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Are You Just Afraid of Being Single?

Posted by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 3:06 AM
  • 24 Replies
1 mom liked this

By: Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD

 

You aren’t exactly happy in your relationship…but you stay. You remind yourself (frequently, perhaps), that your partner is a good person who cares about you, and that no relationship is perfect. Maybe you’ve even been making extra effort to improve your relationship – sending more sweet texts, doing more fun things together, going away for a romantic weekend – but still, you feel like something is missing. And you may wonder what to do next.

It may be time to ask yourself: are you staying because you’re afraid of being alone?

First, let yourself be aware of how you feel when you think about being single. You need to be honest with yourself, which can be difficult for people who strongly want to avoid being alone. Just the thought of it might make you make you feel uncomfortable, avoidant, or even a bit afraid. If you sense that this is a powerful issue, you need to pay attention to it.

Spend some time thinking about what it would be like to be on your own. You don’t need to actually end your relationship – you just need imagine what it would be like to be single for a while. Get comfortable with the idea and acknowledge that it could actually be enjoyable in some ways. Think about what it would be like to spend time with other friends and pursue interests you enjoy. Of course, if you were single, you might feel lonely at home sometimes, so allow yourself to imagine feeling lonely and restless (but then moving on to re-engage in life). If you were on your own, you might choose to date, so think about what that would be like. Overall, you want to practice being able to “see” yourself creating an enjoyable and fulfilling  – though imperfect – life as a single person. Even when you can imagine feeling good in this “single” life, you may sense that you would still yearn for a partner… but the question is: Would you still want your current partner?

Once you’re comfortable with the idea of being alone, you’ll be in a good place to answer that question. Since you’ll no longer be shackled to your relationship out of fear, you’ll be able to choose what you really want to do. You might choose to move on, or you might choose to stay with your current partner and continue to try to improve your relationship.

When you doubt whether you are with the right person, remember this: To enjoy life as part of a couple, it’s extremely important to feel and believe in your heart that you have chosen to be with your partner.


by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 3:06 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Serenity7
by Platinum Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 5:55 AM

Thanks for posting


UCFknight
by Brenda on Sep. 7, 2016 at 10:34 AM
1 mom liked this

I have friends and family who are terrified of being alone. I couldn't imagine staying in a relationship where I didn't yearn to be held and kissed by my spouse. When the door opens in the evening I love seeing his handsome face, and usually get a few butterflies. Even after being together 16 years, he always keeps me on my toes. A lot of my friends use the excuse, of not wanting to be alone, or sticking together because of the kids. But we only have one life to live, so why not make it as amazing and fulfilling as possible?!

Hottmomma607
by Trica on Sep. 7, 2016 at 10:43 AM
Life is too short to be unhappy but in a relationship. It's sad.
I have a friend like that and it's been a crazy ride for her. She held onto an abusive marriage and into toxic relationships after that. It's been 18mo with a new guy and baby, I think she's finally got it? Her ex was an ass and now their daughter together is 16yo be finally took am interest in her.*smh*
He was focused on his military career.


Quoting UCFknight:

I have friends and family who are terrified of being alone. I couldn't imagine staying in a relationship where I didn't yearn to be held and kissed by my spouse. When the door opens in the evening I love seeing his handsome face, and usually get a few butterflies. Even after being together 16 years, he always keeps me on my toes. A lot of my friends use the excuse, of not wanting to be alone, or sticking together because of the kids. But we only have one life to live, so why not make it as amazing and fulfilling as possible?!

MomToovey
by Marianne on Sep. 7, 2016 at 10:51 AM

You know, I have never heard of it. Well, not put that way at least. I have heard of women who choose to stay married because they think they're stuck (as in, SAHM who would need to move out and get a job on zero finances). But never because they think being single is a far worse alternative.

Thankfully, I fall into the "happily married" category so I don't need to worry!

teal.blaze
by on Sep. 7, 2016 at 10:52 AM
I struggle with this. Neither of us is happy anymore. I love my husband, but I can only take so much lying. It's destroyed me from the inside, out. But at the same time, I struggle with depression, and dont do well by myself. I just about lost it when I was home alone with the kids by myself for 2 days. I can't sleep in a bed by myself. I only had one boyfriend before my husband, and he's the only person I've ever had sex with. I am terrified of the idea of not having him here.
UCFknight
by Brenda on Sep. 7, 2016 at 11:01 AM

That is just so sad. I will never understand how pants cannot be involved in their children' lives. And glad she got out. Did she ever go through therapy? It's hard living such a jaded life. Your point of view tends to be skewed after being in an abusive relationship. 

