Thursday, February 12, 2015

BEING SINGLE ON VALENTINE'S DAY IS CHILL AS HELL.


There are a lot of really awesome things about being 29. As illustrated in this article from The Cut, perhaps the most awesome thing is that you just start to give way less f*cks about everything (and everyone) that isn't worth your time. I'm happy to report that as a single woman creeping up on 30 years old, singledom on Valentine's Day is one of those things about which I give absolutely zero f*cks.

I don't mean this to disparage those of you who are coupled up and planning a really nice evening for yourselves. Hopefully someday before I'm dead I'll be doing that, too. What I mean is, I'm an adult woman with a life of substance, and being single on Valentine's Day is like being single every other day of the year: It's chill as hell.

The adults I know who are not currently in a serious relationship all seem to have the same attitude towards this day: IDGAF, but you do you. We don't need to use Valentine's Day as an excuse to brag about how much we love being single, or to rain on the parade of happy couples everywhere. Celebrate, don't celebrate, anti-celebrate... It's all good. Eat candy. Wear red. Drink too much wine and fall asleep on your couch watching Netflix. Honestly if you're living your life right that's just called Friday.

If I could shout one thing to the universe (and the Internet) on this day on behalf of unattached adults it would be: CAN WE LIVE?

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I feel like we the unattached get pigeonholed into two camps on this silly holiday: You're either getting weird or getting sad. (Getting drunk applies in both cases.) Me? I'm getting out of town. (Lest anyone forget, the actual important thing about this weekend is that it is a long one.) I will be enjoying the winter sports bounty of Lake Placid, New York with a dozen or so friends who, like me, give zero f*cks about Valentine's Day and all the f*cks about skiing, fireplaces, the 1980 Olympic Games and hot cocktails in a gigantic lakeview cabin.

I think we can all agree that having a companion, a co-conspirator and a confident is great. But I think the narrative of "being single" could use some editing. It often sounds like single is just a place where you hang out when you're in between relationships—a lonely, desperate place that is mostly occupied by sad, bitter women and emotionally immature men.

In reality (and gender roles aside), being single on Valentine's Day (or any day) is mostly just being a person—with a pretty specific kind of radical independence and an abundance of choice. What you do with all that choice, how your independence plays itself out? That's living your life. 

I SAY WE REVEL IN IT.


As I often do when I start ranting and raving about dating (or not dating, as it were), I asked a few of my most illustrious single friends to tell me why they like being unattached. Some of their answers are earnest, some are silly. All of them are honest and completely relatable.
"The best part about being single is being able to spend QT with myself. I know, sounds ridiculous but its true. It's so corny but "I'm in a relationship... with myself." When else do you have the time and resources to do whatever you want? I'm healthy, independent, single, unattached and free as a bird. it doesn't really get better than that. I know in the future things will change so I'm relishing the time to do what I want now." 
"1) being single = I can do WTF I want, when I want. 2) My value appreciates as I get older; being single means I don't have to worry I'm outgrowing a depreciating second half.  #noweightvsdeadweight 3) Understanding the value of substantial friendships. 4) BeyoncĂ© songs."
"I like making independent decisions and being able to go somewhere, or do something (or not do something) without having to coordinate with anyone else. Making those independent decisions have, over time, helped me figure out who I am and what I like and value." 
 "Being single means I can put myself first and not question opportunities to treat myself. Expensive dinner with girlfriends? FINE. New Boots? FINE. My choices are mine and mine alone for the time being and I'll revel in that, til I find someone to be with, that is." 
"Two words: Face Masks. Being single, I can do one every night if I want and not worry about terrifying a significant other."  
"I love being single but mostly I love being single in New York. I'm 26, on the right career track, have an amazing network of friends and never know what the next weekend adventure will have in store. Who has time for a (serious) relationship right now? At this stage in my life, New York is the only boyfriend I need."

And myself? I like being single because everything—every subway ride, every party, every vacation (except this one), every happy hour, every day pretty much—is colored by opportunity and possibility. To be honest, I also like being unattached because that's mostly all I've been. I have no doubt that being unsingle will rival being single in its awesomeness soon enough, but for now? I'm chill. I'm happy, healthy, well-traveled, well-loved and gainfully employed in the best city on Earth. Coupled-up or not, I'd say that's pretty f*cking great.

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