I Realize I May Never Marry—And I’m Actually Kinda Relieved

While I’ve always known that marriage isn’t for everyone, I grew up believing I’d end up saying “I do” and living happily ever after. In reality, dating has been nothing but a hassle and nothing has worked out as I planned. Now I’m pretty sure I’ll never get married and I couldn’t be happier about that.

I learned to enjoy my independence.

Being self-sufficient is amazing, but true independence goes beyond that. In addition to having the freedom to make my own decisions,  I’m also free from the responsibility of worrying about how those decisions affect others. Living an independent life also provides a certain sense of accomplishment. If I ever were to get married, I believe I’d lose quite a bit of that feeling.

I live my life free of timelines.

My biological clock used to tick very loudly, making me feel like a walking time bomb. I grew up wanting both a husband and kids because that’s how society taught me to measure success. Once I became a free-thinking adult, I learned how to measure my success through my own lenses. I didn’t have to conform to what other people viewed as normal; I could create my own normal. If having kids is still in the cards for me, I’m OK with that; if it’s not, that’s fine too. I don’t have to worry about the pressures of getting married just so I can start a family.

I can avoid typical marital problems.

 Marriage doesn’t always guarantee a fairytale ending. Married couples face real issues on a daily basis, two of the most common being finances and infidelity. Currently, any financial problems I might face fall solely on me. I also don’t have to consult with anyone about the money I spend. As for infidelity, I believe it’s easier to deal with a cheating boyfriend versus a cheating spouse. I have no legal ties that would cause me to think twice about walking away.

I’m pretty sure I’d make a lousy wife.

I’m already no good at romantic relationships in general, so being in a permanent one would likely highlight my faults in the worst way. I don’t care to compromise—I like to do things my way. While I don’t believe in traditional roles in marriage, I’d still like to put it on record that I barely make time to clean up after myself. Adding another person to the list would be too much. Lastly, I don’t like to share. I’ve spent a lifetime being somewhat selfish and it’s only intensified as I got older.

I can focus on other goals.

There are some women who spend their lives preparing to be wives and mothers. While that’s admirable, I realize I’ve never actually prepared myself in such a way. Instead, I focused on my professional goals, which have led to an extremely successful career so far. I’ve also put a lot of energy into seeing the world because I love to travel. At this point, having a romantic relationship ranks at a distant third.

It keeps my expectations in check.

I don’t need every relationship I enter to end with the two of us walking down the aisle. In fact, my dating expectations are so low sometimes, I’m actually surprised when my relationships last longer than a few months. Some believe serial dating is a problem but it works for me, and it keeps life interesting.

Marriage is scary.

We’re talking about spending the rest of your life with another person. It’s a huge commitment and I wouldn’t want to enter it lightly. My approach to relationships has always been to run when things went wrong. Being married wouldn’t allow me to leave with such ease and that’s pretty terrifying.

I can protect my peace.

When sharing a space with a lifetime partner, you’re also sharing their energy. Being single allows me to better control the energy around me. I have complete authority over the company I choose to keep and I prefer to keep it that way.

I don’t have to “make it work.”

Because I’m no longer worried about timelines, the idea of settling never crosses my mind. Fighting for a relationship that’s likely doomed to fail is something I won’t do. If it’s not working, I’m free to move on. It’s as simple as that.

It takes the pressure off of dating.

Whenever I’d meet someone in years past, I’d immediately wonder, “Can I live with this person for the rest of my life?” Nowadays, that question never crosses my mind. If marriage is in my future, I believe it’ll work itself out, so instead of focusing on forever, I can spend more time and energy living in the “now.”  This makes dating so much more enjoyable.

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