Surviving Weddings When You’re Single

Surviving Weddings When You’re Single

Being a single guest at a wedding can be awkward. We have some tips that will help you sail through the event with singular style.

Surviving Weddings When You’re Single

Jozef Polc / 123RF Photo

It’s nearing that time of year when pastel-colored envelopes inscribed in beautiful calligraphy arrive in the mailbox. Of course, it’s an honor when a friend asks us to attend their “special day,” clearly it’s a sign that we’re an important part of their life. But if we’re single, the wedding scene can cause us to second guess our own relationship status.

That’s because before and after the ceremony we’re bombarded with the idea that marriage provides the ultimate happiness, despite the fact that over the last decade, marriage between people age 25-34 has dropped by 10 percent, making non-married folks the majority. Yet, despite the singular shift, the old 1950s idea of matrimonial bliss lives on, as do stares, the pity pats, and the intrusive questions about our relationship status ― especially when we’re flying solo at a wedding.

While both genders receive “single shunning” at weddings, men seem to be blindsided by matrimonial mythology to a greater degree.

Thanks to Hollywood movies such as Wedding Crashers, where the protagonists bed willing bridesmaids for fun and sport, it’s easy for men to fall for the fantasy that single women at weddings are just waiting for their advances. Although a frolicsome one-night stand with their dream girl could happen, the likelihood is not likely ― at least in real life ― and eventually, the fog lifts, leaving the most confident bachelor wondering if his buddy (the groom) really did make the smarter choice.

Women seem to arrive with a vague idea of what’s in store for them once the “I do’s” are done. They expect the tsk-tsks from family members, along with the constant reminders about their biological clocks ticking along with the ever so reassuring, “Don’t worry, your time will come too.”

It can make even the most savvy singular throw her ring-less hand up in bitter defeat. Whether it’s being pulled into the bouquet toss pit, or being forced to sit next to weird Cousin Ed (thanks to a poor matchmaking attempt from the bride and groom), single gals have to endure a lot of jabs, yet they take it with grace and a smile on their face. After all, the wedding is all about the couple, right?

That’s how we singles survive weddings ― we keep the day in perspective. We suck it up, and endure passive aggressive attacks on our relationship status, all while remaining calm and collected. It’s not always easy, but because we’re strong, confident singulars, we take it all in stride.

Admittedly, it’s one thing to love your footloose and fancy-free life; it’s another to hold your ground at a wedding. That said, here are five ways to make sure people know you’re not in need of their suggestions about how to “fix” your singular status.

  1. Don’t feel pressured to bring a plus one. Sure, bringing an escort is an easy way out, but don’t bring someone you’re not really into just for the sake of not coming solo. It’s not worth it. You’ll have more fun attending on your own. Don’t drag along someone you don’t really care for.
  2. Look your best. A wedding is the perfect excuse to shop for a cocktail dress that fits in all the right places or a suit that makes you feel like a million bucks. Looking hot will help you feel your best and give you the confidence to fend off the questions.
  3. Dance. It’s almost inevitable; those dance tunes that go beyond Whitney Houston and Al Green. Join in on the Macarena, or take granny out for a spin on the floor (added bonus: no one can ask nosey questions when you’re twirling). Not only will you have more fun, the bride and groom will appreciate you getting the party started. If someone asks you to dance, say “Yes,” even if not your type. It shows others that you’re approachable.
  4. Conversate. Okay, so hearing about weird Cousin Ed’s sword collection may be a bore, but if you’re stuck sitting beside him throughout the 3-course dinner, it’s best to make light of the situation. Everyone has a story. Ask questions. Who knows, you may leave the party with a new friend or networking contact.
  5. Be prepared to answer the single questions. It’s going to happen; there is no way around it, the questions about if you have a special someone in your life, when you’re going to tie the knot, etc. It’s as predictable as the ring exchange. If you answer with confidence instead of mumbling excuses, that nosy aunt will be more likely to respect your answer and cease the probing.

Simply put, you’ll only enjoy yourself and your single life — if you allow it.

Copyright © Brittny Drye  2015 Singular Communications, LLC.

Brittny Drye has been spinning words on lifestyle topics since 2007. Her work has graced the pages of magazines such as Elle Decor and Southern Accents, and websites such as The Stir, Singular magazine, MetroMix, Socially Superlative, and The Frisky.
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