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Couple Culture: I do, or do I?

17th March 2011

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Do I?

What is it about relationships? When you’re in when one you can’t wait to get out of it. When you’re single you just
want to be in one? Why is there so much pressure for people to ‘couple up?’

Personally I don’t see anything wrong with being single. In fact I love being single. I enjoy doing what I want, when I want,
with who I want. This is until I step out my front door and get bombarded with the same old question- “How’s your love life?”

I mean seriously if your single you cannot do very little without being reminded that you’re not in a relationship. Turn on the TV, every programme focuses on couples. Turn on the radio, more songs about couples. Open a magazine, more information about- wait for it- couples! If the media had its own way it would have everyone believing singletons are a creature from mars.
Just look at Jennifer Aniston, instead of being represented as a strong, single female role model- her love life is constantly under scrutiny.

Let’s face it, if you’re not married by the time you’re thirty something then you’re basically going to be left on the shelf. The

pressure for people to get married, have children and live that perfect, white picket-fence life is suffocating the nation. At the end of the day, no person can live up to the high expectations set by the media. All these expectations can only lead to disappointment and even divorce.

I do.

In a culture fuelled by sex, drugs and wobbly bass lines relationships remain perilously underrated. It’s true that if you read the hyperbole of glossy celebrity mags then being single can be an overwhelmingly depressing experience, but to govern your own love life by the ten commandments of Heat is a sin in itself.

Being in a relationship can of course be highly rewarding but crucially we must not look too far ahead. Maybe it is our deeply entrenched British conservatism but a relationship irrespective of age, experience or sexual orientation should not be burdened with the expectation of wedding bells. Dating, as our less-inhibited friends across the Atlantic call it, can be a great way to get to know people and find out more about yourself – whether it lasts two weeks or two years you will be better for the experience.

Of course no one can help falling in love, and no amount of words can account for the emotional rollercoaster of any meaningful relationship, but to deny yourself the opportunity is to ignore one of life’s richest gifts. Drinking yourself into a coma and dragging a half-naked girl back to your flat for the most underwhelming sexual encounter of your life may seem appealing, but spending an afternoon with someone whose existence amounts to more than just another notch in your bedpost can be equally, if not more rewarding.

If being single works for you then please go right ahead but don’t ever be afraid to chase what could be a life changing encounter as one day you may actually find yourself craving that once-ridiculed white picket-fence existence. JC

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