Ah, your 20s. What a strange, stressful, fun and quick time your 20s are.
You thought your teenage years were bad? Well, your 20s are for sure a never-ending rollercoaster ride filled with friends who get engaged, get married, have babies on purpose and start settling down with their long-term significant other. Being in your 20s and not in a long-term relationship is frowned upon by most and if you're okay with being single, people start to worry about you.
You start to get the "Oh, you're still single?" and "aren't the holidays rough for you?" and "you need to lower your standards a bit" speeches from friends and family.
Truth is, there is absolutely NOTHING wrong with being single in your 20s.
If you think about it in retrospect, once you are married you are committing to one person for hopefully the rest of your life. With modern day technology, your life can now last well into your 90s which means spending 70 years with someone. I don't know about you, but that's a long time to be with someone. So why are we in such a hurry to meet someone and settle down?
Yes, I know there are biological clocks to take into consideration, and compared to generations before us, we are marrying at much older ages, but there is this ugly stigma behind being single. To most people, being single means something is wrong with you because no one has snatched you up. Being single means you failed to maintain a healthy relationship with someone. Being single means you aren't pretty/handsome enough for someone to commit to you. Being single means something is wrong with you if you aren't in a hurry to find the love of your life.
Honestly, I think we get so obsessed with the idea of love and being with someone that we completely lose ourselves and forget what we want until we disappear completely. I think the best positive take on being single comes from the movie "How To Be Single," when Dakota Johnson's character says, "I've been thinking that the time we have to be single is really the time we have to get good at being alone."
Being single should be the time you have absolute freedom to do whatever you please and put yourself first. You don't have to think about hurting someone's feelings, being someone else or making someone happy you just have to do what makes you happy. This is the time to find yourself before you let someone else in on the picture. You have to love yourself first before you let someone else love you back.
I have to believe this is why the divorce rate is skyrocketing. Young people get married too quickly because they believe by 25 they should be settling down and getting married because everyone else is. Just because 25 is a good age for one couple to get married does not mean it is the perfect age for every 25-year-old to get married.
You have to have a selfish period of putting your needs and dreams first before you commit to a relationship. Relationships are all about sacrifices from both ends, but if you never get to have the freedom to do what you want, this can sometimes turn into resentment towards your partner which isn't fair or healthy.
I'm not saying that it's bad to be in a relationship in your 20s; some people are more relationship material than others and that's perfectly okay!
What I am saying is there should be no bad stigma behind being single. Being single should mean you are taking the time to learn how to stand on your own, deciding how you want your life to be and who you want to spend your life with, not the assumption that you're weird, ugly or incapable of love. As the saying goes, "Good things come to those who wait."
Be free, be careless and be happy. For this is just a brief time in your life that you get to see what you are truly made of. So call that girl who you thought was cute on Instagram or dance with that guy who bought you a drink at the bar. This does not exactly mean they are the one, but it allows you to try people head-on and see what you like and what you don't like. That way when you are ready to commit to someone, you'll know what you are looking for in your future boyfriend/girlfriend.