Why I’d rather be single than settle

Today our social media newsfeeds will be full of sickening, ‘Boy done good’ statuses and pictures of flowers, chocolates, cuddly toys and perhaps even more extravagant gifts filtered to within an inch of their lives to celebrate the holiday for lovers – St Valentines Day.

Cold. Like my heart.  Cold. Like my heart.

But what goes on behind the pictures really? I remember back to a couple of Christmases ago when I was with my ex boyfriend. I posted a photo of a Virgin Atlantic flight ticket that had been bought for me (a trip to New York) and it elicited plenty of, ‘lucky girl’ responses. Except I wasn’t all that lucky. The giver of the holiday had been caught cheating on me one month prior.

Today, as I wandered listlessly around Zara, craving black ankle boots and leather jackets, I spotted a ridiculously good looking couple. They joined the queue behind me and I automatically spotted a small Mulberry carrier bag in the guy’s hand. My immediate thought was, ‘lucky cow, he’s bought her something expensive for Valentines and FML what am I going to get?!’ But the more I watched them with sheer envy on my face, the more I realised that for an entire 15 minutes of queue waiting, they hadn’t spoken a single word to each other. Nope, muscly dream boyfriend had been on his phone the entire time.

It made me take a minute to think. Am I a little bit gutted to be waking up alone on Valentine’s Day? Yes. I like being with someone, having company and feeling loved up but would I be even more gutted to be spending Valentines Day with a total knob – even more yes.

The pictures and presents never represent what truly goes on in a relationship. Obviously we are nobody to judge what anyone else does but the more I look around, at friends, at colleagues, even at strangers, the more I see people settling for less than they deserve.

Take my friend Max (we’ll call him that), on a recent text chat he told me how he was feeling a bit miserable. After a bit of probing as to why, he revealed he wasn’t having sex with his long term girlfriend any more because she said she didn’t find him attractive. Now you would hope that would be the end of a relationship. Once the flame has been put out, surely it’s time for it to be put to bed? But not Max and his girlfriend. When I asked why they were staying together he told me he loved her and wanted to be with her. Of course I understand the heart wants what it wants but my brain felt for Max, settling for a relationship that wasn’t fulfilling.

Let’s look at another friend, we’ll call her Lily. Lily has been seeing someone for 2 months, I say ‘seeing’ but I mean going to his house because he never wants to go out. The guy spends money on weekends of boozing with mates but never has enough to take her out to a restaurant or even to go halves on a night out. He will sometimes not text her for days and he’s still on all of the dating apps. When I’m done banging my head against the wall for the 27374th time and I ask Lily why she’s putting up with that behaviour, her answer is always, ‘l like him, I want to see where it goes.’  She then checks her phone to see when he was last online because she hasn’t heard from him.

We all know someone like Max or Lily. Someone who’s in a relationship purely because they’re too scared not to be in one. To lots of people, being single, especially as you inch ever closer to 30, is something to be looked down on. ‘What makes you so undesirable that you can’t find someone?’ is the thought that often goes through people’s minds.

Is being single all that scary though? Scarier than being with someone who treats you like shit, who won’t commit o who doesn’t want to have sex with you? I’m not so sure.

I’ve been single for nearly 4 months now. I jumped straight onto the dating bandwagon after my previous relationship, and to be honest, I’ve hardly looked back. Do I get lonely? Of course. Do I wish I had someone who was about to knock on my door with a bottle of perfume and/or gin? Absofuckinglutely. However, do I wish to settle for someone who’s not right for me just because being single is sometimes a bit shit? No way.

My point, this February the 14th, is that we should stop seeing being single as something of a disadvantage. Ok we might not be waking up to someone cooking us VDay pancakes but we’re also not waking up, looking into the face of someone who makes us miserable.

Stay safe out there today gang and if you’re one of the lucky ones, in a relationship that is truly and wholly fulfilling, grab that person a little bit tighter today, maybe even give them a cheeky bum squeeze of appreciation.

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  1. Jodie
    February 14, 2016 / 11:03 am

    Oh I absolutely loved this! I cannot agree more – you never know whats behind the pictures. I know one girl on social media who used to post amazing photos of her life and relationship, until it came out that he’d been abusing her physically and emotionally. Like you have said – it is SO much better to be single rather than be with a complete twat.

    Happy Valentine’s Day!

    Jodie @ <A HREF="http://www.jodetopia.com/">Jodetopia</A&gt; x

  2. Saskia
    February 14, 2016 / 11:46 am

    Yes I’ve had my fair share of miserable relationships in the past so I definitely understand what you mean. It’s funny that now I’m in a genuinely happy relationship, I feel no need for Valentines celebrations or fancy gifts.

