Archives for Media

Love & Affection

The Hidden Hunger for a Valid and Validating Portrayal of Single Life

Many single people feel good about their single lives. That’s true even for plenty of single people who do not want to stay single; they, too, often feel proud of how they are living their single years fully, rather than just marking time until they find The One. In the popular culture, though, and in everyday life, much of what gets reflected back to single people is damning. They are told, falsely, that they need to marry if they want to live a happy, healthy, and long life. They are mocked as selfish and lonely and desperate to escape single life. Other people try to fix them up, as if they were broken. After a while, it can be a bit much.
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Marriage

What All Unmarried People Should Say about Themselves

Guest Post by Kim Calvert [Bella’s intro: I’ve been studying single life for a long time, and practicing it even longer, so I know the kinds of questions that people have about singles. Often the questions are about the ways in which unmarried people differ from each other. Shouldn’t we be looking separately, I am asked, at single men and single women? Longtime single people versus newly single? Rich versus poor, living alone versus with others, and every other distinction you can possibly imagine. For research purposes, the answer is yes. It is important to understand the many shades and complexities of single people. But in this important guest contribution, the very wise Kim Calvert makes a different argument.
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General

Matrimania Mars the Olympics

I am in awe of Olympic athletes. The commitment they show with their bruising training schedules is impressive. So is their stunning level of skill. On top of all that, the Olympic opportunity occurs just once every four years. The pressure once they get there seems almost unfathomable. The athletes who make it to the Olympics deserve to bask in their moment – especially (but not only) if they make it to the medals podium. The Olympic games, and the medals ceremonies, should be all about the athletes and their amazing achievements. But, of course, they are not. Matrimania – the over-the-top hyping of marriage, coupling, and weddings – is greedy. It saturates society, seeping into every nook and crevice. And now it has spoiled the Olympics, too.
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Love & Affection

Heard Around the World: The Smug Comment About a Female Candidate Who Is Not a Mother

By now, you may have already heard about the disparaging comment that one of the candidates to be Britain’s prime minister, Andrea Leadsom, made about the other candidate, Theresa May, who would go on to secure that position. Leadsom proclaimed that she was better suited to be prime minister because she has kids and May does not, and “being a mum means you have a very real stake in the future of our country. A tangible stake.” She also said: “I don’t know Theresa really well, but I’m sure she will be really sad that she doesn’t have children so I don’t want this to be 'Andrea’s got children, Theresa hasn’t' – do you know what I mean? Because I think that would be really horrible.” But then she did exactly that. (You can read that entire section of the interview here.)
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Love & Affection

When Marriage Is Glorified, It Is Not Just Single People Who Are Hurt

The very wise and savvy advice columnist, Carolyn Hax, responded to a single person who was experiencing something all too commonplace in the lives of single people: Her friends were disappearing. Increasingly, the advice-seeker said, they have “different priorities.” My guess is that many of them were marrying and having children, though she didn’t say so explicitly. The person who wrote the letter was really missing her friends. She wanted that deep and enduring friendship connection again, not just quick catch-up events that happen less and less often. She asked Carolyn Hax if finding her “one true love” was the only answer.
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General

Would Anyone Join a Singles Community that Has Nothing to Do with Dating? Oh, Yes!

What would happen if you invited single people to join an online community all about living single life fully, joyfully, and unapologetically, with no discussions whatsoever about dating or mating or other attempts to become unsingle? Would anyone even join? If people did join, would the group last? I issued just such an invitation a year ago (on July 9, 2015), right here at my “Single at Heart” blog.
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General

Is the Season of Celebrations Getting You Down?

The beginning of summer is just one of those times of year when it seems that everyone is celebrating. It is wedding season, so friends and family are celebrating their marriages (and, if you are old enough, the grown kids of your friends and family members are also celebrating). It is graduation season, so again, all the graduates you know (or parents of graduates) are celebrating, too. If you’ve never married or had kids, do you feel left out and a little down in the midst of all this merry-making? I think it depends a bit on what you wanted from your life. If you really wanted to marry, if you really wanted to have kids and celebrate all their accomplishments with them, then this season must really hurt.
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How we live now

Some Single People Are Better Than Others – Or So We Are Led to Believe

When Kimberly Seals Allers became a single mother, she discovered that not all single mothers are alike. Instead, there is a hierarchy. Some single mothers are more respected and more valued than others. They are also treated better, and their children are, too. I especially appreciated her essay, because the points she made mapped so closely onto the ones I had made in Singled Out about single people more generally. The hierarchy also encompasses single people who are not parents.
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