I recently was in a relationship for two years when my boyfriend told me: ‘Whoever I end up with, I want her to be a stay-at-home wife.’
He wanted someone who would love and support him whilst he set out to achieve his career goals, but wasn’t necessarily willing to help me with mine. He ultimately saw me doing one thing in 10 years: mothering his children, whilst he worked.
For context, I’m in my twenties, I study at University and I would consider myself ambitious.
At the time, I was shocked that this person I had dated for so long, evidently only saw my identity as an appendage of his own – rather than an independent person who had the agency to decide what my future will be like.
Whilst I very well might one day decide to be a stay-at-home mum (probably not, but let’s just say), I know I want that to be my decision, not one enforced upon me by my partner.
So it took me a few months to come to terms with what he said, but I ultimately decided to make the painful decision to end our relationship.
I realised I couldn’t spend the rest of my life – let alone another couple of years – with a partner who wasn’t going to give me the ability to make my own decisions about my own life.
So, I hopped on the bandwagon and joined the movement of the ‘Alpha Single‘.
In 2018, it seems more and more women are also choosing this path. Whilst once upon a time, finding ‘the one’ seemed to be what a woman should strive for in life, the times have changed drastically. Yep, the 21st century – it would appear – is the Age of Singledom.
The Mamamia Out Loud crew discuss the rise of the alpha single. Post continues after audio.
The stereotype of all single people being lonely, compared to those married or in long-term relationships, is redundant. As Meshel Laurie recently wrote: “There’s no loneliness in the world like the loneliness of a loveless relationship.”
An unprecedented amount of women are evidently coming to this realisation, with there currently being more single women than ever before in history.
Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that if you want children today it doesn’t need to be connected to a romantic love like it once was. Or, that today women can be be more self-dependent financially and legally than ever before.
Whilst there are of course so many great things that come from being in a loving relationship, it also comes down to women deciding they don’t just want to settle, but rather find someone who will add value to their life.
Learning to be happy by yourself, and being completely self-sufficient, can of course be a hard thing to do after coming out of a relationship. But, women are finding that it is also necessary.
Personally, I want to find my independence now so that whatever future relationship I choose to commit to, my independence won’t be compromised (as I nearly let happen in my last relationship).