. Sure, I sometimes get my son involved. But in the end, I’m the mom and the adult. What I say goes. When there’s another adult involved, s/he gets equal say.
Since I like to have my own way, I find it convenient to be single right now.
Perhaps down the road my desire for a more constant and consistent companion will outweigh my desire for doing things my way, but right now single is good for me.
I like it.
Could being single actually lead to better health?
For years, conventional wisdom (and some studies) tell us that marriage is the way to be healthy as people. But is that really the case?
There is new evidence floating around that indicates it’s possible to be healthier as a single person than as a married person. This is especially true if you are in a bad marriage. (My marriage was not bad or abusive. However, I do find that, after more than 13 years of marriage, I enjoy being single.)
Some research indicates that you might be happier and healthier single than in a bad marriage — especially if you are a woman. In some cases, though, being single might be healthier than being married, no matter how good things are.
I have a feeling it depends on who you are, how comfortable you are with yourself and being alone, and the kinds of things you get up to as a single person.
In my case, I have a little more time to exercise, since I have my own schedule. I don’t have to try to work around someone else. I also have more time to do things that relax me, and that I enjoy, and I don’t have the stress of trying to incorporate another person on a daily basis. Being able to exercise, plan meals, and have me time on my schedule contributes to health and happiness.
For now, I like it.
Being single isn’t for everyone.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that it’s awful to be a part of a couple. It isn’t. Many people enjoy being with someone they see as a soulmate. They like the partnership and the companionship. They like sharing life with someone who “gets” them.
They like raising their human children and/or animal children, or they just enjoy the peace of having one other person. They go through hard times together and become stronger and closer.
And some folks, no matter how much they enjoy doing things alone, and even if they are comfortable in their own skin, just like to have someone to share the day with. There’s nothing wrong with this.
I enjoy the connections I have with other people. I’m glad I have them. But I don’t feel the need for a grand romance, or for someone to be there Every. Single. Day. in a more quiet way.
If you’re looking for a companion, or happy with your life partner, that’s no problem at all. It’s a good thing. As long as it’s a mostly happy, healthy relationship.
But it’s also ok to be in a happy, healthy relationship with only yourself.
What do you think? Do you prefer to be in a couple or single? And does it change depending on where you’re at in life?