I will never understand why people think they have earned the right to advise twentysomethings about every aspect of their lives. From career to relationships, they believe that our lives are flawed, and hence, they cannot stop providing their two cents about how we run our lives. Every Chinese New Year, my aunt and uncles would ask me when I will get married. My answer to them has always been, “Just keeping waiting.” When they are not satisfied, they will keep highlighting how they were already married at my age as part of an effort to expedite the process of me getting married.
When your relatives convey something along those lines, you cannot help but wonder whether or not their words hold some form of legitimacy. Is time working against me? Is it wrong that I am still not keen on seeing someone? Hell no. There is no harm in being single and spending the time to learn how to love yourself. So, do not let people tell you that being single is not the right way to kickstart your twenties. Being single is about discovering yourself and learning how to take care of yourself before taking care of others.
If you have just spent your 4th anniversary with your girlfriend, congratulations. However, that does not permit you to tell your single friends why they should be in a relationship. They have their reasons, so do respect them.
There are several lines that you should avoid saying to your single friends. I will go through some of the common ones and outline why it is not a good idea to throw them to your single friends.
1. “Give dating apps a shot. Perhaps you can find your dream partner there.”
From my perspective, those who say this are those who never took time to learn how to be alone, so they tried to employ someone else to do it. They think it is a quick fix to being single. However, it does not work for everyone. Just because your friend found his wife through Tinder does not mean the same strategy works for you.
2. “Being too selective is the reason why you’re still single.”
I heard this line many times from my friends and even my loved ones when I was single. Frankly, what is wrong with being picky? When all I had was myself, I intentionally told everyone around me that I do not want to settle for any person who gives me attention. Not all attention from the opposite sex evolves to a Twilight-like love story.
3. “There’s a lot of things that happen in a relationship.”
You do not need to say this to your single friends because chances are, they are already aware of it. Being single means they want to stay focus on things that are best enjoyed alone. They recognise that once they throw their single lives away, they risk losing sight of what mattered most to them because by then, they have to stretch their resources further, which could eventually physically or mentally drain them quicker.
4. “I wish I could return to the single life.”
This emanating from that one friend of yours who is always afraid of being single and hence why he or she is always in a relationship. Do not rant about being in a relationship with your significant other around your single friend. “I have no sympathy for you,” would be their answer to your complaint.
5. “Love will find you when you do not think about it.”
My personal favourite. Apparently, if you are single and ready to mingle (perhaps not), the only thing you wonder about is searching for your significant other. I am confident that all single people go about their day thinking about more important matters in their lives. Looking for that “one” is probably the last item on their to-do list.
Final 2¢: Single Out The Distractions and Nonsense
Do not pretend that you have never come across the phrases above. I am sure you have heard at least one of them. If you are on your way towards marriage with your romantic partner, do not try to convince your single friends that they will be forever alone. They will catch up, and when they need advice from you about keeping their relationships alive, that is the best time for you to give them.
Being single means you are patient enough to wait for what you deserve. Being single does not necessarily mean you are available too. Being single means you are fantastic, and you are taking your sweet time deciding how you want to live your life and who you want to spend it with.
To all my single friends out there, stay cool and if the right one steps into your life, have fun!