So What’s Wrong With Being Single?

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After browsing a lot of old articles in GRP, I stumbled upon one of Ms. Natividad’s earlier articles about the so-called bitterness of failed relationships. Strangely enough, it reminded me of one of my earlier articles as well about the typical Pinoy’s obsession with romance and love stories as well as one my more recent one that details the problem with Pinoy romantic-comedies or “rom-coms”. Now that I have time to think about it, I must say that our obsession with finding a significant other is certainly just another of the many cultural issues that continue to cripple us as a nation.

Now, before I go on, I wish to tell those reading this, especially the few couples or part of couples who enjoy reading our work that there’s nothing wrong with being in love. There is also nothing wrong with looking for or finding someone in life to love either. However, it certainly becomes a problem when it’s the only thing on TV in the form of various teleseryes and is probably the most widely sold form of literature in the country. It becomes a problem when romance and love are the only things a lot of us think about even though there are more pressing things to address first like establishing a promising career or simply providing the necessities of one’s family.

Look, over the years, it seems that stuff like AlDub, Pastillas Girl, our various teleseryes, music and pocket books have convinced us that if you’re a single person, then your life must really suck. They shove in our faces and down our throats concepts like “no girlfriend/boyfriend, no life” and seem to imply that finding a significant other is the single, most important thing in life as almost all “good endings” in various films end this way. Well, I’m going to call bullshit on all of that. Again, you’re welcome to accuse me of being bitter, however some things need to be said on the subject of singlehood to dispel the fears that surround it.

Ready?

toilet_issuesYou Can Still Be Happy Even If You’re Single

Much of our media seems to insist that unless you can find a significant other, then your life is very sad. What they don’t mention however is that you can still find happiness even if you’re single. That’s right, as long as you find love in what you do, you can still be happy even if you have no significant other.

Do you enjoy art? Then by all means, put your efforts into making a masterpiece! Do you enjoy photography? Then go and capture wonderful memories for people? Do you enjoy singing or playing music? Then put your passion in every note and express yourself! Do you enjoy dancing? Then put your emotions into every motion you make and give life to every step! Do you enjoy eating shards of broken glass? Then I suggest you find both a doctor to check out your digestive system and a good psychotherapist to understand what’s wrong with you…

Anyway, the point is, you don’t really need a significant other to be happy. What truly matters is you find happiness in what you do and can share that happiness with others.

You Can Still Be Successful Even If You’re Single

salaryman_japanGoing hand in hand with the above, if you put love in what you do, then you’re bound to excel in it. Remember, having a significant other isn’t a requirement to success after all. Success, after all, comes from a personal effort.

If anything, having someone with you when you struggle to make it to the top is only a bonus. Or, from another point of view, it might even be a handicap. Whatever the case, having a significant other has little to do with one’s success in life.

Of course, there’s nothing really wrong with having a spouse or partner as you work to make something of yourself. However, do note that the best they can do is simply to inspire you to work harder for the future. Striving for success is something that you must find within yourself.

Now that we’re on the subject, let me tell you a little secret that our media seems to be trying to hide from you: A good relationship usually comes once you find a successful career and NOT the other way around…

You Can Still Love Even If You’re Single

single_lifeAnother big problem is that our media all too often puts too much emphasis on romantic love. It rarely focuses on things like familial and platonic love. When it does, they are all too often relegated to background events and sometimes even conflicts with the protagonist’s goals, especially when they are forced to choose between the advice of their parents and following their love interest.

What’s sad is that I find a lot of people, especially the youths, who find more time to be with their boyfriend/girlfriend than with their family. What’s sadder is when their relationship with their significant other is actually just based on lust and can altogether fall apart to easily but would rather spend time with them anyway instead of their old and sometimes lonely parents. Indeed, there are those of us who find it too easy to say “I love you” to a pretty girl/boy they’ll break up with anyway but find it next to impossible to say the same thing to their parents until it is often too late. Heck, I’m just glad I got to say “I love you” to my mom before she died.

So you see, love isn’t just about romance. Love can be about your family and is every bit as important as romantic love or even more so. Love can also be about your friends, especially if you’ve known each other since you were kids and have come to rely on them as family in their own right.

Lastly…

True Love Comes To Those Who Are Secure As Singles

doomed_loveThe thing is, as I’ve said before, true love comes once you learn to love yourself. If you can’t love yourself for who you are then, sadly, you’re not likely to find someone who can do that for you. Our media has made many of us desperate for love but, you have to remember, true love comes from trust and not desperation.

Coming off as needy and clingy won’t attract you good potential mates and you’ll usually just end up with people who are equally desperate and whom you probably won’t like in the long run. However, once you learn to walk with dignity and a sense of self-love, then I guarantee someone, somewhere along the way will appreciate you for everything that you are.

