HAPPY and SINGLE

Being a Single

happy and singleIn the 80s, being single was in vogue; it seemed that a new trend was born. Whoever was single felt special, almost privileged. Now it’s different. We are increasingly confronted with campaigns in which the traditional way of life is seen as optimal. In books and movies singles are put down as “funny but lonely” girls who desperately look for the prince on the white horse. All in all, being single nowadays is not so fashionable, at least judging by the modern media.

Just imagine how singles are portrayed in the media: not too nice, a bit awkward, always and forever looking for a date that could change their life, having undoubtedly registered with an online dating site so they can say they “have really done everything they could to find their perfect mate. In short, the media describes a single necessity instead of a single choice. A kind of Bridget Jones, a character that we personally are not particularly fond of.

You will certainly understand that we cannot see ourselves as this current image. We regularly receive emails depicting singles who are happy that they are single and pleased with their freedom, their independence. These girls and women are not desperate for the “traditional” way of life in seeking a marriage, house and family.

What freedoms are allowed? What are the positive aspects of a single life? Below are a few; we have them taken from your emails and are counting on you to help us again to further supplement this list. But let us understand each other. The single person that we have in mind is not a dull, lonely person. Her evenings alone at home are rather spent out with friends. From the emails that we receive, we understand that these singles have a very active social life, are proud to have great acquaintances and friends and have a satisfying and complete sex life. They are young, modern women who feel that an intense relationship would rob them of their small and large freedoms that single life has to offer.

– If you do not want to do something, or to be somewhere, you simply do not have to. It is your choice and you will not have anybody there to pressure you into doing something you do not want to do.

– No lunch or dinner at his parents’ home. You do not need worry about making a good first impression with people who only have their son/your boyfriend in common with you.

– You have time to maintain meaningful friendships from the past – something not so easily done once you’ve found Mr. Right.

– Holiday! You choose your own destination and your own company. When you are traveling alone, it is a luxury that few can afford (and if you have not gone through this experience, then it might be time to think about it) or manage if in a serious relationship.

– No hassles, no grudges, no long faces, no small but vicious retaliation.

– No criticism. You can totally be yourself, including your little bad habits.

– You do not need to explain yourself to anyone. You are accountable for your own actions.

We can still go on, but we stop here and leave the word to you, men and women, because what is true for her, also applies to him. Send us your comments using the box below.

Here are the reactions we got from our readers until now:

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All those articles about being single, I’m tired of. It’s very simple: happiness does not depend on whether or not having a relationship. And singles are not single just because they are picky or unwanted. You will fall in love with someone or not. It is that simple.

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I am super happy as a single person and unless I again come to someone who gives me the feeling of wanting that touches me in one way or another, my status will remain so. I see lots of relationships around me that are not healthy; stabbing each other in the back or constantly criticizing and arguing. I do not have the urgent desire to have children (I am 31). I feel no need to look for a man in order to satisfy the media’s views. I hope others read this and see that they do not need to be in a relationship to be happy. Some of the unhappiest people I know are in long term relationships.

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While I am single and happy, I will not pretend that I want to be alone. I would like a nice steady relationship at one point but am not rushing it. A good relationship is not rushed and happens at a natural pace, but I am going to enjoy my single life in the meantime.

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I’ve been single for 13 years, and I’ve never been happier. I own my own home and do not ever need to hear somebody whining about my animals and where they sleep. I enjoy every minute of my own company and am finally giving myself what I deserve.

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The benefits of the single life? There are many but there are also many disadvantages. Also, the previous list of suggestions from your readers is quite unfortunate. As far as it being simple to say no to sex with the person you are seeing, you should not say no because if you like each other you will want to do this. But you do not have obligations to each other so if you say no you should not be together. As far as traveling alone, I just got back from Asia for a month and I was by myself yet I am in a relationship! We did argue and disagree about it but it is because he cares for me and I care for him but we were never mad at each other. Vicious retaliation and stabbing each other in the backs?? Are we talking about a mature relationship or your girlfriends from elementary school? If you have a healthy relationship then you can be yourself, even with the bad habits. Also, do not think it is one-sided; look in the mirror. Surely there is something you can do to make the relationship better. As far as being held accountable, you should do things in private that you would want to be seen in public even if nobody is looking. Be happy but be accountable to yourself and your right mate will appear and you will not ever feel that you have to change.

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My brothers and sisters are all married and educated but now my sisters are glorified maids for the children. They are unhappy because they are not able to do what they love, but will not change because they love their families. I am single and ridiculously happy because I have money saved; when you are single you are in complete control over your finances and do not need to wonder where money is going. Plus you will never quibble about mundane things like food or keeping the house clean. You can have the car and house of your dreams because you can work all the hours you want and pursue your dream career. You will not have to work and come home to a dirty house then worry about scrubbing it clean when all you want to do is relax and have a nice dinner. You can watch whatever you want on television or pursue any hobbies you’re interested in. If you don’t feel like it, you don’t need to shave or wash your hair, if you need sex you can please yourself. Nobody is scrutinizing what you are doing all day, every day. You can go on vacation by yourself or go mountain climbing if you want. I see my brothers and sisters needing to simply clean their house all day every day, oh the horror. I’m glad I’m now 27 and still single. I enjoy my freedom and I can continue studying as I want. I can go to parties or outings with my friends and go home whenever I want. Order a taxi and just go.

