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Living single, healthy and happy

By Olugbemi Fernandez
21 July 2022   |   4:06 am
All singles over 35 years, particularly women, will agree with me that there are pressures when you live single. This is all over the world. There may be more support in the western world.

All singles over 35 years, particularly women, will agree with me that there are pressures when you live single. This is all over the world. There may be more support in the western world. America, Britain and China have Singles holidays; in recognition of their mature singles population.

Why is there so much pressure that some get so depressed and even commit suicide? It is true that some are mentally stronger than others. Psychologists will tell you that singles are prone to depression. Studies done with singles of a wide age range, reported similar findings. (Ref: Associations between relationship status and mental well-being in different life phases, from young to middle adulthood (Source – www.sciencedirect.com – The Internet).

The pressure is real.

Having said that, one should bear in mind that some people want to stay single. The Nigerian society may not give room to such people, to live freely. This is a society that respects married women and disrespects unmarried women. I remember when I searched for an apartment, as a single young lady in my 20’s. After a few rejection by Landlords, I learnt the only way was to present someone as my ‘husband’. It worked. Mercifully, Landlords are more reasonable these days.

Another pressure comes from Isolation. You probably have an apartment. Your friends and siblings are busy with their families. If you are an entrepreneur working alone, that could add to the isolation. Your married friends have other married friends and may have even disconnected from you.

Here are some tips to curb isolation:
Reach out with kindness to someone daily.
Take up a new hobby and connect with like minds.
If you are an introvert, reach out through social media. Connecting with people removes loneliness and takes the focus off yourself.
Exercise often. Get the endorphins going. That is the “feel good” hormone. If you can’t do the gym or take up a sport, walk. This helps to lift the mood.

Pressure may also come from the biological clock. Consider adoption. This can be a long process. You could try fostering, which is not a lifetime commitment, legally.

If all these sound a bit overwhelming, get a pet. It’s been proven they are therapeutic. Lagosians have picked up on this; considering the number of dog owners I have met at my local veterinary clinic.

Another pressure comes from comparing oneself to classmates and feeling left behind. DON’T. You are doing better than some. So, someone is a grandmother and you don’t have a child? We have different destinies. Check your list of achievements. You probably have done what that grandma has never imagined.

Many mature singles; particularly women, have stunted social life. Why? Maybe to escape societal pressures. Or perhaps you get fewer invitations out.

Don’t let societal pressures or fewer invitations deter you from having the kind of social life you want. Connect with people who have similar interest. I was delighted at how many people share the same passion for fine cuisine; like myself. Get out there! Enjoy every day God has given you and be thankful for everything. Believe the best, daily.
This article will be concluded in another edition.

The book titled “Why am I still Single?” was written to encourage mature singles, by sharing experiences of mature singles. It proffers solutions to issues of the mature singles, from the Christian perspective. The first five requests will get a free copy each, through the Nigerian Guardian Newspaper.

•Olugbemi Fernandez is a market research consultant based in Lagos. She has a ministry to mature singles.

Send comments and enquiries to maturechristian_s@yahoo.com.