Being single is the ideal situation for me right now in many ways, especially since I’m working hard on establishing myself in NYC and moving forward with my career. While I love the freedom of rolling solo, the financial burden of being alone as an adult can be stressful.
You have to pay rent all by yourself. Living in a big city like New York means that rent is expensive. For many people, it’s nearly impossible to afford a place on their own. This means having to figure out a way to pay rent all by yourself and often putting a large strain on your budget. I’ve often wished I was in a committed relationship just so I would have a built-in roommate I knew and liked.
Living with roommates kinda blows. Because it’s so expensive to live in big cities—and let’s be honest, there are many places across the country where housing is overpriced—many millennials have to live with roommates in order to afford a place. This can lead to a lot of stress and time spent trying to figure out how to live with people you often don’t know very well. When you’re single, you don’t get the option of splitting the rent with your significant other. While sometimes it’s possible to live with friends, being in a long-term committed relationship allows for negotiating living situations in a way that’s much more convenient.
There’s no one to help pay the bills. While rent is a significant portion of the bills for many of us, there are many other things that need to be paid for each month. Utilities, internet, car payment, groceries… the list can go on and on. In a long-term relationship, you have someone help you split those costs. Obviously you’re paying more for things like groceries, but some costs can be reduced through sharing a car or splitting the utilities. The fact is that when you’re single, all the bills are your sole responsibility.
There’s no one to stress about money with. This leads to my main point about the financial strain of being single. All of these financial burdens, all of the bills and everything else, fall back on you alone. Many people have help from parents or other people in their lives to help them with some costs, but not everyone does. The stress that comes with being in charge of your finances and not having any support can be intense.
Single people don’t get the same tax benefits as married ones. While I’m no accountant or tax expert, I do know that there are many tax cuts that married people benefit from. This can especially be true if you’re still a student and going to college. It can sometimes feel like society is built around couples, and this can be frustrating when you’re not a part of one.
There’s no one to treat you or splurge on you. I’m not very traditional when it comes to relationships, and I think regardless of gender, it’s nice to treat your partner to gifts or special things if you can afford it. When you’re single, it’s less likely that you will have someone to buy you a meal when you’re having a hard week or get you a little gift that you’ve had your eye on. Those little things might not make that much of a difference financially, but they can help you feel more secure and loved.
There are many advantages to having two incomes. Overall, if you’re in a relationship and both of you are able to work, having two incomes coming in can only be a good thing. There are many ways to cut costs as a couple and share in expenses together. This makes it a little bit easier to plan ahead and save money.
Having financial support from a partner makes it easier to go back to school or pursue other goals. I’ve had many friends in relationships that were able to do things that I wouldn’t be able to do as a single woman. Some have taken time off work to write a book or go back to school while their partner worked full-time. Of course, every situation is different, but being able to have this support system to negotiate these kinds of situations is a big advantage.
Still, relying on yourself can be a major source of pride. At the end of the day, being in a couple doesn’t ensure that you won’t have financial difficulties. There are many single people with successful careers who are thriving financially and many couples who are living paycheck to paycheck. Also, there’s a great sense of accomplishment that can come along with taking care of yourself. While at times it can be stressful, making your own money and paying your own bills can make you feel like a badass.
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