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When we’re single, family functions or even evenings out with certain friends can feel like an interrogation session. Our lifestyle puts us under the spotlight as we’re peppered with queries on blind dates or what we’re doing to change our single status. The faces change, but the question is the same: “Why are you still single?”
Despite what these well-meaning family and friends might say, the truth is, sometimes it is better to be single.
No one knows this better than Jen Schefft, whose love life hit the limelight when she appeared on The Bachelor. Her fabled romance with the bachelor, Andrew Firestone, started and ended some time after the reality show when she trusted her gut and broke off their engagement. Next, appearing on The Bachelorette, she turned down another marriage proposal, knowing it wasn’t the right decision.
“It was really after that final show (of The Bachelorette) when I didn’t choose anyone that I just received a ton of backlash. (The message from the media and from people was) ‘Well nothing could be wrong with these men, it obviously has to be you,’ ” she says.
But, for Schefft, nothing is wrong. She is 30, happy, and (gasp) still single.
“Being happy single really is just a mindset. It’s a matter of recognizing that you are better off waiting until you find the right person and just enjoy being single,” says Schefft, who is sharing her never-settle attitude in her new book, Better Single Than Sorry.
So how do you enjoy being sans significant other? “Get involved with a charity or go back to school,” suggests Schefft. “Do things that make you happy.”
But we all have those days when being single doesn’t seem desirable — Valentine’s Day included — and we’re ready to settle for any relationship that comes along.
“Valentine’s is definitely a day that can get you down, but you have to remember it’s just another day … it’s not like you get any days off work for it,” says Schefft. “If you’re upset, then do something fun like plan a manicure or go for drinks with friends.”
For Schefft, the solution to being happy single and finding the right partner is one and the same: Stay busy. “If you really like someone, then you’re going to make time for them. If you’re so, so busy, then you probably don’t really like them.”
So, even though those friends and family — even reality television — seem to push us towards a relationship, Schefft suggests if you’re single and loving it, then stand up for that choice and end the relationship interrogation session with a reminder that it’s better to be without someone than to be with the wrong someone — words I couldn’t agree with more.