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Singdom doth not equate to the end of life as we know it

But I like the way Baldwin frames being alone as a choice, one that calls to us not because we so love isolation and hate feelings, but because our relationship status is just one of many things we have to juggle. She’s not saying a partner wouldn’t be nice (or threatening to plunge cutlery into her eye)—although certainly some women, like some men, revel in total amatory freedom. But singlenesscan be voluntary, can be fulfilling, can be the best choice on the table at the moment, even if it’s not always a fountain of bliss. – Article from Daily Life

Singledom. The defect of relationship statuses for women it seems. Men could be bachelors for the rest of their lives and not get hit with any stigma in regards to their relationship status.

I know it’s the case for me. Especially coming from a European family. I’m 35. Don’t have children by choice, don’t have a partner by choice and quite content living in shared housing in an inner city boho chic suburb with a cat.

I don’t see a damn thing wrong with this picture. My mother, on the other hand, sees everything wrong.

I didn’t talk to my mother for 4 years after I moved out of home. Because she literally said that if I left home I was dead to her. So I proceeded to make sure that I could make this happen to the best of my ability. You see, it’s unheard of in our culture for a girl to move out of home without being married first. It’s just not how it’s done, cherie.

I moved out. Not only did I move out, I moved out and in with a man. Who I wasn’t married to. You can see where her angst came from.

We sorted out stuff out not long after my sister asked me to please stop being so distant. But my mother has since learnt to not treat me like she would a child. Although lately she’s been telling me to find a sperm bank and get pregnant. She’s stopped short of sending me their contact numbers with an appointment time. I don’t know why, my sister just had a baby, why must I have one too?

I remember when I was 16 and telling my mother that I would never get married or have children. She shoo’d me away saying that I’d change my mind. I sit here at 35 and think that I knew my mind at 16. Not much has changed.

Do I want to find someone to spend my life with? Sure. Do we have to get married? No. Does this have to result in children? No, actually I’d prefer it didn’t. However if I am with someone who is willing to raise said clingy infant then I might be tempted to change my mind. Tempted being a very very big if however.

I enjoy my life. I love that I can go for a bike ride on a Saturday morning to the cafe around the corner for a coffee and toast with vegemite on it. I love that I can sit at home in my pj’s and nest. I love that I can spend a Sunday not getting out of my nightie and playing computer games. Or that I can go drinking on a Friday night with my friends at the pub up the road and roll home. Or spend an afternoon in the park with other people’s dogs coming over for pats as I read my book. Or swimming with my wifey. Or x-stitching with my bestie on the couch watching supernatural and coo’ing over how I’d have Dean’s babies with a bottle of white. You get the drift here.

What do I miss? I miss being intimate with someone. I miss wrapping myself around someone and breathing in their scent and smiling. I miss the little things about sharing your life with someone. I miss just having someone around that doesn’t necessarily need me to keep them entertained and is happy for me to go do my thing because that’s me grounding myself. Yet I don’t think my life is sub-par because I don’t have this right now.

I love my life. I love being single, I love the self discovery and epiphanies that I get from daily challenges to think outside the box. To be the woman who society deems is “ineligible” for love because I’m getting older, I’ve never been married and I refuse to reproduce.

I never got married because I haven’t met anyone who made me think happily ever after thoughts. I’ve never been swept off my feet and carried away by “love”. I’ve gone into relationships thinking that I really enjoy this person and I want to spend time with them. It’s never been “I’ll die without you in my life”.

Actually no.. no thanks, I don’t think I will

So here’s a big raspberry to a society who thinks that because I haven’t followed the traditional route then somehow my life is somehow lacking (it’s not).

28 Comments

    • Why thank you kind sir 🙂

      I think there’s a vast majority of people that might relate to it. It’s scary how we’ve all been brainwashed to think that we’re not worthy if we don’t get married and have children though. I think that’s what I find so offending. Is that is what the pinnacle of life is to many many people. Children + marriage = successful life.

      In my world that sounds like hell.

      • Hear you loud and clear. And as someone who thought he wanted the married with children life (I’m now divorced), I can safely say that it’s not the be all and end all…

        Though kind of like you, I do feel that that could change if I met the right person. Anyway, enough with the overshare. Carry on.

        • Ahh I like the over-share! It’s like getting the juicy bits of a hard shell crab. Give me your gooshy bits!

          Well then I think you’ve got a bit more insight into the whole marriage thing. I don’t think that a wife, a white picket fence and 2.5 kids is for everyone. And it’s sad that we seem to think that this “thing” is what we have to achieve to be “happy”.

          So here’s to hoping we both meet that elusive someone that might change our minds. For now however, you should totes come and help me finish off all the tequila in Sydney. It’s a mission.

