When I think of one of my best friends, the word that springs to mind instantly is ‘amazing’.
She’s a celebrity and travel journalist, top of her field, and her life is extraordinary. She’s always off skiing the Alps or trekking with gorillas in Rwanda or prancing about the planet doing something. When she’s not being Lara Croft, she’s interviewing A-list celebrities or travelling to the world’s most stunning resorts for free. She’s got her own flat, is slim, fit, gorgeous, intelligent, funny and sexy as hell. She has tons of friends, a family who adore her and doesn’t lack male attention.
Not exactly someone you’d feel sorry for, is she?
But people do. All those achievements and all everyone can focus on is the fact that she’s single and doesn’t have babies.
When she’s not being Lara Croft, she’s interviewing A-list celebrities or travelling to the world’s most stunning resorts for free. Not exactly someone you’d feel sorry for, is she?
Why as a society do we automatically think ‘problem’ when we think ‘single’?
Everyone is constantly problem-solving my friend’s life. ‘Stop being so fussy!’ ‘Ever thought of freezing your eggs?’ ‘Give up on men, have a baby on your own!’ She kindly and valiantly indulges them but as someone who’s also career orientated and been single for stages of my life, I know how frustrating it is!
Why are single people thought of as charity cases? Why do we assume they need rescuing? Why do we think it’s OK to offer advice to our single friends when we wouldn’t dream of doing it to someone who’s married? Who decided finding a partner is the pinnacle of all achievements?
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Contrary to popular belief not all single people are desperate to be coupled up. They’re not desperate at all.
It’s incredibly galling (though well intended) when people whose lives you quite frankly do not envy, say “Oh Sweetie, come and spend the holidays with us. Don’t be all alone!’.
The single person is then supposed to reply: “Oh yes please! I’d love to come and sit in your kitchen, watching you spoon feed the baby while your husband shuffles about in his dressing gown, selling you on his 52-year-old cousin who lives in a caravan and hasn’t had a job for 20 years but (here’s when the single person is supposed to burst into spontaneous applause) is single and wants to meet you! Hurrah!