Posts Tagged ‘relationships’

After almost a year hiatus, Em’s Top 7 is back in operation! The past year has been crazy, in a good way, but super busy. I set out to write a top 7 for my friends going off to university/college and I never quite finished, so once I missed that week- it was all downhill from there! Stay tuned as I’m going to finish that post soon and have a few other back to school ones on the go!

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Today, I hung out with two of my girlfriends. We took a random road trip to try a find a decent restaurant that is actually open on a Monday, and thankfully our summer brains were on and teacher talk did not take over. The three of us are single and in our 30s and the conversation turned to an interesting subject.

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Now, this post is meant to shed some light into what it’s like to be a single girl whether by choice or by circumstance. It’s not meant to create an “us vs. them” divide, this is completely meant to offer some insight and clear up some misconceptions of what it is like to be a woman on her own, because a life without a partner is not without it’s struggles.

I believe that God has all of us, single or not, in the right place at the time. I believe that whether you are married or not, a parent or not, you can be completely satisfied and have a full understanding about life and what it has to offer. No matter where you are, no matter what your life circumstance is, there are going to be challenges. It is so important to be someone who is in tune with what is going on in your friend/family members’ lives, because we all struggle in different ways and need support and love in whatever those circumstances are. So, hopefully this post will be a reminder of that.

That being said- if you know me, you know that even when I’m serious, I usually say things with a bit of humour, so keep that in mind…

So with that long preamble- I present to you, “Seven Phrases Every Single Gal Is Dying NOT to Hear.”

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Myth #1- Single Gals are rolling in the dough…

1. “It must be nice to have such a disposable income.” We don’t know where this one comes from, because even though we have decent jobs, we never seem to have any extra money. Think about it. As a single person, you still have to make full payments for rent/mortgage, a car, insurance- all on one salary. Not to mention trying to pay off student loans and any other crazy unknown expenses that come up. At the rate I’m going, I’m looking to have my schooling paid back by the time I’m 37- if I stick to a strict budget. Now, that being said, my debit card does get a decent workout at both the Clinique counter and Victoria Secret, and I do get my hair done regularly but I figure those purchases really are necessities on the quest to land a man.

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You just sent me what?!

2. “Have you tried online dating?” I have very limited commentary for this one. People usually offer this not as a piece of advice, but as a solution to the problem. Most single women would concur that getting married is more than a box to be checked, and not a problem to be solved. And sure, online dating is a good way to meet single guys, especially if your circles have dried up of prospects. But, online dating sucks. Sure, there may be a gem of a guy on there somewhere- but it’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack. Some people strike gold right away, while others have to deal with the many men (or boys) who are usually separated from their wives, socially inept, or seriously perverted. And that’s just on the Christian sites… That could be a whole blog post in itself. And usually the response to the lack of viable options online is another favourite phrase, “Maybe you’re being too picky…”

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I have to schedule time in to shave my legs?!

3. “Being single is less responsibility…” Another misconception about being a single person is the hours of time we must seem to have on our hands. Think about it. Groceries still need to be bought, laundry to be done, all the bills to pay, the grass to cut, waiting for the repair guy to show up, taking the car in to be fixed, the house to be cleaned, dinner to be cooked, etc. Think of all the jobs that have to be done in life and as a single person, you are responsible for them all. There is no one to ask to pick up a few things on their way home for you, or someone to sort the recycling when you are busy. There is a reason why a marriage is considered a partnership. Why do you think single people love takeout/frozen dinners so much? (Lol- and why do you think I’m having Cheerios for dinner? Awesome, yes. But I would rather have the energy/company to make something way more fabulous.)

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Married club= Singles not welcome

4. “You’ll understand when you’re married.” Without going into a rant about this one, this is the most frustrating statement a single person can hear. Especially when they are past their late 20s. What if I never get married? Will I never understand? Will I never be fulfilled? When I get married does the world suddenly make sense and have meaning? This statement sucks. I have been on the receiving end of this, and even though the intention is not mean-spirited, the feeling of not being a part of a group or not being a fully formed human being is.

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Hmm.. budget allows for a road trip to “Akron, Ohio”- anyone?

5. “You must travel all the time!” Three things that make this untrue. Firstly, people don’t want to travel with you. And, well in theory it sounds great to travel alone and go where the wind takes you, part of the fun of a vacation is sharing it with someone. Most of my friends are married or have kids and will not travel, some even for a weekend. Secondly, have you ever seen how expensive it is to travel as a single? Often it’s double the cost of what it costs a couple. And, travelling with someone is an intimate experience- you have to choose a travelling companion wisely. Sure, you may save a chunk of cash, but you may be giving up your sanity at the same time…. And thirdly- see point number 1.

