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Why Am I Single? The Honest Answer, 36 Reasons & the Excuses We Use

Do you ever sit and wonder, why am I still single? Maybe it’s been months or years or even a decade, but you still can’t quite work it out.

why am i single

Whether you do a lot of failed dating or have a permanent date night with your couch every weekend, wondering why you’re still single is common.

You may have been single for a long time and you may wondering about a few things – What am I doing wrong. Was it me? Was I too picky? Did I attract the wrong people? Was I meant to be alone forever?

A lot of people are single because they want to be. But is that what you want?

When you don’t want to be single but are, it can be hard to come to terms with the reason or reasons why. We believe that figuring out why we’re still single is how we break out of that rut and find ourselves a relationship.

That may partially be true. It can also help us come to terms with the fact that we don’t have to think of it as still being single, but just being single for now.

[Read: The most common lines singles have to hear and bear ALL THE TIME!]

Why is society so obsessed with whether you’re single or coupled up?!

Before we go any further into understanding the answer to the question, why am I still single, we need to get this out of the way.

For some unknown reason, society deems it acceptable to be coupled up, and something to be ashamed of if you’re single. Personally, if you’re pondering the age-old, why am I still single, listen up! The answer might be surprising.

This terrible societal “rule” makes those who are single feel like they’re lacking something or failing in life, when the truth is actually quite different.

There is nothing wrong in focusing on yourself and living your life, having experiences which fulfill your own dreams and make you happy. If you meet someone along the way, great.

If you don’t, so what? You have friends, you have family, you have the people you encounter every single day.

Being single isn’t something to be ashamed of, it’s something to embrace and run with!

[Read: How to enjoy being single and live the life you really want to live]

Why you should appreciate the single life

If you’re single and want to dat someone, there’s a good chance you’re eager to meet someone and find that special someone.

But here’s something you need to understand – being in a relationship isn’t all roses. You’re probably shaking your head right now and thinking “oh she’s one of those people”, but hear me out.

You don’t have to check out plans with another person, you don’t have to compromise, you don’t have to sleep squashed up on one side of the bed, you don’t have to worry about someone’s true motives with your heart.

Trust us, being in a relationship can sometimes be so exhausting that the single life seems like a picnic.

[Read: The 13 hardest challenges of being in a relationship no one talks about]

Of course, we know that you don’t have the companionship and the love that you have in a relationship, but that is something you will never appreciate if you don’t find it within yourself anyway.

All we’re saying is that you shouldn’t believe that being in a relationship is 100% guaranteed to bring you happiness. 

[Read: The reasons you should love yourself first before falling in love]

If you’re wondering ‘why am I single’ and wracking your brain for reasons, our advice to you is to stop. Stop wondering about it and start living your life.

The truth is that once you start to shed the baggage of wondering what’s wrong with you or what you’re doing wrong, you’ll run into all manner of people who might end up being your signifiant other at some point in the future. 

It’s a strange twist of fate, but it’s the truth. 

Confession: I really, really wish I was single right now instead of dating!

Why you think you’re still single – The excuses we use to convince ourselves

If someone asks you why you’re still single, you probably won’t start with your trust issues or neediness. You’ll probably say something like “I don’t know” or “I just haven’t found the one.”

We don’t like to blame ourselves for our situations. Instead, we convince ourselves that we are still single for a bunch of reasons that aren’t actually true. These things are our ways of denying the real reasons we’re still single.

If you can identify the reasons you think you’re still single, you can start to learn the actual reasons.

1. You have bad luck

Yes, this could be partially true. God knows you’ve used this excuse a million times, but luck isn’t all that goes into it. If you blame bad luck on your single status, you say you have no control over it and that just isn’t true.

Sure, you can’t force someone to date you, but giving into this reasoning excuses you from taking any responsibility. [Read: What it means to be your own hero and take control of your life]

2. You’re too trusting

This is another poor excuse we tell ourselves to make it seem like we’re in the right, and everyone else is a stinking liar.

We tell ourselves that being trusting is good and positive and that it isn’t our fault that we trust people.

That makes sense, at least on the surface. But, if you are saying that, it probably isn’t true. When people are too trusting, they usually aren’t so self aware.

3. You’re an introvert

Poor you. You love being alone and at home. You like to read and watch obscure movies. The thing is there are plenty of introverts that would love to do that with you.

Plenty of introverts are actively dating. Using that as a reason for why you’re still single is a cop-out. [Read: Introvert problems? 12 quick fixes to nip the bad ones in the bud]

4. Everyone sucks

When you’re out dating, you may feel like everyone sucks. For every ten people you talk to, just one may be decent. But that isn’t the reason you’re still single.

