I was thinking of my first write up for this year and I was like, you know what, lemme talk about singlehood because I’ve had conversations with some single and even married friends and I want to share some of the concerns raised with you all.
“My alone feels good, I’ll only have you if you’re sweeter than my solitude”. A profound quote by Warsan Shire a British writer.
“Being single used to mean that nobody wanted you. Now it means you’re pretty sexy and you’re taking your time deciding how you want your life to be and who you want to spend it with”. Another brilliant quote by Carrie Bradshaw, the protagonist of the HBO franchise Sex and the City played by Sarah Jessica Parker. The movie series lovers can go search for her lol.
Related: Relationship Talk: Understanding Men
These two quotes above, should actually be how every single person envisions singlehood. By the way, shout out to all the single ladies and gentlemen reading this. I came all prepared for you guys today. No shaking!
Perceptions on Relationships
To be very honest, this wasn’t how many including myself saw singlehood before entering into a relationship. Mind you, all the two quotes are from two women who had the chance to learn about how to enjoy singlehood and be their best selves even before considering relationships.
The thing is, if you’re married without children, people have issues with it. If you’re a widow/widower and you remarry, people have issues with it and if you’re single too, the same story. Too much negativity from people who don’t really care about these group of people.
Most singles today are mainly found doing one thing; “waiting to find happiness in a relationship”. This thought is dominant with most singles because our African society precisely “Ghanaian society” pays more respect and attention to the engaged and married.
“Hurry up and find a partner, get married, and have kids” (society slogan). This is the life path that we’ve been taught to follow since we were young. This is the life path we’ve been told is the “way of life”. This senseless philosophy has sent people to their early graves.
Being Single In A Ghanaian Society
Singlehood isn’t something that holds value in this part of the world. Honestly, it’s almost a shame to be single at age 26-30. If you happen to be above these age limit, then eish, the indirect stigma, hmm I don’t even want to go there.
The issue is that, the focus has been on the married and the engaged for so long. Go on Instagram, Facebook or twitter today, proposal and wedding videos are the most watched. Seeing these, most singles especially our “sisters”, because they naturally fantasize a lot, want to skip the single stage to being married. Why? Maybe just so they also get to post their wedding pictures or get the attention and respect a “typical Ghanaian society” would give them.
This has led a lot of people to settle for abusive relationships because they think they are better off in an abusive relationship than being single. There are some people who just fear being single. I was surprised hearing that though. It’s a very sad distin.
Is The Church Helping?
Even in our churches, I’ve realized that the focus is also the same, on the engaged and the married. The singles who are looking to vibe with fellow believers usually get declarations and prayers that they would find a partner and would be out of that lonely and boring stage (single stage) soon.
Apart from encouraging and praying for more marriages for these singles, there is close to nothing done to help these singles who desire marriages, prepare to even meet and identify like-minded believers. How many singles summits are organized in churches today? How does the church help singles who are struggling with where they find themselves?
Related: Tales Of The Distorted Affair
I was chatting a male friend sometime back and he said he wants to work and get lots of money because he’s been told that women “love money” and that when he has money, he can get married to whomever he chooses. I asked what he knew about being a good husband and he said, that “job” is not for him.
He is a man and he would get all he wants so far as there is money. This person is a Christian brother in a very reputable church o. But ah well, I wasn’t too surprised because he is not the only person who bears this thought. There is actually very little done to help singles make the right choices and even have the right mindset for marriage.
I think the family unit has also failed with that. Immediately you manage to finish a first degree and get a job, the next question is “Kojo or Akosua, when are you bringing our in-law home? It is very surprising that, it is only after one guy or lady has shattered your heart that parents and friends get to encourage and tell you what you should have looked out for.
That married person who is esteemed for his or her status now, was once single. Let’s not forget that. From the conversations I’ve had, I can say that most peoples’ relationships and marriages end badly because their single lives were lived mostly in anticipation of finding their happiness in the other person. Which is a distorted idea that has to be rectified.
Dear single lady or gentleman, just as the first quote implies, your happiness shouldn’t come from any other more than it should come from you. Marriage is great and it has been instituted by God for all who desire it, and of course I’d be the first person to tell any single person to look forward to a marriage that is peaceful and worth living for.
Related: This Thing Called Marriage
But first know this, your singlehood is actually a period of preparation and discovery. Don’t rush out of it. Who are you? What makes you “you”? Where do you want to see yourself? And lastly, what have you learnt about marriage and how prepared are you, emotionally, financially, spiritually and physically? As a man, you’re going to be the head of the home. How prepared are you? As a woman, you’re going to be an help meet. How prepared are you?
Answer this for me. Are you even sure you are the type of “person” who would be suitable for the type of “person” you dream about? Are you your dream husband’s dream wife? Deal with that anger issue, the stinginess, the unforgiveness, the pettiness, the childishness, the list dier plenty.
Now to those who complain about loneliness. Loneliness is not the absence of affection because I know what it is to have people show you love and yet you still feel lonely. But Loneliness is the absence of direction. If you don’t know where you are going in life or you don’t have any workable plan for your life, you’ll feel lonely even in the most peaceful marriage.
When your life doesn’t have direction and a vision, you would feel lonely because you are always out of activity. My pretty ladies, now that you’re single, work and make money. The husband you’re waiting for will be the breadwinner of your future home, yes, but you can also bring the “butter”, “jam”, “cheese” or anything that makes “bread” tastes super delicious so your home would be full and more enjoyable.
One thing I’ve learnt from my singlehood is that when you learn to love and appreciate yourself and your growth, you turn to have a more realistic and mature preference as to who to even entertain around you. Finding love is beautiful, I can assure you but it is more peaceful and fulfilling when you’re with someone who helps you to be super excellent at being your best self.
Our society, families and religious groups should be more concerned and intentional about singles and help them on their journey. Self-love is very important and no one should live without it. If you know you don’t appreciate and always talk down on yourself, kindly put an end to that.
“Loving yourself is God’s command, you better obey it!” (@purplishofficial)
You would definitely attract “who you are” in the other person so be careful how you see and treat yourself. Love yourself and use this period to learn all the qualities a good husband or wife should possess because that marriage would come. The bible is the best place to learn these. Thank me later.
Singlehood is beautiful and won’t be boring if only you utilize it well and build up yourself for the next step in life.
And oh, when that person finally comes, don’t forget to make God the center of that relationship. God sees and knows all you would never know about another person. Away…