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I’ve been single my whole life and I am normally very happy until I came across that great man.
I have always been very happy about my independence and not being accountable to anyone. Even when I left home, I really loved it because I could pick anything I liked, without taking into account another person. Oddly enough, now I am not so happy with being single despite all its benefits. Once I found a great man and fell in love then broke up I found I am missing something and I feel like less of a person. Even a happy single person needs a partner.

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I myself am 9 years single! People have their opinions and have said I am lesbian or gay which makes me so mad! But how many of them are happy?  I know I am.

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I read your piece about being single and can only say that I can connect with what was said. I myself am 22 years old, almost 23 and my generation is always portrayed as being an antisocial youth but rather a lot of people my age are as bourgeois as it gets. All want to get married, have children, live together, etc. This is indeed sad that people pity you if you’re single. If you have a birthday party or another visit to friends and family, you get that standard question, “are you seeing anybody yet”? If you say you single, you get the question, “oh is that right, oh, how can that be? You’re such a beautiful girl and I know someone you might like”. While I’m not looking, I love to be single. Sure, what other people say you miss, sometimes an arm around you and wanting to have sex when there is no one, but that does not really outweigh the benefits. Everything you do, is focused on yourself. That’s great, if you want to go, you do that, if you want a week of fried food, you can, if you want to buy those expensive pants, you can. And if it is about sex, just find a sex buddy, someone you just call if you have needs; no dating, no need to spend evenings chatting. It is all about you, so you can choose what makes you happy.

Comment from Marije

Just single a week now and all feelings are behind me after being in a relationship. The newness of flirting with other people, dancing and acting crazy at pubs or bars is so much fun! The greatest feeling is freedom, freedom to feel how you really do at the moment. Yes, sometimes you can wear thick pajamas on the couch and just cry over a horrible movie on the television, sometimes you can fall asleep with makeup on your face or not shave. But above all I am doing what I want to do to make myself happy like going outside whenever I want or working whenever I want. This may sound selfish but it depends on how you look at it. It’s all about me, I am the main character in my story. Be honest and true to yourself as that is the only way to attract someone else if you are looking. Best of luck to all!

Marije

Comment from Willy

After having had a few long term relationships, I have been single for a year now, and I must say it suits me fine. Of course it has its pros and cons. You can do whatever you want, you can go socialize with friends at home even if it’s a mess, and after all, you can only blame yourself here. So no bickering about everyday little things. Vacations and sports that you like etc. In it, you are the happy single. But that arm around your shoulder and conversations how your day has been are also important things. Being together in bed any time you want, who does not want that! All in all everything has its pros and cons, and if I get a new partner, I will be happy then too. And then I will sometimes think back on my time, I was “happy single”. But one thing I do know, is that a relationship will be best for me; you can still live your life the way you want. You do not know what the future will bring.

Willy

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Advantages to being single: You can fully concentrate on your work life and have your dreams come true! A relationship is often in the way! For example you can start with a secondary activity then you’re always busy, you have many contacts and no time to brood. You can buy a property yourself and decorate to your liking!

Dear

Comment by Rob

In short, you can be as selfish as you want to live. No need to be accountable to anyone but yourself, no need to worry about the other person’s desires. Always do your own thing, you do not have to share. You do not need to learn that life is something else. People, what a wonderful world it is still with all those egotists! Well, come on with your criticism…

Rob

Comment from Alwin

This is in response to your “single” article. My experience is that it is being a happy single hinges on how you can focus your social life. In my case I was, after a relationship of 10 years, suddenly alone and all my friends are now married and most are equipped with one or more children. It is not easy for singles at this point in their life. I hate being a third wheel when friends who are couples go out. However, I have learned in that time who are my real friends and who are just acquaintances. The single period of my life has been dynamic, though, I have not had children but have started a business, I have a busy social life and a lot of freedom to do what I want as far as sports and hobbies. I relearned the nightlife, I went on nice vacations and enjoyed my newfound freedom. I am still seeking love and stability as well as appreciation and making plans together but that will come when it comes.

After several short relationships I have taken a new leap of faith with my new love (yes, via Internet) and it feels fantastic. In the bad moments I do secretly wish to go back to my independent status of selfish bachelor, but at the same time realize that the happy-single is only an illusion, and for me nothing more than that.

Greetings, Alwin

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  1. I sometimes get tired of this kind of message. You complain that singles are put in a box, but do exactly the same in your enthusiasm! I have no large group of friends and acquaintances, but a limited number of very good friends that I can call on forever. I still think sex really belong in a relationship, so did I not have an active sex life in my bachelor time? And yet I was at that time very happy, as now in a relationship. And of course there are certain advantages and disadvantages of being in a relationship. All that is to say that happiness does not depend on whether or not you have a relationship, but more with how you handle yourself. And then the “vantage points” that you mentioned in not having a relationship… I have none of the points that “burden” a relationship. It is apparently just what kind of relationship you personally have.

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