Am I Better Off Single?

By Marissa Sparkman

If you’re a single adult, you probably get asked a lot if you’re seeing someone special. Have you gone on any good dates recently? Did that guy you went for drinks with last week text you back? Are you on the apps? If these are questions you hear a lot – it can be exhausting. Single adults face pressure to stop being single by friends, family, social media … Don’t get me wrong – the people in our lives don’t always mean to put pressure on us. They just want us to be happy. But what if you’re better off single right now? This might be a question you aren’t asked very often, but I challenge you to give some thought to it. And to help you do so, I’m here to help you out a bit. You might find that you’re better of single, if:

You’re Not Enjoying the Dating Process

Does the thought of staying home with a bag of Hot Cheetos and Netflix sound more appealing right now? I’m here to tell you that it’s okay to take a pause if you’re not actually enjoying the dating process. Maybe you’ve been on a few bad Bumble dates. Maybe you were recently ghosted by someone you really liked, and you’re feeling really disappointed. Single individuals can face a lot of pressure to be actively dating by friends, family, and the media … but I’m here to tell you that prioritizing yourself right now doesn’t mean you’re doing something wrong. It doesn’t mean you’ll be alone forever. Eat the chips and watch the reruns.

You Have No Time for Your Friends

Or maybe you can’t remember the last time you went out with your friends. With everything adults have to balance, it’s understandable that you might not see your friends as much as you’d like to. But if you find that this part of your life is lacking, it might be more beneficial for you right now to work on prioritizing your relationship with your friends. In our society, we place a lot of our focus on finding and being in a relationship, but what if we were to treat our friends the way we would treat a significant other? Take your friend on a date and buy them flowers. You might find that switching your focus to this part of your life fulfills you even more than a relationship could right now.

You Don’t Know How to Prioritize Yourself

Have you ever taken yourself on a date? If you haven’t, the time to do so might be now. It can be hard to do things alone, I know, but you’re totally capable of doing hard things. Learning to enjoy your own company can also be highly beneficial in building self-confidence. Maybe there’s a class you’ve been wanting to take, or you’ve always thought it could be fun to go to a coffee shop with a book. Remember that you’re the main character in your life, and doing the things that make YOU happy is the most important thing here. If you feel like you haven’t felt that way in a long time, you might find that learning to enjoy your own company is exactly what you need.

You Just Got Out of a Relationship

Maybe you really do struggle with being alone. It can be tempting, especially when one relationship ends, to immediately get back out there. But what if you were to take some time to reflect on the relationship that just ended? Did you see your friends a lot less while in this relationship? Did you stop prioritizing yourself and your needs? Were you happy? It can be important to reflect on these things, and that isn’t something that can necessarily be done if dating immediately becomes the new focus. You deserve to take some time to not only grieve the relationship but to work on finding out what your needs and desires are in the next relationship you have.

You Have No Idea What You Want

Maybe you just read that last paragraph and thought to yourself, “Wow, I actually don’t know what I want.” The things you’re looking for in a significant other (or others!) are allowed to change. Maybe you thought you wanted to get married and have kids, but now you’re just not sure if that makes sense for you. Maybe you like the idea of non-monogamy, but you don’t really know what your boundaries would be. There are so many possibilities for the way you can approach relationships, and it’s okay if you have no idea what you want right now. Did you know that therapy can actually help you with this? Therapy can not only help you to discover what you’re looking for; it can also help you to communicate your needs and desires to potential partners. Because maybe you’ve realized that you’re not better off single right now and that you want to see what’s out there. This is totally okay!

It’s also okay to realize that, you know what? You kind of like the idea of learning to prioritize yourself and your friendships. We’re here to help you with that, too.