Single life is a different experience for each of us. You may be having the most interesting and enlightening period of your life while your BFF whines every day about how crappy and pointless relationships are (or vice versa). Still, being single isn’t actually all that bad — and in fact it’d be like heaven on earth if we only had these 10 things:
- More single female role models. We hardly see any inspiring single role models in the media. Women who are portrayed as strong and independent eventually settle down and live happily ever after. Moreover, the impossible standard of the superwoman who effortlessly finds both love and a successful career makes it hard for us to feel happy about our own lives. If media companies showed real kickass single women who were happy to stay that way, we’d finally feel like we’re doing a good enough job.
- Actual equality, especially when it comes to finances. Even though women today in many cases out-earn men, let’s not pretend that gender pay gap is thing of the past. As long as men are often expected and able to earn more, we’ll probably struggle a bit more as single women. If we can’t afford a decent lifestyle when we’re solo, how can we ever be happy with it as a real long-term option?
- Fewer sexual hangups. Hookups and friends with benefits are everywhere nowadays, but I still feel there’s a conservative turn in attitudes towards sexuality and sex in general. We’re not easy just because we want to have sex “like men,” and it only makes sense that we don’t want a relationship with every man we sleep with. The freedom to be open about what we want would make our relationships with guys so much smoother. No, we don’t want to “get our claws” on you, and this isn’t our default attitude when we go out with a guy.
- Good friends who value our friendship. Solidarity among women is extremely important. We need friends that prioritize our friendship, not friends that stick around until they find a boyfriend or girlfriend. If we don’t value the love and support we get from our friends then we’ll always romanticize guys and relationships, and expect a fairytale solution to our personal problems.
- Less brainwashing about relationships and marriage. Since we were little, many of us have had certain expectations about guys and relationships. Our future wedding day is more of a fact than just a single possibility, and the pressure from that is real. Instead of putting marriage on a pedestal, we should have the real picture of the responsibilities and compromises it involves. Moreover, more of us need to stop second-guessing ourselves if we realize we actually DON’T want a husband or kids of our own. We’re intelligent enough to know what we want, so we shouldn’t let anyone make us feel otherwise.
- Reasons to celebrate our single status. We celebrate couples’ big life events such as weddings and baby showers but we don’t get any credit for being single. Maybe we don’t expect to receive a “Congratulations, you’re single!” card every year, but we need to find pride in being single if we ever want to treat it as a real life option. We need people around us to acknowledge that being single can be a choice, not a compromise because we haven’t found a man.
- New, exciting life milestones. Apart from marriage and family, why not just admit that there are other life milestones? Obviously for some of us having babies is a priority, but for others, things such as seeing the world, volunteering in the Amazon jungle, or kickstarting their own project is the only “baby” we want to have. We need to be able to treat them like real life goals, and not secondary alternatives to having a family. (Plus, if we really do want a child, we don’t really have to be in a relationship to have one.)
- No pressure to date guys we don’t really like. How many times have we tried to rationalize something that doesn’t feel natural just because we’re supposed to put ourselves out there and try our best? No thanks. We shouldn’t talk ourselves into a relationship just because a guy is nice, or has a good job or for whatever reason. We need to value our freedom too much for that.
- Less judgment in general. I remember once a work colleague who was in a relationship asked me if I have a boyfriend, and when I replied that no, I’m single, she was embarrassed and apologized. I thought her response was hilarious because I was actually secretly feeling sorry for her for not being free to flirt with the hot guy in Sales. The point is, we shouldn’t judge anybody. Assuming that a woman is freaking out because she’s single is just stupid. Some of us are doing much better than you might think, and we actually prefer it that way.