“When are you going to meet someone and settle down?”
If you’re a single adult it’s likely you’ve heard this question at a family dinner or gathering. To the people that care about you most, like friends and family, you’re smart, kind, funny, and successful. You have it all together and no one can figure out why you’re still single.
What your family and friends don’t know is neither can you.
Why anyone is single can be a complicated question to answer. Sometimes there isn’t an obvious answer. If you’re a person that seems to have “everything going for you” it’s much harder to explain to the outside world, especially family, why you don’t have a partner. As confused as you are to why you haven’t found the right match, imagine how your friends and family feel.
If you’re constantly facing interrogation from friends and family about your love life it isn’t because they’re nosy, they might be that too, but it’s because they just can’t figure it out. They don’t ask you why you’re single just to bug you; they really want to know the answer!
Since you can’t figure it out, the people closest to you want to be the ones to solve the mystery. Unfortunately, the people who love us most often give us the worst dating advice.
They encourage you to settle.
To your family and friends, everyone seems “nice”. In the world of being a single adult; nice is the dreaded enemy. Nice is the description of someone that you have chemical attraction to. There is no arguing that relationships take work but you shouldn’t have to work on chemistry.
If you aren’t feeling the fireworks from the beginning then it’s likely you’re settling because you believe in scarcity. You ponder, with anxiety, the possibility that someone better won’t come along. You lament about the horrible truth, what if you are too picky? Your head and your heart are in agreement for once that this might not be the one, but you’re supportive friends and family members tell you not to be so critical.
It’s your love life and you should be critical. You wouldn’t settle for a job you didn’t really want under the same premise so why settle for a man? You know how you want to feel in a relationship and if the chemistry isn’t there it’s ok to move on.
They don’t support your “search” for love.
Online dating, dating apps, matchmakers, and dating coaches might be outside the realm of understanding to your parents who met decades ago, or your friends who met their partners in high school, or college. The landscape of how couples meet is ever changing. Having to “search” for a partner isn’t a luxury but a necessity.
If you decided to stop working and solely play the lottery, people would think you were crazy. If you were unemployed and decided to “stop looking” for a job your friends and family might think you were lazy. We don’t apply a passive attitude to any other aspect of our lives, so why apply it to love?
There’s a chance, that without effort, you’ll find someone you’re compatible but you won’t find that over the moon, butt-crazy in love relationship without a little looking. Love isn’t luck, and believing that it is doesn’t help your cause.
They think you’re trying too hard.
So what if your bookshelf looks like the self-help section from Amazon? Who cares that you’re up on the latest psychology study on attraction, sexuality, or marriage? You understand that dating is like selling in that there’s an art to it. The reason being yourself usually doesn’t work is because we’re trying to live up to a standard that’s not our own.
Instead of being ourselves we act as the version constructed by society, our families and our environments. Being ourselves implies that we should never try to change or improve even though what we’re doing isn’t working. Be smart, be strategic and be the woman you want to be, even if that looks different than the “You” people have come to know.
When your family and friends interfere in your love life take it as a compliment. They think so highly of you that it really does baffle them why you haven’t found someone as amazing as yourself. Even though they mean well, don’t take their advice to heart. You know what you’re doing and your hard work will eventually pay off.