Single people get a lot of shit. If it’s not the constant questioning of whether you’re seeing anyone - and if not why not and when will you ever have children? - the fact that supermarkets quite happily sell ‘dinner for two for £10’ deals but not a 'night in for one for a fiver' is a bit of a pain in the ass. (For the record, it’s totally fine to eat the one for two on your own though)
When you’re single people assume that you’re lonely, unhappy and desperately looking for someone to fill a human shaped hole in your heart. But as many of you already know, that’s quite frankly not the case.
The good news is, fellow singletons, psychological research has now given us the come back we’ve desperately searched for at awkward family get togethers. Next time aunty Linda asks when you’re finally going to bring a boyfriend or girlfriend home to meet everyone, you can tell her that actually Linda, I’m pretty happy as I am right now. Yes, happy! Single people can be happy. How? Because science says so, Linda.
Dr Bella DePaulo, a psychologist and former professor at the University of Virginia said the majority of studies that claim married people are happier and healthier leave out the consequences of divorce, which makes living life as a singleton an actual rational choice for many. Imagine that…
She said: ‘They are not single because they are still looking for The One. They are not waiting for their dream. They are already living their dream’. See? Dreams are being lived in Singletown, Linda. Dreams.
At the American Psychological Association’s annual meeting, Dr DePaulo said studies that compare married and single people have found that singles have more friends, exercise more and are healthier, reports the Times.
The issue with most of the research that has previously been used to look at differences between those who are married and those who are single is that divorced people are often thrown in with the single lot.
‘And here’s the thing: in most studies, people who get married and then get divorced end up worse off than the people who just stayed single,’ Dr DePaulo said.
This inevitably messes with the results that you get from Team Single - a situation Dr DePaulo says wouldn’t be accepted in any other sort of research trial. It all sounds a bit unfair really, doesn't it?
Don’t get me wrong, one day, I repeat, one day, I would love to get married and have kids, a dog, and even a tumble dryer. And I’m sure that I will be fantastically happy when that happens. But I personally don’t want that right now. It’s for some people, but not for all of us. So let’s stop assuming that our single pals are lonely losers desperately swiping right on strangers' selfies. There’s more to life than that in Singletown. We exercise and have friends with whom we mingle. We are living our damn dreams.
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This article originally appeared on The Debrief.