I’m Only 22, I Don’t Want Someone Else To Be My Whole World

I am a firm believer in true love. I do believe that there is someone out there for me who will eventually sweep me off my feet and make me wonder why I ever settled for anybody else. There is a man out there for me who I will celebrate countless anniversaries, Valentine’s Days, and birthdays with. There is a man who I will be able to get through any fight, long distance, or hardship with and know that nothing will ever change. There is a man out there who I will share an unbreakable bond with held together by the deep desires of love.

But, not today.

I don’t want someone who I “won’t be able to imagine my life without.” I don’t want someone to “have my whole heart.” I don’t want someone to be “my whole world,” or “my rock,” or “my better half.” I don’t want somebody who can understand me better than I can understand myself.

I want to feel whole. I want to be my own rock, my own anchor, my own soulmate. I want to understand myself better than anyone else can. I don’t want to look back and hate myself for altering my future for someone else when I know I wasn’t ready to.

That’s why I don’t want to find the man I will love forever today. Or tomorrow. Or the day after that.

For those who know me, you know that when I fall, I fall fast, and I fall hard. I am a hopeless romantic who wears my heart on my sleeve. I simply love the idea of being in love. I can’t remember a time in my life that I didn’t have some type of interest in a guy. I love having a “texting buddy,” I love feeling desired. I have gotten hurt a few times, but I always pick myself up and try to move on. But moving on is hard for me, simply because I love being in love. I’ve called guys my “better half,” and “my rock.” I’ve convinced myself that I couldn’t picture my life without them. I’m starting to realize now how that’s the last thing I want in my future relationship. Especially as a young woman in my early 20’s. Before I enter into any serious relationship, I need to feel like I’m complete. And I need to be able to feel complete, while completely alone.

Too many women depend on men to make them happy, and I would be lying if I said I haven’t done that myself. At this point in my life, I don’t know how to be completely independent when I’m in a relationship. I know many girls who can be, but personally, I don’t know how.

I have dreams. I have plans that only involve myself. I’m at a pivotal point in my life where I get to decide where I go from here. I can travel, move across the country, and make stupid spontaneous decisions, just because I can. As of right now, there is nothing holding me back from where I want to take my life – well, having a bit more money may be nice, but, I’ll figure that one out eventually. I don’t want to find my true love yet. I’m not ready to settle and I’m not ready to alter my personal plans for someone else. The only thing I’m ready for is to discover where my life takes me post-grad. I’m ready to move across the country. I’m ready to make new and beautiful memories with people that I’ll meet along the way. But, I’m simply not ready to fall in love again.

As my college career is coming to a close and I’m starting to find out what I want for my life, I’m starting to realize that I never want to fall for a guy who I consider my “better half.” I don’t want a better half. I want to be whole. I want to consider myself and my happiness as more important than a relationship I will ever be involved with. Does this make me selfish? No. This makes me able to know that I can and will be happy alone, no matter how many heartbreaks will come my way.

Many people will marry their high school sweethearts, some of my friends included in that. And I love them for that. I think their relationships are healthy and I have loved watching them grow independently even though they have a significant other, and I admire them for that. There is nothing wrong with already finding the person who you want to spend the rest of your life with. You can still live a complete life with a boyfriend/girlfriend by your side at age 22. But, I know myself enough to know that I’m not at the point in my life where I can do that.

I want to imagine my own life. I want to be able to navigate through life’s exciting opportunities and devastating disappointments independently, and if and when a guy decides he wants to join me, I’ll still be able to have the peace of mind that I can do it alone. I will be able to imagine my life without him, because at that point I have already done it alone.

Many of you may read this and view me as a loner. Or maybe you’ll think I hate the idea of love. Believe what you wish, but neither of these assumptions are true. Like I said before, I can’t wait for the day I find my true love. I can’t wait to be able to look a guy in the eyes and say “I love you,” and know that it means “I love you forever.” I can’t wait for a guy to love me, challenge me, and support me every day for the rest of my life. That day will come, but I haven’t lived enough yet.

I’m 22. I have too many stupid decisions to make before I decide my fate. I have the rest of my life to find the guy who gives love a whole new meaning for me.

That day will come. Just not today.

Featured image via Taryn Elliott on Pexels


  1. I know this website is primarily targeted at women, but a few girls I know write for this website so I see the stuff shared on my page all of the time. That being said, I keep up with your stuff. All of your pieces are a perfect balance of thought-provoking, emotional, and intelligent. Keep up the good work.

  2. **~Perfect balance of bold and regular font~**

    Get over yourself and find someone to spend time with; surprise- you will love several people in your life, all of whom help you realize who you want to share your time with. Clown.

  3. I’m obsessed with this piece. Looked at your author page and had a hard time picking a favorite one. you write with such passion and make everything so relatable. I just started writing and I hope to someday be as amazing at it as you are!

  4. I love this article. I can totally relate to it and I am currently on a break with my boyfriend because I said I didn’t want to have my life figured out so young and I wanted to be independent. It was a really hard choice but this article reinforced my thoughts. It’s honest and real; I’m even jealous that you can live like this during an important part of life.

    • I am in the same boat. I’ve been dating my boyfriend since I was 20 and now at 23 years old and just graduating college I sometimes wish I was able to live the normal life of someone my age, take the trips I’ve wanted to take, move away on my own, etc. My boyfriend is 29 and was able to have his own experiences and I’m often envious of him for that.

      • I am just curious why you feel that you can’t go on trips and develope into your own person while being with someone you love. The person you are in a relationship with shouldn’t hold you back from becoming the person you are suppose to be or keep you from doing the things you want to do. I have been with my girlfriend for 8 years I have been with her through all of my college career and hers. She goes out and goes on trips with her friends and does the things she wants to experience in life some with me and some with her friends and family, I also do the same. We have both developed into our own by the help of each other, ourselves, others around us, and mistakes and successes. We have some similar interests but our hobbies and passions are very different but I can honestly say that she is the one I will spend the rest of my life with. So what I am trying to say is if the one does come into your life don’t think just because he is there doesn’t mean you can develope into the person you wanted to be before he/ she came into your life. Someone who truly loves you won’t hold you back but push you to be the best you can be and will be there when you need help or someone to talk to.

      • Derek, I understand your point of view, however, there is a element that Beth expresses indirectly that might be misread.

        She is not ready, people like Beth, and like myself, have to change the way they deal with everyday relationships and the judgements that they feel the whole world around them express. More importantly are the judgements coming from our selves. We are incredibly free but at the same time trapped in our own judgements.

        The day we stop allowing our selves to listen to judgements, regardless of their nature, and have freed our selves, just then we will feel ready to have someone, like you rightly say, to share life without any holding backs. To put it simply we are not yet ourselves by ourselves. (Again, this is debatable, since are we who we want to be or are we who we already are? In response, we are those convinced that we have not yet complied to the idea of who we want to be, who we truly are)

        Reading carefully between the lines, we tend to exploit “the other half” they will hold us back”, in reality the ones holding back (although we seem like we are free) are ourselves. This because, often, we have unrealistic expectations firstly from ourselves. I would be surprised it Beth denies having ambition enhanced by a strong tendency to perfectionism.

        The desire to “go out there and grow up by ourselves) expresses the fear of almost not being ready, or better an unfinished “product”.

        The reality is, we will never reach perfection and we will never complete the journey. The solution relies in the day we realise that every day brings change.

        It’s like climbing a staircase that has no end. Assuming we hope to find love when we reach the top of the stairs, again, there is no top of the stairs (we stop climbing the staircase when we reach die) we will never allow for love to meet us half way.
        The solution will come when our souls realise this truth and are ready to take a step with someone by their side.

        Until then, what Beth, and I are craving for is a period of self-discovery, in loneliness, that will lead our souls to contrast our beliefs, to change them and to accept a different reality, with serenity and tranquillity. We want to be more serene.

        A note for Beth, you would enjoy the read of : “5 minutes” by Paulo Coelho.
        Simple read, but hard, hard hard.

        Beth, good luck.
        I’m on the same journey.

      • Hey Derek,
        I sure hope I find myself in the type of relationship at some point that you seem to be in. I’m happy for you, it does sound great and fulfilling. However, I haven’t found that yet, and this piece was more of a reflection of why I find that it’s totally OK at this point. I don’t know what the future holds; today, tomorrow, or 10 years from now. All I can do at this point is focus on finding myself. It gives me a peace of mind. Thanks for the feedback!


      • I also started dating my boyfriend when I was 20 and I am now 23 and just graduated college. My boyfriend is only two years older than me, but I was a goody two shoes in high school and rarely dated. He’s had several girlfriends before me and I feel like he’s got to have more life experiences. We are really in love and don’t hold each other back from taking trips. In fact I just moved to Colorado and he’s going to join me in 4 months, so we let each other do our own thing. We’re best friends and lovers. However our relationship feels so perfect that it seems we will probably be together for a long time. I guess I just feel like either I will never know what it’s like to truly date around or if I did by that time I won’t be young and attractive enough to really enjoy i.

  5. I love this article! I find that everyone is expected to find their soul mate in college and this article was definitely a refreshing read! I really liked your idea about having dreams and passions and acting on them before devoting yourself to someone else. Awesome article, Megan! 🙂

  6. I am so proud of you! Follow your dream. God is preparing u for the plans He has for u. He knows who your mate is. I will be talking with u soon. Love u.

  7. This article was everything I’ve been thinking in my head put down on paper. I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels this way. Thank you <3 and I wish you all the happiness in the world.

