The advantages of being alone

This was tonight’s dinner

With Valentines Day coming up there are ads, pictures, and stories about how glorious it is to be part of a couple. There are also the rebuttals, defending the right to be single and the glories of singleness. This isn’t exactly rebuttal, if you are with someone, good for you. I was married myself for years so being alone and single is something I’m still getting used to after 3 years.

Being single in your 20’s and 30’s is different from being single when you are 50. Most examples of older women are sad: about a lonely widow, a sad childless single woman, women struggling on limited incomes and the stereotypical cat lady. There is the rare happy older woman, usually eccentric but still pitied and looked at with condescension.

So as an old broad who is alone, single, without a partner I’ve made a list of the good things about my status.

1. Less laundry. I do my laundry once a week, one load. No last minute surprises, no extra work. Sorting and folding take a few minutes.

2. Toilet paper lasts longer. Also the bathroom, especially the floor, stays cleaner longer. This should probably be #1.

3. I can change plans without having to check with someone else, or worry that he will be inconvenienced or it will cause any conflicts.

4. I don’t have to go to events I don’t want to attend either, to appease a partner.

5. I can have the TV on late at night and read in bed late if I want to, without guilt. Also I can turn off the TV and have quiet if I want.

6. Freedom to watch what TV shows I want and if I get netflix again, to binge watch if I want when I want.

7. I can buy groceries early in the morning, run errands on my own schedule. Don’t have to wait on another person.

8. Since it’s just me I don’t have to cook every day or make complete meals. Tonight I had a bowl of cereal for dinner. All I have to clean up is a bowl and spoon. Brilliant.

9. I do live with a cat, do not need to worry about another person’s possible allergies, dislike of cats, whether their pet gets along with mine or other problems.

10. No drama. I don’t worry if my partner is faithful, about his ex-wife, ex-girlfriend, gambling debts, drug addiction or anything unexpected. My husband was a no drama guy, so I was very fortunate but know some women aren’t.

11. I can keep the thermostat on 70 degrees if I want. No complaints that it’s too hot.

12. I can spend money without consulting another person. As long as the bills are paid, there is food in the fridge and gas in the car I can buy a concert ticket, pair of shoes or go on a thrift store shopping spree with no worry and a clear conscience.

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