The State of Singledom
The State of Singledom…
…am I being selfish in my single life?
I have done a little research ahead of my note. I was quite surprised, shocked maybe about the findings. To be honest I have never really cared about how many of US out there are single, but there are a few to say the least. Type “single people” in Google and it returns hundreds of statistics.
In 2017 According to Labor Statistics in US -more than 110 million people were single Americans, that is over 35% of the population in the United States.
Another statistic claims that 125 million of 16 years and older, or 50.2% population in USA were single in 2014, compared with 37% of population in 1976. Slight increase or what?
BBC in UK reported that in 2015 over 51% people in England and Wales were single, according to ONS (Office of National Statistics) – ha what about Scotland – all happily married? That figure apparently is including cohabiting couples, though still statistics are quite surprising.
Back on home ground in Poland, statistics are a little bit more optimistic. According to one source there are 29% singles living in Poland. Another source claiming the number is 5 million. It claims, that 59% of people up to age of 34, still did not put a ring on that finger. That makes me feel a little better, I fit in within standard Polish statistic. Just.
Taking all those findings, why does it always feel, like I am the last one standing on the single side? Any family or friends’ events from weddings to funerals, partying, BBQs, work events – why is it that I am the only solo person, if there are so many of them out there?
Maybe a rhetorical question, as my note was going to look at the life of a single woman these days. Pros and cons maybe. Someone who lived alone for 10 years, I think I could call myself a singledom expert. Whohoo it looks like I am an expert in more areas than I thought 😉.
Reading those articles, it made me feel, like being single is still something so shocking, that they had to make those statistics in the first place. I for sure, am aware there is an issue in the world now with forming relationships. I have experienced it first-hand. The beauty of trying to even find a date in reality or through, so much disliked by me online world.
Most of my friends are in relationships – partnerships or marriage. A lot of them have children. They are in long term relationships, and others in new, still fresh ones. I know people who don’t even know how it is to be on their own. Before one relationship ends, another one was already forming. They never experienced how it is, to live with yourself. That is not the point, I am not here to play the role of a psychotherapist and analyse scale of normality within those around me. What is interesting to me, is how I am perceived and also how I feel with my lifestyle.
I am going to say this out loud – I ENJOY BEING SINGLE! Over the years of unfortunate dates, disastrous short term relations, disappointments, trying to become someone else, giving a lot of my attention and time just to be showed middle finger at the end of it - I thought I had enough. I was so focused on finding a boyfriend, I didn’t ever get to know myself. The idea of still being on my own while over 30 was beyond me. Yet that time has come, and I am closing the gap on mid 30s now. I actually feel complete, yet there is no ring on my finger either.
If I was to summarise my life – I have a well paid job, I own a property, I own a car, I socialise with friends and family, I go on holidays, I eat in nice restaurants and go to the movies, I have whole big bed to myself. God bless silence at night and no one snoring in my ear! I have clean bathroom, no dirty socks on the floor. I can use the bathroom when I want, without feeling awkward on my potential date hearing, that I am actually a real human being (if you know what I mean haha). I don’t have to compromise on any plans, don’t need to worry about upsetting anyone, I do what I want and when I want. Heaven, right?
How selfish of me! I got so stuck within my little “bubble” and routine, I think, I probably closed door in front of someone’s face without even realising it. And that my dear reader, is what I would blame, for the current situation of those 30%, 40% or 50% of single people in the world. Selfishness of our personal space.
The longer you are single, I feel the harder it is to open yourself to a possibility of a relationship. After all what for would I even need that man? Ok, I can think of at least ONE very good reason, that I am sure you are wondering why wasn’t mentioned yet. The closeness, physicality and sexual relationships are equally as important. It is quite easy to forget about those though, with our busy, scheduled lives. But I agree I do miss that, and watching those in happy relationships around me, their emotional connection, kisses, cuddles – makes me envious sometimes.
The time I would admit I miss someone the most, is when something bad happens. Be it a problem at work, death in family, an accident or even worse sickness than normal. It does feel extremely lonely then. No one to fall on to, no one to take care of me and promise things will get better. Over the years, my skin had to toughen up and walls got built. Not a surprise, it’s difficult to break that through it now.
Unconsciously probably, we as strong, confident women (and men I am sure too) are sending the signals, that we don’t need anyone to share our lives and space with. That is one group of singles, I have few other ideas on types such as a serious dater, forever Peter Pan’s, career go getters, waiting for their perfect prince or princesses and more. These would be enough for a separate essay. As it stands, I can only comment on my own type.
Questions such as do I want kids or when am going to settle down, are slowly dying up. I think even people closest to me learned to accept my state of mind. Will I ever escape it? I admit, I meet a lot of interesting people. The older I get, the fussier I have become. I think that used to be my problem, I was giving chance to almost anyone, trying to see the best in people. Now I understand myself better, I know what I want from life, I wouldn’t just let anyone in it. I have values and I stand by them. I would want that special person to be at least similar. Maybe forming a friendship before relationship would be the way forward?
Just like relationships formed at school, university or work, people usually get to know each other first. Not like on a blind date or pulling someone at the bar, where we have no idea, not even the slightest of what this person is all about.
I value my freedom – is this bad of me? I still enjoy the interactions with people, male and female. I always try to be kind, friendly and am happy to form new friendships, but in order to open myself up to more than that, I think I will need to get out of my comfort zone more. Maybe the toilet seat left up from time to time, would not mean the end of the world after all?
In the meantime, I wish you all a lot of LOVE and happiness! To yourself and others. After all that is the most important value of them all!