The fear of ending up alone is causing many of us to settle for less in our love lives. As someone who loves singlehood and all of the “me time” that goes with it, I have to ask: Wouldn’t you rather be alone and happy than hitched and miserable?
Isn’t being with someone for the sake of not being alone just as lonely? Here’s why you should work your way through the fear and never (ever!) settle for less than what you want.
A recent study published in The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology revealed the fear of being single drives us to stay in bad relationships or settle for so-so partners, prioritizing relationship status over relationship quality.
To that I say, “Pffft!” Mind you, I’m on the opposite end of the spectrum with a wide array of intimacy issues. Regardless, I’d rather know I stand a chance at finding someone who’s the best fit for me as opposed to letting my insecurities call the shots. Sure, I might end up alone, but I won’t be lonely. To me, being in a relationship I’m not really meant for would be more isolating than potential spinsterhood — it limits both your chances at finding “real” love and how you evolve as a person.
Still not convinced? Here are 10 reasons to never enter the settle-for-less kind of relationship:
Your decision to be in a relationship is based on fear
Nothing good ever comes from a fear-based decision.
It’s a sign you don’t trust yourself
You can’t force everything to happen exactly how you want it to. You have to trust in your ability to seek out the best guy for you — and trust that you will. Grow as a person, become comfortable with yourself, and it won’t be long before you’re as in-demand as The Bachelorette.
A relationship won’t “fix” you
If you’re going into a relationship for any other reason than sincerely wanting to be with him, stop yourself now — otherwise, years will go by and eventually you’ll feel too “stuck” to move on. Keep in mind you’re causing someone else to miss out on “real” love too.
When the novelty wears off… then what?
I’ll tell you what: You’re going to let yourself go, because who cares? Your subconscious motto to life will be, “Meh.” Not only will you become apathetic when his socks are on the floor (and two inches away from the laundry hamper), you’ll spend your nights out with your BFF uncertain of the last time you washed your hair, because who cares?
Eventually, you’re going to despise yourself
As the relationship fizzles and you feel like your life’s sinking in quicksand, you’re going to get uber-upset with yourself for a) putting yourself in this position, b) wasting so much time with someone who’s holding you back and c) you’re actually allowing it to happen!
You can’t create a relationship out of the ether
(or with a checklist)
The comfort level you’re seeking from your relationship takes time — you can’t say “I love you” after two weeks of being together and expect that to mean this is the “real deal” and you’re in it “for the long haul.” You’ll only know that if you still feel the same way after learning every humiliating, gross, and WTF thing there is to know about each other.
You’re going to miss out on… well, everything
While bulldozing yourself into a relationship for the sake of having one, you’ll miss out on the experience of letting your life evolve naturally (which also means being emotionally prepared for each step you take). Pushing yourself into a relationship you’re not ready for will do more harm than good. Every. Single. Time.
When the relationship tanks,
you’ll be left with less than nothing
It takes a lot of time and energy to maintain a charade. When a relationship is unnatural, you have to tap into energy reserves typically saved for emergency situations. When you or he finally decide to split (since you shouldn’t have been together in the first place), you’re going to be a fraction of who you used to be. Trust me, it takes longer to rebuild than tear down.
What else is there?
If you’re not going after exactly what you want in every aspect of your life, I’m not sure why it’s necessary to get out of bed at all. (Except for maybe Cheetos.)
You’re forgetting the one thing scarier than being alone
Most of us get in our own way: We subconsciously put barriers in our way because we’re used to them being there and don’t know how to function otherwise. The only thing scarier than “maybe” being alone? Definitely being alone — because you’ve saddled yourself with someone who doesn’t fully understand or accept you as exactly who you are, and what’s worse: You’re definitely not in a position to find someone who will.
More reasons to enjoy the single life
This mom thinks the only thing you should “lean in” to is marrying smart
The best things about being single
When you’re the only single gal left