The Unspoken: A Recognition Of The Single Girl’s Bravery

[Image credit: Whitney Jordan]

My best friend and I are hilarious. Well, it’s more like we’re hilarious from a third-person perspective and/or hilarious only in retrospect. She and I are like the Tina Fey and Amy Poehler of the non-celebrity world; we’re usually drunk and we curse like sailors, AKA our lives can be likened to your favorite romcom (Bridesmaids, My Best Friend’s Wedding, take your pick).

We’re also perpetually single. We find it unnerving when we plan a girls’ night out, and the friends with boyfriends hit the sack early to be with their boos, while the single friends jump ship halfway through the night for one-night stands. It seems lots of our girlfriends – and a lotta girls in general – feel the need to end each and every night with men. Tina and I don’t understand this.

The other night, Tina and I were having a drink at her apartment when, in a moment of unexpected vulnerability, she said to me, “I didn’t realize I needed a boyfriend until all of my roommates started bringing theirs over.” I didn’t know what to say, so I looked down at my shoes. A familiar chill came over me. Here’s the 411: Tina lives in an apartment with three other girls who are all floating on the highs of requited love. She wasn’t pitying herself, but the harsh reality is that when you’re surrounded by couples, you’re bound to feel lonely – regardless of how much you value being alone.

Couples, every now and then, you make singles feel uncomfortable. I know you don’t mean to, but you do. And because couples get days of recognition all the time (Valentine’s Day, date nights, New Year’s Eve [yes, this one is couple-y — kissing at midnight]), it only makes sense we take the time to bring to light the bravery of the single girl:

The single girl hustles at work, then celebrates by taking herself out to dinner. She looks forward to the simple things, including that glass of red wine awaiting her at home. But when she does finally make her way to the kitchen in her home – a place that’s supposed to be her haven – she finds all of her girlfriends sitting on their boyfriends’ laps in said kitchen. And suddenly, the soothing calm that’s meant to arise from the sound of pouring a full-bodied wine into a glass is drowned out by the inescapable noise of lips smacking. It’s the kind of noise that’s so mind-numbing it haunts the single girl in her sleep. The sound of one couple’s lips staggers with the sound of another’s, and together, they create a musical symphony that goes a little something like, “Ha ha! You can’t have this.”

The single girl, who went about her day feeling confident and anything but lonely, now looks on longingly, and questions every decision she’s ever made.

She thinks about calling the guy she let go a while back.

She considers calling over her booty call, for whom she has no real feelings.

Most of all, she wants to call the guy who broke her heart; the one that no matter what she does, she can never get out of her head.

After having these brief thoughts, she decides not to act on any of them, because she realizes something: none of them leave her with the kind of love she sees in her kitchen. Acting on these thoughts would simply be half-hearted attempts to create a feeling she has not yet been blessed with finding.

So she retires to her room and shuts the door. She curls up to read a book and find her happy place, but she can hear every gory detail of the lovers’ lives through her cardboard walls. Every sweet whisper, every moan, every creak the bed makes. She turns on music and she hopes it’ll be loud enough to block out both the sounds of the lovers and the thoughts created by her own self-doubt.

But then, the single girl wakes up the next morning. She wonders why she ever let anyone else get into her head. A promise is made not to fall victim ever again. And, with a little help from the sun, she re-energizes herself, laughs, and builds up her courage all over again.

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About Sheena Sharma

Indian-American writer in New York. Inherently curryous about first-generation Americans, Gen-Y and love.

1 Response

  1. Hey SS, your blog resonates with me. It’s one thing to save face in front of friends and say “yeah I’m single so what” but when I’m by myself, there’s that gnawing kind of loneliness, and I crave to be with someone, not because society tells me to, but because I genuinely like sharing travels, laughs, and cuddles with a guy who wants to do the same. So yeah, bravery is the name of the game- I always say that on social media, the friends with significant others can post this picture and that picture with their boo, and everyone sees it, but single people posting the same things (by themselves) just feels like a “oh, so and so is doing this…by herself…again”. Thank you for being vulnerable and sharing your insights!

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