Single. It’s an interesting concept for such a small word. And it can have so many different meanings when someone uses the word to describe him/herself. In fact, it really doesn’t tell you much besides that the person is not married. However, this same person could be single but dating multiple people; single but dating one person exclusively; single but screwing one or more people; single and desperately wanting to be married; single with absolutely no prospects; single but beginning a thing with someone… look — you get my point, there’s several variations available to this one word.
I didn’t really think about this too much until I was out with two of my girls earlier this year, and the topic of our current relationship statuses came up. Now, funny enough — the three of us at the time were all technically single, but represented different aspects of the word. One girl was engaged, another one single but entertaining someone that she didn’t really like all that much, and then there was me — smack dab in the midst of a flirtationship.
Anyway, at some point, my engaged friend asked us how our love lives were going because this was our chance to catch up with her since she usually resides in another country. Our responses? Basically that not much had changed since she came back in town the last time, and we were both still very much single. This declaration was followed by Engaged friend dropping several names on us and asking, “but what happened to them?” “Oh,” we both replied separately, “He’s still around, but…”
Now, how funny is that?! Two women who when asked right out about their dating situations completely ex-ed out the men who were definitely in the picture! Upon realizing this, SCurl (the other “real” single person at our table besides me) decided that no woman is ever 100% single. In fact, she noted that most of us were at least 25% not single (35% on the weekends). I countered that the same could be said for men as well, and that most people are rarely ever completely unattached to anyone. And yet… we were both quick to remind Engaged friend that those men who were still around didn’t change our single status.
So what does that mean when you meet someone and he or she says they are single? How do you know just how single they are? And more importantly, how do you determine your single status? Do you count the people who may be in your life, but you know have no long term future, towards this single title or is it more a reflection of if you’re in a relationship with someone?