"Who wants to be 70 and alone?", a verse from Drake's song "From Time", plays over and over in my head. After recently celebrating my 36th birthday, the realization that I'm one year closer to 40 has set in and I keep thinking, "Who wants to be 40 and alone? Not me!"
I know there is nothing wrong with being 40 and single, but it's just not where I want my life to be in four years and here's why:
1. The dating pool sucks.
Let's be real. The dating pool isn't that great once you're in your mid-30s. Most of the good men are already taken, remarried or gay. It's hard to find a man who doesn't come with baggage, who has no kids or has never been married. None of those things are bad, I just find it MUCH easier to date someone without those things.
2. I don't want to be a Bitter Betty.
This should probably be my #1 reason. Bitter Betties are what sparked me to write about this topic because I know quite a few women over 40 who are bitter. Bitter about the state of their life/career. Bitter about being single. Bitter about being alone. Bitter about being childless. And sure being married and having children or a great career doesn't guarantee happiness. But if you feel a void in your life from not having those things then it can lead to bitterness. I feel the void now, but I also think I have hope. Because I haven't reached 40 yet. I see the stigma that is associated with women who are 40+, childless and never been married.
3. Negativity permeates.
So again, I know it's not all women over 40, but a large portion of the single ones that I know personally are negative about life and the energy around them breathes this negativity. They aren't happy and wish they had a husband or someone to share their lives with. They're pessimistic about everything and have a problem for every solution.
4. I don't have the gift of singlessness.
1 Corinthians 7:7 speaks of singleness as a gift from God. Mmmm let's just say I don't have that gift. I'm a lover. I need to love and be loved. A.s.a.p.
I personally experienced depression last year during my extended unemployment. I feel like once you have a bout with depression, it's always in the back of your head. And sometimes the smallest things can make you slip back into that mindset. Not having someone to share my life with and not having a teammate by the time I'm 40, could easily lead me into depression again. And I definitely don't want to go back there.
6. Loneliness is real. Sometimes painful.
And yes I know being married and lonely is worse than being single and lonely, but this post is from a single woman's view. 'kay!
7. Getting pregnant once you are over 35 is risky.
I know there are numerous examples of women who have had successful pregnancies over the age of 35. But you'd be foolish to think that risks don't come with that. I'd rather make the choice not to have children on my own, than be forced to make that decision because of my age.
8. All your friends are married with kids.
All of my best friends are parents. Some juggle their schedules better than others. But sometimes they are so busy being parents, that they have no time for anything else. Not to mention their lives revolve around kid parties, play dates and parent/teacher conferences.
10. Being a cat lady does NOT seem cool.
I don't want a cat to be the one thing that looks forward to me coming home. I actually have cat-lady friends and it's sad. The cats are their life. Their babies. #TeamNoCats
11. I want to have a life partner/best friend.
I want someone who is in my corner, my biggest cheerleader, the first person I want to tell great news and the person I look to for comfort when I have bad news. My parents show a great example of this. Their love and friendship is something to attain.
12. I love to cuddle.
Sure I could cuddle anyone, but I want a cuddle life partner. LOL I want to rush home and jump into my man's arms. I'm an affectionate person and I want to be able to share that with someone. Sooner rather than later of course.
13. Comparison is real. Facebook timelines are evil.
It's easy to go on Facebook and see status updates of friends getting engaged, married, having babies or traveling the world with their mate. And it becomes hard to NOT compare your life to how you see others living.
14. I love presents. But always buying presents to celebrate couplehood gets old.
Where's the parties to celebrate singlehood? Can I get a Kitchen Aid mixer? Seriously, why don't we have single-women showers, where a woman is celebrated just for being her? And she gets showered with love and gifts for the day. Did I mention I love gifts?
15. My Twenty-Year High School Reunion.
My 20-year high school reunion will be in two years. (Eeek!) For my 10-year reunion, I went with my two best friends, even though they were both dating people at the time. But now they are married with kids. And a good majority of my other classmates are married with kids. I do not want look like the loner who couldn't find a mate/date by showing up solo. Also, while everyone is sharing pictures and stories about their kids, what will I be doing? I'm sure I'd survive the high school reunion solo because I have great friends, but I want to be able to ooh and ahh over the kid photos and share in the storytelling about that one time my husband annoyed me so much or the time my child peed all over me...You get the gist.
I realize that some of these reasons can be argued away. You can avoid being lonely by staying busy. I do that easily between two jobs, school, starting a business and spiritual worship, etc. But what happens when I go to lay my head down at night-time? Or when I cooking dinner and I have to eat alone? Negativity is a state of mind, but it can be hard to change when you feel like something is missing in your life. I'm grateful for all that I have, but keeping all negativity away is easier said than done, especially when you are bombarded with Facebook timelines of happy babies and couples or ads on TV for family vacations. And even though I know believing everything you see on social media is foolish because people only post what they want you to see, we're only human. We see what we see and take that at face value sometimes. We're blinded by the happy images, unable to realize that people only post what they want us to see. Their lives might appear great or their relationship amazing, but they could be unhappy.
The struggle is real and my reasons for not wanting to be 40 and single are just that. MY own, personal reasons. And if for some reason I am still single and childless in four years, then I will try my hardest not to be a negative, bitter, cat-lady, as long as you don't hold it against me.