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There is a reason he’s still single…

6. “Wait… I THINK I know a single guy….” As if being single is the only criteria one has for finding a man. Yes, the number of single guys is dwindling, but hopefully standards aren’t dwindling also! Again, see the online dating rant about checking a box. That being said, if you know someone who is single and who your single friend would get along with, please introduce them!

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I’m aaaaall aloneeeee… all by myseeeelf…

7. “I won’t be able to make it; I need to spend time with my husband/We have to __________.” Ok. I get this. I really do. Marriages take work and there are times where you need to make time to be with your husband/family. That being said I cannot tell you how incredibly lonely it is and how pathetic one feels when you have everyone cancel on you or not be free to do something because of this reason. While you are out at a family BBQ or cozy-ing up to your man, the poor single girl is opening a can of tuna and bottle of wine alone.

And, since it’s been so long (and I have one more) here’s number 8.
8. “Just be patient. You’ll find him. God will bring him into your life at the right time…” This may be a true statement (or maybe not). But, honestly this is THE WORST thing you can say to someone who is single. Why? Because it implies that you haven’t been patient, you aren’t fully ready to be in a relationship, that there is something wrong with you that needs to be sorted out before you are “blessed” with a mate. And, when someone much younger than you (and usually married) says this (and usually shares the story about how they waited so long and the man of their dreams just appeared) it honestly makes the single person want to either crawl into a hole and die or punch the advice giver in the face. Just be a good friend. Being a friend means listening to your friend’s struggles and just being there for that person. Throwing a blanket statement out there and assuming you know how that person feels isn’t being a good friend. Take them out for coffee, include them on your wild family adventures- make an effort to check in with them.

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So thankful for the handful of amazing friends I have!

To sum up: Being single is not all fun and games as it appears, but single people are usually pretty content with their lives. Yes, most single people would love to be un-single but, only if that means being with someone who is going to make their lives better. Single people want to be remembered and loved by their married friends because we love and remember you too! (And I am so thankful for the ones who go out of their way to include/love me!)

COMMENT IN THE SPEECH BUBBLE ABOVE! SINGLE PEOPLE- did I miss anything? MARRIED PEOPLE- what do you think?

Facebook is probably the number one way people communicate now a days. “Call me” has since been replace by, “Facebook me!” and instead of asking for someone’s number, you merely ask, “Are you on Facebook?” And, it’s always exciting when someone adds you to Facebook: the instant connection you feel as you declare, “Yay, we’re Facebook friends!” is the best feeling in the world.

ID-10055791But there is a dark side to this community. Sometimes it is worse than the playground at school. If people can add friends, then they can also get rid of them.  Or in Facebook speak, “de-friend” them. I’ve gone through my list occasionally to look for someone, who I knew I had been friends with to see the dreaded “add friend+” button. Sometimes I understand; I too de-friend every once in a while. I clean up my list, getting rid of people I don’t talk to, and can’t see myself interacting with them ever again. Nothing personal, but your account is a personal thing, and the things you share are meant for your followers/friends only.

Other times though, the de-friending is hurtful and feels like a personal attack and you can’t help but ask yourself, “Did I do something?,” “Do you really not like me enough anymore?” or, “I thought we were friends…. 😦

De-friending someone, is almost as big of a deal as adding them.  So, when is it necessary to hit that “unfriend” button?  Here are seven friends you most certainly should delete.

 1. Inappropriate Friend- this is the friend who posts such scandalous things, that you are always worried to open your newsfeed with anyone around, for fear they’ll think you are perv. It’s usual pictures, sayings, and sometimes status updates of a sexual, racist, or just social unacceptable nature. I think there is a way to make sure his/her posts don’t end up in your newsfeed, but if it’s a constant thing, one starts to reevaluate that friendship. Are they a perv? A racist pig? Or just plain creepy, serial killer material? Could be de-friend worthy.

2a. TMI Friend- I don’t get this friend. Something personal and private is going on in your life and you’d like to rely on your friends for support. So why not inform all 700 of them at once? Surely, there will be an outpouring of love and support for you… or not. What do you say to someone who posts a status like, “thanks for leaving me alone and pregnant, jerk” (true story) or “just got over my bout with hemorrhoids!”?  Better to PM the 10 or so of your closest friends who truly care and will be inclined to do something for you. Remember, you have people who potentially could employ you, date you, be future family members, co workers etc on this thing. Careful what you tell the world! Too many of these posts and you end up in my de-friend pile. Lol, or on my list of people to creep when I’m bored and need a laugh…

Just got the broccoli out of my teeth- check it out!  www.freedigitalphotos.net

Just got the broccoli out of my teeth- check it out! http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

2b. Too Many Updates- going along the same vein with too much information is the person who updates their status too many times.

