The Single Couple – Moron or Oxymoron?

A charming old couple, who would probably like to spend a little more time away from each other. Image courtesy of

A charming old couple, who would probably like to spend a little more time away from each other. Image courtesy of

We all have friends who are wonderfully together, and no, I’m not talking about having their head screwed on or a life plan, (well perhaps I am in some part). What I’m really referring to is the friend who revels in their relationship to the point that they can spend all day, every day with the other person, and still not get enough. I’m not talking about the initial stages where the other person’s presence is simply never looking like it will wear off, what I mean is when the two people who clearly used to be separate entities, now seem to only function properly when they are treated as two halves of one whole. Particularly irritating is the existence of a joint Facebook account, because Jane and Joe Bloggs clearly wouldn’t think separately enough to have one of their own each.

Yes, I know, I know,  you now think I’m either an old cynic, or in a relationship I couldn’t care less about. Well you would be wrong. I’m not old (yet), not particularly cynical, and am in a healthy and  long term loving relationship with someone who I absolutely love spending time with and live with, but what I don’t see is why I should give up my independence entirely, to only exist as part of something, rather than a person in my own right.

This may seem harsh, uncaring, and somewhat rude but I really don’t intend it that way. I am simply aware of the different approaches to being in a relationship, and fascinated by the choices we make.

Perhaps stemming in part from being an only (and non-excessively spoilt) child, but justified by many other means, I actually LIKE my own company. I firmly believe you need to be comfortable being by yourself before you can be with anyone else. Surely you actively OWE it to yourself not to absolve yourself of all your independent thought just because you enjoy the company of another person enough to venture into a relationship.

I read an article recently about space, and healthy time apart. Not to say we should all take breaks from our relationships and be faux single for a while, in fact, if you’re doing that, you should probably consider skipping the relationship altogether. However, if you feel you cannot do things independently any more comfortably, you should stop and think about whether you are still bringing yourself to the relationship, or merging yourself inextricably from the other person.

There is a lot to gain from spending time apart such as having something new to share with your partner when you get home from work, just as spending time together is also healthy – it is all about balance.

Celebrities, while often not a pool of people to lift relation ship advice from, are showing they can be successful in their own right while still in a successful relationship. Ms Paltrow is very often away from Mr Martin, as are the Beckham’s, the Afflecks, and many others…..ok, so not the best examples in the world and not without their own strife, granted. However, the theory is still founded on some truth.  Is it really an oxymoron to find the perfect Single Couple? That pair who live harmoniously together and still maintain their own identities? Pretty certain this phenomenon exists without the world imploding, or your relationship falling into smithereens!

Let’s face it, everyone is different and has their own ‘sweet spot’ of togetherness which works for them, but having complete absolution of your identity can’t benefit you or your partner at all. After all, weren’t they attracted to you for YOU in the first place? You need to be allowed to grow, and let the other person grow too.

And please….please, if you only take one thing from this thought….. don’t amalgamate your Facebook….. **Facepalm**

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Categories: People


Digital and Comms nerd working in an INGO. PhD researcher (technology / gender / International development / fragile and conflict affected states / South Sudan). Bibliophile. Writer. Musician. Views my own.

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