Honestly, there are a lot of crappy people out there, but weeding through them is part of the process. 

5. You don’t have time to date

Technically this could be true, but if you don’t want to be single, you make the time. Yes, you’re busy. But when you want to do something badly enough, you make the time to work at it.

You could have two full-time jobs, be in graduate school, yet still find time to meet someone and get engaged because if you want to. It’s hard, but it’s also about prioritizing dating over binging on Netflix. [Read: All the ways the perpetually busy can still make time to find love]

6. You haven’t met anyone

You meet people every day, unless you’re a recluse *and if that’s the case you’ll need a whole other feature*. It isn’t a matter of meeting people but interacting with them.

You won’t hit it off with everyone, but introducing yourself to someone in an elevator, at the bar, or in line at the grocery store is how you meet people. [Read: How to make friends as an introvert who never leaves home]

7. People are intimidated by you

This is a terrible excuse. There are people who get intimidated, but if you are holding onto this as the reason you’re still single, it isn’t out of your control.

You are letting yourself intimidate others. We’re not telling you to change who you are. But when you hold onto an excuse like this, you make it a self-fulfilling prophecy. [Read: How to be more approachable and less intimidating to people]

8. You don’t know

You are not perfect. And you deserve love with someone amazing. You are awesome, but you are not without flaws. You may not be able to think of a single reason why someone wouldn’t want to date you.

But what you need to focus on is not your flaws, but whether you’re mentally prepared to date, and whether you’ll willing to invest the time into it.

[Read: The most awful dating habits of yours that are keeping you single]

The honest reasons why you’re still single

It probably felt a bit harsh telling you that you were wrong about why you’re still single. But we’d rather be that someone who’s harsh and blatantly honest than someone who sugarcoats it and tells you that love is around the corner and you just need to wait.

When you can accept the true reason you’re still single, you can start to work on it. You can make changes or change your perspective. We’re not saying it will get you into a relationship ASAP, but it might make the process a whole lot easier.

If you really want to delve into the possible reasons, let’s go through the list of reasons here. But before we do that, we want to explain that every single so-called reason we’re going to mention is meant in a positive way.

None of them are negative unless you allow them to be. As already mentioned, being single isn’t something to be ashamed of.

1. You’re not ready

This is nothing to be ashamed of. You may have spent years craving for a healthy relationship. But were you mentally prepared for it? Or would falling in love at the wrong time only have made life worse for you?

Maybe all this while, it’s not that you weren’t prepared for the commitment. Maybe you just weren’t ready to trust someone or being yourself with someone. [Read: 16 signs you’re still not ready to be in a serious relationship]

2. You’re just lonely

We don’t want to make being lonely sound so minor because it truly sucks. Being lonely can lead you to crave connection in the wrong places.

When you’re lonely, you may not be making the most practical decisions. This can lead you to calling up a dysfunctional ex or dating someone completely wrong for you. Loneliness can help you get motivated. It can also over-motivate you. [Read: Why do I feel so alone? The answer that can change your life]

3. You have trust issues

We’re sorry to tell you this, but most of us have trust issues. If you’ve been cheated on or ghosted or just lied to, whether in dating or life, you likely have some level of trust issues.

Even if you don’t think about it, your mind subconsciously reacts to triggers and risks knowing what happened last time. It can prevent you from opening up or being open to possibilities. [Read: How to date with trust issues and learn to trust people again]

4. You want a relationship, any relationship

People wonder why they are still single but ignore all the drama of their past relationships. It becomes glaringly clear that they wanted a relationship, any relationship.

You try so hard to not be single that you settle for anyone who is interested. You date someone you don’t really like because there is nothing really wrong and leads to you remaining single. Don’t be picky, but prioritize a true connection over any connection.

5. You’re stuck to a plan

When you were young, you may have thought you’d be married by now. So when you meet someone, your mind immediately reverts to that ideal. You had a plan and you still want to make that happen.

Being stuck to what you planned or what you wanted to happen prevents you from enjoying the moment and actually seeing where things can go in reality. [Read: Why you shouldn’t rush marriage even when you’re waiting to get hitched]

6. You’re too fast

You try so hard to not be single, and you miss out on the best part of dating.

If after one good date, you’re expecting a relationship, you rush and sabotage something that could work if you let it flow naturally.

7. You think you need a partner

You do not need to be in a relationship. Whether you want kids down the line or want a marriage or a partnership, you do not need that.

Thinking you must get married to raise a family or be happy or successful can put extra and unneeded pressure on you.

Finding a partner is a blessing if you want that. However, accepting that it isn’t something you need will help you feel a lot more at ease about dating. [Read: Single for life – Enjoy the ride and find the one along the way]

8. You’re scared

We get it. No matter how badly you want to risk it all and jump into a relationship, you may be terrified of being hurt. This fear of being hurt is totally valid and something all of us feel.

