To wonder if people look down on single women?

(166 Posts)
honeynotcherry Sat 26-Mar-16 13:51:57

I don't mean Mumsnet - don't mean lots of 'well I don't!' but in general is is the case?

I think I've been abandoned as a lost cause grin but in the circles i know not getting married or staying single is definitely seen for women as being something to be pitied.

Is this a correct view, do you think?

wannadancethenightaway Sat 26-Mar-16 13:54:08

I don't hmm I envy some aspects of the single life sigh

CaptainCrunch Sat 26-Mar-16 13:55:29

Unfortunately I think you're probably right. A certain generation seem to believe you're a failure or a bit of a weirdo if you've not hooked up with someone by about 30. That said I think people who think that would be like this with men too.

manicinsomniac Sat 26-Mar-16 13:56:35

I think they are. But then I am single so I might be paranoid.

Gabilan Sat 26-Mar-16 13:57:53

You see it occasionally on MN - comments such as "no wonder you're single" etc. IRL I find it less of a problem, probably because a lot of people don't know one way or the other if I have a partner. Perhaps if they knew I don't they'd judge me. I find it less of a problem now in my 40s - perhaps because I'm established in other ways sos I'm not judged for it so much. Perhaps also because as people age they come to realise that it is better to be single than in a shit relationship.

ElsaAintAsColdAsMe Sat 26-Mar-16 14:01:48

I am single and living in a new area. I have told people in passing that I'm single and had the old head tilt and 'never mind' comments as well as people who think I'm going to steal their husbands purely because I need a man to validate my existence and I don't care how I get one hmm

museumum Sat 26-Mar-16 14:02:24

I know a number of single women around my age (nearly 40). Nobody pities them, all the ones I know have really interesting lives with fascinating jobs and lots of travel.

honeynotcherry Sat 26-Mar-16 14:03:41

grin @ the first response!

NickiFury Sat 26-Mar-16 14:04:43

Yes definitely, but those that do don't realise that I actually feel sorry for them. I've been married twice, there's nothing particularly special about it and I can't be bothered to have to deal with and accommodate someone else's likes, dislikes and opinions on how my life should be.

I've also been proposed to by two others, so married twice but four proposals, what makes someone who grabbed the first man that came along and wanted to marry them any better than me? That they should look down on my status and yet they do.

DerelictDaughter Sat 26-Mar-16 14:13:05

It's weird, I have a few single childless female friends in their forties and they genuinely think that "mothers" look down on them for not having children. I've read stupid articles in the Guardian about this phenomenon and never once witnessed it.

Having said that, it's not pity, and it's not 'looking down on', but out of my friends who have been single for years, there is not one I would consider dependable. They live their own lives which are full and interesting and free - that's great. But in their cases there's a lack of understanding of the mechanics of keeping a relationship going, having children who need you, having (zzz) domestic commitments etc. It doesn't half get in the way.

Examples: you go on holiday with friends, and the two single women announce they will not be cooking because they can't. So...we're going to look after you? Really? Pitch in!!

My single friend likes to come round and chat, but I need to cook a family meal, supervise homework...she thinks I am making a comment on the emptiness of her home life when I tell her I'm going to have to get on.

And the broken arrangements: "I just feel a bit like staying in today, so I won't be coming' - thanks, I had to negotiate those two hours off at the weekend with my family, cheers for that.

So basically a bit of a lack of understanding.

Strokethefurrywall Sat 26-Mar-16 14:13:46

I don't look down or pity single women in the slightest!

Most single women I know are successful people enjoying their freedom to travel and do what they want, just like I did when I was single. They are happy and totally fulfilled just in a different way than I am now.

ilovevegcrisps Sat 26-Mar-16 14:15:01

Derelict, you know single women can have children and 'domestic lives', don't you!?

Gabilan Sat 26-Mar-16 14:17:39

people who think I'm going to steal their husbands purely because I need a man to validate my existence and I don't care how I get one

Oh god, yes, that one. Also seen on MN threads when someone asks about their DH being friends with another woman and people ask "is she single". It doesn't make any difference if she is or not. On a thread about potential cheating, it should be obvious that being in a relationship is not proof against trying to nick a spouse.

I used to get it IRL - that sort of shift towards a partner when a woman realises he's talking to you and shock you don't appear to be attached yourself. Also happens less as I've got older, presumably because women in their 40s are not attractive enough to tempt men away. NB this only happens in some circumstances with some people. It's not all the time and plenty of people are perfectly secure in their relationships.

