The Single Woman's Perspective

Even single women can enjoy sunsets.
Even single women can enjoy sunsets.

This is a topic I would not discuss with some married women because some will just not get it. I have met a few well meaning married women, but some of these individuals just do not know what to think about you when you are single and over thirty. In your twenties they are encouraging you to go on dates and find "the one," but if you decided along the way being in a relationship is not that important to you, then some married women may not know how to approach you when the topic of relationships comes up in conversation. For instance, many people will ask you if you are married and have kids, even if you did not bring this up in the first place. Most people who are married and who have kids usually work this information into the conversation early on, and it can be awkward when someone asks you about it, especially if you have already talked to them a few times. I am not saying this is true of all married women, but if you are a single woman in your thirties or older, then you probably know what I am talking about. At first a married woman might ask you if you are seeing someone or engaged, and if they find out you are not, then they make comments that are nice, but not always helpful. "You have time to find someone," or "I hope you find someone as great as my husband," are two of the popular variants that have been thrown my way. I also have had women in relationships tell me I hope I did not feel like they were "leaving me behind", as if I am some little puppy needing their constant attention. Now if you are a social person who enjoys interacting with couples that chat about their families, then going to lots of parties with married people might not bother you. However, I am not a highly social person, and I know I would stick out like a sore thumb in such events. I never went to many parties in high school or college, and being around a group of married women talking about their husbands would make me feel out of place for sure.

Informal Conversations Between Married People

So you are this single person at the grocery store that bumps into friends, and several married ones start talking about their husband doing this and that. These conversations might even happen on social networking sites, and you usually are not included because what would you have to say about these anyway? So what do single people talk about when they get together in person, or when they interact on social networking sites? Well a lot of us talk about books, movies, art, politics, and social issues. I mean I do have opinions on family life to some extent because I grew up in one, but I really have nothing to say about why people with children deserve a tax break over single people without kids. For instance, as an independent contractor who writes online I pay a large amount of tax, and as a single woman without kids I have very few deductions. I am not a Tea Party enthusiast demanding tax breaks, but having married people tell me I should get married and have kids just to have a tax deduction is a bit insulting really. Yes, it does cost more money to raise kids than to live on one's own, but why is one segment of the population more deserving of a tax break than others?

Single Women Depicted As Old Maids

What is so horrible about being the "old maid" anyway? I have heard women who are getting divorced talk about how they hope that they do not end up alone, as if being on one's own is the worst thing in the world. Seriously, we are all on our own in many instances anyway, and I see a lot of married women carting their kids around grocery stores by themselves. Where is hubby then? Yes, I see dads doing that too, but more likely than not it is a mom picking her kids up from daycare after work, and heading to the grocery store. Many women have full and part-time jobs, but the lion's share of the parental responsibilities still fall on their shoulders. Yes, things are becoming more equitable on that front, but one complaint I periodically hear from married women is how their husband and kids do not pick up after themselves. By the way, I hear this complaint in the grocery stores as I am trying to focus on shopping and not hearing that. I am not sure how some kids can leave all the house hold chores to their mother, and as a kid I did not get that choice. I remember being six years old and standing on a step stool to do dishes. I did not have parents cleaning my room, and it was never a big piling mess either.

However, if you are a grown man and your wife is doing more laundry and dishes than you, then for shame. You are making her have all those conversations at the grocery store, and maybe if you should turn off the TV for an hour she would have more rest mister!

When I hear married woman complain about doing dishes and cleaning up after their kids and husbands, I am glad I am single and have free time to write, follow politics, and work on my art. Being married does not sound like a picnic. Too many women sound like they are doing too much house work. It is okay for married women to offer advice to single women about how the can remedy their marital status and be as happy as they are, but single women could never tell a group of married women that some of their complaints would make quite a few of us single ladies never want to get married.

Who feels sorry for who? I do not feel sorry for anyone, and neither should married women feel sorry for their single friends. We all make our life choices, and should be happy with these. So I might end up an "old maid," horror of horrors, but at least I am not a maid to a capable husband and kids who could help out a bit more around the house. You really should not even have to ask your husband to do basic things like cooking, cleaning, dishes and laundry if you are a working woman, and he has been way too catered his entire life by first by his mom, and then by you if you even have to ask him to do basic chores. If your kids are over five, they are old enough to do dishes and clean their own room. I was as a kid.