It is natural to be scared of getting hurt. Most of us bury those feelings down because we want a relationship.

But fear has a way of rearing its ugly head without our say so. If you accept that you’re scared, you can take steps to face it. [Read: What to do if you’ve been single too long and want to find love]

9. You have unrealistic expectations

We all grew up watching fairytales. Unfortunately, fairytales aren’t real. There is no such thing as the perfect relationship or a prince charming. If you think you’ll find a princess only to find a fire-breathing dragon, sometimes, you might be disillusioned by love.

There are going to be ups and downs in relationships, but if you are only interested in the ups, then you aren’t ready. You don’t desire a true and honest relationship.

Relationships aren’t always fun, perfect, or even survivable because they require work, staying power, and a desire to fix things even when they aren’t fun to fix. [Read: 14 unrealistic expectations that can ruin your love life]

10. Your type isn’t any good for you

We all have a “type.” The problem is what our type is, isn’t always good for us. If you don’t like the “nice guy” or look for the “bad girl,” then you might be seeking out a relationship that is unhealthy for you.

If you want not to be single, try dating someone you normally wouldn’t consider. She doesn’t have to be a perfect *size two with blonde hair*, maybe find someone that you have something in common with instead of worrying about what they look like or if they’re your type.

Maybe they are what you want, but not what you need. [Read: The 20 kinds of lovers that exist in this world]

11. You want a relationship, but honestly you don’t

Sometimes we say we want something when we really don’t. If all your friends are in relationships, then you convince yourself that you want to have someone in your life when you might really want to be alone and single. Only you decide for yourself what you want.

If you ask, why am I single, consider the potential that you want to be single and that it is okay to be so. Life is short. If you aren’t ready for a serious relationship and want to play the field, then keep the player’s mitt on and stop trying to live by what other people do.

Live for yourself, even if that means you aren’t ready for a relationship right now… or ever.

12. You push people away

Some people are fearful of relationships. So the minute that things don’t feel one hundred percent, they push people away.

If you have been in a ton of relationships and just when things start to get a little more than surface, you do something to blow it up. You might be pushing people away.

There are all sorts of reasons why we push people away. Whether it is from past hurts, poor modeling from your parents, or just fear in general of letting someone in, if you want a relationship, then start to examine your own patterns. Is there something you do to push people away? [Read: Want to fall in love? Change these 8 self-sabotaging habits]

13. You just haven’t found the right one

There is a chance that you just haven’t found the right person. We are all complex beings. If you want to commit yourself to another complex being, then it is important for you to find the right person.

Some people look around and see everyone else paired up and settled, which is probably why the divorce rate is so high. Don’t think there is a magic age or stage in life where you are supposed to find someone.

When the right person comes along, you will know. If your heart is really ready and you want someone, you will just know.

14. You try too hard

There are times when we want something so badly we become obsessed with it, and that is never good. Like wanting a pot to boil, if you want to be with someone so badly that it is coming out your pores, people feel it. And you make people uncomfortable.

If you are too eager, try to take things to the next level too quickly, or overly seeking someone, they smell desperation and neediness.

Those are two qualities that don’t scream “be mine.” Stop trying so hard and try to let things happen on their own. [Read: 15 things to do when you feel like you’ll be single forever]

15. You’re looking in the wrong places

If you hike or are a workout freak and look for someone in a bar every weekend, you look in the wrong places.

If you want to meet someone, then try to meet them while doing what you love. Join a hiking group or start socializing with fitness and running groups.

You are much more likely to meet your forever person if you meet them doing something that you love and are passionate about. Then you have something in common besides just physical attraction. That makes for a great relationship for the future.

16. You compare them to someone or some standard

If you had an “awesome” relationship in the past and something happened, you could unwittingly be putting some sort of standard on other people you meet.

If you have the vision of what you want based on what you had, you aren’t ever going to find it again. You only set yourself up for disappointment. The past is the past, and you can’t relive it, nor can you find someone who is the exact same as the person you lost.

To find a future relationship, let go of the one that got away. If it were meant to be, you would be with them. [Read: The signs your past relationship is holding you back from a better future]

17. You don’t know what a real relationship looks like

You think you know what a relationship looks like, but you don’t. The minute the passion fades, you think it is all wrong. There is an ebb and flow to every relationship.

If you have an ideation about how relationships should be, then you might misread signs in your relationships with people and cutting them when things aren’t exactly what you envision them to be. That is a recipe for disaster.

