Do I Oooozze “Single-for-Life”?

I ooze Single.  I know I do.   And not just “single for right now”, but for a long time.   More than once, an old boyfriend has gotten back in touch with me after many years and, during our what-have-you-been-up-to conversation, they never ask “did you get married”?  They ask about my job, my family, if I have a boyfriend, but I don’t ever recall one thinking that I was now a Mrs.

Recently, I was talking to Dave, one of my exes, and we were teasing each other about various funny incidents that happened during our courtship (such a quaint word).  A number of guys I dated wanted to marry me; this guy didn’t.  I wondered what was wrong with him for not even making the attempt.  He told me one of the reasons.

We were talking about a mutual friend who was moving to a new city to marry her beau.  Dave and I thought it would have made more sense for the groom-to-be to move to her city (long story), but he wouldn’t so she was going there.  Dave mentioned that, if I had been in that situation, he knew that the move thing probably would have been a deal-breaker for me.  I hadn’t said it, but I was thinking the same thing.

He said he knew almost immediately upon meeting me that I would probably be single for a long time, if not forever.  He said that most women give an indication pretty quickly –verbally and/or non-verbally– that they would be willing to do what was necessary to make a marriage happen…to change their life in whatever way was necessary.  Not in an extreme way but in a practical way.  He said he always felt that I liked my life just as it was and probably wouldn’t be willing to change it much…a change, of course, which would be necessary if I were to marry.  Changes have to be made when you’re combining two lives, right?

I thought “Wow”.  Everything he said was true but I wasn’t aware of it until he gave voice to it.  I wasn’t conscious of it, but I am aware on a gut level that I often felt that marriage would be too much of a disruption to my life.  Hmmmm.

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21 Responses to Do I Oooozze “Single-for-Life”?

  1. eleanore says:

    @Trenia: My thoughts on being “content as a single woman” are the same as for “being content…period”. You have to figure out a way to be good with the life you have right now. Marriage and kids might happen for you…and they might not…but you don't want to miss out on life fretting about what might or might not happen in the future. Spend your time with people you enjoy, doing things that make you happy. A happy life may put you in a positive place for meeting the right guy. But, if somehow that doesn't happen, life is still pretty good because you made it that way.

  2. Trenia says:

    What do you think is the key to being content as a single woman and not panicking about not being married? I'm in my early 30's, but I never really thought about marriage much until my late 20's. I very much want to get married and have children, probably adoption, but I suspect it will happen for me later in life.

  3. eleanore says:

    @Stella: Thanks for all your comments and your support. I like being in a relationship, too. (I just never wanted to be married.) I do believe life should be good in-or-out of a relationship.

  4. Stella says:

    eleanore- it's fabulous the number of comments this elicited. The people who are in tune with you and those who are less so.
    What I love about your blog is that you know who you are, you know what makes you happy, and you live the life that you choose, and you make no apology for it. And you remind me that although I do want to be in a relationship, my single life is still pretty awesome.
    Stella x

  5. Catherine says:

    I hope it's all right that I'm commenting because I am married but didn't make that leap until I was 40. Like you, I was largely considered too independent for most men and was quite happy with my life as it was.

    Strong and independent are two great qualities so stay that way and screw anyone who thinks differently.

  6. MLMR says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. MLMR says:

    Once again, Eleanore, another interesting read!

    I followed the comments and found them interesting as well, and mostly on point, especially Michael Ann’s comment, Molly’s and Tanya H’s. Varying perspectives are the spice of life, learning to respect them is the crown of maturity. This is why I love to hear what others think about a specific issue and then try to take something from their point of view to help me learn and grow in my own thinking.

    Having said that, I take more of the Molly approach: I am fine if it doesn’t happen, but would be ecstatic if it does happen – marriage I mean. I don’t feel lonely as a single woman – I have a great life, great friends, family and an all around great career – but the company of a great and wonderful man and some lovely children will be more than welcome when the time comes. I know too many women who married to dull the loneliness of their lives only to find that marriage was no fix for something that run deeper than marriage could fix.

    Thanks for another great read, and looking forward to the next one.

  8. Tanya H says:

    Very interesting blog, and I can say it made me think too. I also liked reading the responses by others too, other perspectives are great when they are written the way they are here! I've had 1 friend say to me years ago when we were still in college, “Maybe your not meant to be married?”, because I complained about not having dates/boyfriends. Which I know upset me at the time, and I know I denied that possibility to her. Now I'm 39, and I admit I've been serially single for pretty much my entire life. I would like to share my life with with a man, but I'm not interested at all in having children, and I'm not willing to settle for just any guy either! I also get the I'm too independent, intimidating, etc….I keep getting tempted to just bluntly ask men what is it about me that seems to repell men like bug spray?

