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Not a single clue...

Happy Singles Day, y'all! I know.... it's Armistice Day, right?

Well, yes. And it really was too bad for those guys. But 11 November is now also International Singles Day.

Started by four incel blokes at a Chinese university in 1993, the day is set aside for parties and singles events in China.

The date may seem arbitrary but "11/11" appaz resembles four single people living their best lives despite the constraints of the relationship-biased Gregorian calendar.

There is also a growing tradition for singles to buy themselves gifts on 11th - as such, it is now the biggest online and offline shopping day in the world.

And while that is clearly a crushingly cynical move from the retail world, I rather like it.

It puts singles - and their occasional need to be perked up - front and centre.

Single (whisper it) has become a dirty word these days.

Just ask Emma Watson. Not content with reinventing feminism (that day at the United Nations… iconic!) the Harry Potter star is now staging a candlelit sit-in on ‘single’.

Asked by Vogue about turning 30, Emma admitted to feeling "stressed and anxious".

She said: "If you do not have a husband, if you do not have a baby, and you are turning 30, … there’s just this incredible amount of anxiety.”

But don't send the 'u ok, hon?' text just yet, folks. Because Watto is just fine.

She added: "It took me a long time, but I’m very happy [being single]. I call it being self-partnered.”

Say what? As a woman who has devoted years to defining the single girl’s narrative, I get her desperation to move things on.

Single comes with baggage for us - that faint whiff of emotional dysfunction and cat wee that no amount of yoga or manicures can dispel.

But self-partnered? Hell nope. Being single is in no way a partnership.

Yes, I nag myself to take out the bins. I give myself the silent treatment for hours on end.

And of course I scream in the mirror “Am I not enough for you?” when I catch myself masturbating. WHO DOESN’T?

But partnership implies support and companionship and these are sadly not self-generated - they have to come from other people.

We are social beings, we need human contact, we function better with a sounding board for our big decisions.

And while family and friends are both beloved and vital in my life, I wake up on my own and sometimes feel a bit bored. A bit empty.

And there’s no shame in this. So to send the message that every woman is an island, replete in isolation, is bullshit.

Just like Emma, I am happy with my life. But I wouldn’t say I’m happily single. I’d much rather be in a loving relationship. Yet to admit it is rare nowadays.

The #meneevs sisterhood insist I don’t need a man to thrive and that it’s puke-inducingly basic to imply a longing for one. Because who wants to be that poor cow?

So instead I stick to the press release - that I'm upbeat, relentlessly fulfilled, a tower of strength just as I am, thank you.

And fuck me, it’s exhausting. I spiralise, I keep a gratitude journal and I “work on me” with all this blessed freedom my life affords.

But unlike Emma, I don’t spoon the hell out of myself each night, high-fiving my shadow for nailing another week of being our best independent self.

Instead I draw comfort from small triumphs and own the things I’d like to change about my life - I promise to get to them in the morning.

That’s being single. And there's not a self-partnered thing I can do about it.


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