Is She Single?

Is She Single?

Why is it that some guys assume that just because a woman is single, she must be looking for a date – with him?

Is she single in los angeles

Andres Rodriguez / 123RF Photo

I just got my fourth message from a guy asking about a woman he saw in some photos I posted on Facebook from SingularCity’s recent outing to an art museum.

“What’s her name?”

Response: “Paula.”

“Well, that’s not much information. Is she single?”

And when I didn’t respond, a few days later: “You never got back to me about Paula.”

Now normally, questions like these wouldn’t bug me that much, but I’ve had numerous debates with this guy over the definition of single. For him, being single means one thing: you are open (strike that) you are looking for a romantic partner — actively seeking a sexual and / or romantic connection. In my book, that doesn’t define what it means to be single. Just look at the success of all those married-and-looking-for-an-affair websites like Ashley Madison.

Yet, just because this woman attended a SingularCity event, this guy presumed that she was looking for love (not friendship, not recreation, not even the free ticket we gave to SingularCity members) and therefore, should be interested in meeting him. That’s why when he asked me, “Is she single?” I wanted ask him to be more specific, despite knowing what he meant was, “Is the woman in the photo interested in going out with me? Can you connect us?”

Instead I get: “Is she single?”

OK, after six years of being on my Singular magazine soap box and ranting (often in vain) about how important it is for single people to shed the derogatory stereotypes about what it means to be single, I do get a bit testy when I continue to hear people define single people in such a narrow way.

I have single friends who have never been married, who are divorced and widowed. Some are not dating at all and some date sporadically. Others are in long-term relationships, yet still maintain their own household, bank account, health insurance and 401K plans. And most of my single friends have a social life that isn’t limited to spending all of their time with a romantic partner. Bottom line, their interest in dating (or not) does not define their single status.

Still, it amazes me that despite singles being the majority of the population, so many of us sidestep calling ourselves “single” because we continue to have this “icky” idea that it means one thing: you’re looking for a date, and even worse, that you’re desperately seeking someone (almost anyone) so you won’t have to be single anymore.

Most of the single people I know have a lot more on their minds than that. They’re available to date, when and if they want to, but they’re not actively on the hunt. They’re too busy with their careers, furthering their educations, traveling, learning a new skill, having fun with sports and hobbies, redecorating their house – in other words, living life. They’ve learned to be comfortable in their singular skin, notwithstanding being programmed by our culture to believe that being single is bad / being coupled is good. They enjoy their independence, their freedom, their ability to chart their own course in life without having to make decisions in negotiation with someone else.

They join SingularCity and attend our activities and events because they enjoy meeting people, making friends, discovering destinations in their city in an environment that, while developed for single people, was not constructed to make them un-single. In fact, if you’re looking for a typical “singles event,” you won’t find it at SingularCity – not under my watch!

And oddly enough, the old adage that you’ll find someone when you’re not looking seems to be true because ironically, many of our former members are happily married now. And for the others, they’re still just fine being single. But as for my Facebook friend — sorry, just because she’s single doesn’t mean she wants to hook up with you.

Kim CalvertKim Calvert is the editor of Singular magazine and the founder of the SingularCity social networking community. An outspoken champion of people who are living their lives as a “me” instead of a “we,” Kim oversees the creative direction and editorial content of the magazine and online social networking community. She secures contributors and is responsible for maintaining the fun, upbeat, inspirational and often-humorous tone of Singular, a lifestyle guide for successful single living.


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11 thoughts on “Is She Single?

  1. wow – I think the reactions on this show two very disturbing things
    1. How frustrated men are with meeting women
    2. Women who complain about being hit on, rather than feel flattered, are just simply bitches

  2. Single and interested have infinite permutations depending upon circumstances.
    A hooker is always “interested” but a “normal” woman has degrees and nuance.
    And in between there is an infinite spectrum.
    The problem I think is looking for “answers”. Articles like this are fun to debate but each situation, individual, circumstance and yes, moment, is unique.

    But I have to agree with Steve Matoren. As long as guy is not vulgar or intrusive there is no reason why a sincere and low key approach should be met with derision. On the other hand not taking no for an answer is definitely uncalled for.

    I’ve heard from a lot of women that when they even politely say no online many men get offensive and rude. Personally I think it’s kind of a relief and helpful to get that response before you put in a lot of time, effort and resources.