  8. This article is everything and more! At every angle I have family and friends telling me that I should be introducing them to ‘The One’…
    How am I meant to find him if I can’t even find me? Lol I’m still here trying to figure out my life. I’ve just started a new career at 22 and there is too much that I have planned and want to do with my life before I sit down and fall in love. Thank you for this, I knew I couldn’t be the only one thinking this way

  9. Seems to me she’s waiting to discover that she’s a lesbian feminist terrified of commitment. Traversing the globe and fornicating with any able body isn’t going to provide you with financial stability and a clear vision of who you see yourself as in the future. It’s as if for every three young women in america, there’s one that’s convinced they’re a flower child out of the late 60’s. Those days are over honey, get busy building a succesful relationship with someone that makes you want to be a better human being in all aspects. Unfortunately, your mother and father wont always be around to flip the bill for your free spirited adventures.

    • Man Darren, you are just a ray of sunshine!
      Finding someone and building a relationship with them is all fine and dandy, but if don’t have a full grasp on yourself, how can you expect the relationship to work, or to be as fulfilling?

    • Hey Darren,
      I appreciate the feedback on my piece. However, I’m not “waiting to discover” my own sexuality. I am confident in myself and where I am in my life. I don’t believe I am a “flower child out of the late 60’s” nor am I an entitled/spoiled young woman who runs to my parents to pay all of my bills. I’m sorry that you completely missed the point of this article and I’m sorry that you feel as though I need to find my future husband now in order to be “financially stable” and to “get a clearer vision of who I am.” I have my own plans and dreams, and I don’t need someone else in my life to confirm that. You may think my life choices won’t get me anywhere, but neither will being judgmental such as yourself. If you want a clearer vision of who I am, I encourage you to look at my personal blog:


      Maybe then you’ll understand me better before you start labeling me. Think before you speak (or comment).


    • Darren, having freedom to do what one wants with whom they want to do with doesn’t necessarily mean they’re looking to get laid. Sometimes a person just wants to be free to be where they want to be when they want to be with whom they want to be with in whatever way that is common to them both. But most importantly, Beth is pointing out that being alone is fine. Going places alone is fine. Being alone with your thoughts and being able to pursue your creative side and your ambitions without having to concern yourself with what somebody else thinks is a very legitimate way to be.

      If it’s done right every person that a person associates with helps them become a better person. You don’t have to be in a committed relationship to become a better person. I gathered from those that can see Beth’s point of view, they are willing and able to flip their own bill. But it’s not about going somewhere, it’s about being who you want to be by yourself for as long as by yourself is who you want to be.

  10. I also shared this story with my guy friends who are looking for girlfriends (and told them to do role reversal haha). Good advice for both genders 😀

  11. I have been with my boyfriend for 4 years but I really enjoyed reading this. I am lucky that we share similar outlooks on life.. While with him, I have started my own business, moved into my own apartment, and soon we will be moving across the country together, just because! He isn’t my rock and he doesn’t complete me.. I actually like to be alone a lot of the time. He is really just an extension of myself and someone I can be best friends with during the day, and naughty with at night Haha! I think it’s really about WHO you are in a RELATIONSHIP with and not WHEN. I think I’m probably a little too independent for most guys but I can tell you that is something I acquired while in my relationship. I so applaud you for your passion and determination, and I wish you the best of luck with your travels and adventures! <3

    • Hi Hannah,
      I truly admire your accomplishments! You seem to have built a great life for not only yourself, but also for your relationship. I truly hope that I find that someday. Thank you for taking the time to comment! Good luck with the business, the apartment, and the big move!

  12. Nicely done! I’m a widow in my 50s – I lost my soulmate after 20 years of marriage. I get an awful lot of “So, are you seeing anyone?” or “Don’t you want to get married again?” No, I’m not; and sure, I’m open to marriage, but it isn’t really a big pressing goal. For now I’m figuring out life here on my own. My husband has been gone for over eight years. I miss him, but nobody could replace him and it wouldn’t be fair to try.

    • Hi Katherine,
      Keep living your life the way you want to! So sorry to hear about your late husband, but you seem to be a strong and independent woman and that’s great. Best of luck with everything.

  13. I really liked the concept of not needing to find a better half to be complete and I think it is an important aspect in an healthy relationship – not depending on someone else, but simply choosing each other to share life with.
    Nevertheless, after reading half-way through, I noticed the amounts of “I” used througout the text. For me, finding myself is not only about identifying my inner motivation, but more importantly about me in the context of others as in the question: How can I support others?

    In my opinion, both aspects are equally important – Who am I and how I am in regard to others? and have to be answered in regard to each other, because they both define us.
    Best regards, Pascal

  14. Beth,
    Im in the same boat as you. Im only 22 and not be any means am I ready to settle down, or even fall in love for that matter. I have dreams, which only include myself and also have the idea of wanting to be complete ME. It sounds selfish but I dont wanna look back and realize I lost everything, just to fall in love. Im so glad to see that there are others out that have the same idea and have that determination that’s been lost in others, just so they can fall in love. With being so young I decided to move, and not just states, I moved outta the USA to Ireland. I’m now living my dream of studying music, while djing at high end clubs and also getting the recognition from high end labels. Dont be afraid to take a chance, who knows it could end up changing your life like it changed mine. Good luck girl! GO GET ‘EM!!!!!

    • That’s amazing, Chris. I myself have considered moving abroad and it’s comforting to know that there’s people out there who have taken the chance and it has changed them for the better. Good luck with everything and I hope everything only gets better from here because you seem like you certainly deserve it!

  15. I met my husband by chance at 18 and I certainly didn’t know who I was or what I wanted from life other than the career I had chosen and was studying for at university. It was exciting to make those decisions and discoveries with someone else, and to explore who we were together. We married after five years, and this year celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. I’ve never thought of him as my better half, we are complete equals in our marriage, and because of this when we married I did not agree to obey. We have no set roles, and certainly don’t fit the stereotypes – he does laundry, I dig the garden – but it’s because we hadn’t already decided who we were that has allowed us to be like this. When our son was born I chose not to feed him myself because I wanted my husband to have the same opportunities to bond with him, and we each used to enjoy our middle of the night snuggles as we fed him his bottle. We each have our own interests and spend time apart, but we also love being together and hope to be in the same situation for the rest of our lives.
    Don’t be so set on finding who you are alone that you block out the people who might actually help you to be the person you are. I couldn’t imagine my life without my husband, but at the same time I do also have a life of my own.

    • I think you’re probably the acception to the rule. Like in the post she said that she has friends who married their highschool sweethearts and are able to grow independently as well as together, and she said she admires them for that. I’m 22, and when I date a guy, he like consumes me. He really does define me, and its certainly not his fault. My personality actually changes, and depending on the guy, thay can be an awful thing. This isn’t something that I do on purpose… It just happens. I think I’m just not mature enough or ‘myself’ enough yet, but i certainly can’t wait for that to happen! I think that’s the point of her article. That she just wants to find herself first before finding someone else. You and your husband really do sound like a good match 🙂

    • I’m so glad you said this!! I totally agree you don’t have to be alone to grow and find out who you are. Experiencing life with someone is equally as rewarding.

    • Hey Alix,
      I think being able to maintain a serious relationship at such a young age is great and admirable. I know first hand, my sister has been with her boyfriend for 9 years. They met at age 16. That’s just not me. I’m not really set on anything at this point, and I guess that was sort of my point. There are plenty of people in my life who have shaped the person I am today. I am grateful to be surrounded by amazing people on a daily basis and have a great support system, which makes being single not so bad. My life is filled with love, even if I haven’t found the love of my life just yet. Thanks for the comment, though, and I wish you the best.

    • I’m glad someone said this! I totally respect that everyone is going to take a different path in life and that is more than okay. However, personally I was married a month after my college graduation at 20 years old. I love that we are creating a life together as opposed to attempting to join two separately established lives. Neither of us was stuck in our ways about anything, and we get to figure everything out as we go… together. And we’ve gotten to do some traveling and our combined income allows us to do more than most people our age which is an added benefit. It’s not for everyone but I would hate for anyone to think that they need to go do their own thing when starting a life with someone and learning together may be even better. 🙂

  16. I really enjoyed reading this. I am 44 years old, I got married at 19. My husband and I just split up and I am on that hunt to find myself. I wish I would have done what you are doing. You are a very bright person! Although I never regret marrying my husband and we are still friends, I was in love with love. I needed him to make me happy. It’s taken me all these years to realize what you have done at your young age. We each need to be happy with ourselves first. I never got the time to explore the world, instead we started a family. I love my kids more than anything else. But now is my time to “find myself” and feel whole just like you said. You said it so perfectly! Good for you!!!! Everyone will have their own opinions, but you know what is right for YOU! Good luck to you and I wish you all the happiness. Feel whole and once you do what you want, you will make a better partner for someone!

  17. God has someone special for you. If you are on your path of achieving your dreams and goals, and on your spiritual path becoming the right person, then that person will come in to your life regardless of what age. You dont let the opportunity pass or let the person go because ypu wanna go around having flings and what not. Everyone has their moment in time when the person comes 18, 21, 25, 30 what ever and its not just about all out lovy dubby feelings for your soulmate, you might not even fall in love right away. Dont be cliché.

  18. Thank you so much for writing this. I feel exactly the same way as much as I miss being in love. I’m excited to figure out my life on my own, and make the decisions that are best for me.

