If you’re single and not reading Single is the New Black then you, my dear friend, are missing out. This book gives voice to myriad of challenges we as single women face in a world that’s seemingly built for two. Or rather, that’s the narrative we’re sold, right? If you’re single then something must be wrong with you. You’re either too picky, not putting yourself out there, have daddy issues, blah, blah, blah.
Dr. Karin Anderson Abrell, the author, writes a tome that doesn’t attempt to ‘fix’ us but rather, she validates our struggle! Imagine that. Dr. Karin is able to empathize with us because she’s lived our experiences. And that’s just one of the things that makes this book so unique. She shares personal snippets of her journey through singlehood, offers up a guy’s perspective on our struggles (the ‘guy’ is sometimes shocked at the things we go through, imagine that-insert snark here), and actual scenarios from women brave enough to share their interactions and perspectives on navigating the single life.
Here are a few points that stood out most for me.
1.There’s nothing wrong with me. I’m fine just the way I am. I just haven’t met the right man, yet.
Family and friends can really do a number on your outlook. They’ll make statements or pose questions like “are you putting yourself out there?” “Maybe you need to see a therapist to figure out what’s wrong”. Of course this is all proffered under the guise of being helpful but really it’s not. Such statements as these can leave you feeling like something is wrong with you and defensive. It’s bad enough society and the media create the image that being “one of two” is somehow the superior position to be in; but having the added pressure from friends and family can be stifling. I will say I’m grateful that my parents have never asked me about my dating life, or pressured me about settling down and getting married. Rather, that came from my other family members and friends.
2. It’s not because I’m not trying hard enough.It just hasn’t happened yet. Big, huge, sigh.
I’ve been told by some well-meaning friends that I need to work on my attitude where dating is concerned. Now, I’m a big proponent of chemistry. Such a small word with a lot of weight, right? Anyway, back to my point. Chemistry is either there or it isn’t. It cannot be manufactured. So if I don’t sense any chemistry between myself and a guy then I’m probably not going to spend a lot of time with him. Conversely, if I sense chemistry but the behavior is inconsistent, then again, I’m probably not going to waste my time.
3. Don’t compare myself to my married friends. They got lucky!
Oh the number of times I’ve done this. Okay, maybe not my married friends since I don’t have many, but my friends that are in seemingly long-term, stable relationships? Absolutely. I’ve done the “why them and not me?” Mind you, I don’t begrudge my friends, but I often find myself wondering what’s wrong with me that I haven’t met my man yet.
4. Stop thinking about it so much. It’s a waste of time.
Ah, it’s like Dr. Karin was reading my mind with this point (actually the entire book I felt this way). I go back and forth between thinking about it, obsessing over it, to being just fine on my own. I think what triggers the obsession are the holidays, my birthday, and when a friend meets a keeper. Wow, I just realized that my triggers are external. Hmmmmm… At any rate, Dr. Karin provides some exercises that help pull you out of this line of thinking. More on that coming up next…
5. Quit worrying about being alone forever. You’re alone because you refuse to settle.
Actually, for me, this goes hand in hand with number 4. I start thinking about being single which inevitably leads to me thinking that maybe it’s just not in the cards for me to settle down. I will say that I’ve gotten better about moving through these thoughts and the emotions that go with them, but it’d be nice to not have them at all. In the meantime, I’ll use the cognitive disputation exercises Dr. Karin discusses in her book. I won’t explain the specifics of it (you’ll have to get the book for that) but it helps dispute the irrational thoughts you have.
Are you intrigued and want to get the book? If so, you’re in luck as I’m giving away not only two copies of the book, but also two brand new Single Girls Rock t-shirts!
Enter here to get your FREE book and T-shirt!!!!!!
Until then, remember, you are more than your relationship status. Single is the new black!