dating

An open letter to everyone who is single at the moment.

Dear single people,

It’s OK. You’re going to be OK.

I know that sometimes the crushing loneliness, insecurity, and mountains of leftovers that come with being single can almost overwhelm you – but you’re better off riding solo than staying in a relationship that’s slowly sucking the joy out of you.

I know this because I’m 33, I’m single as f**k, and I’m OK.

Despite what pop culture tries to tell us, I’m not a bitter old woman surrounded by cats – I’m a pretty damn happy 33-year-old surrounded by a dog and a whole bunch of indoor plants.

open letter single people
You're better off riding solo than staying in a relationship that's slowly sucking the joy out of you. Image via Unsplashed.

And that's OK.

I'm at a point in my life where I feel like I'll either meet someone and we'll just click or I'll happily wander the earth on my own for the rest of my days. And the thing is, the older you get the harder it is to find someone. You know who are you are and what your values are and you're no longer prepared to settle for someone who isn't a true partner.

That's not to say that I don't have moments of self doubt, times where I worry that I'm really missing out on something - I do, of course I do, but they pass.

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Some days I feel resentment that everyone else around me seems to have found someone, and I haven't - but that passes too.

And now that I'm at an age where people I know are starting to go through divorces, I know that 'finding someone' is only half the battle. Truly loving that person and being able to bring out the best in each other? That's the real fight.

A survey conducted by eHarmony earlier this year found that 26 per cent of people in the UK were unhappy in their relationship, but over half of them (54 per cent) weren't prepared to leave.

That's a whole lot of people giving up their happiness so they don't have to be labelled a 'single'. That's a huge number of people who are slowly sucking the life out of each other, so they don't have to divide their assets, and go out into the big, bad world on their own.

Listen to the Mamamia Out Loud hosts discuss one listener's question. Post continues after audio. 

That's a whole lot of hidden sadness. That's so many sliding door moments that were missed.

eHarmony calls it singlephobia and it's a phenomenon that's wrecking havoc on the mental health and wellbeing of men and women around the world.

People are letting a fear of change, and the discomfort that comes with trying something new, get in the way of their own happiness - and they're bringing someone else down with them.

They're sticking around in loveless relationships and slowly building up resentment for their partner, so they don't have to face big life events on their own.

At a time in our lives when we have more choice than ever - people are choosing the safe option.

eHarmony's psychologist, Dr Linda Papadopoulos, says if any of this sounds familiar to you, you need to take some time to re-evaluate your relationship, and think about whether it really makes you happy - sooner rather than later.

You're only on this earth for a short amount of time - wouldn't you rather spend it untethered and free to find something that makes you truly happy, rather than tied down to something that makes your miserable?

I know I would.

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