Day 5: The Biggest Misconception You Think People Have About Single Life
There are lots of misconceptions I think people have about single life, so I’m honestly not even sure where to begin here. I could probably rant on and on about this topic for hours! I think I’ll start by discussing some of the rude, crude, and extremely disrespectful tweets I occasionally receive from men who seem baffled by the sight of single women CELEBRATING their lives. Apparently my message really offends some men out there who think a single woman’s place is to be seen and not heard, or to curl up in the fetal position and rock back and forth in the corner rather than live our lives to the fullest; all because we happen to be unmarried.
Just last night I received a series of horrible tweets from a man (excuse me…boy) who doesn’t even follow me on Twitter but apparently saw one of my tweets get retweeted into his timeline. He responded with “#LonelyTweet.” The tweet in reference was a quote from Sex & the City, saying something along the lines of “We’re single because we want to be.” And to Rude Twitter Boy, this came across as “lonely.” So the #1 misconception I think some people, in particularly some men, seem to have about single women is that we’re all lonely and desperate. I guess in Rude Twitter Boy’s mind, he couldn’t fathom that perhaps…just perhaps…some women really do choose to be single rather than having singleness thrust upon us like a communicable disease or a horrible punishment. We went back and forth couple of times, and he accused me of being a “parody account,” (again, apparently he couldn’t grasp that I might actually BE celebrating and enjoying single life, rather than poking fun of someone enjoying and celebrating single life in a parody sort of way) leaving me just flummoxed at how ugly and mean-spirited he got with a woman he didn’t even know…and for what? Because I choose to view my singleness as a positive and I encourage other women to do the same? Why do some people seem to feel the need to put us singles “in our place” if we happen to exude happiness and joy and independence rather than sitting around whining about not being in a relationship (like they would apparently have us do)? It’s like the world seeks to constantly remind us, lest we get too happy on our own, that our lives aren’t REALLY happy, because how could they be if we don’t have a boyfriend or husband? I think this is an attitude more than a misconception…but for some strange reason, some men and people in relationships seem to be really offended at the sight of a happy single woman. It honestly drives me crazy. I simply don’t understand it. After all, haven’t we singles celebrated and supported our married friends through countless parades of wedding showers and engagement parties and birth announcements and baby showers? Couldn’t we practically own stock in Target from the sheer number of gifts we’ve bought our married friends over the years? Is it too much to ask then that they, in turn, allow us to have our happiness parade without coming along and finding ways to rain on it? And as for Rude Twitter Boy…wonder if it has ever occurred to him that the very reason there are so many single women on the planet is because we would rather spend our lives alone than with someone like him?!? (That’s a hashtag-just-sayin’ moment if I ever saw one! HA!)
The second half of my rant is about people who seem to think that if you are single past a certain age, there must be something tragically wrong with you. Like the lady who wrote a book a few years ago (more so to get attention and put herself on the radar, I suspect, than to actually speak LIFE into single women’s hearts) stating that some women aren’t married yet because they’re quote “angry sluts.” She also had a litany of other bogus reasons she fired off in her book, all seemingly designed to make single women feel smaller and to play the shame and blame games with themselves, wondering what horrible character flaw they must have to have not found someone to marry them yet. Why do we have to put single women through this? Who is this helping? Why does it have to mean something is wrong with us because we happen to be unmarried? Couldn’t it just be the way the cookie crumbled? I mean, crazed murderer Joran van der Sloot found some clueless girl to marry him as he sits rotting in a jail cell…by that logic, does that mean there’s something RIGHT with him and that that same “rightness” has somehow managed to escape me because I happen to be single? Lord help me, if that’s the case! (Lord help us ALL, if that’s the case.)
When you get right down to the heart of the matter, we’re all tragically flawed in our own unique ways, married and single people alike…so to take a single woman and have her turn inward on herself and question her very worth and value and character just because she happens to be a single woman is wrong, and damaging, and unfair. I would like to suggest that maybe we all just back up off the rhetoric a little and let single people be. Let married people be. Let us all be free in our own unique experience of “Life, Love, & the Pursuit of Happiness,” whatever that happens to look like for each of us. Maybe for you it’s 2.5 kids and a picket fence. Maybe for me it’s a 2.5 pound kitten named Prince Hairy and a loft apartment. And that doesn’t make you better or me worse, or you wrong and me right. It just makes us DIFFERENT.
I say let’s give each other the freedom to be DIFFERENT. It’s time. Things have changed. Families look different. Happiness looks different. The era has passed when Barbie needed Ken to buy her dream house or even build her dream house. Shouldn’t we step outta the way and give her the freedom to build her dream LIFE, and only then decide if she wants to invite Ken to join her in it?
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