“Just got up, going to be a great day!” “Bagel or Toast: The great debate” *pic of me eating my toast* “Ugh, first period is dragging on forever” “I love my best friend, she’s so awesome!” “Has anyone noticed that Mr. Brown has a striking resemblance to Mr. Potato Head?” “Oh. My. Wow. Just got a wink from Sweater Vest Boy…. swoon! #Mrs.SweaterVest?” “Hey, anyone want to meet me for lunch? I’ll be sitting on the north side of the caf, you know the table beside the vending machine, the one with the Pespi, not the chips… “

And it’s only lunchtime! I often wonder if I’m going to get the play by play of every bowel movement as well. I mean, I am concern about your gastro-intestinal well being, but how could I ever keep up? By far the number one reason people de-friend is because of too many updates.

 3. Incessant Game Requests- I do have to admit this allowed me to discover the amazingness that is Candy Crush though… but a lot of people voted this as the biggest reason.

4. My life is so amazing friend- I’m all for positivity but people like this: “Just got back from an amazing vacation with my amazing family. Amazing pics to follow!” “My job is so amazing!” “My husband is so amazing! Look at the amazing roast he made today! And he did an amazing job cleaning up the house!” “My kids are amazing, they are so well behaved and amazing!” either make me feel horrible about myself, or wish something horrible would happen to him/her…. just to see if he/she would post about it. I’m all for cutting out the negativity in your life, but this over the top display of positivity, turns me into a Negative Nelly. Lol, I should start posting the opposite version of these status updates and see how people respond.

Going on that vein. Anyone who makes you feel negative, angry and upset needs to go. You don’t need that negativity/drama in your life!  

Say goodbye to those negative influences!

Say goodbye to those negative influences! http://www.freedigitalphotos.net

5. The Cryptic update friend/Needy friend- I’ve had to defriend a few over this. I’m not a counsellor or a shrink. Sure I love helping people out, but scary Emo updates and cry for help messages are beyond me and my scope of training.

6. The Preacher Friend- whether it’s politics, religion, heath debates, mommy issues- if you are posting very one sided articles and comments on the same thing over and over and over again, you’re getting the de-friend. I’m all for sharing your opinions, but in a way that creates dialogue and discussion, not judgment.  And, what better place for that then Facebook when you have so many diverse and interesting opinions and thoughts?

7a. No, “Hey how’s it going?” in over a year friend

7b. Old co-workers/people won’t talk to again/contacts you added for business at a time friends

7c. People you just aren’t friends with and don’t deserve to have that much insight into your life. Friendships grow over the years, and sometimes they come to a natural close. I’ve gotten rid of a few people who I just wasn’t friends with anymore and didn’t desire to be.

7d. The ex-boyfriend/friends/family of the ex- (including friend/families exes). Without getting ranty, Facebook is unnatural. In olden days, you would break up with someone and never talk to him or her again. You (or your friends) wouldn’t be able to keep tabs on them. It’s creepy to know what your best friend’s ex husband’s daily status is, or that your ex’s brother met up with your ex and his new girlfriend for dinner. It doesn’t allow anyone to move on at all. I even know friends who have divorced and have an amicable relationship with each other who chose not to be facebook friends, and I know that’s what’s allowed them to be good parents.  It’s called closure people.  And, as a friend/family member, it’s important that you value your family member/friend over your attachment to his/her ex and his/her family and friends.  That probably means doing a little de-friending.

I love Facebook; it’s allowed me to connect with so many people, find lost friends and make new friends. The ability for networking (as a teacher and musician) is amazing. I can post questions about anything and get such a variety of answers. I’ve been able to keep in touch with students, campers, and old friends from elementary school. The important thing to remember is this, “Social media is a relational tool, but it’s not a relational reality.”* Knowing that can keep your Facebook list in check, and keep you from being de-friended!

So, who have you de-friended?  Or, who has de-friended you?  Comment at the Speech Bubble at the top of the post!

 *http://proverbs31.org/devotions/devo/i-just-unfriended-my-friend/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+p31encouragement+%28P31+Encouragement+for+Today%29#sthash.9Jo173dH.dpuf