If You’ve Never Been In A Serious Relationship, Remember This

By now, you expected to have been in a few relationships — you thought you’d have casually dated a few guys, had a few annoying almost relationships, and maybe even settled down into something real and long-term once or twice. In reality, it’s the total opposite. Not only are you single AF at the moment, you’ve never been anything but. If you’re freaking out or feeling bad because you’ve never had a serious relationship, don’t. Instead, remember these things.

  1. No, there’s nothing wrong with you. Really. People assume you must be a commitment-phobe or a workaholic or that there must be some other plausible explanation for your singleness, but there doesn’t need to be a reason. More importantly, you don’t need to justify your love life. Sometimes things just don’t come together and it’s not through any fault or defect on your own. You’re amazing, really.
  2. You have high standards in love, and that’s something to be proud of. Realistically, you know you could go out and find a boyfriend tomorrow if that’s what you really wanted, but you’re not willing to settle for just anything. You’ve said no to a plethora of guys because they just weren’t right and you didn’t want to waste their time or yours. You’re not going to lower your standards or expectations just for the sake of not being on your own.
  3. You’re fine on your own, even if you haven’t always wanted to be. An unexpected perk of being single for so long is that you get pretty good at being alone. You start to enjoy your own company and you don’t rely on other people to get things done. You’re completely self-sufficient, which is a quality that will serve you well in the future. Sure, it’d be nice to have some company and some help now and then, but you’ll always know that you can survive without it.
  4. Not being in love doesn’t mean you’re not loved. Just because you haven’t had a serious relationship doesn’t mean there aren’t people in your life that love and adore you 100%. Whether it’s your family or your best friends, you’ve got plenty of love and support in your life. Lack of romantic love might suck sometimes, but it doesn’t mean you’re alone or lonely without it.
  5. You have all this time to become the person you’ve always dreamed of. Use it wisely. When you’ve been single for so long, you start to worry that you’re missing out and getting behind in life. So many of your friends are in serious relationships by now — so serious that some are engaged or already married and having kids! That’s not your path, though, and that’s okay. While you’re not focusing on building a future with a partner, you have plenty of time to build yourself into the person you’ve always wanted to be. Set goals and go out there and achieve them. What’s stopping you?
  6. Be proud of your accomplishments — they’re all yours. Being on your own isn’t always easy, and there are times when not having a partner to help weather life’s storms is tough as hell and sometimes overwhelming. However, you’ve always come out the other side braver and stronger than before, and that’s something worth taking pride in. You’ve accomplished so much all on your own. Isn’t that amazing?
  7. Love will happen when it’s meant to happen. Yes, sentiments like this are cliche and probably started to annoy the crap out of you after the 500th time you heard it, but it is actually true. There’s no point in forcing love (or trying to). Your life isn’t on hold while you wait for a guy to show up. You’ve got plenty of other things to do in the meantime, but when the right one for you comes along, you’ll be ready.
  8. You don’t have to defend your relationship status or lack thereof. Whether it’s your choice to be single or not, there’s nothing worse than being interrogated about whether you’re seeing anyone, whether you’d like to be set up, whether you’re lonely, etc. You might feel forced to justify your single status, but screw that. Your life is yours and what anyone else thinks doesn’t matter. Keep doing you.
  9. Not being in a relationship has its perks. Being the single girl in your friendship group means you’re always on the receiving end of relationship rants, making you very aware of the dilemmas that you don’t have to face. Those endless arguments when a relationship heads south make you feel glad to be alone. And that’s just the start. Having complete and total freedom to do whatever you want, whenever you want without having to consider anyone else is pretty nice too.
  10. It’s really not a big deal. Never be embarrassed that you haven’t been in a serious relationship. Embrace it! People get uncomfortable about the fact that you’ve been single so long because they don’t know how THEY would handle it and they’re projecting that all onto you. You’re not going to be alone forever (and even if you were, you’d know you could handle it like a pro).
Michelle Elman is a body confidence activist, certified life coach, creator of Scarred not Scared, and founder of Mindset for Life. She’s written for publications including Cosmopolitan, Huffington Post, and Grazia and appeared on ITV’s “This Morning,” Sky News, Loose Women, and more. She’s also the author of the book “How To Say No.” You can follow Michelle on Instagram at @michelleelman, on Twitter @michelleelman, or on her website, MichelleElman.com.