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What People Don’t Tell You about Being Single

Are you the type of person who relies on manuals – For electronics? For garden tools? For Life?  Or, do you live dangerously by taking your chances with the new hair straightener/curler, or whatever that gadget was meant to do?
Having spent a lovely weekend in Weligama with a wedded duo, I’ve come to realize that marriage is in reality, quite easy to do. It’s just going through motions of breakfast, lunch, and dinner with constant human interaction sprinkled with little sparks of irritability and borderline love. It was quite amusing, really.

Today, I have made it my mission to make you understand that as simple single life may appear to be on the surface, it’s a
tangle of thoughts of fries vs. wedges, jeans vs. sweat pants, and sleeping in more or not. It’s a tough life, I assure you.
I’ve come to think of myself as an expert in Single Life (self-proclaimed, obvs) who can negotiate any qualm or worry in the subject concerned; I’ve thought I’d share some of my experiences where your perception of single life may be different to reality.

       1.)     Thought-Bounce:
Whoever thought that making decisions solely depending on your wisdom and experience (and hunger) was easy, couldn’t be further from the truth. You rely on your instincts ALONE. Some might think that this is easier rather than having to consult a better half – but work-related issues, challenges, etc. are so managed so much better when you have someone to bounce these ideas across.

2.)     Menu-Polization:
A fortnight ago, I was stuck mid-way between Bambalapitiya and Colpetty trying to decide lunch was from KFC or McDonalds (KFC won, eventually). If you thought asking your partner/spouse for preferences for a meal was tough, try catering to your insatiable desire for éclairs and tiramisu together. If you are in a pair, you compromise. Whoever prefers a peaceful ride back home eventually gives into the other.

3.)     Convo-Corner:
If you ask anyone, they would imagine that a single girl’s sole purpose in life is to socialize, think again. You are on every imaginable social media platform with your phone ping-ing every few seconds with new alerts, but you rarely find that one person to open up to. It’s a constant battle between quantity and quality. One of the earliest things I discovered about being single is that it’s not always what means the eye, and I wish I had forewarning.

4.)     WAR-drobe:
I almost snort at the memory of a few ‘smug married’ types complaining on how hard it is to match each other’s outfits. 
At least you have someone to opine with, and if you are under/over-dressed, you have someone else who is in the same boat as you. 
Imagine walking into a party to find 50+ people in shorts and you are in a cocktail gown with your hair and make-up amounting to you Rs. 5000. 
Mirrors lie; so, having your partner to compliment/berate you on your never-ending supply of black clothes is far better than standing in front of a mirror and having three rounds of changing clothes and ending up in the first. 

Yes, I believe you understand my plight now. 

5.)     Smiley-Wiley:
Smiling and making eye contact or generally being friendly is considered slutty. 
I don’t know how I missed this in my ‘Girls’ Guide to surviving post-pubertal Life’, but apparently, it’s a thing. 

6.)     Why, Oh, Why: 
       When you’re single, you wish you can employ a coach who can tell you what to say when inane people ask you
'Why’, ‘How’, and ‘If’ you’re sure you’re single. You really don’t know how you share the same ancestors as them, I mean, why?This is one of these things that you don’t have sufficient warning for. There should be a manual for this. People must be warned.

7.)     Career choices:
You might think that society at large must applaud your hard work and contribution to the economy. Nope, they ask you if you derive any satisfaction in what you do. I clarify that the bags under my eyes are a result of binge-watching TV series and not me crying at the things I can afford.

       8.)     Prognosis El Parenal Units:
There’s really nothing that can train your parents on how to deal with incessant questions from relatives, snooty neighbours, their so-called successful contemporaries on why their 30 year old daughter is still single. I wish it were easier on them and you knew how to prepare them for this.

9.)     My Way or the Highway:
One of thing you don’t expect is the independence that comes with solitude. You make all your decisions and you stick to them. 
Somewhere down the line when you eventually meet someone you want to be with, you cannot adapt. You quote lyrics of ‘Lemonade’ to him in your fights. This, unfortunately, is irreversible and this ‘stubborn streak’ tends to stick with you and integrates into your personality.

10.)  La…La… Love:
Just like the point above, it becomes more difficult to fall in love when you’ve learned to be on your own for a while. You tend to not to want a relationship thereafter, and it’s a battle for the person who seeks to love you to convince you that he/she is worth it.

Here is me telling you what people don’t tell you about being single. There’s so much being single doesn’t prepare you for – all the manuals will not help you, and you wish someone could warn you of these unwarranted challenges. The list goes on, and maybe you’ve experienced some yourself.
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[All images are courtesy of Google]


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