  19. I haven’t the slightest idea why somebody would lay claim to be “totally independent” at a particular age, in this case 22, when there is a world of people out there to meet and possibly connect with. Why close off what could be an amazing connection with a person just because you have some strange obsession with wanting to be free of the “constraints” of a relationship? See, most normal people understand that those “constraints” are actually perks and a majority of folks enjoy them. It boggles me that somebody would be so closed off to the idea of true love at 22. It happens. I’m 23 and a guy and I’ve already found the partner that I know will be by my side for a very, very long time. So being young isn’t an automatic to act or be a certain way. In fact this article seems to embody the concept of isolationism in both execution and expectation. Newsflash, most people like to date, and furthermore date people that open their minds to new things and experiences. I don’t know the guys you seem to be dating, but maybe it’s time to move out and try another speed dating round during one of your superfluous cross-country moves.

    • Hey Evan,
      I don’t think that this article outwardly stated that I want to be “totally independent,” because I am most certainly not. I have a strong support system from friends, families, and even past boyfriends who have shaped me into the person I am. I’m not closing off any connections, and I don’t have an obsession with wanting to be free of the “constraints” of a relationship. I’m simply not ready to be in one. I enjoy dating, I enjoy putting myself out there and getting to know people which is perhaps why I am able to coherently verbalize my thoughts in writing. It’s because I am a firm believer in true love, like I said.

      I am not a fortune teller, I literally have no idea what is going to happen tomorrow, never mind three years from now. That’s great that you found the love of your life. I know I’ll be in your shoes someday. However, I think you should accept others people’s choices too, rather than categorizing me as an individual who “hates connecting with people,” because that is totally not the case. Be happy that I’m on a journey to fall in love with myself, just like I’m sure many people are happy for the journey that you have decided to take with your significant other.

      Newsflash, I date plenty of great guys, but they’re just not the greatest for me. And I won’t apologize for working on a relationship with myself first, regardless of how you see it. Good luck with everything, and I truly do encourage you to be more open minded about people like me. We are all at different emotional stages. Accept it rather than using phrases such as “strange obsessions,” and “isolationism” to describe the emotional stage I’m currently at.


  20. This was such a perfect article. You hit it spot on. I couldn’t have written it better myself. Good luck to you!


  22. This is such a beautiful piece. Thank you for sharing such personal thoughts and emotions. I will definitely share this. Keep on encouraging young women with your words and I look forward to reading more 🙂

  23. Unfortunately many of you do not have God on your radar screen right now, but I can tell you that what society dishes out is a lot of emptiness. I pray that at some point, and for you I wish that could be now, that you come close to Jesus, I mean really close, as He is the rock that you do need in your life. God, the creator of all things seen and unseen, loves you so much that He first gave us His written word in the Scriptures (a guide to life that would steer us away from much pain & suffering), He then sent His one and only Son to tell us of God the Father in Heaven, of His word, His love and the blessings He wants to pour our onto you. Jesus was rejected and suffered unbelievable pain and death on a cross for all of our sins for all time. He came back to life just as we can be reborn again in Him. We are all sinners and no one is deserving of God’s love, but through Jesus we can stand before God sinless because our sins have been taken far away. We cannot buy or earn our way to God in Heaven, that has already been done. If you truly believe in this with your whole heart then wouldn’t you want to live a life as pleasing to God as humanly possible? To show your love, honor and utmost respect for Him? God promised to all that believe He would send a helper. The Holy Spirit. The 3rd way God is reaching out to us out of love. The Spirit will come and live within your heart once you believe with your very soul that God is always there for you and that Jesus will always be there to see you through no matter what comes your way. Listen to God’s word not the things of this world and He will make your paths straight. This is a fallen sin filled world in which we live. With God in you He will steer you clear of many of the obstacles, but your will still suffer because evil surrounds us here. But comfort is found only in the one that will never abandon you and when it is time to leave (by God’s choice not ours) Jesus promises to reach out and take our hand and walk us home. Please don’t rely solely upon yourself or that of others around you, but always in God that created you and loves you above all else. Follow His ways and a relationship will happen that will be truly be blessed. One not without struggle, but one with a base built on rock that will never be shaken. Wait for someone that will love God first and you will find your true happiness. “Going to church” by itself is not loving God with your whole heart. That is just window dressing. Read His word, attend Bible studies, fellowship with other believers, take part in church work, missions and so on. The closer you get to God the stronger He will bless you and your future family. That is His promise to you. These words will fall upon different people not unlike the seeds fall on different types of soil described in the Scriptures. Some will be like rock that have no chance of taking root, some will be like infertile sand not allowing the seed to grow, others will fall among the weeds and be overcome, and a few will fall on good soil and produce good fruit unto the Lord. I pray that many will be like the good soil. God bless! Lee at Acts1:8 Ministry Green Bay, WI. USA

  24. This article articulated everything that I’ve been feeling lately about being 22 and graduating from college soon. Thanks!

  25. At first when I started to read this I was like oh god, some party girl who selfishly boasts about how she’ll never settle down because she probably has like zero self esteem. But I was nicely surprised. I am only 20, but have met the love of my life (actually at 19) and I am absolutely positive he’s the one. I’ve been through guys but found myself always in love with the douche-bag type. It took some figuring out but I was lucky enough to stumble into my soulmate, and we are now engaged to be married after I finish up school and what not. But everyone has different experiences, and I think that I was definitely ready to meet someone at the time that I did. That’s just the way I am, a secretly hopeless romantic thinking love would be around any corner. I was ready to try again with somebody, but it’s not like I expected that he would become someone I would be so close with. I just let myself be open, and if he sucked, he sucked and I would move on. I wouldn’t make a point to close myself off from other guys just because I had engraved in my mind that “I’m just not ready.” Just be free and open to opportunity and don’t try and control everything. I would definitely say that it would be hard to go on without him, I couldn’t deny that, but that’s because I love him. Honestly, I’m glad I met him when I did because I was a wild wild girl (party/drinking/smoking) making many mistakes. He didn’t change me, but meeting him made me want to change myself for the better otherwise I knew I’d lose him. And I’m extremely happy to have him on my side through all my ups and downs through schools, and friendships and family. It’s amazing to share that with someone. I agree, you have to be happy with you first before you give yourself to someone else because it makes sense – you want to be the best you can for somebody else and a possible relationship. So if you aren’t ready at 22, you just aren’t and thats cool. If you are ready at 19, then that’s cool too.

  26. I literally think you and I might be the same person. Everyone is always pushing me to find someone, but I have too many goals and dreams to accomplish right now. On my own. I don’t need someone else to worry about. I work in sports and our hours are unpredictable and most people don’t understand that. I’ve always been independent and the idea of having someone who may need me more than I need them, scares me. I’ve never been in love and I do eventually want to find someone to share a mental, physical and spiritual intimacy with, but right now I’m okay without it and I am finally happy with that realization.

  27. I love, love, love this article!

    My boyfriend lives three hours away. I am unique in a sense that I have been in steady relationship for going on three years, but I am also very independent. I am used to doing things on my own. As much as I love my boyfriend, if he were to leave me, yes, it would hurt but my world would not be over. It’s very nice to have a man in your life, but it’s not a necessity. I am a full time college student, with a part time job, all while training for a marathon.

    Some of the women in my family cannot function without a man, and it’s very sad. And because of this they have settled in their chose of partner and don’t have the best marriages. They did not have the confidence to chase dreams on their own.

    I am lucky that my parents raised me to be my own person, that I can do whatever I set my heart on, and to respect God and myself.

    • I’ve totally seen the same thing! Women/friends settling with the man they are with just because its who they are already comfortable with, and I almost did the same, but wouldn’t of been happy.
      I think its important for girls to be independent.

  28. There is no point in saying much… Just thank you, Beth, for showing me I am not some weirdo with bizarre commitment issues 🙂

  29. I simply can’t improve on this blog Marly… only that at the age I am now…I still feel thus way. My standards have always been high and I never wanted to “settle”…and I still enjoy being single. For me it gives me more time to “be there for others” but also I’m still having a lo

  30. You might never read this, but I just wanted to say what you’re doing and what you wrote to share with other people is awesome! I was with someone for a while and I realized that even though you might love them at the time, they do hold you back while you’re still young. And no this isn’t the case for everyone, as every relationship is different, but this is how it was for me so you’re article really spoke out to me! Its awesome thanks for sharing! Feel the same way.

    • Hey Sarah,
      I read every comment with the same enthusiasm. There is truly no better feeling than knowing people can take something from my writing. I’m happy that you enjoyed it! Thanks for taking the time to comment, I appreciate it more than you know.

  31. I love everything that you wrote. I know you amy not read this but I am currently 19 and by a total accident I met who i truly to believe to be the one (along with basically everyone else – including him). We met through a mutual friend and go to different schools. I am not saying you wrong by any means because you are not, but i don’t want everyone to think closing out the idea of a relationship is how it should go. Yes, everyone is different but I am actually a very independent person and spend all week without my boyfriend and only see him on the weekends (obviously because we go to different universities). I have my alone time and know who I am as a person. I don’t know if I’m just lucky or what but please don’t shut out everyone. Loved the article though!!!

  32. I love you for what you have written! I am 22 and i feel the same.Lets live a life how one wants to,you inspire me. Hugs !

  33. I’m a man, I’m 26 and everything that you said is what i’m living everyday. People around me think I’m weird, but I can’t imagine my life to be with someone just to be with someone. Life is short, Earth is enough populated to make me make a baby, I don’t want to wait the retirement to enjoy fully my life. I’m discovering the world and myself and that’s the way I live. I like being in a relationship but I need my time for myself because as you said, I want to be a whole person and not a half of somebody.

