Category: singles versus marrieds


The Greatest Misconception About Being Single

June 23rd, 2011 — 4:23pm

Last weekend, I went to a birthday party for my cousin’s one year old son. As the only single person in a sea of married kin and their kids, I found myself experiencing the greatest misconception about being unattached.

It happened during a conversation with a married relative who also happens to be a new mom. We hadn’t seen each other in more than a year, so I excitedly filled her in on my two Dating Blitzes and landing a literary agent to represent my book chronicling the experience. Her response?

“Are you seeing anyone?”

The implication, of course, being that my relationship status is what matters more than anything else.

“Are you going out tonight?” she continued.

Assumption number two — that because it’s Saturday and I’m single, I must be heading out on the town.

What irked me about both questions is the underlying presumption that if you’re single, your primary preoccupation is to find a way not to be, that you can’t possibly be living a full, happy life without a significant other.

A good friend of mine made the valid point that, when you blog about your dating life, it inevitably invites questions on the subject. Understood. But I still maintain this line of interrogation is all too common from married or partnered up people — as though they can no longer appreciate what it means to be single and content.

Would I like to meet someone and a start a family? Of course. Do I spend my days dwelling on it or structuring my existence solely to make it happen? Absolutely not. I’m thankful for the many wonderful people and pursuits that enrich my life, for the adventures and opportunities flying solo affords me.

Those who’ve left singlehood behind would do well to remember that.

| being single in your thirties, singlehood versus marriage, singles versus marrieds

The Single Versus Married Divide

November 10th, 2010 — 6:24pm

The other night, tweeted her frustration about a married friend’s insensitivity.

“Love when I STUPIDLY vent to [her] about the challenges of ‘co-parenting’ as a single mom and she says, “Thank God for my Hubby”.” 

Her tweet got me to thinking about the divide between singles and marrieds — and how it starts with a failure to remember where each side is coming from.

While @SingleMamaNYC’s friend clumsily acknowledged the downside of flying solo, many married people perceive singles as leading a fabulous life free of responsibilities. Case in point — the sister of a friend who doesn’t understand why she’s not more available to babysit.

I’ve been on the receiving end of a similar expectation, the assumption clearly being that as singles, we have so much more time on our hands (never mind careers, friends, and other non-marital commitments). Harboring such a one-dimensional view of singles is about as fair as it is to say having a spouse solves all of your problems.

Bottom line, the grass isn’t necessarily greener for someone who doesn’t share your relationship status. Making the most of being single takes hard work and so — from what I hear — does having a successful marriage. My good friend Sherri understands that. Happily married, she always make time for her single friends, volunteering often to be wing woman for a night on the town. Meanwhile, blissful newlywed Heidi regularly sends me suggestions for fun mingling opportunities (karaoke speed dating, here I come!).

We would all do well to follow their example and cross the single-married divide every now and then — with a little more finesse, of course, than @SingleMamaNYC’s friend.

| singlehood versus marriage, singles versus marrieds

The Singles Vs. The Marrieds

August 18th, 2009 — 9:30pm

Not too long ago, I blogged about friends with significant others ditching their single galpals. The post prompted a friend of mine to mention she’s experienced the reverse phenomenon – single friends shying away after she got married.

I couldn’t help thinking, does it really have to become an us versus them dynamic when you no longer have the same marital status in common?

Another friend, D, recently experienced a rather extreme take on the idea that singles and marrieds don’t mix. Her aunt assembled a collage of all the cousins’ weddings. She used pictures of each bridal couple together, and then group photos of all of the girls at each wedding. All except D, who was literally cut out of every group shot. Why?

“Because,” she says. “I’m the only single one and don’t have my own bridal photo and therefore, do not count.”

Her aunt’s cutting move is a good example of the self-segregating that often happens between singles and marrieds. What is it that makes this peculiar pattern take place? Do singles resent being around the type of committed relationship they have yet to find? Are married folk uncomfortable with reminders of the footloose and fancy-free days they’ve left behind?

Perhaps, most simply, it’s that singles and marrieds often end up traveling in different circles. Most recently, I noticed this when I attended last month’s BlogHer conference, and most of the Mommy Blogger contingent seemed to travel in packs, veering away from those of us who are child-free.

Yes, it’s all too easy to keep your distance from peers with a different relationship status. The thing is, there’s much to be said for keeping the lines of communication open. Because, when it comes to navigating the tricky terrain of relationships — married or not — the larger the conversation, the better.

| friends who have a different marital status, singles versus marrieds

The Singles Vs. The Marrieds

August 18th, 2009 — 4:30pm

Not too long ago, I blogged about friends with significant others ditching their single galpals. The post prompted a friend of mine to mention she’s experienced the reverse phenomenon – single friends shying away after she got married.

I couldn’t help thinking, does it really have to become an us versus them dynamic when you no longer have the same marital status in common?

Another friend, D, recently experienced a rather extreme take on the idea that singles and marrieds don’t mix. Her aunt assembled a collage of all the cousins’ weddings. She used pictures of each bridal couple together, and then group photos of all of the girls at each wedding. All except D, who was literally cut out of every group shot. Why?

“Because,” she says. “I’m the only single one and don’t have my own bridal photo and therefore, do not count.”

Her aunt’s cutting move is a good example of the self-segregating that often happens between singles and marrieds. What is it that makes this peculiar pattern take place? Do singles resent being around the type of committed relationship they have yet to find? Are married folk uncomfortable with reminders of the footloose and fancy-free days they’ve left behind?

Perhaps, most simply, it’s that singles and marrieds often end up traveling in different circles. Most recently, I noticed this when I attended last month’s BlogHer conference, and most of the Mommy Blogger contingent seemed to travel in packs, veering away from those of us who are child-free.

Yes, it’s all too easy to keep your distance from peers with a different relationship status. The thing is, there’s much to be said for keeping the lines of communication open. Because, when it comes to navigating the tricky terrain of relationships — married or not — the larger the conversation, the better.

| friends who have a different marital status, singles versus marrieds

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