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Mystified by monogamy? Lost in the lingerie aisle? Confused by kinks or struggling with sex in general? Our resident agony aunt Prudence offers answers to PRUDE readers’ problems, to help direct and soothe, or at least make you laugh…
Q. I’m moving into my mid-twenties and suddenly all my friends have partners and it feels like I’m the only single one left. I’m happy for them, but it also feels like they’re leaving me behind. What can I do to stop feeling resentful?
A. You don’t always have to be happy for your friends. They’re your friends, so they should understand if your emotions towards them aren’t always congratulatory greetings-card sentiments. Tell them you feel resentful – this doesn’t need to be in a serious sit-down conversation, but you can make it clear. If they’re spending all their time with their beaux and not saving any evenings to go to the cinema or get rat-arsed with you, tell them. They might not have realised, and after you’ve said something they might consider balancing time with friends and romantic partners a bit better. People spend enough time celebrating their friends’ relationships – anniversaries, engagements, weddings, the rest of it – they can celebrate your singledom too!
That’s the practical side of dealing with the resentful left-behind feeling. The emotional side is trickier. The simple answer is to enjoy all the various freedoms that come with being single, especially when you’re young. Having a partner shouldn’t be something to tick off the list of things that collectively form the process of growing up – it’s a thing that happens when it happens. Remember that while having a significant other can be great, it’s also a drag in all the ways that having a pet is – you have to feed them and make sure they go outside and try to understand the unintelligible noises they make to work out what they want. It may be the right time in your friends’ lives to adopt a man/woman/non-binary-beast, but not yours.
And that’s actually pretty sweet. Turn your resentment into a kind of friendly schadenfreude. In the fondest of ways, think: “God, thank fuck I’m not like them yet.” Buy yourself flowers, think about how great it is to not have to debate with someone about whether to get a cactus or an orchid, and to be able to kiss whoever you want without having to explain it.
If you’ve got a problem to do with sex, relationships or anything Prude-ish, send in your question to Prudence at: ukprude@anonymous
Enjoyed this article? Read more here: Talk to Prudence: how to revitalise my nudes?