          • Ha. I’d love to. Though I’m confused as hell now?

            I gathered that you were Australian (or at least, I’m hoping you are otherwise that would be bloody embarrassing) but from your recent posts, I thought you were in the US at the moment..? Help!

          • Oh, nothing quite a fun as confusing people, I swear 😀 Warm fuzzies.

            Right, here’s the low down – Yes I’m Australian (you don’t have to be embarrassed yet) – no I’m not quite in the States, I’m taking a trip down memory lane from my previous road trip as I go along. I’m due back in the States in February/March for my birthday/Mardi Gras. What can I say? I’m a bit in love with America. Although I do miss shopping in Camden just as much mind you. Why are there no teleport pads yet?

          • Ah I see… Thanks for clearing it all up for me. Now everything makes sense.

            Well that’s a bit of a bummer as I am actually hoping to be in Sydney around March. We could have had an international blog beer…

          • Get to Sydney after the 16th March and I’ll buy the first round 😛

          • I take it you’ll have left for the States by then, right? Or are you being serious? In which case, sorry. I really can’t tell.

          • Hah, I’m not that mean! No I’ll be home from the 16th March. So open to beer’s after this point. Actually I’ll probably need quite a few to get over the heart break of actually being back in Sydney.

          • Aha. It all makes sense now. Forgive me, I thought that you would be in the US for an extended period of time.

            Well I haven’t actually booked my flights yet but that was around the time that I was thinking of getting there, possibly earlier.

            Ha. Bring on the beers!

          • Ahh well there you go then!! If you get in earlier you can totally get to the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras that’s on the first weekend in March. Queer’s ftw. It’s an awesome night =)

            But you should totally look me up for that beer. I’ll even show you round some sights in Sydney, because I’m nice like that!

            **I wish I could stay in the states for an extended period of time, however work commitments and a needy cat means that I need to come home 😀

  1. There is not a thing wrong with being single. I was pretty set in my singledom until I met my boyfriend. I say that, because I feel like that’s the attitude I would fall back on if we ever broke up. I don’t like the idea of searching for “the one.” I’m cool on my own if that’s where life takes me.

    And I am not crazy about kids (but I would related if I were married and they guy really wanted them. But he better learn to change a diaper. And no more than two). I get comments all the time about marriage and kids. I hadn’t been dating my current boyfriend for more than six months when people first started if we were getting married. I don’t understand why people need to put that kind of pressure on others. How about you just let me live my life the way I want to?

    • I don’t think there is a “the one” – I think through life we meet people who compliment and give us what we need in that time by loving and sharing themselves with us and they move on and so do we. To new people, new experiences. I don’t know that I think “the one” exists.

      Well see that’s the thing. I don’t see why I have to have children when I am not really maternal in any way. I read an article a while ago about a woman who had 2 kids because her husband really wanted them and how she felt really coldly towards them because she resented him for making her and resented them for ruining her life.

      I never want to be that woman.

  2. I’m glad you’re happy with your life, that’s ALL that matters! I’ve been single way more than I’ve been in relationships and it’s definitely a mode of living in which an independent person can thrive. Do you mind my asking what your culture is, that you are expected to stay within your parents’ home until you’re married? I have Indian and Vietnamese friends whose families are very similar… it’s interesting to learn more about. And I love that your Mom went from that to telling you to go it alone via a sperm bank, ha! All that matters is that you feel you are living life as you have chosen to do so.

    • I’m kinda glad too =)

      I spent a lot of my life in relationships. As in actually in them and not out of them. So it’s nice to be able to be happy with being single, I thought maybe I was in relationships because that was what was expected of me, but it seems like I’m rather happy also being on my own.

      My family background is Turkish. Although I do have to say that I really don’t fit the mould of a good Turkish woman. Unless you count my crying at baby animals a lot. Then yes, I’m definitely like the rest of them!

      My poor mother has come a long way it seems from my youth, and hers. I think because I’m the eldest I was her learning curve. Which is great for my sister who is younger, but it just wasn’t so fun for me and every so often mum and I go back to having a rather strained relationship because as much as I’ve forgiven her for being such a bitch to me, she’s never really addressed it and it’s one of those things that sits in the background you know? She’s complained to my sister that I never confide in her and I feel bad. That I’ve somehow cut her out of my life but I don’t need her for that role. Then there’s the whole European guilt that I should be living with my mother and looking after her in her old age thing since my sister is married and just starting a family. It’s all really rather messy!

      But her telling me about these things called sperm banks and not having to wait for a man to get pregnant was gold. I was sitting there with my jaw hanging open and wondering what alien had invaded my mother’s brain. I did ask her if she hit her head on anything recently.