    Singular’s big contribution, to me, is the recognition that basing your happiness on the conditioned expectations of society is a huge miss. I wish I’d figured that out sooner but it’s made a big difference. In addition the same is true of material stuff. Putting off happiness “until” a circumstance is achieved that lives only in your mind is madness. I learned that from reading Eckhart Tolle.

  3. and also…if a woman finds a guy “good looking” no woman is going to be annoyed by him asking if she’s “single.” Just ask Tom Brady.

  4. I would expect the responses from women and men to be polar opposite on this topic. And the reason is men are always looking and women need a reason to look. I can’t tell you how many times women have expressed annoyance at being hit on or approached for a date. Why not just be flattered someone is interested in? This is something I will never understand about the female psyche. And it’s also why many men subscribe to the theory it’s best to treat women like shit, rather than romance them. Anything to avoid looking too “needy,” right ladies?

    As for the basis for the article….

    for starters- I do believe/assume EVERY HEALTHY NORMAL HUMAN is interested in sex or a relationship – anyone who “claims” they do not is either lying to you or lying to themselves. It’s the most natural impulse for humans and the entire animal world – the desire to be with another.

    With that said, certainly, not all people are currently looking. Either people have broken up recently with someone, or got hurt, and just aren’t ready to dive back in. But short of becoming a member of the cloth or a monk, everyone else is looking, to a degree; if they’re not already involved with someone…and some of those people are still “looking” as well.

    The reason I would ask if a woman is “single” when inquiring about her is that I’m tired of dealing with women who are already involved in relationships. It’s not worth my time to engage with women who are unhappy in existing relationships- so the “single” question is merely to find out of if she’s unattached. If the answer is “yes”, then I’d proceed to find out if she’d be interested in me. I certainly don’t assume that just because a woman is “single,” she should, or would, go out with me.

    1. The problem here is semantics with the word “Single”. It is much better to ask the lady if she is ‘Unattached” and “Available” if you want to cut to the chase of making a connection. All this talk about “Singleness” when we are social animals who like to congregate with others be they of the same or opposite sex leaves me cold!

      1. The guy you mention in the article (and I’m sure there are many guys who are the same) should have gone to the art museum, the happy hour, the hike, the dinner, the whatever events you plan and then he’d have an opportunity to meet women there himself. Let him see if there’s a connection with the woman and let her see if she feels a connection for him. Instead he wants Kim to be his matchmaker while he sits in his arm chair or surfs dating sites. Boring! Sounds like he’s been flipping through Tinder too much.

        As for Yardley, if you actually read the article you’d understand that being social is exactly what SingularCity is about. Too many single people feel they are left out of “coupled” events or if they do go to something that’s a singles mixer, they fear they’ll be perceived as desperately single.

        SingularCity lets us just have fun and meet people without all the expectations and pressure. If you actually got involved and met people there, you’d see. Unless of course, you really are just looking for a “hook-up” or a “nurse with a purse.”

        1. I blame it all on Internet dating! Both sexes have become callous and want immediate gratification. They don’t have time to meet someone in a social setting so they can get to know them as human beings, and then, if there’s romantic chemistry, act on it. They want to know BEFORE they even meet someone whether or not they’re going to get laid (if its a man) or if it’s going to be a long term committed relationship (if it’s a woman). How on earth can you really expect to be able to make that kind of connection, or even determine IF it will be that kind of connection based on seeing a photo? If they would just cool their jets long enough to get to know people, and in the process, develop some social skills, they’d have much more satisfying romantic/sexual relationships with the opposite sex.

        2. I think he did attend the event but did not get
          a chance to get her contact info. Kim should
          have contacted the women to see if she might
          be interested…let the woman decide and don’t stand on semantics. If this is a couple in the making, it is not a good idea to stand in their way.

          1. Maybe he did not attend the event after all.
            But it still would be ok to have Kim let her know the gentlemen was interested and provide HER with the contact info.

  5. So true Kim. It is also the reason why I put “it’s complicated” on facebook so I am not solicited. I just wish men would assume a woman is NOT looking as this would require an interest in friendship instead of sex which is the classier route. Now I even politely decline coffee as I know what it really means and no, I’m not gay, I just prefer the independence and freedom of being single.

  6. Excellent once again and for some reason, I find myself laughing at our ‘Single Event’ isn’t typical – hallelujha! There is a little respite somewhere :)

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