Your entire family's in a dilemma, and so are you. They're wondering whether you're seeing someone, whether you should be seeing someone, or whether they should be finding someone for you. You're wondering whether you're the marrying kind or not. From "confirmed bachelors" having been a byword, the world seems to have moved to a new Sex-and-the-City-empowered generation of women, who seem to have realised that you can't have it all, and you might as well retain your marital (or unmarital) status.
This does not mean we're all feminists...oh, no - far be it from me to claim that I can live without men flitting in and out of my life - or that I cannot take one (or more) constant presence(s) in my life. I've always been a champion for anti-feminism. (Honestly, burn your bras and you're left with out-of-shape breasts; to whom have they been of any use???) But what I've often come across is a sense of claustrophobia, of too many shared spaces. Couples who do everything
together, share each other's email passwords and know each other's histories...well,
that's a little too close for someone who believes each member of a couple should have a room of his or her own.
I've often spoken to some of my like-minded, equally emotionally claustrophobic friends about whether we're designed to be single or part of a couple. Most of the conversations ended with
the conclusion that long-distance relationships were the best. You had someone to fantasise about, and you had your own space to go to movies alone, eat alone, take vacations alone and indulge in some harmless flirting when you had the mind to. There are times when we want no
strings attached, and times when we find the pull of the string comforting.
And then I realised that it was all about one thing - being single in a relationship. It was about retaining all the freedom you had while being single, while moving into the comfortable camaraderie of a relationship. And since this is 2007, I'm not talking about being
tied up in chains (unless, of course, you're into that sort of thing!) But, in all seriousness, how
often is it that women nag at their partners and ask them who that was on the phone, when
they will be back, where they are headed to, how long it's been since they had some alone
time together...and men nag their partners about the same issues? Perhaps some of us
need to resign ourselves to not being the committing kind...or at least, the marrying kind. Perhaps some of us need to realise that we will only be happy with partners as neurotic as we are. And - perhaps - we all need to be open to the fact that a marriage, or any long-term relationship can work as long as we can all accommodate each other's singledom within it.