Is it just me or does it seem like Valentine’s Day has become more of an assault on single life than a celebration of loving couples? What they don’t tell you is marriage doesn’t equal happiness.
January 4, 2010 – (New York, NY) Is it just me or does it seem like Valentine’s Day has become more of an assault on single life than it is a celebration of loving couples? There’s nothing wrong with wanting someone to share your life with but being made to feel as if something is wrong with you because you haven’t landed the “one” doesn’t seem like a loving message to me. Nor, does it seem that shoving general relationship advice down people’s throat is the best way for them to find the unique individual that best suits them or their lifestyle.
I suppose it’s because society leads us to believe that being part of a couple is the best way to be well adjusted. However, a study by Associate Professor Jamila Bookwala, published in the November 30th Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, refutes this idea. It found that never married people aged 40 and up tend to have a better emotional well being than married people. The reason is that singles often know how to take care of themselves and feel in control of their lives. While, for a marriage to work well, the parties most often have a certain level of interdependence.
Being dependent on someone else isn’t inherently a problem, but something else that’s not often mentioned to singles is that marriage is certainly no guarantee of happiness or a lifelong partnership. In fact, A December 2009 USA Today article by Sharon Jayson called, “With this doubt, I thee wed: Some know marriage will fail,” cited a recent survey in which 76 percent of men and 83 percent of women said they “somewhat knew” or were “extremely certain” before they said “I do” that their union would end in divorce.
You might be wondering, if this is the case, why did these people take a stroll down the aisle? 49 percent of men and 41 percent of women said it seemed like marriage was the next logical step in their relationship. Other popular reasons: respondents didn’t want to be single anymore; figured they could make it work; thought their partner was the best they could do, thought they could change some aspect of their partner or their partner pressure them in to it. In addition to these reasons, the author of the survey found the social stigma of being single also played a role.
In the book I Didn’t Work This Hard Just to Get Married: Successful, Single Black Women Speak Out, I spoke with dozens of single women who rebuke the concept that you should settle for the wrong person just so you are not alone and that being unmarried means you live a lonely and unhappy existence; it’s a transitional phase in life which provides one the opportunity to get to know themselves and what they want and expect from others so that if they do find the “one,” they can get married for the right reasons and therefore have a better opportunity to have a healthy, functional, long lasting union.
I Didn’t Work This Hard Just to Get Married
To read an excerpt: www.mcbeamon.com
Available @ Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com
Single, Women, Dating, Relationships, Valentine, s Day, African American, Marriage