Because I am female, I am expected to aspire to marriage. I am expected to make my life choices, always keeping in mind that marriage is the most important. – Beyone
I have been single a while. Not a decade or an eon, but long enough to know that I am pitied. It doesn’t really matter that I am a (somewhat, sometimes) attractive, young, vibrant and personally successful female, my accomplishments in all facets of my life are somewhat overshadowed by the glaringly obvious flaw:
I AM SINGLE
For my male counterparts, they are allowed and encouraged to be the perpetual bachelors: young, sprightly gentlemen with the possibility of a plethora of women only a SMS away. When they attend work functions ‘stag’ they are desirable. When I do, if I’m not pathetic, I’m desperate or worse: a threat.
The pitying isn’t coming solely from men. Over a crisp glass of vino this evening a friend divulged that she too (newly single) had been the victim of the ever so condescending
“Oh, but you’ll meet him!”
As she quite rightly pointed out- she didn’t want to bloody meet him. She, for now, was enough. Men were “love of night” not “love of life”. A scary concept for our loved up friends.
I suffer the same ‘pep’ talk from female friends constantly. The differences are sometimes subtle:
Single friend: Next! Move on babes, he’s not worth it.
Taken friend: Are you sure you shouldn’t go on a second date with elevator boy? I mean, you can always live with a third nipple and surely the prior sexual assault conviction isn’t a deal breaker?
My reasoning has deduced that my shacked up friends like to be able to categorise their single friends. Gay. Morbidly obese. Relationship phobic. Slut. Cat lady. Neat little boxes that you can slot someone in, to explain the unattached status of their love life. If you’re available, not emotionally restarted and you can’t really see a reason why you’re single (other than no one is worthy), then it stands to reason that neither can your friends. And that scares them.
They. Can’t. Put. You. In. A. Box.
Categorising is the curse of the couples. If you’re not happily snuggled up to a significant other (as they are), how can you possibly be happy (as they are)? I believe that single phobia is spreading. Instead of being feared, we should be revered. We manage just-fine-thank-you-very-much. Sure, Valentines Day isn’t pleasant and tandem bike riding is difficult solo, but we grin and bear it with sass and style and a sense of freedom.
So to the pitied: you may not have met the one, but in the meantime you might as well have fuckloads of fun.