It’s fall wedding season, which means there are probably some single ladies and gents out there feeling the blues as others are saying their “I Do’s.”
Or, if you’re not exactly despondent, you’re probably hoping to sit at the (seemingly sparse) singles table to make a potential spark of your own — guilty, party of one! Because, if we’re being completely honest with ourselves, as elated as we may be for our friends starting the next chapter of their lives, it can also be a sobering reminder of the empty pages in our own romance novel.
Somewhere between the gift registry and the open bar, we become so caught up daydreaming about Mr. and Mrs. Right that we forget to embrace our independence. Science has proven that being in the wrong relationship causes more than heartache. It is physically damaging to your health. During a Whitehall II study that followed more than 10,000 participants ranging in age from 35 to 55 for roughly 12 years, those who reported negative close relationships proved higher risk for heart problems. In a 2005 study of 42 healthy, married couples from 22 to 77 years old, marital conflicts led to wounds healing at a slower pace.
Toxic partnerships also cause mental health issues, such as unhappiness (that’s the easy one), stress, and feelings of insecurity. Women in particular are more susceptible to hypertension, high blood sugar, waistline obesity, and other factors of metabolic syndrome. Men do not face these similar risks.
So, if you’re sans a plus one, I have some advice: Wait for the relationship that’s right for you.
In a society plagued by the bigger, better deal, wait for the person that makes you forget about your phone, who forgets about theirs, because being together is all that matters in that moment. Wait for when you don’t want to post on social media because your happiness doesn’t depend on who else witnesses it.
Don’t let technology become a smokescreen. Wait for someone that calls you because they miss the sound of your voice, because you’re on their mind. Understand that you’re worth more. Wait for the person who pulls through, who you can count on. Wait for someone that fights for the relationship and aims to grow alongside you.
Don’t let the status of others influence your own. Wait for the partner that challenges you, who wants you to have the most out of life, and will never let you settle. Wait for uncontrollable laughter and passionate sex, a best friend and lover.
Wait for your equal, the day your heart finds a home in someone else.
Wait for the moment the fear of losing them is greater than the fear of being alone, because what’s worse than being single is being in the wrong relationship. So, the next time you’re “saving the date” don’t worry about finding a date of your own. Time is relative. Embrace the wait.
Your health depends on it.