Don’t Be Ashamed of Being Single: 9 Reasons Not to Couple Up

A single girl in bed stretching and smiling in the morning.

Sometimes, it can feel like everyone’s in a relationship. Then there’s you. When you go out, your lovelife takes center stage as the subject of gossip. You’re happy single, but the prying from friends and family is beginning to wear and now you’re looking for something serious again. If this is you, then it’s time to stop and reevaluate why you’re interested in a relationship. If you want a committed relationship then go fo it, but there’s certainly no shame in being single either.

If you’re feeling the pressure from friends and family to couple up, here are some reminders why being single is the best way to be.

1. You’ll have more time for your friends.
Remember those friends you had when you weren’t in a relationship? Yeah, those people. Well, they’re still around and waiting to welcome you back with open arms. Our culture tends to value friendship far less than romance, but singles out there know that friends are our anchors. When you’re not committed, that means more time for those you love platonically.

2. You’ll have more time for yourself.
Seeing a trend yet? Having a dedicated partner takes time. When you’re single you’re only responsible for you. Want to binge on a Netflix series? Treat yourself. How about taking a glass blowing class? Be my guest. You don’t have to ask permission to take time away from the relationship, because your only relationship is with yourself.

3. Itching to jet set? No problem.
When you’re in a serious relationship, trips to the grocery store require careful deliberation and planning. Coordinating a two week European getaway becomes a nightmare. Figuring out time off for work, scheduling, saving, and travel interests can be downright infuriating with a committed partner. When you’re single, if you get the travel bug, purchase a ticket, pack a bag, and you’re off. It’s just that easy. (Well, still check in at work first.)

4. The only relationship to maintain is the one with yourself.
It should go without saying that in a committed relationship you and your partner are responsible for its success. That means that you have to do maintenance and checkin with each other to keep it in tip-top shape. If you’re happily committed, I’d hope you don’t consider this a chore. But, being single means you don’t have to consider it at all. That’s a lot of free headspace. Don’t spend it all in one place.

5. You’re single, now mingle.
This is the part of being single that unhappy couples lose sleep over, and it’s yours at no added cost. You can date as many people as you want, whenever you want. No permission require or need to watch out for hurt feelings. Don’t want to date anybody? No problem. ow you engage in romance (or don’t) is totally up to you.

6. Big life decisions are your choice alone.
In life, things come up. Taking a job, buying a car, or making a move are all major life decisions. In relationships, these decisions are all soundtracked by the background noise of what your choice will do to your relationship. You need to consider your partner’s feelings at every turn. That’s part of the deal. When you’re single, you’re the only one that needs to weigh in on any of those decisions. That doesn’t mean that you can’t get advice from other people, just that you don’t have to.

7. Learn to enjoy your own company.
If being alone teaches you anything, it’s how to enjoy your own company. Being single isn’t a bad thing. If you can’t enjoy your alone time, there might be some deeper issues to work on that are best handled when you’re single. You’re the only person you’ll be with for the rest of your life, and it’s important to learn to be at peace with your own company.

8. Eat whatever you want, whenever you want.
Okay, this isn’t a free pass to let yourself go, but it does mean that you can eat without considering your partner’s dietary restrictions. There’s no more going back and forth trying to figure out what restaurant you both want to eat at. Are you in the mood for Chinese or Italian? How about both? You can eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for dinner if you want. There’s no judgement coming your way.

9. Save that money for a rainy day.
No partner means no expensive date nights or gifts and definitely no wedding. That means saving a lot of money. Take a vacation, go out with friends, or put it into a retirement account. Whatever you do, it’s money spent well on you.

It can get lonely being single and it’s hard to deal with the pressure to date you get from family and friends. Add the pressure you feel from a  culture that puts a lot of value on finding the love of your life, and it can be really tough Whatever way you define love, it will come. That’s just a matter of time. Life is about the journey and being single is part of that, so be at peace with it. You might find you like your single time, and that’s a good way to be.

Alex Bocknek

Alex Bocknek is the senior editor of The Date Mix and works at Zoosk, the online dating service. He’s also a recovering music critic and an aspiring fiction writer (probably lost) on the way to an independent bookstore near you. He can be found occasionally musing about politics, philosophy, and love in the modern world.

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