And for those out there who are losing hope, here’s all I have to say:

Remember what they say about there not being any forever? Well, here’s something else to ponder: Sorrow and loneliness AREN’T forever either. Yes, that’s right. Just as the night must give way to dawn and the storm must give way to the sun, so shall you eventually find happiness and perhaps love again. Never forget that if you take time to be kind, you can never be alone in life. 

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29 Comments on “So What’s Wrong With Being Single?”

  1. In some cases, because of fear of being single again because of the mindset that it sucks to be one, he/she is still continuing a desteuctive relationship. Example, a battered wife refuse to leave her husband because she fears the single life again ( with baggage if they have children)

    Maybe sometime write about the culture of ‘ di dapat pakialaman ang away mag-asawa” because i realize, i is somehow a deadly culture. I watched SOCO and there is this crime where the wife is already shouting in agony but the neighbors shrugged it off because of stay away from “away magasawa” culture, the next morning, the woman and her daughter were dead. While in U.S. when someone heard her neighbor shouting stop, she immediately calls the police fearing someone is being abused, but when police came, it was discovered that the lady is just asking her boyfriend to stop farting. If only we filipinos are proactive as some americans, we could actually stop crimes.

  2. Dear Grimwald,
    pls allow me to share something that occured more than once during my relationship with my former pinay gf.

    Friends of her asked my gf many times this:
    “why is he (that is me) not yet married”
    “why doenst he have kids already”
    “does he hate kids?”
    “has he proposed you already?”

    This happened relatively so often that it made me sick. As if that are the only 2 things in life that matter (getting married and getting kids).

    In my country its quite normal and usual to first start living together. Why? To see how 2 people interact when they live under the same roof 24/7. By dating & courting one doesnt find out if someone has a morning mood or has a habit to fart and belch. My GF was not really in favour of “living together” because she labeled it as “trial and error”. Well, I rather end the relationship during that moment in time then ending a marriage when finding out she farts all day long.

    (back to your revelation)
    Being single has its benefits and living together (in a marriage or any other situation) has also benefits.

      1. Sucks more if you are a woman, like me, im turning 30 next week,. Then there will always be someone who will make you feel like a loser because.

        1. Im still single, how about when i grow old, nobody will take care of me.(this is the reason why im searching for passive incomes and taking care of my health, if all fails, at least i tried my best,and those who preach they love God, it is biblical to plan ahead so that you wouldn’t depend on your children someday, it is not their obligation but rather it is parent’s obligation to take care of their children…)

        2. 30 is too old for some people, (there was this 24 something girl that laugh when she ask how old i am, like really, its not like she will stay 24 forever)

        3. Those who have partners which is instilling in my mind that it sucks to be single (you have a boyfriend i know, but please busy yourself loving your boyfriend not bragging about it, i wonder which is which when it comes to relationship, does she love her boyfriend or just with the idea of having one)

        i realize that other people make yourlife sucks by bringing you down, when im alone in my home, healthy and able to laugh at my parents antics, have ample money to buy what i need and sometimes what i want, i realize, life is kind to me.

        1. Oh looks like were in the same boat in regards to Age. My family is actually pressuring me to get Married since I’ll be 31 this year and the reason they want me to get married is just so I can still bear children.

          I laughed because I find it silly and also because my family has a pretty messed up gene pool.

        2. 🙁 Kinda sad. Well, as for me, I have my own plans.

          And if worst comes to worst and I’m not dead by the time I’m 65, I’m gonna find the most awesome way to die and I’m gonna do myself in!

      2. I calculated something like that from your statement regarding the age of your granddad (90+, right?) and your dad (50, right?).

        I am “slightly” older than you are and that doesnt make things different.

    1. My bestfriend has a British boyfriend and they had been living together for almost 5 years in London. Whenever they would visit the Philippines, family members would pressure the two to tie the knot already.
      Her parents would complain of why their eldest daughter didn’t give them any grandkids yet and then there were jokes if her boyfriend is impotent.
      Some guessed they didn’t marry due to her boyfriend being an atheist.
      But her boyfriend on the other hand, believes Marriage is a joke and being live-in partners is just too convenient.

      1. TinTin,
        If I am not mistaken the Philippines only know/have 1 (one) real relationship and that is (a church/civil) marriage.
        On the other side of that coin, we have at least 2 others (besides civil wedding/marriage) that have the same legal effect/status as a civil wedding (only with less “ceremony” and cheaper).

        Those 2 are:
        – registered partnership
        – living together contract.

        My country and my culture does not force me to do anything. In my country and my culture, I am not emotionally blackmailed nor psychologically blackmailed to tie the knot asap and get kids asap.
        What might help to choose from any of the 3 mentioned ways, are pure, plain and simple income tax benefits.
        And as long as I marry in my own country, I can always file for a legal divorce. So in case a pinay thinks, a marriage is about financial security then she is wrong.

