You’re Single, Not Dead

I think I’ve become the single gals fairy godmother of late.

More than twice in the last few weeks I’ve found myself in the position of being a shoulder to cry on or a confidant for friends who’ve recently separated from a partner and found themselves newly single. In each situation I’ve been met with the same concerns at being found single after a long term relationship.

When I found myself newly single I dealt with it pretty much on my own, my work colleagues didn’t find out for 3 months that I was no longer with my then boyfriend and I didn’t even tell some of my closest friends what I was going through. I tended to cut myself off from anyone who wasn’t my family and internalised the whole situation.

I thought I’d use my newly acquired “single gal experiences” to address some of the main wails I meet from newly single friends..

Ohmygod I am so alone and sad because I’m single!

First things first, you’re single – not dead! Is the box you tick under “marital status” really how you define yourself as a person? Your life doesn’t end just because you don’t have a significant other, you can still have life experiences, achieve, be whatever you want to be – you just don’t have someone to share a bed with. I may now look back as my single days with glasses that are tinted but in truth I had some of my best life experiences when I was single: I began to spend a lot more time on this blog and developed it to where it stands today. I spent time with old friends, made new friends and went on dates (some good, some not so good) – not so sad.

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I’m XX years old and I haven’t had a baby yet or got married – it’s never going to happen for me now!

They say that everything happens for a reason and chances are whatever reason you and your beaux split up for may still have been there had you been married or if you’d had a child (unless you split because of one or both of those reasons). Yes, you’re single now, but imagine how much harder the split process would have been had you had an ankle biter of a baby in tow or if you had messy divorce stuff to finalise. No you may not be where you thought you would be in your life at this precise moment, perhaps you imagined fat babies and a ring around your finger but wouldn’t you rather you had those two things with the right person rather than HAD them with the wrong one? I saw a story once about a lady having a baby at the age of 65 and people get married WELL into nursing home days – there’s hope for you yet.

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He doesn’t want to be with me anymore! I obviously put on too much weight/didn’t pay him enough attention/wasn’t good enough in bed for him… etc

First and absolutely foremost – I call bullshit. Whether you’re male or female blaming yourself by means of superficial reasons only breeds negativity. I’ve never known of “being bad in bed” or “putting on too much weight” as being genuine reasons from human beings worth being in a relationship for a break up. If a person is well and truly worth being with and loves you (or “likes you” if you haven’t reached the big L word yet) those sort of reasons won’t matter. So what if you put on a few pounds? As long as you’re happy with your body or how you look what’s the big deal? They think you’re bad in bed? Grab yourself a copy of the karma sutra or talk it out. As long as theres communication sex stuff can usually be figured out. If he has a penis that swerves left, you go right… if he likes his girl to go on top but you’re not comfortable with that, find a happy medium – ergo – not really relationship deal breakers. You can’t blame yourself for those little reasons. If you cheated or you turned out to be a great big phoney then there may be some grounds for the heave ho, but torturing yourself over insignificant and nonsensical reasons? Man up.

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How will I cope with dating? It was bad enough when I was 20 and there wasn’t even internet dating back then!

People deal differently with dating – some love it, some hate it. I didn’t really mind it. The dating scene can be a little bit scary no matter what age you are or how long you’ve been single but when you’re fresh out of a relationship I imagine it would be like staring up at a cantering horse right after it’s bolted and thrown you off it’s back. You don’t really want to get back on because – painful, but also because you’re bums a little bruised and your ego is a little dented and the last thing you want is for it to happen again. Truth is, unless you want to sit on your backside nursing your ego for the rest of your life then at some point you’re going to have to saddle up. If you’ve never internet dated before it can be scary: the whole premise of setting yourself up an online profile with your vital statistics in order to find someone to date may seem a bit humiliating, but thousands of people do it and hundreds of people have been successful and found love (or whatever comes close). Just take it step by step: Sign up with low expectations and go for a free site before you shell out money looking for Mr or Mrs Right so you can see if it’s for you. Don’t like the look of online dating? People DO still date the old fashioned way. Meeting people in bars, at work, a friend of a friend, an old friend.

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My life seems so empty, we used to spend so much time together that I don’t know what to do with myself anymore.

It sounds a bit cheesy and anti Beyonce, but when you’re in a committed relationship you do in a way become two parts of a whole. You spend a lot of time together, you consider one another in your lives, you split Christmas’ between your families and your friends more often not are shared. Then you’re on you’re own and you suddenly have so much free time and time to do what you want – remember YOU? Take some time out for yourself, indulge in yourself and get out and about and doing stuff but don’t go out so much that you avoid being by yourself. You need to separate “being alone” and “being on your own”. Alone indicates that you have no one – surround yourself with friends, family and a support circle and you won’t feel alone. Take up a hobby – ever fancied knitting? Make a bed throw. After some house company? Get a dog. Put yourself forward for social occasions, be more open to saying “yes” to invites where you’d usually have said “I can’t tonight, we have to….”.

  • I get totally what you mean but I guess we all deal with stuff in different ways
    I found keeping busy takes your mind off it xox

  • Mel

    I bloody love this post! Been feeling a bit sorry for myself this week because of my single status but you’re right, I have things to do!

    Thanks xx