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Comments 19 comments

SpiffyD profile image

SpiffyD 5 years ago from The Caribbean

It seems as though that is a prevailing attitude among many. It's unfortunate that a few of the women in relationships find it difficult to relate to single persons.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I think it is a societal thing. Not all married women are this way, but even if your read a magazine like RedBook, even articles read like these real life scenarios I have experienced. Oh well, I just do not hang out in groups where this is the prevalent view point.


Paradise7 profile image

Paradise7 5 years ago from Upstate New York

Most of the women I know are career women, and what we have in common is accounting. bookkeeping, financial reporting...(I know, I know, how boring!). Most of the friends I have are men; sometimes married, sometimes single, sometimes gay in a relationship or gay and single--what we have in common is a love of art, theater, and photography.

The married career women I know of my age group are off the topics of husbands and kids and into the topics of divorce and grandkids. Makes for an interesting change, I must say.

I was married twice and neither time was a picnic for me; the men tried, I'm quite sure, but in both cases there was an underlying incompatibilty that couldn't be overcome and didn't make itself evident until the marriages were established. I was so deeply unhappy that it was...run away or kill myself, almost that bad. So I ran, both times, and now my life is blessed with solitude.

Basically how to shine as a conversationalist, whether married, single or whatever, is to listen a lot more than you talk. Listen, look interested, nod your head...once you sort through the chaff and the person is more relaxed and still talking, you can find out some really fascinating things about people; where they've been, what they've done, what they think.

I love parties. I love a bunch of people getting together for any excuse whatever. I especially love outdoor parties in the summertime, and it's even more fun if my friends have either a swimming pool or a cottage by the lake.

I like the way long-established couples are when they are together, with a bunch of other people, in their bathing suits!


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I am not so sure my goal is shining as a conversationalist in a group dynamic. I like listening to people, but I can do that in one on one conversations rather than a party. Perhaps this hub is more about introvert single people who do not enjoy the social gathering, and who shine in the one of one convo, which I do. The few times I was at a party I wandered away from all the conversations and went for a walk. Just not much of a party animal, but I see why some enjoy it. I have fun and wacky conversations with my family and a few close friends. It is so much more me than a large party.


Kim Lynn profile image

Kim Lynn 5 years ago

You may not be married or have children, but it is clear that you do have something to bring to the table! I am married, have kids and grandkids and I enjoyed reading your thoughts on this subject. Great job!


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks Kim for the comment! I have written for a few years and know many are engaged by my writing. We are all individuals, and we all have so much at the table, and anyone who does not see that will never know the beauty of diversity.

I find current events more interesting that the every day comments about the hubby not cleaning, but that is just me. Not saying people should not talk about that stuff, but sometimes you feel like you are hearing the same conversation, for the thousandth time in your life. What is cool is when you find married people with kids who have conversations about current events with them like they are adults. My family did that with me when I was a kid. I became so aware of things going on in the world because of this.


graceomalley profile image

graceomalley 5 years ago

I find many people are remarkably unable to understand how anyone's life could be different from their own. You're not just like me? What's wrong with you?

Being single is more and more common in our society (and modern society supports this, with values of independence & self actualization, ect.) Finding a common topic of conversation with people just a little different from yourself shouldn't be all that hard. If we're in the same grocery we live in the same town, have the same political leaders, the same books are available to us, we have the same weather.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Graceomalley,

You are right common topics are not hard to find. However, I have experienced where it seems married people want to talk about their common topics. Not all married people, but this is just an observation from the single perspective.


WannaB Writer profile image

WannaB Writer 5 years ago from Templeton, CA

I, too, enjoy solitude to write, but I've been married for 47 years. We have no living children. There were many times when I wondered if I should have married anyone at all, because I'm not naturally as nurturing as most wives and mothers I know, seem to be. When I get involved in writing or working on a web site, I like to be able to work uninterrupted. It was when I almost lost my husband last year that I realized how important our relationship is and how easy it is to take it for granted. Now at times when I'm tempted to feel irritated because of an interruption, I realize how much I would miss him if he were gone.

