Sinking ships: escaping the stigma of being single

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We live in the age of relationships, situationships and the occasional “relation” with no “ship.” So you can only imagine how hard it is for many young adults to feel confident as that one “single friend.”

No matter where you go, the aroma of love is in air, and I might be one of the few who wears a gas mask for protection. I know that statement probably came off as the usual “I’m single, and I don’t need a man” facade that women tend to put on, but I will explain. Having a companion, someone who is all yours, is a great feeling that one day, hopefully, we all will experience.

However, the one thing our generation fails to take into account is the hard work and time a healthy relationship takes. No matter how much two people like each other or are attracted to each other, they have to be willing to not only be committed but also to compromise, or the relationship will fail every time.

People are jumping in and out of relationships like dating is on the verge of going out of style. Public service announcement: dating is not going anywhere. Whether you believe in the theory of evolution or some more spiritual explanation for the union of two hearts, there is someone for everyone. So do not let a night binging on movies such as “Titanic” and “A Walk to Remember” get you so down that you begin looking for a relationship in places where you should not.

The biggest problem is rushing to date or letting social media influence your view on being single. Too often, being single is viewed as a bad thing, and the only good thing ever associated with being single is free will. If you ever leave a relationship, and the first thing you have to say about your newly single title is now you can finally do whatever you want, pat yourself on the back. You just saved yourself from a controlling relationship. A relationship should never make you feel like you cannot be yourself or you have to stop hanging with people and doing things you love to do. Change is important to grow, but there is a big difference between stopping bad habits and being manipulated.

If getting into the wrong relationship is not bad enough, think about all the stress that comes with trying to make something work that is not meant to be.

To all those struggling with dating, having to force happiness always ends badly. Instead, let’s all make sure we know who and what we’re getting into. Our generation is infamous for the “talking stage.” Let’s use the talking stage as a way to completely get to know the person of interest. You should know who they are as a person and what experiences have helped shape that person before you make the decision to fully commit. Of course, there is no way to completely know someone in only a few months, but knowing as much as you can will either seal the deal or become the ultimate deal breaker.

Being single does not mean you are lonely, ugly or crazy. Being single just means that you are single, and no negative connotation is attached. It is scary to think that someone is in a relationship with someone because they do not want to be alone, and, unfortunately in our generation, that is highly common. When people ask you why you are single, do not feel obligated to have a valid justification; there is more to life than dating. Some people actually have responsibilities and goals and do not want the distraction of a relationship, while others like the thought of being able to hang out with multiple people versus only one person.

The most common reason for being single is plain and simple: you might not have found a working relationship with someone yet. For this reason, the talking stage tends to last longer than the actual relationship. Whatever your reason for being single is, do not let people talk to you into a relationship or make you feel bad, and most of all, do not stress it. After all, there are more important things to worry about, like midterms and student loans.

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