20 Surprising Worries That Single People Have
By: Rosie Valentine |
“You don’t know how lucky you are!”
“I’d love to be single again!”
“Appreciate how good you’ve got it!”
Your friends who are already in relationships may be the first to tell you that they ‘envy your lifestyle’ and you should ‘cherish your single status,’ but we always want what we haven’t got. They imagine the wild perks of freedom, but you see the lonely realities of sitting at home scoffing pizza alone on a Saturday night; it’s a double-edged sword.
Yes the single life is full of opportunities and exciting prospects of hot new encounters but it can also be full of worries too. I spoke to fellow single friends about the difficulties of being single and the uneasy thoughts that have crossed their minds.
If you’re single too, you’ve probably experienced some of these worries as well:
1) All my friends are settling down
Not another wedding invitation! If your kitchen table is a wedding planner’s dream, don’t stare at the stack of invites with a face like a bulldog chewing a wasp. Instead, be happy for your friends and know that it’ll be your turn soon. Getting married isn’t a race, and it’s the norm these days for people to get married well into their 30s and 40s. Instead, enjoy the time where you can do what you want, when you want, and stop comparing yourself to your friends.
2) I feel lonely
In the words of Bridget Jones: “Oh, God, I’m so lonely. An entire weekend stretching ahead with no one to love or have fun with. Anyway, I don’t care. I’ve got a lovely steamed ginger pudding from M&S to put in the microwave.”
We all get lonely from time to time and you can probably relate to this, but just remember, being in a relationship isn’t the cure for loneliness. Plenty of people are in a relationship but still feel lonely. Don’t cut yourself off from friends and family as these connections will fill the void.
3) What if I’m single forever?
Before you turn to the nearest convent, fear not. If you want a relationship, you’ll find it and of course you won’t be single forever – you just need to make sure you’re looking for it. Even if it’s not the ‘dream boy’ or ‘dream girl’, we all have the opportunity to be in a relationship with someone, it’s just about choice.
4) I’m at the age where I should be thinking about children
If you’re a woman – don’t fall into the trap of the worrying about your ‘biological clock ticking’ – there are options whatever age you are, and if you’re a guy, well, you’ve got it a bit easier, but still, don’t fret. There’s no ‘right age for children’ if you haven’t found the right person yet and it would be wrong to enter a relationship simply for the sake of having children. Focus on looking for someone compatible first.
5) Should I have broken up with my ex?
Ah the classic ex regret! The main thing to remember is that you broke up for a reason. It’s normal to get pangs of regret during lonely times, but when you’re looking back on the happy moments through rose-tinted glasses, shift your thinking into remembering the not-so-good times and you’ll know if you made the right decision. Most important lesson: always look forward, not back.
6) Am I being too picky?
If you’re hoping for Prince Charming, a Victoria’s Secret model or a carbon copy of your ex, then yes, perhaps you are being too picky. There’s no point having standards so high that you find yourself perpetually without a date. It’s good to know what you want, but also don’t be closed off from dating someone who’s not your usual type.
7) Where will I meet someone?
If tequila-filled nights out no longer float your boat, and you’re worried about where to meet someone new. Don’t lose hope. How about taking up some new hobbies? Checking out some coffee shops in a different neighbourhood? Or even trying some new online dating sites, apps and events? Be adventurous!
8) Should I continue dating someone if there’s no spark?
There needs to be a spark for things to develop, but sometimes this isn’t instant. Give it time – people are always nervous on the first few dates and sometimes put on an act to try and impress you. That person needs a chance to ‘loosen up’ and be themselves. If it’s a case of dating for months and you get along with that person, but there’s no passion, it may be time to call it a day and move that person into the (dreaded) friendzone.
9) What if I’m the last single friend
We all worry about being the only singleton in our friendship group, but just remember, even if you’re the last single friend out of your particular group of friends, you’re not the last single person on the planet. Get yourself out there and enjoy yourself – at least you’ll be the one with all the entertaining stories!
10) Is the person I’m dating playing games and do I need to play games to keep up with the games? Ugh.
If you’re playing games to keep up with someone else’s game, i.e. waiting a certain amount of time to respond to a text message or waiting for the other person to initiate contact first – STOP. Life’s too short for games. Move on or just be honest about how you feel. If you’re not sure how the other person feels about you – ask them.
11) Who should I take to a function?
