There’s no shame in being single. In fact, around a third of the British population are currently unattached. Why then, do those in relationships feel the need to assume an advisory role, and utter empty platitudes at every opportunity? While a little empathy is always nice, rehashing tired clichés quickly becomes tedious to those on the receiving end of them. With this in mind, here are the top comments to avoid.
1. You shouldn’t try so hard
Effort should be praised, not derided. While the forces of ‘fate’ might have worked for Ancient Romans, modern relationships tend to be formed by those who put the hours in.
2. Mr. /Mrs. Right is out there somewhere
This particularly vague assertion isn’t exactly reassuring, as the same is often said in reference to aliens and Big Foot – neither of which we might expect to meet anytime soon.
3. I know how you feel! My partner works long hours
Evenings, weekends and someone to help make the difficult decisions. It isn’t the same!
4. You must have a lot more time to do things that you like
This statement comes from the ‘grass is always greener’ cannon of pseudo-reassurance. The person bemoaning their lack of time would be advised to take a look at their own relationship before dispensing advice. In any event, who has time these days?
5. My friend [insert name] is single…
Great! But how many times does it turn out that there’s a very good reason that said friend is single?
6. Singles have so much extra money
Well, perhaps – but we also don’t have two incomes. And who said it’s cheap being single anyway? According to research, the average first date costs more than £104.
7. Have you met anyone yet?
Nothing like bit of pressure, is there? If you have to ask this question, then the answer is probably ‘no’. After all, meeting someone is pretty big news.
8. There are plenty more fish in the sea
With fish stocks dwindling, this cliché has become more tired than ever.
9. You should get out more
It’s certainly true that hermits are unlikely to hook up with anyone. However, most singles do go out on a regular basis (when they’re not overly tired from work). What is often particularly annoying about this comment is that the person giving the advice is usually in a relationship that doesn’t involve socialising with others.
10. You’re too choosy
Standards are a good thing in all spheres of life – food standards prevent us being poisoned, and trading standards stop us being ripped off. Why then shouldn’t singles apply their own standards to potential partners?