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In this day and age, people act as if you are supposed to get married and jump straight into having children. However, it might be better to just live your life as a single pringle.

Professor Bella DePaulo at the American Psychological Association’s annual convention in Denver challenged the idea that marriage ‘helps’ people live happier longer lives. You see, she spoke based on research comparing people who have either stayed single or stayed married and findings showed that people who were single had a heightened sense of self-determination and are without a doubt more likely to experience a good sense of growth as well as development as a person.

The number she looked at were reported by the Office for National Statistics and showed that in the UK just last year there were about 16 million single people and 23 million married people. The number of single individuals is forever growing and with good reason. Single people have better connections with their parents, friends, siblings and co-workers. Married people seem to become more closed off and there are tons of benefits that come with solitude.

You should not see single people as ‘lonely’ or ‘sad’ most of them are anything but. Being single generally, comes with people constantly asking you things like ‘when are you gonna find someone and settle down?’ ‘When are you gonna have kids?’ These questions can be quite annoying and never ending for sure. Marriage does not make people happier. Only you can make yourself happy. Why spend all of your time and energy in finding your ‘soulmate’ when you could invest in yourself?

You can be single and happy, you can live a fulfilling life without having kids or getting married. Just because everyone else is doing it does not mean you have to conform. If you are content being single then be single. Just because your mother is pressing you for grandchildren does not mean you have to jump into the arms of the first man who sticks around. I honestly have only met a couple ‘sad’ single people. Most single people are happy.

They are living their lives the way that they want to. Living single allows a person to live the best most authentic and meaningful life they possibly can. While the single life is not for everyone we should not assume that there is something wrong with it or those that choose it. Are you single? How do you feel? Sometimes marriage is not the answer and that is okay. Please don’t let others pressure you into something you aren’t ready for.