The Pressures of Being Single

“So, are you seeing anyone?”

“When are you gonna start dating?”

“Why don’t you go out with *insert name here*? I heard they are single!”

“There’s plenty of fish in the sea!”

 

Recently, almost all of my conversations have involved at least one of these questions (or a similar one). These questions are not new to me. In fact, some of these people have been asking me these since I was 12. I have absolutely nothing against people who are genuinely curious about my relationship status. However, when the same people ask these questions so often, it can get annoying. As I started to hear these more and more as I got older, it made me wonder:

 

What’s the rush to get into a relationship?

According to Urban Dictionary, cuffing season occurs in the fall and winter when more people “desire to be ‘cuffed’ or “tied down by a serious relationship”. Apparently, as the temperatures drop, people become lonelier and start desiring a significant other to cuddle with. Whenever I’m online, I see numerous posts and articles containing advice to make the best out of cuffing season. I’d also get bombarded with several cute couple pictures that people want to create with their SO. Then every once in a while, I see my friends with their SO and they’ll ask me why I’m not going out with anyone. It has made me ask myself if I should actually go out and date someone. Maybe I should be in a relationship too. Everybody else is, right?

 

Photo via Unsplash

 

“Aren’t you lonely?”

“You’re pretty. I don’t understand why you’re not with anyone?”

“Don’t you want children in the future?”

 

Some of you may think I’m just a bitter loner behind a keyboard (I promise I’m not), but it gets frustrating and disheartening when people ask these same questions over and over again. It can happen so often you can start feeling like your accomplishments and emotions are invalid if you’re not in a relationship. As a woman, I sometimes feel an increasing expectation from others to be in a relationship. As you get older, you’re expected to find someone (sometimes at a specific age), get married and start a family. People start pushing you to find someone and start connecting it to your physical appearance. Others will even tell you how to dress or act to be able to attract someone.

 

All of these factors combined can seem like a lot of pressure for you to jump into a relationship quickly. You see and hear it everywhere all the time, so much so that you may even start wanting it too. It can come to a point that if you’re not in a relationship, you start thinking badly about yourself. You start doubting your beauty and ability to attract someone. It can affect your self-esteem, a problem that you may think only a SO will solve.

 

Photo via Bruce Mars

 

Don’t feel obligated to do something you don’t want to. It’s perfectly fine to be single. Just because everybody else is getting cozy with their partners doesn’t mean you have to. You don’t have to date to appease other people’s feelings, so don’t feel forced to find someone. There are plenty of ways to enjoy the cold months without a SO by your side. Remember that your relationship status is not your self-worth. It doesn’t make you more or less beautiful or worthy if you’re in a relationship or not. It’s very possible to be happy and single. Until the right moment (and person) for you comes along, enjoy the single life.