  34. I’m not trying to sound rude, but if you meet a man tomorrrow that is everything you’re looking for I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t just turn him down.

  35. I may be wrong, but I have a feeling that once you get married, some of the perspectives you have will change. I’m 20 and married; young? Definitely, but like you said, it works for some, but it will end up changing your mind on a few things I believe.

  36. Exactly on the same boat as you. I want to improve myself, make myself the best version of me. Except, I was fortunate enough to find a guy when least expected, who is my best friend, who is there for me, who pushes me, and who inspires me. Yeah, being 22 and engaged is something uncommon now a days, but when someone only adds to your success, you’ve had crazy adventures with them than anyone else, and has the same life plans as you, I say – give them a chance! 🙂 Good luck to you.

  37. I may be a guy but what you speak rings true. However, I kinda get the vibe like, whatever guy meets you is gonna think he has no place in you because you are “complete”, and if he were to die or something you would shrug it off because you have “been there before.” Just a vibe I get. Keep up the good work!

    • Hey Leo,
      Thank you for the comment. I would definitely not “shrug” off the death of someone I care about, just like I wouldn’t shrug off the death of anyone who is currently a huge part of my life. The point isn’t for me to not have any “room” for anyone else, the point is for me to be able to be able to feel satisfied with my own life before integrating myself into someone else’s.

  38. Thank you, thank you, thank you for writing a peice that perfectly reflects what I would never be able to articulate that eloquently in words. I am 22, and all my friends are getting married… I am a hopeless romantic, but also very driven towards my future career and I have a serious wanderlust for travel. A dude just doesn’t fit into my life right now, and I am perfectly okay with that. Some people think I’m weird because of that, but life is too short to go with the crowd or care what people think. From one independant almost-grad to another, you are not alone, and you are absolutely my hero for being exactly where you are unabashedly. ❤️

  39. It was never your choice when you will find the right one to spend your life with anyhow. Whether you choose to wait or look for that one. It happens when it is meant to happen. Many mistake the wrong person for the right one because they want to choose now as the time, and then find out later it was wrong. Every failed relationship has brought and invaluable life lesson to those involved whether they choose to recognize it or not. Maybe you recognize red flags or maybe you learn how to compromise or when it is right to not compromise and move on. Absolutely take the time you need to grow up and live life but keep an open mind and heart because the “one” is not going to arrive on your schedule. He will almost certainly arrive when you least expect it, and when you aren’t looking for him.

  40. AKA your sombre that you don’t have a boyfriend. It’s too obvious, nobody wants to admit they want to depend on another person but they do. In the scheme of things, I honestly don’t see what’s wrong with women having the decision to follow after men, let people do whatever they want as long as they aren’t infringing on other peoples lives.

    • Hey Zach,
      The point of this article wasn’t to pity myself for being single. Sure, there are plenty of days that go by that I wish I had someone to share my life with. However, in my opinion, I don’t want to “follow after any man,” because I would lose sight of my own personal goals. I don’t want to follow anyone. People can do whatever they want, as I stated in my article; this is just the way that I am choosing to live mine. Thank you for the feedback though.

  41. I am extremely glad to know that I am not the only one who have these thoughts. You see, I just ruined what seemed to be a good relationship. I have known the guy for 6 years now and he has professed his loved for me when we were 15. At the time I knew it was “puppy love”. Now we’re both 21. We recently decided to be in a serious relationship though we are thousands of miles apart. Why? Because I started having feelings for him. After 3 months, however, I started having doubts. I kept questioning whether being in a relationship was the best thing for me to be in especially since I am about to transfer to a university after being in a community college for 4 years (I plan to go to med school) . For two weeks I felt something was off. Then one night I decided to break up with him. I knew it was the right thing to do. I told him I want to find myself first. Initially he welcomed the idea but he really got hurt and this isn’t the first time I hurt him. At the moment we are not in speaking terms for 3 weeks now. Yes there are nights when I regret it because he was such a great guy. It hurts as fuck just thinking about what I ruined but for once I want to be selfish enough to know what I want in life and I know that being in a relationship will not really help me find that. To be honest I do not have anything to hold on to right now but I do believe that whatever will be, will be. I just hope he will understand and forgive me in time. I am not closing doors for him. But right now I really need to feel whole….on my own.

  42. I used to think this way. Until I gave my life to Jesus. I got so tired of living to please some other guy, and then like this article states… I tried to be alone for once and be happy with myself. And that’s when I knew that that time alone, God was preparing me for someone who won’t depend on me for happiness but God instead. And so now I am 21 and about to marry the love that I don’t deserve all because I focused on myself and my faith instead of trying to fix someone else. God is faithful and He loves everyone. You don’t have to do it alone.

  43. I want to thank you for acknowledging that some girls know how to be independent when in a relationship with their significant other. So many posts like this trash on being in a real, nurturing and mature relationships while in your 20s. I hate that! Much of the time the author is not ready (as you stated), but does not realize that this is not the case for every individual. I have dated my boyfriend consistently for the past 5 years and he is the man I fully intend to marry (and intend to experience the world). I am not pushed to settle with him but explore new and exciting things, it just happens to be my boyfriend and not my best girl friend.

    So thank you for acknowledging that it can and is done. You were very respectful of those who are at that point in their life and stating that neither is better or worse. Best of luck, have fun and experience everything you want to!


    • Hey Michelle,
      Could not agree with you more! Everyone is different and I don’t think it’s fair to classify all young 20 year olds in the same category. It sounds like you have a great relationship and I wish you the best of luck with it!

  44. This entire write-up reminds me of a 3 minute bit by Eartha Kitt, as she discussed her views on “Love and Compromise”. If I may paraphrase, she says “I’ll fall in love with myself and I want to find someone to share it with.” First glance, it seems a bit narcissistic, but if you think about it (in the context which she says it), you get the sense that she’s expressing the desire to being a complete person who has learned to love herself and be content in who she is before attempting to find someone to share her entire being with.

    That said, Ms.Beth Cormack….you did “the dang thang” with this one! You’ve managed to find the words that I could not. Thanks for sharing!

  45. I knew it there is someone who feels the like mine! That loneliness doesn’t come from not having a partner nor having company but it is more internal and deep than the eye can see. That you can actually feel complete on your own and be more powerful than ever before because you know to yourself that you can handle your choices and face the consequences and learn from mistakes. You are 22 and you start to realize these things already, I envy you. I wish I had this kind of enlightenment too when I was 22. Cheers to you young lady!

  46. I just recently ended my engagement to a guy I was dating since I was 19. I loved him and he knew me better than I knew myself and THAT scared me. I wanted to know myself so that I didn’t have to rely on him to do that for me. I just had a gut feeling that something wasn’t right. I’m 24 and I know I still have many things I need to understand about myself. I felt selfish and wrong for ending my engagement but this piece put into words feelings that I couldn’t express. I can’t thank you enough for writing this piece and inspiring me.

  47. I’ve been saying this for years. I’m a 23 yr old male. I relate completely. Love is great, but you need to be able to stand on your own two feet. Enjoy being young and doing things you won’t be able to do when you’re older. There’s no better feeling than waking up knowing you’re your own best friend.

  48. You say your not ready to find your true love but you will never know when your true love might come. If you meet the person you are supposed to spend the rest of your life with in the next year what will you do? Will you just not be with him cause your not ready and just let him slip away?

  49. exactly how i feel right now. and i’m about to break up with mah bae -_- life has really full of choices. and i choose to explore things on my own. where i feel free.

  50. In the midst of a really awful/devastating/depressing break up, this is exactly what I needed to read. Thank you so much. Today isn’t as awful as I thought it was going to be.

  51. Thanks for writing this. I thought i have problems with myself but after reading this it made me realize that what i felt is just normal. It’s nice having another person experiencing the same situation and being able to understand him/herself. Really glad i read your article

  52. I didn’t read the whole thing but would just like to say as a 22 year old woman!
    I met my partner when we where just little hear and there we seen each other at one of my family members pool parties, I DID NOT LIKE HIM! he picked on me 🙁
    when I was 13 his mom ran some 4H clubs that I was in and we where dating other people… but liked each other so a little later down the road October 7 2007 we started dating I was 14 & he was 16 He has been my world since then as i am his, SO MANY great memories we shared together and plenty more to come! we had our first child when I was 17 and and another one 4 months a go so now my 2 sons and my husband are my whole world…. ID NEVER trade them for anything else in the world 🙂
    I feel bad for people who don’t have the experience of knowing there partener like I know mine 🙂

  53. I’m 21 and married. But before I was married, and if I wasn’t married now, I certainly wouldn’t enjoy the thought of going out into the big, wide world all alone and with no one I knew. I want to explore, and I’ve done some of it before, but I hate being isolated from people I love. I need deep, meaningful, intimate connection with people. And I’ve only ever found that in long-term relationships. Sure, I could travel the world and explore however much I wanted if I was still single, but I’d be doing it all alone. I’ve lived away from my family before I was married, and the lack of intimate connection, hugs, quality time, and so on really wore me down. Sure, I considered the people I worked with every day as my friends and their greetings brought me pleasure. But I needed more than just saying hi, a quick hug, or a quick conversation. Being free to explore the world is great. But I also need deep, sustained, meaningful, dependable connections with other people to thrive in the long term. These things are hard to come by and can’t be found just anywhere. When I find them I hold on tight, and wouldn’t put off these relationships for anything. I need these close relationships in my life to help me stay sane and healthy!

