Why are there so many single women

Something is wrong with her!

Although my friends know that I am single, I reliably receive greetings every year on Valentine's Day with texts like: "We wish you all the best." I should then probably feel a strong inner emptiness, listen to myself, learn, mine Overcome single selfishness and still become a useful member of society. Why actually?

We live in a progressive country, accept alternative lifestyles, relationships and families: same-sex marriage and adoption (even if politics still lag behind), patchwork, polyamory, celibacy. Society does not seem to be able to make peace with single women over 35. Something about us must trigger a disturbing, oppressive feeling. The image of the quirky old maid who takes turns talking to her cats and cutting out stamps.

The fact that a single woman can be happy, miss nothing, wait for no one, and look for no one is a myth for most. In reality we are given three stamps: sad, lonely, unfulfilled. Woman, forty, with no partner or children, that means something is wrong with me. Many have an ambition to find out what.

Most read this week:

"What do the men not see in you ?!" "Why you are not married ... you are nice."

How often do I get that - those seemingly innocent questions, the pitying looks, the awkward compliments. But beneath the surface of the friendly flattery lurks the accusation: "Hmm, you're great, but already forty and still single. The other women get it baked too! "

Then the suspicions follow: “You probably frighten the men. How about fewer replies? "

“You have to make an effort. But don't rush them! Men can smell desperation. "

Seriously? We live in the 21st century. Didn't women burn their bras and vacuum them on high heels in order to free themselves from traditional role models and conventional life models? So as not to have to be in a way that someone, maybe, under certain circumstances, likes it? Demanding, intelligent, independent - in what other circumstances are these characteristics negatively chalked for a woman? Only when it comes to the effect on men should they lead to a dead end. What a nonsense! I think even a man is happy when his wife manages to screw the 40-watt bulb into the socket and replace the batteries in the remote control.

I am amazed every time when seasoned women, singles between thirty and forty, act naive and submissive. Just landed in the bar, the radar is already on: Who is cute, does he look at me, do we fit together? The checklist is checked down charmingly: good job, own apartment, own car? Three times crossed, and who you are is determined by the man, the woman wants to please. So every crazy joke is laughed at.

Apparently, being single is a planned problem to be tackled. A whole armada of consultants understood that too. Her advice and programs for completely renewing yourself sound as promising as anti-pimple tonics, the standard process from vision to reality couple relationship is: self-analysis, finding mistakes, being a little ashamed of who you are, mistakes Eliminate, love each other again, lead an exciting single life (meditate, yoga, fitness, purchase animals, travel), take life back into your hands and go on the offensive with an improved self-focus. I soon put the books aside and was annoyed at how sweaty and expensive one should be repaired in one's weak "Everybody has a husband, I want too" moments. Green glamor smoothies, counting steps with the app, pulling out my pubic hair with wax and maybe getting a nifty tattoo? Without me.

It is noteworthy that no man is considered mentally weak if he is still single at forty. The "Shame on yourself, question yourself, reinvent yourself" game apparently only affects women. There is hardly any makeshift literature for him. And I've never met a man who would have been asked by the bartender: "Got stuck on the leftover ramp, huh?"

The other day a business partner called me "Mrs. B." only to correct himself shortly after with "Uh, obviously Miss B." and grin disapprovingly. That too rarely happens to a man. I've been wearing a silver ring on my finger since the incident. Or should I be honest and say: “I haven't met the right guy yet. I don't know why. ”Neither do I know why I've never found ten euros on the tram and never went snowshoeing. It just didn't happen.

I had two long-term relationships, both of which failed because the bottom line was that we weren't a good match. A few years ago I was still actively searching, intoxicated by the crush of some friends. As a calendar saying "Happiness does not fall from heaven" sounds stupid, but from the mouth of a friend it is terrifyingly plausible. On the way in a chat forum, I first spent hours looking for suitable photos, and finally had a friend take my picture. What a theater! After a few days I felt silly in the whole courtship. Wanting to advertise myself to someone as something special in order to stand out from the crowd - it's as if I absolutely had to get rid of myself, the »damaged goods«, shortly before the expiry date.

"Are you too picky, are they your high standards?"

You can rely on this accusation. An act that would explain everything. Ain't it weird People understand someone who not only promises a decent salary from his job, but also some fulfillment. It's okay to worry about the African safari and the new kitchen design. But when it comes to your life partner, please take what crosses your path.

My single life is easy going. I always felt more comfortable alone than with a partner. It wasn't just the men. What does he want? Is he alright? Is he missing something? These questions kept bothering me. In the same way that I had to explain myself every time I got home late from work. No, I'm not the dogged career woman, I work in a small engineering office. If I stay longer in front of the screen, it's because I like to work. I do not claim to realize myself through my work, but the tasks there are important to me. Often they seemed more urgent to me than hanging out on the couch together.

"Who will catch you when you feel bad?"

“Everyone needs a shoulder to lean on. Contact."

My friends and family are capable of hugging. Sex is good, and often even better, outside of a relationship. Of course, in some hours I am lonely, like every human being. That's the way it is.

As far as I am concerned, it can go on forever. I'm fine, I'm healthy, have great friends, a job that I enjoy, a nice apartment, I go on vacation whenever and wherever I want.

Don't get me wrong: I have no problem when two people love each other, get married and have children. For many, a relationship can mean a better life. I just don't know any relationship for which I wanted to swap my current life.

When I watch couples, I often think: "They have each other, but they don't have an easy time with each other." Either the two are the whole ocean, couples who don't know which friends to celebrate with because their ship is in the past few years only had room for two (in that case it says: "Let's do something really crazy and get married in Las Vegas without guests!"). Then I see a lot of non-couples who are only in contact because so much is attached: marriage, home loan savings contracts, companies, semi-detached houses, children. You go to the Italian restaurant every now and then to talk about the new daily menu. The third group, the wow couples - rare but existent - are those who are cooler together than alone and let the other be who they are. The list for the question "What am I missing as a single?" Is therefore manageable.

Before people give up on me as a hopeless case, they ask the crucial question:

"Don't you want a family?"

I've never heard the biological clock ticking. I am passionate about aunt, a good friend and take care of many people. For me, the idea of ​​a family is not just that of father, mother, child. There is also the chosen family, a group of people who love each other, trust each other unconditionally and care for each other. That too is love. When women accuse me: "My children will pay your pension later!" (Which is a fairy tale anyway), then I ask back: "And what if they become silts for whose daily bread I pay taxes?" Child love is just too beautiful a myth to allow for this thought.

Who knows what surprises life has in store. Maybe I'm getting married late? Still having a child? Whatever happens, I already know one thing: no life form has leased the sunny side.

Incidentally, I took off the silver ring. It just doesn't suit me.

Photo: Fabian Zapatka