        If a pinay steps in poor (in a marriage), she will exit poor (after the divorce).
        If a pinay steps in rich (in a marriage), she will exit rich (after the divorce).

        1. Spot on Mr. Robert!
          Majority of Pinays will look for Financial security in marrying a foreigner (Jubilation for her huge family) while only a few minority are looking for true love.

  3. Sometimes the typical pinoy would poke fun at singles by saying the following:

    1. Are you planning to be a Priest/ Nun? *common*
    2. You must be an insecure person
    3. a crazy weirdo
    4. Are you Gay/ Lesbian?
    5. A loser

      1. I once met an acquaintance who asked me during a drinking session on how can I managed being single. Because she can’t picture herself being single and thought it might be really hard and lonely.

        1. @TinTin,
          most of my friends (and I) have a full time job. We have friends, we have hobbies. So no time to be lonely and its not at all hard.

          Thats what you can tell your acquaintance.

        2. Honestly Mr. Robert that is like talking to a brick wall. She will only hear what she wants to hear.
          It only baffles her on how I do my single life on a daily basis.
          Hobbies? Doesn’t have one, nor plans on getting one unless it involves her ex.

        3. @TinTin,
          Yes that brick wall is quite famous.

          I think I made a typo in one my previous comments.
          I meant hobby (not hubby). The things we do in our spare time. Or did you mean that her ex may become your biggest hobby? LOL

        4. Hello again Mr. Robert!
          Her hobbies mostly consist doing whatever of her ex. They have been in a relationship for 8 years and the reality that he left her for a new GF made her contemplate on suicide… I feel guilty since we were drinking heavily that time and when she said she wants to commit suicide I punched her hard hoping she’ll knock out and forget it in the morning (Drunken decision to knock her out)

          okay, okay that may sound violent but it felt like a sensible thing to do to a suicidal girl who’s 8 years my junior and I want her to forget the past and enjoy her young life.

        5. Hi TinTin,
          I can even top that, although I dont have any proof nor evidence of the event.

          My EX (pinay from Cebu) told me that her previous BF had killed himself.

          Before I will continue giving you the cause/reason why he did it, let me first disclose something else which is related.
          She didnt show me his grave and she never showed me any photographs of him (with or without her). So I am not sure if the relationship ever took place nor the event.
          (in my neck of the woods, its quite normal to have still all the photographs of previous relationships. Unless all teared apart out of rage or whatever).

          The reason why he killed himself (as told to me by her) was that he loved her but she didnt love him (ouch). But it gets weirder and weirder. She also told me that she had sex with him.

          So, we have a situation of a so-called BF/GF-relationship where sex is included but one party not loving the other.
          In my book, we call that either a “one night stand” or just “casual sex” (no strings attached, no ties, no emotions, just plain lust).

      2. @ccc @tintin

        you can’t imagine how I was always made to feel like a loser, especially when my cousins and close friends started to have relationships. actually mas matindi sa Facebook kasi parang maraming tao na gusto magkaroon ng profile picture kasama ang boyfriend / Girlfriend nd nila, so they can show off to everyone that they finally found “true happiness”, just like many “normal” people who have relationships. But as Grimwald said, you’re free to accuse me of being bitter 🙂

        1. Hahahaha Usually one my friends or relatives brag about their relationships. Aandar yung pessimist side ko at sabihan ko ng “Ah, nasa honeymoon stage pa kayo. Mawala ding yang pagka lovey dovey pagdating ng panahon”

          aaaaand add the evil gloating laughter.

        2. Yeah, they feel like they are the main characters in some rom com. I respect them and be happy for them, until they poke fun at their single friends like it is a priviledge because they have someone right now.

          I already fell in love hard once, so being single is somehow a decision on my side, and i just hope people respect it and doesn’t ask stupid question, preferrably leave me alone!

  4. I absolutely agree with you Grimwald. I had been in a very toxic relationship. It was so upsetting that after all the things that you’ve done for that person you love, he ended up cheating. First two weeks was indeed difficult; the adjustments, the recovery and moving on and forgetting the memories part is such a pain in the arse. But I didn’t let these things conquer me. The experiences I had taught me lots of things. I realized I should love myself. I then started to do things that will make me happy. I started to learn a new language, I went back to playing the guitar, I focused on my career and I also have a part time job after work (which will surely help me save more). The past made me who I am now. You just have to learn to love yourself and enjoy being single. Don’t depend your happiness on someone else. I’m 28 yrs old and single. Yes, I am single and happy! 🙂

  5. Being brave enough to be alone frees you up to invite people into your life because you want them and not because you need them.

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