    It’s true that there is a certain sense in which I think of my husband as being “my whole world,” and that is because I feel that, even if I lost everything else, I would still be able to find some sort of joy, happiness, comfort in him. No matter what happens, if I at least have that one person standing by me, believing in me, being there for me, then I know that it will be okay; life might suck, but at least I have another person to be in it with. That said, I would never encourage any woman to give up her dreams for a significant other. I believe that healthy relationships are ones in which the partners continue to grow and develop both together and as individuals. I’ve never understood people who sacrifice their personal identity to the relationship; each person in the relationship needs to be strong and healthy, because without healthy parts, you cannot have a healthy whole.

  54. This is really true. Although I’m 23, I’m still young. I want to travel the world and focus on myself and living my own life the way I want to before I start making someone else my whole life. I think it has a lot to do with being independent and building that independence so you don’t become dependent on someone else when you’re in a relationship with them and love them too much to where you and your own desires are left behind. I think early 20s is the perfect time to take that control of your life and put yourself first because once you start having a family, it’s not all about you anymore. Great piece<3

  55. Hello Beth! I completely agree with you… Everyone else is looking for their other half, but they haven’t figured out yet that they are already complete. I encourage what you are trying to do and I respect it. You have your own plans that only involve yourself, but what if I would tell you, that if you find tomorrow that man you were talking about, he could be able to fit your plans, join you and make it even better than it was going to be on your own.

    If you want to travel and do whatever you want, is it too insane to believe that someone will let you do whatever you feel like doing and he will also join you? I’m pretty sure it’s not about doing things alone but doing the things that you want to do and in the way you want it to, what really matters

    I don’t judge what you said, Im just giving you a different point of view. Think about it and be aware to identify what Life gives us.

    Good luck in everything, and don’t let anyone get between you and your plans, unless they are willing to help and support you.

  56. I’m a big fan of this article I’m 22 years old and every one of these sentences define me I’m a hopeless romantic, I want to travel the world , I want to know myself better than anyone and most especially I want someone to support me BUT NOT someone who I cannot live without . This are the exact words that I’m looking for whenever my friends starts asking me ‘On how come you don’t have a boyfriend yet?’ now I can answer them with ‘I want to go on an adventure without someone holding me back I want to be a whole better person not just a better half I want to live on my own not find someone who I cannot live without’. Thanks this is one of the best articles I have read online 😀

  57. It’s amazing how on point this article is with my life. I’m much like you in a majority of ways, want to be wanted by another. We as humans desire it to a level we don’t comprehend sometimes.

    This article screamed to me, I’m waiting for my love to find me. And it’s funny how people perceive that quote. Some say it’s lazy, scared, worrisome. But it’s a beautiful way to approach life. Love isn’t something you can see in a picture of someone. Love is sneaky, yet hiding in plain sight. People search and push and prod and drive love into their mind, of how it should be and who it should resemble and the exact way everything should happen instead of letting things unravel as God intended.

    True love isn’t experienced, in the sense of a spouse, by a human more than once, I don’t believe, and the feeling of it isn’t known until you got that point and say damn, this is what it really means to love someone. You can’t find that by scoping out you’re one and only. I feel as if one day you just kinda get smacked with it. This idea of having to have someone.

    I love this piece. Live life to the absolute fullest and when the time comes to find it, you will one way or another. There’s too many things to see, do, experience to worry about marriage and true love at, 22 for you/23 for me.

  58. I just finished a 4 year relationship last January, and I am dating a new guy now. I must admit, the first time I read this article, I was easily swayed by its strong sense of thought-provoking and intellectual points. It bothered me for once because I found this very relatable. My college life’s about to end, i’m 20, and I just experience a heartbreak. Then this new guys came to me and said he wanted me in his life. So we’re technically, exclusively together without labels.

    Going back, I’ve had second thoughts whether it’s a right decision of me choosing him at this point where I told him at first I was emotionally unready. I realized soon that I wanted him, and it’s him I wanted. I also learned of what’s the point of having all life’s pleasures, if you can’t share it with someone.

    I guess women have different ways of living out their life. And I’m really happy about this article because it’s not clouded with the author’s current prejudices. I just want to share to other women and readers out there, that you can become independent even when you’re with someone. As long as you discover your womanhood in your man, and you communicate and grow, that’s what’s important.

  59. Hi Beth! Congratulations on this beautiful piece you’ve shared with everyone. I read every word you wrote. Right from the very first paragraph, I thought it was my own writing. Because you were able to put into words the exact thoughts in my head, I couldn’t help double-checking who the author is. It was a magical experience reading this piece.

    P.S. I’m also a 22 year old who is about to leave school (graduate school, though because we have shorter academic years of requirement in my country). Cheers to you and your passion! I hope I can also write for a website like this one.

  60. I have never read an article that better described how I feel… I’ve suffered from depression and anger my whole life and it’s what made me understand I just can’t handle some things on my own.. So I took the initiative and went to therapy and my therapist made me realize that being miserable all the time isn’t me. That I can be happy and after half a year of going I learned how to be happy and I learned the importance of autonomy and autonomy in a relationship. which is what you spoke about. Find happiness within yourself, too.
    Thank you for writing this. In all the blogs I’ve read I’ve never been able to identify so intimately with this one! You’re awesome!

  61. I do not think I have ever read something that completely explains how I feel about my life and love as well as this does. I am also a 21 year old (almost 22) that is about to graduate and move to a currently unknown city for graduate school. This time in our lives is definitely the most exciting and adventurous, and I completely agree that wanting to leave every door open is a great ambition. Thank you so much for reminding me of who I am and what I want to do! I have saved this posts, so whenever I feel lost or confused about life or love I can be reminded of my goals and what I want to do. Good luck with whatever adventure you face next!

  62. I love this article. I had a serious boyfriend from 18-23 and during that time, my life revolved around him. I graduated high school with him by my side, I graduated college, got my first real job offer, declined a job offer, had a family member die, watched friends get married/have kids… you name it. He was ALWAYS there with me and I swore he was the person I was going to be with for the rest of my life. Until he wasn’t… I realized that I really didn’t have my own life and I was truly devastated realizing I had spent some of the best years of my life not making/creating/finding myself and my own life. I broke it off with him at 2 in the morning one night after lying in bed for hours thinking “if I have to wake up next to this person one more morning, it might actually be the day I lose my mind”. Granted, that is not moment I am at all proud of or how I should have handled the situation. But looking back now, it is without a doubt the absolute best thing I have ever done with my life. We broke up, life moved on, I started over and I built the life I wanted for myself and I did the things I wanted to do and I lived how I wanted to live. I liked who I was finally “discovering” underneath all of the layers of who I thought I was. I learned SO many important things about myself that I would never have discovered if I hadn’t learned to be alone. I started realizing how to be an adult, really.

    I fell in love again about a year after that first breakup. The kind of love that is hard and fast and hits you like a ton of bricks. I too fall hard and fast and once I start falling down the rabbit hole, there’s no stopping. He encouraged me to be everything I wanted to be and helped me become more independent and self-sufficient. He challenged me – changed me for the better – made me look at things from a completely different perspective. We broke up when he got a job offer out of state and he didn’t want to do long distance and wouldn’t ask me to leave my life to move with him. I was devastated – it was the worst heartbreak I’d ever experienced, even worse than the previous five year relationship. This one, the one who taught me so much about myself, destroyed my heart. I was so scared that I would go back to my “old” life after we broke up. But again – I learned so many important things from my time with him. Even though I loved the crap out of that man and would have walked on lava for him, he was the first guy who ever made me feel like I didn’t NEED him to be whole – he was simply an extension of the self I wanted to be and the self I knew he could help me become. I wanted him to be around, I didn’t NEED him. I grew my confidence through him, learned to be independent and to ask for what I want and not be ashamed to be unabashedly myself.

    So I took my newfound confidence and put it to use and did something for me. I traveled by myself to 6 new states and 8 new cities in half a year. I bought the cheapest plane tickets to wherever I found, hopped a flight and figured it out when I got there. Then I went to Latin America, the Caribbean, South Pacific and next spring I take the cliche 20-something-backpack-around-Europe-trip. During my adventures I made friends, I asked strangers for advice and I sat quietly on ocean shorelines, mountain passes and in city parks learning how to love myself in and out of a relationship. I’ve matured and discovered what I will/will not “put up” with in a relationship and level set expectations for myself for future endeavors. Looking back at the five year relationship is honestly laughable compared to where I am today because I went from thinking I NEEDED my boyfriend to be my other half to be in a successful relationship to realizing that I don’t need anyone but myself (k, and my cat) to be happy – but that having someone to share my life with is an amazing thing and I will be so lucky to someday finally find that person who will want to be with me, independently, for the rest of our lives.


    I guess what I’m trying to say, is I’ve figured out life alone and with life counterparts and have truly found myself through those experiences. I continue every day to figure out life. I absolutely support and believe in you to find yourself and experience your life how you want it before you are ready to take the leap into being with someone else. Through my first period of self-discovery, to developing with “I Thought You Were The One But Turns Out You’re Not” boy, to another period of higher self-discovery to yet another new relationship – I learned and continue to learn and grow and develop into the person I want to be and the person I want to be in a relationship and the person I hope to be for the rest of my life. I hope I never stop learning how to be alone and enjoy my company. I hope I never stop learning about how to be the best significant other I can possibly be for someone. I hope I never stop learning about myself through lessons taught by others. Many of us will never self-actualize, but it’s the journey that is most important.