That being said, I have usually enjoyed being in groups that included men more than groups of women, for conversational purposes, because it seems most woman I met -- even in college -- did not have many interests outside of their homes and relationships. They enjoyed shopping, and I do not. On social occasions, I prefer small groups where about six mixed men and women talk about politics, religion, and other such taboo topics.

I also like one on one conversations about topics of mutual interest. I think the key words here are mutual interests. I used to go to lunch with two women who had opportunity to travel more than I did. Both were married, but they liked to talk mostly about their travels. I felt like a fish out of water, not because their travels weren't interesting, but because the conversations seemed to be competitive more than informative . You'd have to have been to the places they were talking about to really feel like part of the conversation.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

WannaBWriter,

I feel sometimes people like to try and "one-up" each other in social situations. It just feel awkward having to imagine being at lunch with people having such a conversation. I had one friend who used to brag with who other friends about who spent more on clothes, and I never was interested in that contest since I just shop at places like Ross or Marshalls. I like to shop a bit, but I never make that a topic of conversation, and I only buy what I truly need.


Earth Angel profile image

Earth Angel 5 years ago

Blessings to you SweetiePie!

Another GREAT Hub; thank you for sharing!

Do you really think this has to do with "married vs. single" as much as maybe "introverted vs. extroverted??"

I'm happily single and have been for awhile! I never have any of the problems you mention above or in other Hubs? But I'm pretty extroverted as well!

My best friend is introverted and she experiences the world through a different lens entirely!?

Your writing sounds thoughtful, genuine, creative and introspective!?

Just a thought!?

Blessings to all of us as we travel between groups! Earth Angel!


CJ Wallace 5 years ago

SweetiePie,

Great Article, and as a single woman about to be 50 you hit the nail on the head! What you said is so true. Fortunately for me most of those I socialize with are either divorced or never married so we stick together! I'm going to start a single 40/50 club for men & women! Stay tuned! I enjoy everything you write, wish I had more time myself!! Rock on!!


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Hi CJ Wallace,

Thanks for your comment and ideas.I work five days a week, and write on my days off and after work. Actually, everything I write is part of my work, so this is a second time gig for me. You can write more if you want to, just make fifteen minutes a day to do so. It never hurts to have a hobby you enjoy.


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 5 years ago from London, UK

Very interesting topic and well written hub.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

I always appreciate your comments Hello, hello!


Glenn Stok profile image

Glenn Stok 5 years ago from Long Island, NY

You are so right that we should not feel sorry for people who have made their own choices, no matter what they may be. Having remained single or whatever other choice they have made for themselves, the fact remains that they made the choice.

On the other hand, if they seem stuck in a life that they don't want, they may have gotten there because of issues that were unresolved in childhood. If this is troubling the person then they would (or should) reach out to friends for support. And maybe seek answers or solutions. But if they don't, then we need to assume that they are happy with where they are.

As for me, I am single with an endless desire to be married. But that's me. My thoughts lead me to believe that I just never found the right one. Notice how I said that. "My thoughts" may be my worst enemy.

But then I take those thoughts and write about them, same as you. We share something, you and I, that lets us be creative. That's the solitude of being single so we can have the time and space to write and create.

When I think about it, my married friends don't have time to write. They are too busy in their social arena with other married people or with bringing up their baby. Hey, our writing is our baby! Some of us writers think of it as our own flesh and blood. We nurture it (our writing) and we find it rewarding.

Gee I didn't realize that your hub left me with so much to say. Really enjoyed it. Thanks. Voted up.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 5 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Hi Glen,

I think your married friends do not have time to write because they are not writers like you and I. I know some writers who are working on a book like I am, and they are married. I think people make time for the things they value. I know some parents who take their kids to the library and work on their blogs while their kids read books. If married people want to write, or spend a quiet time at home, I think they will do that. I think a lot of married people I have met in the past tended to be more social, and that was how they always spent their time. As time goes by I am meeting a few more married and single people who prefer to work on writing on hobbies like art.


galaxy1000 profile image

galaxy1000 4 years ago from Spokane, WA

Well said. I can relate to what you are saying.


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 4 years ago from Southern California, USA Author

Thanks, Galaxy. I think since the time I wrote these the comments people make about me being single no longer bother me. At the time it was sort of annoying.

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