Another year has passed and I’m still single. As a matter of fact, I’ve never been in a relationship in my entire life.
It’s not that I’m hiding at home and always reading books. I’m not constantly checking out that cute guy’s Facebook status, which, by the way, he NEVER updates. As an introvert, I find it tremendously difficult to connect with others and find someone I can fully trust. Nevertheless, I’m making the conscious effort of going out and doing stuff I enjoy at my own pace.
Sometimes, my pace is too slow for people’s tastes. Everybody seems to want to rush into things. Society always emphasizes the importance of relationships. Why? Because you become fulfilled. Because it shows that you are not alone. Because there is nothing inherently wrong with you. Yeah, somebody loves you for who you are and you won’t forever be classified as the Crazy Cat Lady.
Everything is wrong if you’re single — and especially if you’ve never been in a relationship. That’s what society wants you to think. I cannot begin to tell you how men react when they find out that I’ve never been in a relationship before. They take five steps back and question me as if I have a disease. Sometimes, I make the judgment call of not pursuing the potential relationship further. Other times, men want intimacy much quicker than I’m willing to consider. Usually, after one date, they are gone.
And that’s okay! We should never settle into a relationship that isn’t right for us.
As the world’s most dreadful holiday approaches to remind us of our perpetual singlehood — Valentine’s Day — here are ten reasons why it’s great to be a single introvert.
Why It’s Great Being a Single Introvert
1. You can spoil yourself.
Introverts — especially highly sensitive introverts — often focus on making their partner happy by fulfilling their wishes. But what about you? When you’re single, it’s your turn to do what you want, like traveling to exotic places or buying that expensive necklace you’ve been eyeing. There is no one to stop you.
2. No distractions from your goals.
Relationships can take up a significant amount of your time. At the end of the day, you may no longer have the energy to pursue the things you are passionate about or want to try out. As a single person, you are the only obstacle you face when accomplishing your goals. You have enough time to do what you love. For introverts, that may be finally reading the entire Harry Potter series, writing a screenplay about all the bad dates you’ve had, or getting in touch with your spiritual side.
3. You save money on gifts.
By not worrying about buying expensive gifts for special occasions (like birthdays, holidays, and those silly monthly anniversaries), you are able to reserve that extra cash for bigger goals. I am enjoying my singlehood by crossing off things from my bucket list. Last year, I took a two-week tour across Europe. I spent all my money trying exotic foods and visiting beloved landmarks. Next stop? Perhaps Machu Picchu in Peru. Traveling alone can help recharge your spirits to face the world head-on.
4. No social pressures.
Being obligated to go out to social gatherings can seriously affect our mojo. As introverts, too much socializing wears us out. Sometimes we are just not in the mood to see people, and we need downtime to re-energize ourselves. We feel happier and freer when we are not dragged into things we don’t want to do. When you’re single, you can stay home whenever you want.
5. You don’t have to worry about arguments.
Many introverts shy away from confrontation. We may bottle up our feelings or bend over backward trying to please our partner and avoid a fight. Or sometimes we simply disengage and walk out. We may not have the energy to defend what we care deeply about. But without a relationship, there is no need to feel stressed about possible disagreements because the only person you need to answer to is yourself.
6. You don’t have to compromise.
Relationships are all about compromise, and it’s not always a 50-50 outcome. As a single person, you don’t have to choose the “lesser of two evils” to please your significant other. Worse yet, you don’t have to do something because you’re obligated to do so. As a single introvert, you can do whatever you like whenever you like because you are not seeking approval from anyone.
7. No reminders of how different you are.
Okay, fine. We introverts are different. We view the world differently. We don’t think in the typical “extroverted” way. And that’s okay. How bland would the world be if we all saw things exactly the same way?
8. You don’t have to check-in.
When you are out doing your thing, there is no need to let your significant other know who you’re with or if you’re running late. Unless, of course, you live with your parents. You should definitely give them that courtesy notification.
9. No guilty feeling.
There are times when you want to curl up at home and watch a Netflix marathon of Fuller House and not deal with friends or family dysfunction. When you’re single, there’s no need to explain why you do the things you do. Or anybody to make you feel bad about your decisions because they don’t understand what an introvert is. You are the master of your destiny!
10. You get to be you.
One of my biggest fears is losing my sense of self when I’m in a relationship. Countless times I’ve witnessed how one person cannot function without the other because they are so blindly in love. They spend so much time together that their identities become fused into one. Where does one begin or end? It’s hard to tell.
And who are they when they are apart? Miserable. Codependency deeply impacts your social groups and sinks you into a blackhole of limited friendships, because now your friends have to like your significant other. And if they don’t? They gradually fade away. By remaining single, you keep the essence of who you are. You are free to socialize with anybody you’d like. You don’t have to force yourself — or others — to fit into that two-person reality, especially if that person is not the right fit for you.
Being single allows you to love and appreciate yourself in no other way possible. Remember that you are whole without anybody else in the equation.
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Image credit: @aniamisyyy via Twenty20