    Every year, every new experience, every new guy, every new trip I continue to learn more and more about myself just like you and many other people will. It’s one of the best parts of growing up, as cheesy as that is, figuring out who you are. You’ll change a lot, you’ll change often, but in the end you’ll be the best version of yourself you can be by choosing to focus on you first.

  63. Hi Ms. Beth. Thank you very much for writing this.It’s like you’ve written everything that I’ve been wanting to point out to everyone. I can’t stop re-reading it. I had to share this to everyone. I just turned 23 last month. When I was 22 I broke up with this guy that I’ve been dating for so many years because I have plans that only involve myself. And well you know the rest, you’ve written everything. Thanks

  64. At the age of 23, almost 24, I am the captain of that ship. I think will forever be on that ship. I prefer making decisions that can further my life for the better. I was offered a job in Texas. I currently live in Pennsylvania. My thought process is that if I were “tied down” to someone, I would not be able to go. Making risks in life is so much easier when you only need to think about yourself.

  65. I’m 22 and just got out of a 5 years “on and off” relationship. Every sentences describes what I’m going through right now. I know I have been telling myself I need to do what is best for me but sometimes it’s hard, because we all have feelings. But thank you Beth, you make me understand I am not in this alone, and how I need to work to make my life feel complete by myself.

  66. So what this basically comes down to is “I want to travel the earth(I don’t understand the obsession every girl has with travelling), have lots and lots of sex with strangers, and then marry a beta provider once I realise I hit the wall and my biological clock is ticking.

    Sure. “finding yourself”

  67. We have exactly the same reason, I’m 19 and a college graduate. I have dreams and I want to feel whole. We have our family and that is true love. Thanks for this article Ms. Cormack.

  68. i can relate much 🙂 thanks for this article I have better idea why im doing what i do now but not exactly what you do but it kinda gave me an idea of who i am :))

  69. Must be nice to have these problems. Most people in the world your age are struggling to survive or trying to keep their children alive. Count your blessings & be open to whatever life holds for you.

  70. hei i dont know how i ended up here reading this. but everything you said are true *well for me*. I’m turning 22 this June and yes I never think about having a boyfriend. and the good thing is i never had one. Lol. I do have that feeling to have that special *someone* but i dont think this is the right time yet. and yes, i do have a lot of things to achieve before being someone’s wife and all. and trust me, lots of my friend are settling down with their marriage. and yes, they are 22! i have no idea why they want to rush to change their status but after all it is their decision. many people laugh at me for not having any boyfriend and never had one. but its OKAY! i am okay with it. well at least i dont have to feel stress and depressed after argue with boyfriend. no need to think how to surprise someone on special day. i can enjoy my life to think about myself and be myself. no need to think about someone that I cannot guarantee he is going to be my other half. i love your writing. keep it up!

  71. Beth, you have a good head on your shoulders.Too many young women make bad choices in marrying way too young because they are caught up in romantic love which clouds their heads…OR they get pregnant and feel they have to marry…and I don’t believe that people should even be getting married until they are well into their thirties…when they KNOW who they are and have lived life…and KNOW that they can get through issues on their own. Just look at the divorce rate to know that most people jump into marriages way too quickly due to religious (yes…gotta LOVE the preachers here commenting! Geez!), family, and society pressures and too many don;t get out due to the same three reasons when they know it wan’t right to begin with…or they have changed way too much to hold it together any longer. And there is nothing wrong with dissolving a marriage if it isn’t working. BE HAPPY PEOPLE!! Now I wouldn’t be overly promiscuous…but it’s okay to have serial monogamy and lovers in your life periodically who care about you and vice versa. Sex isn’t evil no matter what the preachers here want to preach! LOL! There is such a thing as being “responsible.” Our souls are here to experience and learn and grow. Wish more people would get that. Read the “Conversations with God” books. On the flip side though…don’t become too independent and wait too long to be with that true love. In the end…we are here to pair and when you’re older…you don’t want to be navigating this world alone. Take care.

  72. Beth, I am completely wowed by your words. This article could not have spoken my exact thoughts any more perfectly. Thank you for writing this. More ladies at this age also need to realize this. Long gone are the days where women need a man to survive. Great job!

    Anyways, I have been following your work for a while now. I also saw how you are a fitness enthusiast. I am a blogger from NYC and also write for Lucky Magazine. I am currently looking for a fitness writer for a new segment on my blog. Please contact me if you are interested.



  73. Thank you for the article.

    It really spoke to me. You said things that i could not put into words myself. At least i now have a valid explanation that does seem long winded and legit.

    Keep going. You have talent

  74. I love this message. It is a sound decision and one you won’t regret as so many do when they jump into marriage too soon. I have faith you will find the right one at the right time and enjoy many years of peace and happiness together. Your children will be blessed to have a stable home full of love. I’ll be sharing this message because it will make a stronger impact coming from a young woman instead of from me. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

  75. You represent a all new level of narcism for women in the western society. You are an interesting stereotype of a new group of women emerging in our society. This philosophy can be very enjoyable, if this way of living truly makes you happy and complete, live it at the fullest.

    • Caring for yourself is not narcissism. Becoming a whole person standing on your two feet is not narcissism. Planning for a career is not narcissism but practical. One of Beth’s points is to not fret about what you don’t have and use your time wisely having a good life until the blessing of he right relationship drops in your lap.

  76. Hi! Thank you very much for writing this beautiful article. I just broke up with my long time boyfriend months ago. I really love him. But I just suddenly realized that I want to explore the world and other people’s lives by myself. I want to do things with just me. I want ot spend more time with my friends and myself. I want to focus on what I want, those things that I wish I would do. At first, when I broke up with hi, I felt guilty and sad. I felt like it made no sense. But upon reading this, I realized, it is possible to try to be independent, trying to be just you. Thank you!!!!

  77. I think I have this at 20 times since it was first published and each time it speaks new truth to me. I am also a hopeless romantic that loves idea of finding her true love someday. But this article really helped me to realize that that someday doesn’t need to be anytime soon. I have too many personal goals and bucket list items to fulfill before I involve some boy. Thank you, Beth, for articulating exactly what I knew in my heart of hearts to be true!

  78. I am so glad that I came across this! Since I started my blog, I have always wondered how I can write about this topic and express myself. This is the perfect example! Thank you so much!

  79. This article is amazing. Yes it is amazing if you’ve already found the person you’ll grow old with early. But the experience of being able to enjoy your single life to the fullest and learn to love yourself more is also great. I’m not sure if it’s true but a lot of mature people say that the best way you can love someone in full potential is when you know how to love yourself as well. Just keep on enjoying life since we only get to live our life once. And when you get to find you’re true love you’ve got a lot of stories to tell him 😀

  80. Beth,

    Thank you for writing this beautiful article. You said everything that I could not find the words to say myself. It is very comforting to know that I am not the only one who thinks this way, especially when everyone I know is the opposite.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you

  81. Hi Beth,

    Thank you for writing such an amazing article. I wish that I had come across your article much sooner.

    I’m quite alike you when it comes to relationships and wearing my heart on my sleeves. Once I found someone, I fell hard.
    It would have been so much easier if both of us were more mature… I made the mistake of being in a relationship when I wasn’t ready to. It started out great yet came to an end a few weeks ago. I wished that I had taken my time to live my life while getting to know that significant other as well. My problems were independence and immaturity, two common problems at the early years of 20s…

    I want to be out there living my life and making new friends. I want to pursuit my interests and follow where my heart leads me. I want to become a better person as a whole. I want to change myself for myself. Maybe then, we would have a chance together again. I want him to use this time to improve himself as well, growing into the person that I will love even more… I feel so desperate about wanting him to be the one for me, and that I’m the one for him…

    I want to move on without moving on…
    I want to live my life, yet I also want to hold onto him. In my mind, he’s the right person, who I met at the wrong time. A lot of people and things (tarot cards and horoscope compatibility) said that I should move on. I know that the breakup is what needed to happen, and I accepted it. But being stubborn and determined, I refused to believe that he isn’t the one for me.

    I’m sorry if this reply sounds like a rant, because it probably is. I just want to tell you that your article meant a lot to me. I can really related to how you were/are feeling.

    Thank you for the beautiful writing.

  82. You must be the healthiest person on the planet.

    I invested 19 years of my life in someone who was supposed to be my soul mate only to have them dump me when they had no use for me anymore. There’s more to it than that, but I wish had know better at a younger age. Now I have to rebuild from the bottom up.

  83. I was with my girlfriend for 3 years, from sophomore year in college until like last month. She broke up with me, and it’s because she felt the same way that this article describes. And it sucks. I don’t see how people can’t love themselves and grow with the person they love. I don’t understand it, but I accept it.. If any of you out there feel this way and are in a relationship.. gtfo of it for the sake of the person you’re with.. they will be much better in the long run. It’s hard not to have hard feelings for my ex.. it was sort of a blindside.. but I know no matter how long we’re apart, she was the one for me, and I’ll always be open to try again. It’s just tough to get to the point of accepting that life goes on without that person. So I stress, let the person go, don’t be afraid to hurt them.. I know I’d rather have been hurt when she first realized that she wanted to be alone than to be dragged along. Good article.

  84. This article is great and thank you for writing it.
    I am 22 years old going on 23 in under a month but I am in the same position. I am about 1-2 years away from finishing my university degree and at the moment when I look in the future I see my career as a human rights lawyer and travelling but can’t see myself settling down for a while yet because there is still so much that I want to do. I do hope that I will find someone one day and when that happens I will be ready and it will be an amazing and fulfilling relationship.