SwearyInn Sat 26-Mar-16 14:17:55

I suspect some people do. I felt it when I was single, but it's through ignorance, or people believing that their way is the only way.

For once however, I think perhaps society judges a single men (say over 45) even more - I think assumes is gay rather than "just hasn't met The One".

If you're happy being single then hooray and it really really matter. And on the plus side, you'll be viewed as far more employable and reliable! (But that's a whole other topic....)

DerelictDaughter Sat 26-Mar-16 14:19:25

lol ilovegcrisps - of course! I'm just talking about a few that I know who happen to have no children and actively avoid a domestic life. (One gets her mum to clean for her every few months shock)

VertigoNun Sat 26-Mar-16 14:21:14

I think some do.

I don't care personally

I tried the married life thing and prefer not to repeat that.

Maybe if the right man came along I would try again. I am not looking.

Gabilan Sat 26-Mar-16 14:22:10

Derelict, you know single women can have children and 'domestic lives', don't you!?

And that whether or not they have children, they can have a full understanding of commitment and manage to cook a meal for people hmm

Although really OP, that post of Derelict's in a nutshell does tell you how some people view single women.

Alasalas2 Sat 26-Mar-16 14:23:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Temporaryanonymity Sat 26-Mar-16 14:24:01

I'm single. When I am with married friends and I tell them about having to fix the washing machine or unblock a loo they tell me how they couldn't do such a thing. Or tell me that they couldn't possibly drive for hours by themselves. It's odd, they pity me for having to do it and I pity them for deskilling themselves.

I've definitely missed out on dinner parties and the like because I have a few friends that like to socialise with other couples. I'm not bothered about that particularly, but I do wonder why a single person present at a meal with couples is difficult for them to handle.

I'm 40 and cool with it though, but I do sense pity quite a lot from families I meet through my son's school.

minatiae Sat 26-Mar-16 14:24:23

I feel single women's time isn't valued. It can be assumed that because single women don't have a spouse or children (talking about single women who don't have kids, single mothers are different), they are the ones that should take later, last minute, or weekend shifts or in a non shift job that they are the ones who can be asked to work late or complete things over the weekend all the time. And that if they mention being busy it's always shrugged off as 'not as busy as a family with kids'. OK having a family introduces things into your life that make you busy, but those who don't have one don't have empty lives. People still have dinner to cook and houses to clean, people to see and places to be. I do find the assumption is that if you're a single woman you live like a typical university student, instead of like a real adult with a life full of things that don't involve eating microwave meals and going to bars to find a man.

curren Sat 26-Mar-16 14:24:36

I have been married since I was twenty. So 15 years now.

Honestly, I miss some aspects of being single, occasionally. But I know if I was single there would be occasional times I wished I wasn't single.

I don't look down on or pity single people. Either situation has its good points and bad points. Good times and not so good times.

It's just different not better or worse

VertigoNun Sat 26-Mar-16 14:26:07

The single woman couples thing is because they don't trust their husband to stay faithful.

Akire Sat 26-Mar-16 14:27:10

I think so to a point. Being single and 40 myself I always notice when say someone dies or his murdered cheery I know that it's always mum of three, great grandma. Really annoying that a single person death seems have less impact. You are never Auntie of 10. But only children or grandchildren validate the person.

It's also bugs me that only see single women on TV adverts when selling cat food, incontience pads or constipation meds! everything else it's more than one woman or families or couples. Keep meaning to make notes on single guy v single girl adverts for proper comparison.

Janeymoo50 Sat 26-Mar-16 14:28:28

Some do, some don't. It's not the "singleless" that upsets some women, it's the "childlessness" of other women on occasion. The air of superiority that some women exude (of course, this would never be seen on MN) is incredible because they have been fortunate to conceive and give birth and some women haven't.
My sister would frequently smirk and comment nastily that I was single and had no kids, it was probably the cruelest behaviour I had ever experienced from another adult.
Oh and us single, childless women must know our place too, never ever dare to offer advice or suggestions as we can't possibly know what we're talking about as "you don't have kids".

BlueMoonRising Sat 26-Mar-16 14:29:33

I'm single. A lot of people look down on me. Mainly because I'm 5 foot 3...

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