Looking over what I'm saying, it makes it sound like I am just deeply selfish and unwilling to compromise. I can give you a few testimonials from people who love me that will tell you the opposite (hi mum!). I just feel that being alone should be everybody's default position and that needing company, at most, should be our secondary state of being.
It feels like we're expected to be crying into a pillow, stinking of Chardonnay, cat pee and desperation. (for the record I prefer Gin & smell expensive, darling). The biggest thing I've learned is that being single aged 36 is actually rather exciting, unpredictable and utterly refreshing! The sense of freedom is incredible.
I'm 59, the eldest of four siblings, but have no partner and no children. A sense of inadequacy grows: what can I leave my nephews and nieces, and their children? I don't mean memories; I mean, what that is tangible and lasting, that I can equitably share among them? It's like feeling a phantom limb, a shadowy disconnect with future generations that I so ache to put right.
Feminists would take the stance that this is somehow to do with the male appetite for a younger model. Women are left alone fending for themselves after a marriage breakdown and fated to an existence of meals for one and loneliness whilst their ex partner enjoys the fruits of youth. The truth, however, is often less interesting than spin.
I am pretty sure, I am the kind of woman that pick-up artists around the world would refer to as a "10". Have I not an excessive amount of lumps here and there? Men love that. And don't get me started on my extensive knowledge of Fresh Prince of Bel Air-trivia. In all ways, I am a catch. I think I am damn well entitled to make some demands of my own, when choosing a man.
Britain is home to a load of sad, lonely singletons if recent headlines are anything to go by. Since a UK study has revealed that 16% of Brits now live alone compared to 9% in 1978, mental health charity Mind have expressed their concerns over the state of mind of people living alone. However what they have failed to address is that for many of these people, living alone is a choice.