Why do so many people assume that if you are single that you are unhappy? That in order to be truly happy you have to be in a relationship? I believe this is similar to people who believe that every woman should have a child or they are not truly fulfilled. I’m so happy that I became a mother but I wouldn’t pressure anyone else to become one unless they wanted to. I am grateful that we have a choice. Especially after having been in a very unhappy marriage for 20 years (unhappy for 15), it’s a big relief to be free.
Single and Happy
Dear Single and Happy
First, congratulations on getting out of an unhappy marriage.
I’m guessing that you have a lot of people trying to fix you up. They think that you would be happier if you had a sweetheart. It’s hard to dodge other people’s projections—they would be unhappy if they were single so they assume you are too. Be polite, tell them where you’re at and go about your business.
The expectation of coupling is a popular notion in our culture—and many others. Like the pressure on women to have children, part of this originates from biology and part is socialization. And, lots of women are happy not having or raising children and lots of people are happy being single.
Having said that, I think it is true that many single people want to be coupled. We are social animals and though not necessarily monogamous, definitely geared for pairing up for sex, companionship, raising children, cuddling, playing, eating together, and getting through life’s harder moments with a good pal.
That is not to say that many of these activities can’t be achieved with good friends, they can. And, it sounds like that is the case for you. This is a fine choice if it works for you.
But, I have also seen is people who have been very hurt in relationship say they are happy alone when what they really mean is: “I am happy taking care of my own needs because I don’t think there is anyone out there that I can trust to take care of my heart, love me well and offer anything to me that I can’t take care of myself”. Some readers may relate to this.
So for those readers, I would say, go slowly and allow yourself to open to the possibility of relationship and trust that you can find a better match than the last several people who broke your heart. If you need a hand sorting out good choices from bad choices, get the help of a trusted friend (one who is in a healthy relationship) or savvy family member. Or, give me a call.