I’ve often said that I enjoy being in a relationship. I like thinking in “we”-s and “us”-es and all of that stuff. It’s not that I can’t survive being single; I can. I’ve done it plenty of times, and everything always turns out just fine. I just prefer having someone dedicated to spend my time with – a default, if you will.
(But please don’t tell my girlfriend she’s my “default” – it sounds worse than how I mean it.)
Not everyone is like me, though. Some women actually prefer being single – and it usually suits them well. I’m not talking about the ones who are jaded, or confused, or anything like that. I mean the women who truly love themselves, so fully and completely, that they don’t need anyone else.
Maybe a part of me aspires to be like them someday, but I don’t think it’s ever going to happen. We’re just from different worlds.
Some women don’t want to bother.
All relationships have an implied stress level and drama quota. Hopefully it’s only minor, but that’s not always the case. Some of us live for the excitement of the highs and lows – and some of us can’t stand the chance of falling behind ourselves.
For most women, the health of their relationship plays a role in their own health, but only to a certain point. According to Dr. Liana Leach of the Australian National University, women who were in “bad” relationships showed an overall deterioration in their health. On the other side of the coin, women who were in “good” relationships showed no emotional improvement over being single.
If a good relationship doesn’t make you feel better, but a bad relationship makes you feel worse, why would you bother with the effort required to maintain a relationship? If you find yourself asking that question, maybe you’d be better off single!
Some women prefer the mystery.
Personally, I like structure. I like knowing what I’m going to do, what my plans are, and what’s expected of me (even if I don’t meet the expectations). But not everyone is like me. Some people get joy out of not knowing – the adventure and spontaneity of not being with someone for every tomorrow for the rest of their lives.
Most women like a little surprise in their lives, but we don’t all like it in the same area. For example, I enjoy being surprised with a text message or a flower my girlfriend snagged from the neighbor’s bushes – but I’ve always been fond of the little things. I don’t like not knowing who I’m going to wake up with – or not knowing if I will wake up to someone. I don’t like not knowing if I look OK before I go out. (I know I have a mirror, but my fashion sense isn’t the greatest – please tell me if this outfit looks stupid!) I don’t like not knowing.
But for some women, the idea of knowing whose face they’re going to wake up to three years from now is an absolute nightmare. The idea that their life can be outlined on paper would be horrible. They don’t want to know – and they aren’t too keen on someone who tries to tell them. If you find yourself feeling trapped by the idea of commitment, it doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you – it just means you’d be better off single!
Some women are entirely independent.
I try to embrace the idea that I only need to seek my own approval; my life is mine to create; blah, blah, blah. But where I strive for this way of thinking, some women actually live it – every single day. These women know that if they love themselves, they have the best love of all.
I consider myself fairly independent. I have a need to make my own money, to be my own boss, and to make my own decisions – but I crave the stability of knowing there’s someone to back me up if I need it. If I’m not totally feeling myself, I need my girlfriend to tell me “Damn, baby, you look good!” If I fall behind on my work, I need my girlfriend to remind me to catch up. If I’m not sure about a decision, I need my girlfriend to help break the tie in my head. (And lucky me – she does all three.)
But for some women, the idea of the checks and balances they’d have to go through in a relationship is horrible. They don’t want to share their choices with someone else, because they’re completely confident in themselves. They don’t need to have someone to tell them they look good, because they tell themselves – and they mean it. Do I envy them? Yeah, maybe a little, but that’s just not who I am.
Some women want it all. (And that’s ok!)
Whether you feel inclined to be in a relationship or to be single, one simple fact remains: Love requires compromise. A lot of compromise, actually. Sure, in a perfect relationship, you’ll be balanced partners, with neither compromising more than the other – but the chances of that actually being the case are pretty slim.
The women who are better off single don’t want to compromise. It might seem selfish, but it comes from a place of self-love. If they have the strength and courage to prioritize themselves (and remain single), why should they be judged or punished for it?
A quick look at the other side of things will show that selfishness is completely subjective. Woman A thinks Woman B is selfish because she won’t commit – but Woman B thinks Woman A is selfish because she’s trying to force her into something she doesn’t want. Which one is “more right”?
Not everyone needs someone.
As a romantic, I think that there’s someone out there for everyone. But just as some people may have more than one “soul mate” in their lifetime (or maybe even more than one at a time!), some people might really be their own soul mate. And really, there’s nothing wrong with that.
The important thing to remember here is that, when you’re in a relationship, your partner shouldn’t come in second place to you – you should be equals. This means that if she doesn’t want to be in the relationship, that has just as much weight as you wanting to be in it – and vice versa.
If you don’t feel comfortable with the idea of your partner taking priority on this, it’s best to let her go – no matter which side you’re on. It’s better to be single than to be in a relationship with the wrong person, and the woman who needs to be single is definitely the wrong person. Find someone who needs someone, and let her love herself.