3. "Maybe you're looking in the wrong places?"
What we usually say: "I guess I just haven't found the right person yet."
What we are really thinking: "Well, gee, Mr./Mrs. Wizard, please do tell, where should I go to find the man/woman of my dreams? It's not like I haven't tried everywhere else: church, work, school, parties, sports events, social functions, the library, funerals, the grocery store, under rocks..."
First of all, this makes it sound like we're hanging out in dingy bars or dark allies looking for love. Seriously, where do you think singles go to find the person of their dreams? Mordor? Mos Eisley? Planet Evil? By the way, if you got any of those references then Nerds Unite!
4. "You have to be happy single before you can be happy with someone."
What we usually say: "I agree, thanks for the reminder."
What we are really thinking: "Uh, ya, I'm going to call 'bullcrap' on that one. Sure, I know I need to be happy with who I am as a person and the life I'm trying to lead, but if I was completely content with being alone then I wouldn't care about wanting to be with someone else. Oh, and by the way, that's easy for you to say with your great spouse and amazing kids waiting for you at home who, by the way, make you happy."
The truth that all the books and relationship gurus are trying to make is that yes, you have to love yourself and get yourself together in order to be ready to handle a stable and mature relationship. BUT we are social creatures and some of life's greatest joys are found only in a relationship. Even God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone..." (Genesis 2:18). So yes, we are happy single, but we also desire all the joys and happiness that a good relationship brings.
5. "There's still plenty of time to find someone."
What we usually say: "I know, I'm not too worried."
What we are really thinking: "Actually, I am worried. I'm not getting any younger and every year that goes by is a year means the odds of not having kids/not having more kids goes up. And sure, 'it will happen when it's supposed to', but that doesn't mean I want that day to come years from now. Plus, I'm not sure I want to be ready to retire when my kids finally graduate high school."
We aren't really worried about finding that special someone because of time's passing. No, we would just rather pass time with that special someone. Enough said.
6. "It will happen when it's supposed to happen."
What we usually say: "I know, and I'm trying to be patient."
What we are really thinking: "So basically you have no real advice other than, 'wait for it, wait for iiiittttt.' Well, thanks Shawn Spencer. I'm going to go back to my life now and just sit around and 'wait for it'."
Ok, we know that you're trying to take the pressure off our shoulders, but saying this actually makes us think about it even more. And it sounds like we have no power to make it happen, that we are just at the mercy of fate.
7. "Maybe you need to put yourself out there more."
What we usually say: "Hmm, that could be true..."
What we are really thinking: "Ok, let me explain how far out there I am. I'm on Tinder, Match, Facebook, Yoursinglesiteofchoice, I go to social activities when I can, I volunteer with other singles, I do my best to keep up a good appearance and workout regularly, I've got a blog, nonprofit, business, I go to speed-dating, organize other single parties and let's see....Well, I guess I could buy some ads in the paper or put my photo on a billboard along the freeway. Any other ideas on how I can 'put myself out there'?"
Again, we know you mean well and are just trying to help. But the truth is that most singles and midsingles I know have so many things on their plate right now. Family, jobs, church responsibilities, service commitments & projects, professional pursuits and the list goes on and on. And even with all that, they still make a Herculean effort to be at as many social activities as possible. Maybe the billboard idea isn't so bad...
8. "I know someone I can set you up with."
What we usually say: "Oh really? That's great."
What we are really thinking: "In reality, that's probably not great. I'm sure your friend/cousin/neighbor/coworker/etc. is an awesome person, but let's be honest: you probably only thought of setting us up because A. he/she is a member of the opposite sex and B. we are both single. Well, gee, if that's all that was required to find someone I'd (gasp), be married by now."
Ok, in reality most singles need to do a better job at accepting blind dates. The typical reaction is very Monthy Python and the Holy Grail-esque: "Run away!" At the same time, however, when you're thinking of setting up the single friend in your life, please give it more thought than "he's a he and she's a she...perfect!"
9. "I wish I was still single, you should live it up."
What we usually say: "No you don't."
What we are really thinking: "No you don't. Sure, you might think that when you and your spouse had a fight or the kids are driving you crazy or you've had no sleep for two days. But be honest: Hell would freeze over before you would give up what you have. So stop complaining and go give your significant other a huge kiss and thank them for putting up with all your craziness."
Sure, single life LOOKS easy, but think back to what it was really like for you before you got married. Living by yourself, cooking for yourself, watching movies by yourself, wondering if you were going on vacation by yourself. Yes, relationships take a lot of work and can be very difficult, but they are also extremely rewarding and fulfilling. Stop saying the grass is greener and worry about mowing your own lawn.
10. "You just have to be positive and have hope."
What we usually say: "Thank you, I'm working on it."
What we are really thinking: "Thank you Yoda, Tony Robbins couldn't have said it any better. Maybe if I just think more positive thoughts...wait, happy thoughts? Then I'll leave this single world behind and then I'll leave my cares behind? (if you got the song reference good for you! Hint: Disney) I'm going to Jedi-mind trick myself into a relationship starting right now!"
Again, we don't really react that snarkily, but you have to understand that we are already working on our attitudes every single day (get the pun?). Singles deal with loneliness, rejection, abandonment, extra stress, etc. all on a weekly if not daily basis. No, we don't spend our days mopping around because we are single, but at the same time give us some credit for handling it as well as we do. You can come home from a tough day and whine to your spouse. A lot of singles I know go home and whine to their cat, dog, XBox, ice cream or the gym.
So there you have it, some fun insights into the mind of a single-person-looking. More than anything, I hope this article made you laugh and remember what single life was like (if you're now married) and if you're single I hope it made you laugh at some of the questions we get asked on a daily basis. Your friends and family love you and mean well, so if they ask these things, just smile and take it in stride.
If they didn't like you they would try to keep you single in order to save the gene pool. At the end of the day, whether you are single or taken, life is an adventure. Explore it with a grateful heart and joyful spirit!