Quoting Hottmomma607: Life is too short to be unhappy but in a relationship. It's sad. I have a friend like that and it's been a crazy ride for her. She held onto an abusive marriage and into toxic relationships after that. It's been 18mo with a new guy and baby, I think she's finally got it? Her ex was an ass and now their daughter together is 16yo be finally took am interest in her.*smh* He was focused on his military career.
Quoting UCFknight:

I have friends and family who are terrified of being alone. I couldn't imagine staying in a relationship where I didn't yearn to be held and kissed by my spouse. When the door opens in the evening I love seeing his handsome face, and usually get a few butterflies. Even after being together 16 years, he always keeps me on my toes. A lot of my friends use the excuse, of not wanting to be alone, or sticking together because of the kids. But we only have one life to live, so why not make it as amazing and fulfilling as possible?!


BonitaM
by Ruby Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:10 PM
Not afraid of being single but have often heard people say "I don't want to be alone forever ". If DH and I ever split up (highly unlikely), I wouldn't want another relationship.
I like my solitude and freedom to come and go as I please. We have the perfect marriage for us and I know exactly how lucky I am to have found him.
sarahjz
by Sarah on Sep. 7, 2016 at 1:23 PM

Fortunately I am happily married.

rsmom2511
by Member on Sep. 7, 2016 at 4:19 PM
I definitely have mixed feelings about this article. I think the generation X and millennial generation always feel like they have to be very very happy all of the time. Many lack coping skills and maybe that's why suicide rates are at an all-time high as well as divorce rates. Marriage isn't always a blissful butterflies in your stomach type situation. And thats OK. It's called being mature and understanding that people grow old and change and sometimes get a little grumpy or set in their ways but at the end of the day you should have each other -you should be good friends -hopefully treat each other with mutual kindness and respect… I think as a teacher I see so many children devastated by the effects of their parents divorce, and being shipped back and forth to different homes and homework gets left behind at one house and they're now tearfully apologizing to me because dad didn't sign permission slip and mom is waiting for the check etc., i'm not saying that everybody should stay married because I know in some situations it's actually better for the kids if the parents are not screaming at each other, but I think if a woman read this article and decides oh geez I'm not supremely happy and passionate about my husband so I think I'm going to be brave and wreck my kids lives in order to venture out to find some Latin lover… That is ridiculous and very immature. I think its a dangerous and unrealistic expectation to have of your spouse and marriage in general & I certainly will not be raising my daughters to feel that something is missing if they don't always have that constant state of bliss and fulfillment in their relationships. I think that there are some women who are afraid to be alone and therefore remain in terrible relationships, but I think the fast majority of the average American couples are relatively happy with various ups and downs but would probably admit they are not passionate about one another the way they maybe were when they first got together… And we have to recognize that that's completely OK. Again, I understand completely that women should not be afraid to be alone if the only reason they're staying with an abusive horrible man is because of their fear for what else is out there but if it's just a case of not feeling blissfully happy and then divorcing your husband and breaking up a child's home I think that is where I just don't agree. I guess I'm an old-fashioned girl at heart.
Hottmomma607
by Trica on Sep. 7, 2016 at 4:19 PM
She was going to therapy while married after his 15mo deployment he comes back to divorces her. She moves out of state but then she a had issues with one guy he was on meth. She finally met the guy she is with now and had a baby by him. She's finally doing better she was getting therapy. The ex finally took interest in his child she's there in another state with him but now she's 16yo.

Quoting UCFknight:

That is just so sad. I will never understand how pants cannot be involved in their children' lives. And glad she got out. Did she ever go through therapy? It's hard living such a jaded life. Your point of view tends to be skewed after being in an abusive relationship. 

Quoting Hottmomma607: Life is too short to be unhappy but in a relationship. It's sad.
I have a friend like that and it's been a crazy ride for her. She held onto an abusive marriage and into toxic relationships after that. It's been 18mo with a new guy and baby, I think she's finally got it? Her ex was an ass and now their daughter together is 16yo be finally took am interest in her.*smh*
He was focused on his military career.


Quoting UCFknight:

I have friends and family who are terrified of being alone. I couldn't imagine staying in a relationship where I didn't yearn to be held and kissed by my spouse. When the door opens in the evening I love seeing his handsome face, and usually get a few butterflies. Even after being together 16 years, he always keeps me on my toes. A lot of my friends use the excuse, of not wanting to be alone, or sticking together because of the kids. But we only have one life to live, so why not make it as amazing and fulfilling as possible?!

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