      • I imagine it must be super tough to be anyone’s first/experiment child. I was the last of five, but the only girl so things were pretty strict… but my Mom has calmed down a lot since then. Still, I can relate to the experience of a strained relationship with unacknowledged things haunting the background :-/
        That’s very interesting that your family is Turkish! I spent some time in Istanbul a few years ago… At the risk of sounding absolutely culturally insensitive, I must say that it appeared to be difficult to be a woman there. But my friend– who had spent more time there than me– gave me several insights that were really interesting…
        I sometimes worry about the whole “taking care of my aging mother” thing… how stressful! I barely take care of myself and my dog!

        • Ahh well you’d understand the whole strict business too I would imagine! What is your family background if you don’t mind my asking?

          Yeah, I think there’s a lot of things we forgive them for because we have to, but it doesn’t mean that we aren’t always waiting for them to acknowledge that they might have screwed up too and apologise. As much as I know I will probably never get that, it’s this stupid hope that refuses to budge.

          Istanbul is very pretty, so many people, but pretty. I think, in a way, that life in Turkey is actually a lot easier for women living there than here. Or anywhere else across the world. I think I’ve come to the conclusion that all those people that migrated in the early 60’s and 70’s have carried across with them the cultural beliefs of their time and viewpoints. Whereas the people that have stayed in the country seem to have developed and moved with the times more than the ones out here. I think it’s because they are all so insular. In so much as that they haven’t really integrated into the Australian way of life, they are still very Turkish in their outlooks, even if they live in another country. It’s an us and them mentality that I don’t think they can get over.

          But during all this, I believe that everyone back in Turkey has actually moved forward in their thinking styles. Culturally, things have shifted there. Granted with the government at the moment it might be shifting back, but only time will tell with that.

          The whole taking care of mum thing? I hear you on that! I have issues looking after myself, my cat always gets the best treatment and food! I miss out sometimes so he doesn’t. But it does make me freak out a bit and hyperventilate into my pillow every so often.

          • Haha that is what pillows are for! Well… and other things.. bahahaha. Sorry…
            Your insights on Turkey are very VERY interesting, thank you so much for explaining all of that! My family background is boring– American, conservative, evangelical, father is a closet homosexual and a hypocrite, blah blah blah 😉 We were raised to be perfect.

          • hahahaha it’s fine and it’s so true, pillows are an all use item 😉

            Not a problem, happy to explain my view on how I think things are…

            It’s never boring =) Families are weird creatures. They seriously are!

            Oh yes, I was raised to be perfect too. Which is why I got my first piercing when I was 18. And my first tattoo when I was 21!

  3. I don’t know how you found my blog but I’m so glad you did! You are a deliciously interesting creature! Love your blog name, btw. I admire your take on the single life (so true how men are admired for it and women are thought to be spinsters) and I too think it is absolutely the “right” way for many people. I think whatever makes you happy is the right way. Period. The whole “wife, picket fence, 2.5 kids” ideal was made up long ago and really no longer applies as far as I’m concerned. I think people follow it because it’s almost like tradition more than anything. it’s what everyone else does, what their parents did, etc. “Expectation” is a huge word here. “Roles” for women is another. Good for you for going against the grain and standing up for your beliefs. Sure, they may change someday, but they’ll change on your terms, on your time table. IF they change at all. You ROCK. (I read your discussion with Aussa. very interesting about your Turkish heritage.)

    • I can’t remember either to be honest Beth but I’m glad I did. I enjoyed reading your blog and thank you 🙂

      I also think whatever makes you happy is the right way too, unfortunately we live in a world where your own happiness doesn’t seem to come first because there’s always someone else that you need/have to care for. So whatever little bit of “self” happiness I can take, I grab!

      The expectation is ridiculous. I was having a conversation with someone on G+ the other day about something similar. There was a thank you post to people who chose not to reproduce and someone spewed out some drivel about how people who refused to have children were selfish and egocentric.

      I often wonder if those that do choose to have kids look around and see the kids that don’t have it so easy? I could never bring a child into this world unless I felt that I could look after it, financially, emotionally… and I often wonder who is the selfish one for just having a child because they could and that child, more often than not, going lacking. Whether that’s in attention, affection, education, interaction… etc. My sister just had her first, she wants to have number 2 soon and then adopt 1 or 2. I love her & her husband for this. I really do.

      And thank you, dearly 🙂 I think I’m just another average girl trying to figure out this thing we call life and keep my head above water most times!

  4. YES!!! You and I need to high 5, with our butts. I feel that would be totally ok and appropriate right now 😛 Hahaha love it sharn, keep being you! Xo

    • Hahahaha I could so do the high five with butts! I would giggle like mad through it though 😉

      Thank you btw xox

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