At 31, I’m at the age of transition where most people my age are accepting the fact that we are real life adults. We can’t do the foolish things we did in our early 20’s and get a pass because “we are young and don’t know any better.” We are 30 and by now we’ve had time to make dumb decisions and learn from them—we should know better. We can’t party and drink from Friday through Sunday, sun up until sun down and get up on Monday morning at 7am, beat traffic and be productive at our eight hour jobs. We definitely can’t NOT get sleep (that ended right after college). We can’t spend our whole paycheck on an outfit and some shoes and have ten dollars left for two weeks and live off of Ramen. We just can’t do the stupid things we used to do because we are grown and should be responsible according to society.
In this newfound age of adulthood, we are also at the point of settling down; getting in a serious relationship, getting married, having kids and buying houses. Having some stability and somebody to come home to is becoming more and more comforting than partying all weekend and turning up (although there’s nothing wrong with a slight turn up every now and then). House parties are turning into couples game nights and Friday nights are becoming date nights. The thing is though, in this transitional age, I’m at a point where some of my friends have crossed on to the other side while some of us (myself included) are still single, still turning up some, still trying to hang (and I emphasize trying).
It’s a tricky period of time because where you and your main set of friends can all be single, in the snap of a finger, one can get in a relationship, get engaged, get married, get pregnant and it’s so different than if ANY of that happened at 20. For one if you get in a relationship at 20, who cares, if you get engaged at 20, it probably won’t last, if you get married at 20, DON’T—LIVE YOUR LIFE and if you get pregnant at 20, you may have to grow up quick but you’re still young and might have mom dukes helping out.
At this age, getting in a relationship more than likely is a serious relationship that will lead to love, marriage and a baby carriage (in no specific order), so the things you used to do as a single person QUICKLY slows down then eventually just stops. What you do becomes what “we” do and consequently this changes the interaction in your friendships. Not saying AT ALL that you are no longer friends with your single friends nor can you have fun with your single friends, it’s just completely different.
My perspective comes from the single friend. Over the past year, several of my closest friends have got into relationships and I must say although our relationship is still the same, it has definitely altered our interaction. It used to be, unless we had a random date, the weekend was ours! We could turn up and stay out all night if we wanted to, entertain men and dream together about meeting the “perfect” man or rant together on how “men ain’t shit.” Now, our outings may be once a month, when we do go out, we still have fun but we now have to be respectful to a relationship and staying out alllllllll night ABSOLUTELY does not occur unless it is a super special occasion. And I can admit, as happy as I am for all of my friends that finally have somebody (the goal that we’ve all been aiming for), it’s definitely an adjustment when you’re used to being able to be as spontaneous as you want to be with your friend and neither of you having to answer to anybody. You feel guilty if you hang out and for some odd reason their mate doesn’t approve or gets mad at your whereabouts and then realize the single vs. not-single interactions may slowly start to dissipate.
Myself, I also have a lot of male friends (strictly platonic) and I can admit it’s even harder when they get in relationships than when my girls do. And not because I want them for myself but because I’m a woman and I know how women think. Unless they already really really knew me and knew our relationship, they may smile in my face but I always feel like they’re side eyeing me and deeply wishing we weren’t friends. I make a constant effort to be their friend too and ANYTIME I have something where I have to invite him, I ALWAYS invite his girl. But if his girl doesn’t want to come, nine times out of ten, to keep peace in their relationship, he’s not coming either.
I recall a time when I had a birthday party. It was just a house party but of course it started around 10pm or 11pm. One friend didn’t come because his girlfriend was unavailable to come so he knew if he came without her, she’d be pissed and the other friend didn’t come because his girlfriend didn’t know me and my friends. I was pissed. I felt like “come on bruh, it’s my birthday,” you only get one per year. Is it really that serious? But evidently it is. From the friend perspective, he should have been there but then from the perspective of a woman, if I was the girlfriend, I guess I’d want to be there too but if I was secure in my relationship then I would have let my man go with no drama. But I guess that “sounds” real simple.
I guess it’s situational in all relationships about what will be tolerated and what won’t be especially when it comes to singles vs. non singles. I look at my parents who are 60 and 61 and things us young women WON’T TOLERATE, my mom would be like “child please.” At this transitional period though, we are working hard to solidify our new relationships and hope we can get to a “child please” point. If my mom says to my dad she’s going out with her girls, he’s probably like “yes, I can watch the game in peace.” On the other end of the spectrum, at 30+, what’s appropriate for a single person may no longer be appropriate for a non-single person or there may be limitations because at this point we should be transitioning past that “super turn up” phase and growing up. Eventually, I’ll cross over to the over side until then, these are just my thoughts!
Until next time,
Ya Girl LG