There is no such thing as the perfect relationship nor is there any one way that things are supposed to go. It involves rolling with the punches, sacrificing sometimes, compromising others.

But, there is no such thing as perfection. If you hold preconceived notion about what a relationship is, let it go to find happiness with another person. [Read: 20 hugely false dating myths you need to banish from your mind right now]

18. You are self-sabotaging

If you aren’t all that in love with you, then you might be self-sabotaging your relationships. What does that mean? The minute things are good and you feel settled, you unwittingly break things up because you don’t love you.

If you don’t think you are worthy of happiness or love, then you might be searching for the opposite, which leaves you single.

If you think things won’t ever work, then you might be making them not work. Stop being negative and making assumptions about what you are capable or worthy of. You just might find love.

Being single is not a bad thing unless that is not what you want for yourself. With a billion people in the world, it’s hard to believe that you can’t find one other person to be with.

[Read: Single for life: Enjoy the ride and find the one along the way]

19. You’re forcing yourself into situations you don’t like

It’s entirely possible that you are trying not to be single to the point where you’re forcing yourself into situations which you simply don’t feel comfortable with.

Nobody can be themselves when they’re in such situations! In order to meet someone who really is going to add value to your life, perhaps someone you can be in a relationship with over the long-term, you need to be yourself! [Read: How to manifest love and draw in your best love life]

20. You date the same people over and over again

One of the most common answers to ‘why am I still single’ is becuase you’re too picky or rigid in your choices.

If you stick to the same type of person, how can you be sure that you’re not missing out on someone completely wonderful who doesn’t fit your usual type? 

21. You’re busy focusing on yourself

This is a great reason, and if this is your particular reason, stick with it! One possible cause of ‘why am I still single’ is because you simply don’t have time to date!

You’re busy focusing on you, having experiences, working on your career and generally having a great time. If this is the case, don’t stop doing it. The right person will come along at the right moment and you won’t have to change a thing. 

22. You want a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’ right away! 

This ties in a little with being too desperate to find love, but if you’re showing signs of desperation, it’s a true turn off. You shouldn’t be so anxious to meet someone and be in a relationship with, that it shows in your behavior!

Just focus on yourself, be happy, and see what happens. If it’s meant to be, it will be! You can’t date someone for five minutes and discuss how many babies they’d like to have with you, and what they should be named! [Read: What to do if you’ve been single too long and want to find love]

23. You’re not actually enjoying your life as it is

It might sound a little strange, but if you’re not happy with your life, you won’t give off the right signs to potential mates.

Positivity is infectious, negativity is not. Make your life something you enjoy and see what happens from there. 

24. You’re inadvertently choosing to remain single

Are you actually choosing to stay single without realizing it? Do you say ‘no’ to potential dates? Do people ask you out and you make excuses? Or do you even realize that they’re asking you out in the first place?

Open your eyes and see the possibilities! [Read: When you’re single AF – 13 experiences we know all too well]

25. You have past baggage which you allow to interfere with potential relationships

Everyone has a little history, but the key is to avoid it inferring with new relationships.

The answer to ‘why am I still single’ is often because you’re allowing past problems to transfer onto new situations. The best advice? Work through your baggage before starting a new relationship. 

26. You have a routine which doesn’t allow you to meet new people

Do you rarely go out after work and stay at home during the weekends? Do you always go out with the same people and simply don’t speak to other people?

It could be that you just need to get out of your bubble and expand your horizons a little!

27. You have low self-esteem

If you have low self esteem, you’re not going to be in the best position to be in any type of relationship. ‘Why am I still single’ usually comes down to not valuing yourself enough.

You deserve the best, and you should realize it! Do this before you meet someone and your future will be much brighter. [Read: How to date when you have low self-esteem and find true happiness

28. You are attracted to the “bad ones” 

Ah, we all love the bad ones! The problem is, the bad ones rarely change, and you’ll stay there because you think you can be the one to do the changing.

This means you’re wasting time with the wrong people and passing by all those super-charming and nice ones you could be having a great time with!

Which of these reasons could be yours? Maybe a few. It’s not unusual for a combination of different reasons to be the cause for someone to remain single when they don’t want to.

However, if you’re happy being single, that’s great! Stay single until you feel ready to be with someone, and to be honest, that type of advice goes for everyone. 

[Read: Not ready for a relationship? All the reason why that is completely okay!]

It is hard to accept, but facing the reasons you’re still single is the best way to move forward. Don’t rush it, but work your way towards it instead.

Read: 20 ways relationships are overrated and why you need to learn to be happy alone

Every day is a new day to find the perfect, or almost perfect, person for you. Think positively, look in the right place, and be open to finding love. Before you know it, you won’t be able to ask, why am I single?

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...