Sometimes it is hard for everyone to remember that there is more to life than being happily coupled up. When you’re single you want what you can’t have- that happy settled relationship. When you’re happily partnered off, it’s hard to remember how much fun you used to have when you were single.
Some of the best moments of being single are when you’re not looking for the next great guy. There is more for coupled friends to offer than your friend’s brother’s next door neighbor that happens to be single.
Let’s bridge the gap, let’s stop seeing “single”as a problem that needs to be solved. Instead let’s learn how we can all get along and have a lot of fun together.
I know it’s hard when you are trying to support a friend that is going through something that you can’t relate to. The biggest problem is that you start wondering how you can help, or what is the right thing to say.
Let me help, here is how coupled friends can help single friends.
- Keep inviting us to hang out.
The problem of wondering what to say goes both ways. We singles often don’t want to interrupt your evenings of wedded bliss and tons of married sex (because you still do that, right?). And if you have children, we assume that you’re ready to move on with your life and leave us in the dust. So help us bridge the gap, and invite us over once in a while. It doesn’t have to be the wild late nights like we used to do together when we were all single. We like your company, just as you are.
Every once in a while, we may leave early from a party you throw with your couple friends or we may turn down your invitation if there is something else going on. This is going to be rare, but it might happen.
- Stop setting us up on blind dates without asking us first.
There is nothing more uncomfortable than the accidental set up- when you invite me and some guy that you think is just perfect and oh! we just happen to all be at the same place at the same time! There is nothing accidental about that, and it’s just awkward.
If you want to set us up on a date let us know in advance. Let us decide whether or not we’re ok with being set up. We’ve had plenty of set ups, and sometimes we’d rather have the opportunity to say no thanks. Or, you can invite us to a big party and if we happen to meet and mingle then that’s swell. But there is also an entire party full of people that we can talk to in case it doesn’t work out.
- Warn us if we will be the only single person at a dinner or a party. But don’t let that stop you from inviting us. We won’t say no just because we’re the only single person at the party. But we would like to know ahead oftime. We can wrap our brain around that, pysch ourself up, and know that we won’t have to put effort into looking extra cute in case someone is flirt-worthy. We would just like some warning, that’s all.
- Let us help you try new things.
One of the best things about being single is that you have to have a life. One of the best things about being coupled up is that you can stay in and do nothing and still have a great night. But a little too much staying in gets to be boring.
That’s where we come in! Singles to the rescue! When we invite you out to check out a funky art opening, a new band, a great party, a new bar say yes once in a while. You can still try new things outside of your coupled life and we’ll love having the new experiences with you.
And if we don’t invite you, ask if you can come along. The next time we share a story about the last great thing we did, tell us you’d like to join the next time and we’ll invite you. It may not have occurred to a single person that a coupled person would want to join us for a wild night out.
- Stop the cliches, please.
“You’ll find him when you’re not looking.” “He’s out there!” “You deserve better!” We’ve heard it a million times, and it’s nothing we aren’t telling ourselves in moments of weakness alone in the shower.
We turn to you for support because you are a friend. We don’t need you to fill space with meaningless cliches, unless you’re making fun of how ridiculous they sound. It’s enough for you to be with us, and if you don’t know what to say it’s ok to admit that. Say something witty or insightful if it comes to mind, otherwise let’s just be goofy and watch silly YouTube videos.
- Be our wingman/woman.
It is really cool to have someone that is already coupled off that is willing to help us pick up men. It saves the trouble of worrying if you’re going to snag the guy we’re really into. Some of my married friends make the most effective wingwomen because they have fun flirting on my behalf and they see their friend (me) get hooked up! Win-win for everyone!
Hopefully these ideas help break some of the tension between marrieds and singles. It doesn’t have to be a war between the two, we just need to be open with each other about what makes us uncomfortable and what kind of support we need.
What are your tricks for dealing with married or single friends?