“Maybe you’re just not the relationship type,” one of my friends told me over a vodka soda at the bar one night. “It’s not a bad thing. It’s just... I feel like you’re happier being alone,” she said. I initially felt a pang of insult, but at the same time, I completely understood what she was saying. That was the third night I’d been out that week (it was only Thursday), and I really do thoroughly enjoy my “do whatever I want, whenever I want” lifestyle.
Not being the “relationship type,” while it may seem like it has negative connotations thanks to false stereotypes, isn’t a bad thing at all, actually. It simply addresses the notion that you have different priorities in life than some of those around you. Maybe you envision your future as a single and successful CEO who is fully committed to their career. Maybe you fully enjoy casual sex, and aren’t someone who needs the emotional aspect. Maybe the thought of being tied to one person forever terrifies you to the point of nightmares. Whatever the reason (not that you have to have one to begin with), there’s no need to feel you need to change to fit a social norm or to explain your preferences to those around you.
As long as you're happy, that's all that matters. Perhaps your current views, wants, and needs regarding relationships will change over time, but if they don’t — that’s completely OK. As someone who isn't the relationship type, I've been there, done that. Here are seven signs you might not be the relationship type, and why you shouldn’t be ashamed of it in the least.
1. You’re Your Own Priority
There is nothing wrong whatsoever with putting yourself first. Maybe you’ve set out very specific career goals that you’re focused on achieving, and your brain only has the capacity to take that on. Or perhaps spending time on yourself, or with your family and friends, comes a close second to work, and that’s how you wish to be spending your free time. We all have our priorities, and it's unfair to pressure ourselves to change them simply with a goal of fitting the "relationship type" — whatever that means. If it doesn't feel right, don't force it.
If you’re seeing someone, and you’re finding that you forget to bring him or her along to your parents’ house for Sunday dinner or neglect to invite them as your plus-one for your best friend’s wedding, or well... to anything, this may be a subtle sign to yourself that you’re not in a place to have him become a part of your world, or something you prioritize. Take it as a sign, and let this person know exactly how you feel.
2. You Like Hanging Out Alone More Than With A Date
Yes, you might enjoy the sexual aspect of having a significant other, but otherwise… you could pass. You like being able to watch Keeping Up With The Kardashians for four hours in a row without being pressured into changing the channel. And you enjoy being able to wear sweatpants and eat pizza alone on your couch on a Tuesday night without having anyone staring at you.
In reality, spending time alone is good for you, according to the Huffington Post, so don’t feel a need to apologize for it. If you don't want someone constantly around, being more of a casual dater might be what's best for you.
3. Casual Sex Is Sort Of Your Thing
Yes, some women, too, enjoy no strings attached sex. As women, we have heard this notion time and time again — if a man is only interested in casual sex, it’s going to be very hard for that to morph into a full-fledged relationship. Same goes for women who just want to be casual. It doesn't mean that someone who enjoys casual sex can't also be interested in a committed relationship, but if you enjoy casual sex more than being with the same person for a long period of time, then maybe a relationship just isn't your thing right now, or ever. And that's cool too.
If you just want to have sex, and really aren’t interested in the other aspects of that person’s life, you know just what I’m saying here. Again, don't feel the pressure to make casual sex into something more just because your friends or traditional gender roles/stereotypes might not see eye-to-eye with you on your choice. Tell them that, in fact, casual sex is actually excellent for you. As long as you're being safe, using protection, and keeping tabs on your sexual health, you're not harming anyone, so there's no reason to change yourself and certainly no reason to feel guilty.
4. You Find Yourself Unable To Commit To Anything
A dish on a menu. A nail polish color at the salon. A brand of yogurt at the grocery store. A Friday night date.
If you’re finding yourself unable to commit to even the little things in life, it’s very unlikely you’ll be able to fully commit to a relationship without constantly second guessing it. This is not to say indecisive people are incapable of relationships by any means, but if you're enjoying the single life and are non-committal, then why force a relationship?
5. You’re Constantly Seeking Someone Else
Building off the inability to commit, many of us find ourselves constantly seeking better options, even if we’re with someone great. If you’re forcing yourself into being in a relationship, yet are continuously flirting with other people, scanning through Tinder at every opportunity, hitting on your co-workers, or anything similar, it’s unlikely you should be in that relationship. Of course, casual flirtation and attraction to people who aren't your partner is totally normal in a relationship, but if it's constant and more appealing to you then... well, your relationship, then you probably aren't with the right person — or maybe you shouldn't be with someone at all. It's possible one day you'll find someone who makes you stop looking and want a serious relationship, but if not, that's just more than fine as well.
6. “I’m Just Not Ready” Is One Of Your Common Phrases
Are you always telling the people you date that you’re “just not ready” for a serious commitment? This habit may allude to the fact that you’re “just not ready” for any sort of relationship, despite who it’s with. If this seems to be a pattern, perhaps try dating those who are more on your page — who want to sporadically spend time with someone, but who enjoy keeping things really laid back.
7. Even The Thought Of Marriage Makes You Want To Run
Some people attend their friends’ weddings and think, “Ugh, why can’t that be me?” Others attend their friends’ weddings and think, “Thank god that is not me!”
It’s OK if the mere thought of marriage makes you cringe. Marriage isn’t for everyone. Just because it’s the path more likely traveled doesn’t mean it needs to be your path. And, again, you don’t need to apologize for that. Ever.
8. You’re More Interested In the Party Scene Than The Dating Scene
I live by the “work hard, play hard” mantra, so I can definitely relate to this one. I have way more fun out of a bar meeting a bunch of guys, having some drinks, and dancing than I do having what I perceive to be lame small talk over an awkward first date.
Yes, if notice your partying habit is out of control by your own standards, this doesn't mean you should continue to live like a college student if it isn't working for you, but if you prefer going out a couple of nights a week having fun with friends rather than seriously dating someone — you do you, girl!
Not everyone has to be in a relationship and not everyone should be in a relationship — and that is nothing to be sorry about. Life is ultimately about being happy, so we should all strive to focus on the things that feel right for us — whether that's being in a serious, committed relationship, or keeping our dating lives super casual.
Images: Giphy (8); Pexels