    I have had an ongoing issue with men where I believe they think I may be interested in them, so they just outright avoid me. You'd think we were in grade school or something, and I have cooties. I'm pretty shy and likely haven't even ever spoken to these men, just noticed them and found them interesting. I don't know….weird I guess…well they are! 🙂

  9. Molly says:

    I also thought your comments were interesting, so thanks.

    I love reading this blog, and I'm married. However I never saw marriage as something I HAD to do in order to be happy and/or successful. I was a happy person single, and thought that if the right guy came along: fine. If not, that would have been fine too.

  10. Michael Ann says:

    I'm so glad to add to the conversation 🙂 That was my hope and intention. We all have so much we can learn from each other. I, for one, really enjoy hearing other perspectives. Yes, I will always come read your blog, I really enjoy it!

  11. eleanore says:

    @T. Thelma: Thanks for the encouragement. I just found your blog and look forward to reading it!

  12. @Michael Ann, I love your honesty. Eleanore, you are right! Michael Ann gives us a different perspective. I have only had 2 long term relationships. I have been single for 15 years. For me, it is easy to be single because I love masculine energy more than I love having a man. Therefore, my male friends are enough for me. Eleanore, I can honestly say from one blogger to another that I look forward to reading your blog each time you post. Don't stop posting. There are more people reading your posts than you think. I see you as an older version of me. I just wish that I was back living in NYC.

  13. eleanore says:

    @Michael Ann: More than once, your comments have given me another perspective to consider…because we are different. Different perspectives are important because they teach us about others and they teach us about ourselves. I hope you'll continue to keep the conversation interesting

  14. Anonymous says:

    OMG after I left my husband 6 months ago the first week I was a basket case but the first time I went to the store and did not have to think about “fixing dinner” so someone else would eat it or if I wanted to watch my favorite program on the big screen tv in the living room on the “comfy” couch instead of the gameroom futon… I got way over that I have to have someone with me. I LOVE MY SINGLE LIFE NOW !!! Don't know if I will ever get married again (have been married twice both tried therapy and did not work therapist said in both cases you would be better off apart) 2nd ex and I are better friends than married however I just LUV, LUV my single life now. I do not answer to anyone but myself.

  15. Kay says:

    Too strong and independent…does that scare “weak and dependent” men??

  16. Michael Ann says:

    Eleanore, I have learned to much about myself from reading your blog. I think our brains are wired differently. Kinda like the married women who don't want children. They just never desired them. People like you (this includes men) who have just never seen themselves as a couple for life. That isn't me at all. I started reading your blog because for one, it is interesting and well-written, but also because my marriage hasn't been a great one and I thought this would be a good place to learn how to be single should that be my future. I realize now that I am not the same kind of person you and some of the other “spinsterlicious” babes here are. It seems that you guys are just wired to want to live alone. It is so foreign to me. I get lonely too easily. Yes, you can be lonely in a bad marriage too–that's not what I'm talking about. But I see living alone as sad, because it would make ME sad. Not that you guys are. This realization about just being “wired” differently just came to me when I read the last two posts. Hearing how you've always felt this way etc… I have always dreamed of being married and the thing I wanted most in life was to be a mom. I just find it fascinating how different we all are! And it's perfectly ok. Just like anything else. Different career choices, different talents, different dreams. This is just all part of that i think.

  17. Anonymous says:

    I can so see myself in this post. I'm 47 and it would take an extremely special man for me to even consider giving up my single life. I love being able to buy things without consulting someone else first and the same goes for what I want to eat for dinner, where I want to travel etc…, etc…

  18. Rhona says:

    That post I think sums me up also. Right now, I am experiencing living single (outside of my parents home) and LOVE IT! I cannot and do not ever, ever, ever want to fit a man in my home. I guess (and that is a huge guess) I would date but overall, who cares? I am great the way things are. I am missing nothing in life and know that if I started I were to get married, I would be bitter and pissed that HE was making life difficult.

  19. MilanoGirl says:

    I don't know what that means–I've never understood those comments. It reminds me of the concept of the guy wanting to be needed by the girl, but not have the girl be needy. Huh? Men are from Mars!

  20. Anonymous says:

    Oh my…I think I could have written that post myself. Twenty years single after a 17 year marriage makes people think there's something wrong with you. Men have told me I'm too strong and independent. What the hell does that mean??

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