    Saskia / girlinbrogues.com

  3. Kate Mitchell
    February 14, 2016 / 12:40 pm

    My ex hubby always made a fuss and sent me huge bunches of flowers but it turned out he also cheated on me at least 3 times, so I agree things are not always what they seem. My new husband never buys me flowers but I know 100% he loves me and would much rather that then a fake relationship!! great post xoxo


  4. Victoria Nightingale
    February 14, 2016 / 12:45 pm

    We actually wrote about really similar things today, because this is exactly what I was thinking today. Even though perhaps I wish I was in a relationship, I don’t mind because I’d much rather be alone than with the wrong person x


  5. Victoria Nightingale
    February 14, 2016 / 12:45 pm

    We actually wrote about really similar things today, because this is exactly what I was thinking today. Even though perhaps I wish I was in a relationship, I don’t mind because I’d much rather be alone than with the wrong person x


  6. Lola andBehold
    February 14, 2016 / 2:46 pm

    I couldn’t agree with you more my love – I’m glad to be single again and only have to worry about ME. I don’t want to compromise anymore, I want to be truly happy. And if that means being alone and occasionally feeling lonely, then so be it. Happy valentine’s day you absolute babe. x

  7. Elainea
    February 14, 2016 / 3:19 pm

    You’re totally right — seeing it as a disadvantage is such a crazy way to look at it! Thanks for sharing such insightful thoughts!

    <a href="http://toastthegirlalmighty.com">toast the girl almighty</a>

  8. J e s s i c a
    February 14, 2016 / 4:26 pm

    Firstly, the caption under the picture made me laugh more then it should of.
    You’re totally right about what people post on social media sites verses what actually goes on in relationships. I’m sorry the New York boy has cheated on you. Totally his loss as you’re such a catch!

  9. ninegrandstudent
    February 14, 2016 / 8:29 pm

    Even as someone in a long-term, committed relationship I highly agree with this. I can’t imagine settling for anything less at all – never once in six years have I thought that I could do better. Yes, there’s cross words, occasional irritation, but there’s no point staying in an unhappy relationship just because! x

    <a href="http://ninegrandstudent.co.uk">NINEGRANDSTUDENT: A Student Lifestyle Blog</a>

  10. SparklesofLight Blog
    February 14, 2016 / 8:49 pm

    I’m so not into Valentine’s Day, I feel like it has become a massive exercise in ‘Keeping up with the Jones’ ‘ and so I’ve banned it for the last few years (from my house that is, not society) but I totally agree how true this is, I see so many people settling for second best or just not good enough and it makes me sad.
    I always think you should look back to 6-7 year old you, would she be impressed with the fella on your arm or would she be horrified that he’s actually not your prince but you’ve accidentally landed Jafar… This always helps me keep things in perspective.

    Rosy | <a href=http://www.sparklesoflight76.blogspot.co.uk>Sparkles of Light Blog</a>

  11. Chloe Rhys-Jones
    February 16, 2016 / 10:37 am

    LOVE this Vix. I’m in a relationship but I have been in previous relationships where I haven’t been myself or it’s not been right & I stayed because I knew no different. This year I didn’t wake up to flowers, breakfast in bed, presents etc & you know what I didn’t give a flying f* because I didn’t ‘need’ or ‘want’ someone to feel they had to buy me something to show me their love.

    One day your ‘perfect’ man will come along until then kiss as many frogs as you want because it’s your life & you can do what the hell you want!!!


  12. Yasmin
    February 16, 2016 / 11:19 am

    I love how honest and thought provoking your posts are!! ‘Lily’ was definitely me a few months ago, except I was ‘seeing’ a guy for almost a year and half who didn’t want to commit and didn’t text me for days if he had better things to do but expected me to be there whenever he wanted me. I stayed with him as I always hoped and told myself it would get better but it never did and I was so scared of breaking up and being lonely. We broke up in December and yes I don’t have anyone to wake up with and spend lazy evenings with but I’m so much happier and confident than I’ve been for such a long time. Though I’m definitely not quite enjoying single tinder life as much as you are….why are all the super likers so creepy??

  13. Erin Oxnam
    February 18, 2016 / 5:24 am

    Oh my goodness. I so relate to this. I wrote a blog post a couple of years ago called "Your standards are too high" – that was something one of my friends said to me in regards to my standards for dating someone, which to me are such basic things. I just refuse to compromise or lower my standards for the sake of not being single.

    Erin | beingerin.com