The dreaded ‘bring a plus one’. No, you can’t bring the cat. If everyone’s paired up, you’re probably just…fed up! Do you go solo and risk being seated next to Norman (the only other single who can’t find a date) once again? Or do you find a sympathetic friend to take with you? Or even take a blind date? If you’re feeling the pressure, remind yourself that other people are there to enjoy the event rather than obsess about your single status. You never know which eligible friends they might be able to introduce you to. If it’s an important event and going alone isn’t an option, it’s always best to take someone you know/have been on a date with before, as you might not be able to predict the behaviour of a blind date, especially if alcohol is involved.
12) How will I know when I’ve met the right person?
Alway trust your gut, you’ll feel butterflies and want to be with that person 24/7. You’ll just know and feel completely comfortable with that person. You won’t feel the pressure to impress them as just being you is enough to do that. If you’re questioning whether the person you met is the ‘right person’, they obviously aren’t.
13) I’ve been single for ages, how will I cope with losing my freedom?
In time, you’ll realise that it’s nice to care about someone and have someone to care about you, to share your thoughts, ease your burdens and catapult your dreams. Of course you’ll still have the freedom to go out with your friends and have alone time, as well as pursuing your hobbies, it’s just a question of balance. Rather than seeing it as ‘losing your freedom’, see it as gaining a soulmate.
14) Am I dating the wrong type?
Listen to your friends as what they say will reveal a lot of truths – especially in the early days. They will see things that you don’t. Be honest with yourself about how that person is making you feel. Are you more insecure than before? Do they bring out the best or worst in you? Take some time to reflect.
15) All the good ones are taken
If you go to a dating event and all the single men look like the cast of The Muppet Show – don’t automatically assume you have to date Gonzo. Perhaps the problem is that you’re spending too much time with couples and that’s why you’re seeing that all the good ones are taken. The solution is to be more creative about the places you find potential dates.
16) I’m too busy to date
Perhaps you are too busy, because you’re married after all…to your JOB! Consider re-organising your schedule so that you have at least one evening every week to focus on dating. The phrase ‘too busy’ is often an excuse we use to avoid making the effort. It simply means we’re prioritising the wrong things and not balancing our time very well.
17) Is the person I’m dating seeing multiple people?
This is modern day dating dilemma, especially because of the influx of dating apps such as Tinder which make it easy to have multiple matches. It’s tempting to speak to everyone you match with and then end up with a series of stagnant conversations. Rather than worrying about competition, be confident that you’re enough to stand out from the crowd. If things are starting to get more serious between you, the best thing to do is to ask outright.
18) Will I ever meet ‘The One?’
Watching The Notebook too many times has left women with unrealistic expectations of a Ryan Gosling-esque Prince Charming figure sweeping them off their feet. The real question is – ‘is there such thing as ‘the one?’ The ‘perfect person’ doesn’t exist, but a perfect person for YOU does, and it’s not just the case of one in 7 billion. There are hundreds of potential matches in the world for you…so you’ve got to just keep looking and stay positive.
19) I’m fed up being the third wheel/gooseberry
Always the bridesmaid, never the bride! If you find yourself going out each week with couples and feeling like the third wheel, then frankly, the solution is very simple – it’s time to find some single friends to go out with, or go out on more dates instead of hanging around with your coupled up friends all the time.
20) My family are pressuring me to settle down
It’s your life not your family’s life so don’t let them dictate how you should live it! Your younger sister may have got married before you, but don’t assume you’re ‘on the shelf’ and have to settle for someone you’re not keen on just to make your family happy. We’re in the 21st century and people don’t get married now until later in life. If these thoughts are going through your head: ‘I may fall in love with that person eventually’ or ‘love could grow’, yes there’s a possibility, but it’s doubtful. If you’re settling for the sake of settling (be this because of age or external pressures from other people), you could end up resenting the person and your situation. Rather than being forced to settle, focus on what you want out of life and go for it, otherwise you could spend the rest of your life regretting it.
You need to be 100% sure before making a commitment. It’ll be one of the biggest decisions of your life.
So single friends – fear not. You’re not alone in these thoughts, and a little bit of worry is healthy for you. Life isn’t meant to be easy to figure out; if it was, it’d be boring. So enjoy the mystery of not having met the right person yet, go to new places, meet new people, see each day as an opportunity and most importantly, stay positive.
If you’re feeling low after a bad date, it could always be worse, check out these 25 dating horror stories.