Why Am I Single?
Sure, you’ve had relationships — there was the one in high school, the two in college, and the one that just ended. But it seems that much more of your adolescent and adult life has been spent being single.
It’s not that being single is a bad thing necessarily. There are many aspects of your single life that you enjoy. You have the freedom and independence to do what you want, when you want.
What’s frustrating about being single is that you feel stuck. You have seen your friends, relatives, and coworkers date, get engaged, get married — some have even started families.
All the while, you are constantly hitting the reset button on your relationships and starting over again while they are progressing in their lives.
You don’t desperately need the companionship or sense of security that comes with a relationship. You just want a connection with another person. You want someone you can share your love with.
Because of your lack of success, you need to answer the question “Why am I single?” before you can be a couple.
It’s Not You, It’s Them
If you have found yourself reeling from a series of bad relationships, it can be easy to lose hope about your prospects. It can seem appealing to swear off relationships and commit to a year of celibacy to detox yourself from the negativity, but instead, it could be helpful to investigate what factors attracted you to these people.
From the time your eyes can focus on the outside world, you are gaining and processing information about relationships. You saw your parents’ relationship or lack of relationship and studied a multitude of relationships portrayed in the media.
All of this data points you towards your future relationships. Where did your history point you?
Are you drawn to a certain type? Does another type totally turn you off? Being aware of your attraction tendencies will give you a better understanding of why you are single.
There could be part of you that is intensely attracted to people based on aspects of your past, even when there is no chance of success in the relationship. In this situation, the best you can do is observe your trends, acknowledge their influence, and try to make relationship decisions that aim to negate the damaging influence.
Put simply, treat your next relationship as an opportunity to pursue someone moderately different from your previous partners. Success can come in strange places.
It’s You, Not Them
When people are done pointing the finger out at their past partners, it inevitably turns back to themselves.
It is possible you found the right person to be in a relationship. They did everything you were looking for; they were everything you wanted, but it still didn’t work because there was something about you that stood in the way.
Your Mental Health Is Suffering
Mental illness is a significant contributor to poor relationships. People who have bipolar disorder notoriously have inconsistent relationships — but even people with mild forms of depression and anxiety can face many challenges due to their symptoms.
When you enter a relationship, it is imperative that you are in top condition mentally. Otherwise, it is not a relationship between just you and your partner; it is a relationship with you, your partner, and your mental health.
You don’t have to be perfect to be in a relationship, but the best successes will emerge when your symptoms are low.
You Are Abusing Drugs and Alcohol
Along the same lines, people with substance abuse problems will find relationships very complicated. Rather than focusing on the relationship, these people will be spending time, efforts, and money getting and using their drug of choice.
All relationships struggle when alcohol and other drugs are involved. Find your own stability to benefit the relationship.
Your Expectations Are Unrealistic
You may dream about being swept off of your feet or finding the person who makes you feel fantastic 100 percent of the time, and as soon as you are only happy 99 percent of the time, you kick them to the curb.
You have to ask yourself, “Is this fair to them or me?” Low expectations lead to poor relationships, but overly high expectations are just as dangerous. Assess your desires and adjust as needed based on your previous experiences.
Relationships Aren’t Really Your Priority
Perhaps your relationships haven’t been working because a relationship isn’t really what you wanted. You tell yourself you want one, but do your actions really match up?
Do you invest the same energy towards the relationship that you do towards picking out a new purse or drafting your fantasy football team? Maybe you are too committed to your independence to give the relationship the attention it deserves, or maybe the idea of a lasting relationship just isn’t that appealing.
It’s okay if you are not fully invested in making a relationship work. Just be honest with yourself about your goals.
You Have Different Motivations
When people enter a relationship they are usually looking for a person to become their partner. Some people have other motivations, though.
These people are intentionally or unintentionally using their significant other to fill some type of void in their life. They might be looking for financial gains or for someone to boost their low self-esteem.
Maybe there are seeking a parent for their young child. In any case, the relationship will struggle unless the motivations align. To resolve this, be clear with yourself and the other to find a match.
The Success of Failing
Someone who is habitually single may think their romantic life is a failure, but this is rarely the case. When it comes to relationships, the biggest failing is being in a long-term relationship that is completely and utterly miserable.
Whenever you are feeling frustrated about your relationship status, close your eyes and image the people who wake up each morning next to someone they can barely tolerate but do nothing to change it.
Relationships can be infinitely infuriating or astoundingly amazing. Either way, people desire to be in one.
Your single status can change, but first you have to understand why the goal has eluded you to this point. Is it you? Is it them? Once you know where you were, you’ll have a better chance to get to where you want to be.