‘You’ll find someone…’
‘You’re just career-minded at the minute…’
‘Maybe you’re being too picky…’
‘You just need to put yourself out there…’
I’m sure I’m not the only single woman who hears these words on a regular basis.
In fact, my family and friends have taken to saying them to me with increased frequency ever since my twin got into a relationship at the start of the year.
What they don’t seem to understand is that actually, while I’m happy for my twin, I’m also happy being single and spending time on my own.
I’m 27 and I’ve never been in a romantic relationship.
I’ve never even had a sexual encounter – and I’m perfectly content with that.
Women in particular are expected to conform to society’s norms – to be in a relationship, lose their virginity, to want to get married and have children. All in order to avoid being alone – being left on the shelf or becoming a (whisper it) ‘spinster’.
I have crushes, however fleeting they may be, such as on the cute stranger at the coffee shop… but I’m yet to find that real connection with someone
As a teen I loved a good rom-com (I still do). Bridget Jones’ Diary, 13 Going on 30 and A Cinderella Story, were some of my favourites. But back then, I didn’t realise that romantic love and relationships didn’t have to be the go-to for everyone.
Now I’m in my twenties, I get that it isn’t that simple. In this day and age, where social media and dating apps are the standard, relationships seem like really hard work.
On the odd occasion I’ve dipped my toes into online dating, the responses I’ve received have put me off. Getting dick pics and instantly being asked about my kinks are bad enough – but the one that really angered me, was the ableist language towards my deafness.
Dating as an adult is difficult – even more so when you are queer and deaf.
And it’s something that has definitely shaped my attitude towards relationships. Maybe fear of rejection had something to do with it, as I often think: who would want to go out with someone who is deaf? Will they treat me differently?
Especially as I have experienced treatment like that – asking someone out and then being rejected due to my hearing loss. It’s taken me a while to really embrace my deaf identity and now I’m older I’m not going to allow anyone to ruin that for me because of their ignorance.
Online you can be anyone, the perfect version of who you wish you were. Then you hear the horror stories of the women who meet awful fates (Picture: Simone Margett)
I also won’t be questioned on how queer I am if I’ve not been in a romantic relationship.
Online you can be anyone, the perfect version of who you wish you were. Then you hear the horror stories of the women who meet awful fates. It makes me always wonder, are relationships really worth the hassle?
Maybe it’s got something to do with the ones I’ve grown up around. Although all are different, there is a distinct lack of affection in most of the ones I’ve seen.
Even seeing my friends date, or getting married or having children, it’s something I’m perfectly content with not having. To me, it means settling or being tied down in a sense. Having children is not something I see in my future.
I have crushes, however fleeting they may be, such as on the cute stranger at the coffee shop or a former classmate. They tend to be more about celebrities and boy band members (we’ve all been there) but I’m yet to find that real connection with someone.
Mostly, though, I’m happy being alone. I like taking myself out on coffee dates, going on a solo-cinema trip or just enjoying my own company at home.
I’ve never done any of these things and felt lonely. I know it might be hard for some to believe, but I’m at the moment, I simply have no interest in actively trying to meet someone. If it happens, then great. If not, it’s not the end of the world.
There are so many advantages of being single: being able to spend time on ourselves and careers, solo travelling to the places we want to go, a chance to build deeper relationships with friends, developing hobbies. There’s greater freedom as well – I can do whatever I want, whenever I want.
I can focus on building the life I want without the pressures of being in a relationship. Except for the one with myself.
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