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Let’s set the stage: You, outside, enjoying yourself. You just watched your favorite cousin get married and are sitting at a table jovially relaxing with a beer, smiling, watching people on the dance floor. It’s been a great day. Lots of laughter and love, and it was wonderful to catch up with everyone.
Suddenly, you feel a presence looming over your shoulder. A stale waft of Chanel No. 5 permeates the air and a clawed hand, with just-applied acrylic nails grabs your shoulder. The mood darkens.
“Theeeeere you are nephew! Whyyyyyyy aren’t you dancing? Did you not bring a date? Are you stiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiillll single? You know women don’t wait foreverrrrr. When I was your age….”
You clamp your jaw into a smile and mentally go someplace else as yet another seemingly well-meaning relative harangues you for being single in your 30s. And while you feel fine, after all these people are saying something, you start second-guessing yourself and wonder, “Is it okay to be single at 30?” Our answer is yes! And here are 5 reasons why.
The word “settle” has a lot of heavy connotations. For now let’s call it, settling for less than you want or deserve. As we grow, we are constantly trying to figure out who we are. Who we were as teens is not who we were in our 20s. And who we are in our 30s is also much different than who we are in our 20s. And the expectations for these age groups can differ depending on your location and culture.
Utah has the lowest age for marriage and New York has the highest. If everyone around you gets married right out of high school or college, you may think that’s what you should do, even if it’s not what you want to do.
But life is about experiences. Both good and bad and learning from them. You learn what you do like and what you don’t like. You go through some changes that help shape you. Each thing helps you refine what you need and want.
I had a client who had a dim view of marriage because each of his friends basically married their first girlfriends, and they were all miserable. But because he waited, he could figure out what was best for him and choose the right match. Being single doesn’t mean nobody wants you. It means you are taking your time to decide with whom you want to spend your time.
I think we’ve all heard the expression, “Don’t stick your dick in cr***!” And, probably, like most men, you threw that out the window. I know I did! Until the drama hits your doorstep! And then you realize that it is totally not worth it. She may be hot and great in bed, but man, your mental health is just not there. The older you get, the more important it is to be happy and centered. And if you meet someone who completely rocks your boat, it’s much easier to sail on to calmer waters.
The drama may not be on purpose. All of us have insecurities to overcome. Or we’re trying to heal from our own trauma. So when she’s young and testing you to check your loyalty, it may be because she’s got an anxious attachment style and is worried you’re going to leave her. That doesn’t mean it’s right, but there’s a reason. When we get into our 30s, we often overcome many insecurities and have the opportunity to do more inner work on ourselves and our relationships.
Yeah, this one is not so fair, but hey, it’s a fact of life. Thankfully, biologically, men can have kids whenever we want. Heck, Robert DeNiro just had his seventh child and he’s 79 years old! I’m not advocating for geriatric dads, but at least we’ve got a little leeway.
Many women of a certain age see their window to have kids narrowing, and it can be really emotional. You may have to decide to rush to have kids or not rush and not have kids.
I had my first child at 41 years old. My dreams of being a young, hot dad went out the window! But I’m a much better dad than I would have been even 10 years beforehand. I’m more centered, I’m happy with who I am, and we’re financially okay. A happy dad, who feels he’s made the right choice is still better than a younger, more energetic dad with misgivings.
In business, there’s a lot of push to be “first movers” and “innovators.” Well, I’ve got some news for you. It’s rarely the first movers who are the long-lasters. They are the ones who make all the mistakes that those who follow can learn from. Learning what not to do in a relationship is just as important as knowing what to do right.
When I finally met my now wife, I did make some relationship mistakes, but at least I avoided a lot that I had seen played out before.
I was at TWO surprise parties for girlfriends/wives where the husband surprised them with a party after they had been at the gym, or they were dressed in casual clothes. Everyone was done up, dressed up and looking great, and there was the birthday girl with dirty hair and stained leggings taking pictures with everyone and glaring daggers at her man. I made sure that for my wife’s surprise 40th party, she was coming directly from a makeover!
We’ve all got baggage, trauma, and issues. It comes with being human. It usually takes a bit of time to figure out your inner workings and how to deal with everything that life throws at you. When you are younger, you may still be acting out all of your issues. You may not be at fault for these problems, but the fact that they are there remains.It’s our duty to our future significant other to be as complete a person as possible when we meet.
So use this time to go to therapy! Pick up some new hobbies. Do some solo traveling while you have fewer responsibilities. Grow and become the type of person that attracts people.
Life is a wonderful journey and each of us goes at our own speed. Don’t let others affect your course. And remember, a lot of the people nagging you or pushing you, just want you to join their club of “marriage.” That doesn’t mean, AT ALL, that they are happy in it. They may feel that, if they “had” to do it, then so should you.
Go live your amazing single life, and you’ll be an amazing partner when you meet the right lady!