  85. Hello Beth,
    I came across your blog just now and everything that you have described is like you took the words right out of my head. My thoughts are exactly the same, my feelings, my emotions. The fact that I only like the ‘idea’ of being with someone forever, because I value my freedom too much. I just never knew how to express myself without sounding harsh or cold-hearted, and you have done so perfectly in a way I can relate. We’re even the same age. It’s nice to know someone out there shares the same perspective, and ideas. I very much enjoyed reading your post. Thank you.

  86. I’m right there with you, Beth. Relationships should be between two people who compliment one another and have harmony, not two people who are two halves of one whole and can’t live without one another.
    I’m 21 and I’m moving to Europe in 9 weeks. I couldn’t do that if I were in a serious relationship 🙂

  87. Love doesn’t wait for you to be ready. As a young man in love with a girl who has this exact attitude I find it frustrating, as if this mindset is unessesarily limiting. It’s frustrating because with this girl things feel so right, I can tell she feels the same from her actions but I feel this mindset is what holds us back. What if you met your soulmate tomorrow? Can you really say, “Not Today”? Maybe this is harsh but I think this attitude is akin to fear mongering, its telling yourself that you will ” miss out” if you don’t do this thing in this specific way. The idea that being in a loving relationship somehow prevents you from “discovering” yourself and “defining” yourself is ludicrous. There is only one person who can do these things and it does not matter what environment you are in or what people you have around you. The ultimate choice to define or discover yourself is up to you and you alone.

  88. Hey !

    I’m not the perfect guy, I’m not the “Prince Charming”.
    I’m just a dreamer, a writer. I dream about a girl, about Romantism.
    And I’m just trying to keep the dream alive with the words I use.

    I’m not a gentleman but at least I try to get close to it.
    I love the idea of love, I just read your article and … Cupid shot me right in the heart.
    Well I guess my big heart is not easy to miss and I’m not proud of it.

    Maybe we can team-up ! Maybe we both can resurrect Romantism.
    We don’t have to be the half of each other. You can be my miror, and I can be yours.
    Did I just say “we” ? Maybe it’s to soon for you, I’ll just keep it for me.

    Ok, that’s hopeless, but how to make yourself heard when you are a loner-wolf ?
    Ok, that’s an ugly scream, and you would have preferred flowers,
    But when a flower dies, a scream echoes…


  89. Hi Beth, I loved your article. It really moved me. Im a couples of years older than you but still feel the same. Just like you, I had relationships, the last one really passionate, and I thought, “I couldnt live without him”. Well, as a matter of fact, I can. Throughouh the years, I met lots of people, travelled on my own to lots of places and countries,had many different experiences that I am pretty sure i wouldnt have been able to have if i had been with a man since a young age, Today Im moving from Berlin where I lived 3 years, just because I wanted to, to Paris, just because I want too! I feel that eveything is possible.
    You are so right when you say that you have first to know yourself and be able to make yourself happy before sharing this with someone else. So many people miss that point, and wait for someone to make them happy.
    Just like you, Im a hopeless romantic, and believe strongly in love, but right now, I just enjoy being on my own, ready for the next advendure of my life in a new city. I strongly believe that having to deal with situations and experiences on my own have made me a stronger and more independant young woman that I ever though i would be.
    I wish you all the best, enjoy every moment of it 🙂
    x Pauline

  90. Hi!

    By reading this piece I was thinking “Wow, this girl seems to be pretty much like me”. I’m 21, I live abroad (I’m French and I live in SF), but I found the person who suits me, it’s been 4 years now. I understand what you mean when you say you want to keep your independence and build up your life, but finding the right person for you will not make this person your whole world, not if you don’t want that to happen. It is actually the opposite, love gives you wings. Not the wings of going crazy for someone, and brutally falling down, the wings to see how amazing you really are. Actually, not love only, but a mature, true relationship, without fighting for nothing, with the other’s support, a complete honesty, a profound respect for the other’s choices does give you wings.

    We have a tendency to see love as a dependence, something that alienates our will power, something hard. I personally found independence by finding the person. I would have never been this brave if I didn’t find myself in this relationship. I would have probably waited to travel the world, to live abroad, or it would have been really painful. He’s not a traveler. We didn’t have the same dreams. We needed time to do what each of us wanted to do. We took that time, but why should we break up? He supported me to go away from him, he supported me to leave him alone, because he cared enough about me to want me do it for myself. I loved him even more.

    Building something with someone doesn’t take your freedom away. It reinforces it, it strengthens your roots to undertake things that you did not even believe you were capable of. Keeping one’s independence in a relationship is essential, especially when one is young like us. Just keep the door open for this kind of people that will make your life happier and easier, because you might learn a lot about yourself and live your dreams sooner and better.

    At our age, everything is building up inside, it’s beautiful, it’s fast, it’s new, but it is also hard, and a lot of questions come in as well. Especially if you travel, and live abroad. It’s really hard, and questioning yourself is not an option. Exactly like in a relationship. Love is not everything, but love + respect + trust will give you independence & happiness.

    I wish you all the best in your endeavors.

  91. I can tell by this article even if you didn’t say it that you’ve probably never been confident in yourself enough to where you should allow yourself to be in love. You are not yet “your own rock.” Furthermore, it is clear you have probably never found a guy worthy of falling in love with. Falling in love does not mean finding someone who is your whole world, your better half, but it is that of finding one person whom you can share a mutually beneficial relationship. I am 22, and in love with my boyfriend. I am my rock, but he is also my rock. I am not only strong on my own but I am even stronger with him in my life. That of which I have. I have friends, family, and job all that I dedicate ample amounts of time to with and without him. He and I are confident enough to stay together but not have to constantly depend on one another. I travel; I am spontaneous. I am pursuing further grad school at a long distance from him. He does not alter my future plans. He is there for me every time I need someone. I don’t come crawling to him with every problem I have. But it is nice to have him every time I need a shoulder to cry on. He is my best friend, and I love him in both an emotional and physical way. He does not over power my life. He does not complete me. But he is the best addition to my life and he enriches the way I live every day. I am grateful to have him. I hope we stay together forever.
    And if I were to lose him it would not be the end of the world. I can imagine life without him. I would heal, move on, and be perfectly fine. I am strong. I don’t want to lose him. I would miss the crap out of him, but eventually I would be okay.
    It saddens me that you think you can’t grow as an individual while also growing with someone else.

  92. Lovely article……

    I think I’m like the male version of you…. It’s funny, I’m also 22 yrs old, at the stage of being happy with being single, it’s like I needed to figure out my path and well-being (happy loner:)…. Also, I don’ t want someone who likes me for what ‘standard’ I seem to be in, so they can say, “hey, i found a nice guy.” Things get all flashy and we start loosing ourselves…. but rather, I want a kind of love that keeps the person free of limitations and better yet inspire each other to grow… If it means someday going your separate ways for each of us to grow, well thats life… and why not leave it on a good note?! rather than make yourself think it’s the end of the world…

    What annoys me is this.. I’m a firm believer of letting go and see the signs….. so sometimes I feel like some people are placed in our lives for us to interact with, they just shine and maybe we can learn from them, but I end up thinking, is it worth the jump?… Am I loosing out on an experience I should try? for example; our past relationships, good or bad, all served a lesson.
    To clear this out I’m trying to go with my gut whenever I can and all in all take it easy! – no expectations :3

    What I now understand though is that I learned a different kind of love… can’t explain it, being in love with yourself brings the best out of yourself and people around you:)

    I’m really glad I could relate to a random person:)

  93. Girl let me tell you this! YOU ARE A GENIUS!
    This article is amazing! Your ideas completely agree with my mindset!
    Every time I try to explain why I’m not hunting for the love of my life in my twenties people look at me like I’m completely insane!
    But I’ve always thought that if I don’t feel comfortable with myself, it’s impossible to feel comfortable with others! And most of all, if you base the way you see yourself by someone else’s point of view, you’re also giving that person the possibility of striking you down!
    But that’s not the point!
    I loved your article and I wanted to thank you so much for putting into words some thoughts that I wasn’t able to explain! <3

  94. Lovely! I can’t believe I’m not the one who’s writing this, because your entire writing really speak to myself :))
    Really glad to know that there are people who have the same idea about… all of the things you’ve written there! And I’m also 22 y.o <3

  95. Hey Beth.

    Your piece gave me the comfort of knowing that there are many girls that are alone and being alone is an attractive and confident thing to do. My childhood bf of 9 yrs left me to chase his dreams. You made me realize that it’s time for me to chase mine now and there is nothing to be ashamed of, not wanting love as of now

  96. wow!! thank you I thought I’m the only one who feels this I love it. we’re still in chapter 2 and our better half or our own rock is on the chapter 8. we should be free and single and enjoy life =))) this really helped me a lot

  97. Hello there!

    As I’m reading your article i found so much incoming, i’m 24 by now and I share the same beliefs.. If you are fimiliar with the term “introvert”? I always thought that i’m some sort of introvert, that doesn’t mean that i’m not a social person, it just means that i’m secure within and that i can be independent without the needs for others, it also means that appreciate true meanings in life and I tend to take them a little bit more seriously.

