I don’t want to be alone.

What a sobering sentence. As I navigate through new stages in my life and play witness to other people’s experiences, I find we tend to circumvent the concept of being alone while putting other excuses in its place. But let’s be honest, the difficulty isn’t really accepting the idea of being alone, but the shame of being alone.

Geez, the pressure from those around you.
If you’re in your 30s or barely escaping the Millenial demographic, every person in the world you know is getting married or having babies. If you’re nowhere close to that, it’s the pressure of being coupled that will plague you, even if you’re not looking for it. My single bout ended a couple years ago and before that, I remember nothing worked out for me so I dismissed my lifestyle as being transitional; living in both North America and Asia. I gave excuses that I couldn’t be in serious relationships because I was busy chasing work, but I think if there was potential in some of the situations, I would have opted to stay in either of those hemispheres cuz it’s much easier being in a relationship than single. Even now that I’m consciously coupling with my sexy bald man, I still teeter on the fear of being alone (maybe just weekends alone without him now).

This God Damn Society!
Without trying to pounce on a feminist agenda, much of our lives as little girls transforming into women have always been about finding a good husband and having children. It’s a sense of pride and the more levels you unlock, the further you are at winning. Unfortunately, if you’re headed in the opposite direction of progression, there’s an undeniable stigma. It must mean there is something wrong with you. For some women who are in sub-par relationships or justifying emotional/physical abuse, they would rather stay than be alone or be seen as a failure at relationships. Is the fear of being alone so bad? I have friends who I console in their “bad situations”, but nothing ever changes, and they remain in their toxic environments. It becomes more apparent that they just want to feel better about their own reality for that moment. Sadly, the downward spiral is just the beginning and becomes more convoluted to the point that you just want to stay away.

Solace in One. 
Honestly, it’s liberating, for serial monogamous daters especially, its great to do things on your own, gain independence and rely on no one else but yourself. The test of your own resilience is the best learning experience, even if it’s forced single-dom. I know its easy to say that without dismissing the pressures of everyone around you but it also allows you to create a standard for yourself.

Desperation often leads to bad choices, you’re pushing your agenda so hard that you don’t see red flags, you don’t look at the fine print and you end up walking into a bigger disaster than if you were to take your time.

Desperation often leads to bad choices, you’re pushing your agenda so hard that you don’t see red flags, you don’t look at the fine print and you end up walking into a bigger disaster than if you were to take your time. Your own insecurities can get the best of you and your standards get lower and lower, all for the sake of not being alone. Trust me, I’ve been there and you start thinking, God how did I end up here?

As some will probably deny the stigma of being alone, they will also deny the greater stigma of being in a bad relationship.  On the flip side, the pressures in relationships can be just as annoying. I want to be grateful in the new stages of my relationship without feeling like it’s not matching up to everyone else’s expectations or timelines. It’s so easy to succumb to other people’s definitions of happiness but then again they’re just outsiders with an opinion. Commitment can be so fleeting with so many options, temptations and dating apps at our fingertips. Regardless if you choose to be single or in a relationship, the choice is yours. That choice should also demand respect and power, which should stem from happiness and not from fear of being judged.