CatholicMatch is a wellspring for discussion on the trials and rewards of single life.
The greatest challenge? Members have no shortage of answers, ranging from physical to spiritual longings. One of the most common sentiments is loneliness.
“The hardest part of being single is to walk the path of life alone,” Michaela-426347 said.
“Nobody to share your life with,” Tom-432657 said.
“Not having that physical person there for you with a hug when the going gets tough,” added Mary-487190.
Theresa-573393, who is 49, shared a heartbreaking account of taking a cab home after surgery. The element of single life that cuts the deepest, she said, is the nagging sense of “feeling unloved.”
“The question that lurks,” she wrote, “is, ‘What is it about me? Why has no one loved me enough to sustain a relationship beyond dating? Am I going to be alone forever?’ I am mourning the loss of the children I will never have. It breaks my heart that I will never be able to share the joy of motherhood when I am so wonderful with children.”
“I know exactly how that feels,” Lindsey-297821 responded. “I question myself every day. I even question others to see if there is anything wrong with me that no one wants to be with me. I mean no one!”
CatholicMatch members confess that sometimes they second guess themselves. “The hardest thing about being single is hoping you measure up,” wrote Josh-196444. “Do you have what it takes in terms of education, status, likes, interests, etc. that would potentially bring you closer to a partner?”
Sarah-671048 also battles uncertainty. “The hardest part about being single for me would be that I don’t know what the future looks like and the hope that one day I’ll be married is forever playing on my mind,” she said.
The hardest part for Adrian-504270? “Remaining loyal and steadfast to God’s will.”
And yet, some CatholicMatch members say they enjoy their status.
“I really like being single,” Paul-663898 wrote. “I have lots of time to pursue hobbies, do community work, relax, work out, meditate, and pay off debt. Would I like a girlfriend? Sure. But I don’t feel my life is less just because I don’t have someone to hug at the end of the day. Alone? We are never truly alone. How can we expect to be happy with someone if we can’t be happy by ourselves?”
Colette-443908 has a quick answer to the upside of being unmarried: “Independence!”
And Deborah-365731 offered practical examples of that autonomy: “I like that when I put something down, it is still there when I come back for it. If I decide to get up early and go for a run at 8 a.m., there’s nobody to complain that I woke them up – or that something I want to do is in conflict with something they want to do. If my job transfers me, I can relocate fairly easily – same with taking spur-of-the-moment trips. If I want to curb my diet, there isn’t a house full of other people to complain that there aren’t any goodies in the house.”
“No honey-do tasks,” Leon-593843 added. “At night, read as long as I wish with the light on above the bed.”
Alexandra-706283 sees advantages too. “Being single gives me the time and space to prepare myself for married life,” she said. “Every day is another step closer to God, another day of preparation for my ultimate vocation as a married spouse and another day to cleanse my soul and brighten my spirit.”
How do you feel about your single status? And, like it or not, what are you doing today to brighten your spirit?