Scientists reveal why now is the best time in history to be single
While you stand there pouring yourself a glass of wine and looking on as every one of your friends is either getting engaged, going off on exciting dates every weekend, or buying a pug with their significant other, it's time to stop feeling sorry for yourself, because it turns out that you are the real winner in this scenario.
Sure, every grandparent, movie and societal expectation has you believe that one of life's main purposes is finding The One; settling down with them, having a few kids, and eventually dying together in the house that you've spent your whole lives paying off. However, it turns out that several studies are pointing out that society doesn't really think that way anymore. In fact, it's now the best time ever in history to be single, according to a number of different research papers published in the past year. And here's why.
1. Despite popular belief, relationships don't necessarily boost your self-esteem
A study of 9,000 adults in Germany looked at how romantic relationships relate to self-esteem, and researchers found that sure, you'll feel better about yourself in a relationship, but only if it's a stable, functional, healthy relationship that lasts at least a year.
And more importantly, a bad relationship is way worse for your self-esteem than if you just stayed single and didn't get into that toxic relationship with that guy you knew was going to be bad for you, (But to hell with it because he got you Abercrombie and Fitch discounts and had good arms).
2. People just aren't into getting married as much
The German study also found that self-esteem didn't change whether you were married or if you were in a long-term relationship with someone sans wedding band.
Additionally, a 2017 Census Bureau report of the US found that 55 per cent of the people who took part said that they wouldn't have "GET MARRIED" on their to-do list for their adult lives. "HAVE A KID" wasn't really an important milestone for them either. Turns out 95 per cent of them thought adulting is more about completing formal schooling and having a good, full-time job (*wipes away a tear of pride*).
3. People who are single are healthier than married ones
A US study followed 79,000 single and married women over a three-year period, tracking health markers including waist size, body-mass index, and blood pressure, as well as their smoking, drinking, exercise and eating habits. In almost every category, women who stayed single or got divorced were healthier than those who were married. It was found married women are more likely to gain weight and drink more, while single women ate healthier, exercised more, and were generally slimmer. While no mental health markers were investigated, there are probably a few benefits there too, given the right attitude.
4. Living alone is all the rage
Individualism and taking care of number one (you) seems to be getting more and more important to women now that they are killing it career-wise. It means that they can afford to have their own place and live blissfully in solitude - aka being able to paint their nails in peace without someone whining about the smell.
Women don't need men like they used to, which might explain why reportedly 45 per cent of the US population was unmarried in 2014 compared to just 28 per cent in 1970.
5. High school students aren't into sex as much as their parents were
Back in the seventies, 33 per cent of high schoolers had had sex in 1977, but in 2014 only 25 per cent had, according to an Australian survey. Over in America, it seems the teens are also less horny than what their parents were - with only 5-10 per cent of 24,000 students revealing they were having sex on weekends despite the fact that 80 per cent of final year students weren't virgins. It seems they'd rather focus on their hobbies, their friends and creating quality Snapchat content instead.
Plus, condom use is up, while sexual assaults and teen pregnancies have declined.
6. Single people actually have way more sex than married couples
But it's not just teens who aren't as interested in the bedroom boogie – a survey of 26,000 people found that married folk are having less sex now than they were back in 1989. Singletons, on the other hand, are doing it more than married couples. Whether that's just because they're older or because people are potentially a bit more lax about it all now, who knows.
So what more convincing do you need than these assorted studies of singledom? Being single really isn't that bad, it's totally up to the way you look at it. Of course you're not going to be better off if you're sobbing into a pint of ice-cream every Saturday night. But if you seize life, look after yourself, focus on your own ambitions and treat yourself to a new succulent every now and again, you'll see that it really is better to be single.