Friday, January 21, 2011

The Single Files™ Episode 1 - OneChele.

[Editor's Note: The Single Files™ begins with some real talk from my homegirl OneChele who runs the outlandishly successful blog Black -N- Bougie. She's also a published author with a couple of relationship-related novels that you'd probably enjoy. Today, she weighs in on the societal pressures a woman faces when everyone asks the silly question "So, Why Aren't You Married Yet?". Show our guest some love you-know-where.]

I’m Single Cuz I’m not Married. Period?

According to the mainstream media, assorted pundits and blogosphere, as an unmarried African-American woman of a certain age, with a certain lifestyle, income and education – I should just buy Snuggies in a rainbow array of colors and invest in a lifelong subscription to Cat Fancy magazine.

I respectfully decline. I feel like I should form a new group called Singles Anonymous. Hi, I’m Michele. I’m chronically single. My cyber-homie AB asked me to write a post on why I’m still single… and just because I love him so… I did not hop a flight to the DMV burbs and toilet-paper his domicile.

It’s my least favorite question in the world. The real thing people want to know when they ask you this question is – What happened to you, does nobody want you and are you okay with it? It automatically puts you in a defensive position. You have to get across that you are desirable, you’re good being alone and you need to project the right amount confidence (not arrogance) and acceptance (not resignation).

Personally, I have a set number of answers for this question ranging from the ubiquitous “I haven’t met the right person yet” to a lengthy historical diatribe of dating woes reaching back to the mid-90s.

The truth lies somewhere in between. Honestly, I probably have met the right person. More than once. Timing, circumstances, missteps and poor judgment (by both parties) spelled ultimate doom for those relationships. I’ve definitely met a lot of Mr. Wrongs as well.

An ex-S/O called out of the blue last week (as they are known to do) to catch up for the new year. [Sidebar: Folks, this is unnecessary. If I wanted to catch up, I would have done so in the preceding eleven months. Chances are if you haven’t heard from me in that time frame – I’m good with that. Moving on.] After a minute or so of small talk, he confided that he had “done something crazy” over New Year’s weekend. He had gone to Vegas with his current girlfriend and decided “what the heck, let’s get married.” He paused to get my reaction.


This is the same dude that said he just couldn’t “do right” to maintain a “grown-up relationship” for a few months at a time. And he got married? This floored me on a number of levels. One of them, yes, being the petty “why her and not me?” level. Not that I wanted to marry him, it was the principal of the thing. But before I could work up a good pity party, he started talking again.

“Well, you know – she’s put in the time. She looks good enough. And I figured it’s time for a ball and chain. I mean, if it doesn’t work out we can just go to Mexico, right?”

What was he planning a major relationship shift for every vacation? It’s at times like these when it all becomes as clear as a desperate starlet’s blouse on the red carpet. There are far worse things than being single… I could be married to that guy.

So long story short: I’m still single because when (if) I do get married, I want to feel like it’s going to be forever (not just because my frequent flier miles are about to expire).

Question: If you're single, how often are you asked this question? Does it annoy you?

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