    To point out at something, I liked where you said: “I don’t want somebody who can understand me better than I can understand myself.” it’s true that most of us don’t even know themselves that much, and to be able to share yourself you must gain knowledge to the all aspects about yourself, you need to know all the ups and down, you need to know your true purpose and motivations, and sometimes you need to be alone, like no pushups no external inviroments to effects the way you think and feel, that’s why you tend to find the voice within you.

    I’d love to get in touch to share some thoughts and ideas if you want. finally I wish the best to come your way.

  98. As a 45 year old mother of two, all I can say is don’t lose this perspective. You are completely right in your desire to be a whole person, and far too many women give that up for marriage and family. The two can coexist- but with a husband and children it becomes increasingly difficulty.

  99. Everyone has a view and it changes with time. I used to be like you, I never wanted to be dependent on one person, never wanted to expose myself so much that a single person could destroy my entire world with just a few words or by simply walking away. But then when I was not looking, just wanting to spend time with myself, I met him.
    I’m nearly 22 now and been with the love of my life for a bit longer than 2 years and I’ve never been happier! I can’t imagine my life without him and I just don’t want to! I have ambition and I want to be successful but I want him by my side when that happens. And I’ve had to make some tweaks about what my future is going to be but I know it’s completely worth it because I’ll have him with me. I’m a whole person by myself but I’m a better person with him by my side and I like to think that he feels the same way.
    So one day you’ll meet him and this all will change, but for now it’s good that you’re happy being who you are.

  100. Your article makes sense, but you wanna tell me, that if you find a special someone who can be your best friend, your support and have an amazing romantic relationship with, someone that doesnt stand in the way of ur career and ambitions but encourages you and gives u advices and moral support that might enlighten your way to achieve ur goals, u wanna tell me if u find someone that special, you would just shut the door in front of him?? What if you dont ever meet someone that special, wouldnt u regret missing out on an amazing connection and relationship? So u dont date until u’re in a certain age or u just go out with multiple guys and have ‘fun’ until u feel as a ‘whole’?? This article does make sense but is not realistic, true life is different, feelings are uncontrollable, and when true love comes, all what u said will not make sense to u even, and I hope you do meet someone that special, someone different than the guys uve met so far, so that u remove this article which kind of encourages people to miss out on relationships that they could never find in their life afterwards just because they’re 22. We all know how hard it is to find someone u are fully compatible with on all aspects, so if u do find him when u’re 22, my advice to u is dont let him go or u will deeply regret it, and if u do stick with him, come back and remove this aricle as you would have learned that life and the circumstances in it are very different than what you dictated in this article!

  101. This article was amazing. Took the words right out my mouth. Love Love Love. I am currently still trying to get over a break up and I felt so comforted by every part of this. Thankyou.

  102. I’m 64, and all I can say is, you gotta lotta livin’ left to do and I hope your life works out better for you than mine did. After all these years, I never found love, not really. Now that I’m 64, it’s not even that important to me, anymore. There’s an old saying, and the meaning of which I find absolutely true: “lover’s come and go, but friends are forever”. My advice to young folks is to spend most of your time cultivating friendships and experiencing new things, places, etc,., and spend less time worrying about material accomplishments and “love”. Love is a DNA programming thing, nature’s way to getting you to make more babies, ’cause that’s all that mother nature cares about, more kids ( nothin’ wrong with ’em, don’t get me wrong — just pointing out that I realized the desire for a significant other is programmed in our biology and this is the prime mover of that urge — I’m pretty sure I’ve unshackled myself from that urge, to a point of a sense of tremendous freedom, like a huge burden has lifted from my soul ). I could be wrong about it all, who knows. Anyway, Good luck.

  103. Beth…While you may only be 22 you are very wise. I know women in my age group (65) who will go out with anyone just because they feel they “need” to find love whether for the first time or again. But seriously…no one else can make you happy – only you can do that. No one can every “complete” someone else – only we can do that for ourselves. And once you feel you are complete and happy with yourself you will be able to meet the right person for you. That someone will be someone who admires your confidence and independence. Or…you may not meet that someone and still have a fantastic life being that wonderful confident, independent woman. Either way I know that you will end up with a very happy, wonderful life.

  104. This woman should be paid to tour middle schools and high schools. There is an epidemic of teen girls who latch on to boys and hang on for dear life. Their wholeness is determined by having a boyfriend, and then adulthood comes and if needed, they will gladly date a guy having no standards for him at all, just to avoid the pain and misery of not having “someone “.

    This author is the definition of strength. I think the best advice to give is that if you don’t believe your life can be great as a single person, you won’t be an ideal mate for anybody, and the chance of a long term relationship working out is next to nothing anyways.

  105. I have always been in relationships and now that I am single I am so lost. I bookmarked this article though and I reread it every once in a while and it genuinely gives me some direction. I dont want someone to be my other half, like you said. I want to be whole on my own even when I find the one for me. Thank you

  106. hi Beth, i’m very lucky i found your article, it was pure coincidence, i just typed my thoughts in google just for fun and found it, i understand what you mean , i’ve been there, still there actually, i’m 24 now and i feel the same way, it’s like i haven’t lived yet, and there is so much i wanna do, if i’m not able to love myself and be happy alone i don’t think that somebody will be able to make me happy, i need time .. i definitely understand what you mean.

  107. I searched “I’m not ready to be his sweetheart” and this article was in the listings.

    I am 51. Waiting for divorce to be final after 20 years of marriage. My kids are out of the house. It’s the first time I’ve ever lived alone -no parents, roommates, spouses or kids.

    I did not know what kind of damage had been done to my psyche during my marriage until I left my ex. That alone required me to be alone because, frankly, I was a bit of a nut case. Being alone was very hard to do and I admit it still is. I made the mistake of dating someone even with the well communicated disclaimer that I did not want a commitment. It’s too bad that we are perfect together because at a different time in my life I would’ve jumped right in and let him be my sweetheart. We’ve dated without commitment for seven months and that’s the longest I’ve ever dated anyone without a commitment. He sends me a text today “you’re my sweetheart”. I went into a panic and have not yet replied. Instead I went searching for suggestions on how to respond. Seeing my EXACT feelings in writing in this article may give me more encouragement to to speak how I really feel once again. I don’t want to mislead him. I really do want to go/do/be by myself and experience life by myself. Not to mention that until a person is ready to share the “where they’re going” and “what they’re doing” accounting to someone else is a real buzz kill. I like the company of a man but what I really want from a man at this point my life is a really good friend, someone who will hang out with me without hitting on me. So, what to do?

    Thank you, Beth, for the perfect words. It’s much appreciated!

  108. The best part of finding the love of your life (at any age, not just a young age) is that in that you can find who you are, with the support of someone who loves you unconditionally. If you don’t feel that, that person is probably not the love of your life. If you think the only way to know you are your own rock and to love yourself is in the absence of a significant other, it’s a sad sentiment. Loving someone else is the best love you can show yourself

  109. Whoaaw! Let’s just say you totally voiced out how I see love at this point in my life(I’m 23). Very me. Cheers to us! 😉

  110. Im a 22 year old male and i can completely relate to this, in my last couple years i would always be with a girl or txting someone i never wanted to be alone but recently broke up with my longest relationship about 5 years because idk who i am ive never been alone long enough to fing my interests alone without a parteners opinion im at the point in my life like you where i dont want any relationship at the moment i want to experience life on my own for awhile and find out who i really am and what I really love doing im currently on the path on finding who i am, still very confused on what to do or which direction to head but ive never felt more happy (:

  111. This article made me think of something that happened to me.
    10 years ago I asked out a former co-worker after I became re-acquainted with her.
    We had worked together for some three years. I ask her out, she says “I’m not gonna have the time” because she was gonna go back to continue her health care education. I keep talking and talking to her hoping to change her mind but I can’t get her to budge. I see her again a few days later and I try again but same story. That is the last time we would actually see each other. She was 24 going on 25 at the time, and after reading your article, maybe she felt this way too. Someone told me that I “just asked her out at the wrong time.” They also said that women in their early 20’s don’t hear their biological clocks ticking like they do when they reach their 30’s.
    I’d been wanting to approach her again thru Facebook these last several years but didn’t because I am long term unemployed despite the fact I have a Bachelors and I wanted to wait until I could get my career off the ground. I didn’t want to approach her, or any other woman, while unemployed.
    A year ago I saw on her FB page she is engaged and the wedding took place a couple weekends ago. I am heartbroken. Well, you really don’t get to choose when you ask someone out.
    What’s eating me up is I feel like I never got a chance. Someone else got the chance, and they went in and married her. It’s going to take a long time for me to get past this.

  112. I loved this piece. Especially for one so young, you write eloquently and
    with a deep understanding of things that are important. BUT, I loved your reply to Bob even more. Good for you. Keep it up

  113. this article describe my life so much.Ive just turned 22 and I am alone.Just one date in highschool nothing serious.This doesn’t seem to bother me.I had some health problems got bullied at school etc but I have a lovely family and great friends and I don’t need anything else right now.Study a lot and wait to find a job.as I have health my friends and family I don’t care about anything.

  114. I understand where your coming from and it makes sense. but I think I’m too far down the rabbit hole. I don’t know when I made this decision but whether or not I can be around her or someone else has taken that spot.. I wanna support her through anything and make sure nothing but a smile graces her face. this sounds stupid reading but I’ve never been so sure and motivated in my life. I hope I can stay stupid forever

  115. I am a guy, but I can so much relate to what you wrote. I am in a relationship, but yesterday I met a beautiful girl in a club, we had fun and I realized that there is so much more of me and the world to be discovered. I don’t want to miss that as I still am only 23. Thank you for this piece.


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