Help, being told I need to have a boyfriend to be happy

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    Hello Everyone:
    I would appreciate any advice! I am being told by my family and a friend that in order to be happy, I need a boyfriend. I don’t disagree with that fact that some of my friends are very happy in their current relationships, and would be quite unhappy if they were single. I, however, am content with my life as a single person. For about 4 months after a break-up, I was extremely unhappy, always longing for someone. But this year, just the opposite has happened. I’ve made a lot of great friends, I work, go to college, volunteer when I can, read books, play an instrument, etc. I am, overall, busy and quite happy. However, my parents keep telling me that I should date so-and-so, and that I “need,” a boyfriend. This makes my blood boil; my dad even told me he is sorry for making me angry, but he’s trying to keep me from being “unhappy, because lonely people are unhappy.” They are constantly telling me to date someone. At the ripe ol’ age of 21, they keep reminding me how they were married by now, and I should be too. In addition, I have a friend that I used to be very close with. But now she always makes it sound like my life is “incomplete,” without a boyfriend. She has very few friends, and spends most all her free time with her current boyfriend. I am happy for them, but I do not envy her, nor do I appreciate her pity for me. How to I convey to my friend and parents that I’m quite happy being single? Or cope with their annoying statements?

    Thank You


    <Sigh> Glad that you seem to have a good head on your shoulders. Your thoughts are correct. You don’t need a boyfriend to make you happy, especially since you already are quite happy. Another person can never “make” you happy, that is something you must do for yourself. A relationship enhances a life it does not make it happy. All you can do is remind them you are happy and not engage in the conversations with them. Best of luck!


    Rock Banana

    I strongly recommend you check out some of Noah Elkrief’s videos. This one seems like a good fit for you:

    “I need X in order to be happy” is one of the best formulas for needless suffering going!


    Hi Cynthia,

    This is a perfect example of what They say is a Reflection of Them, not You.

    You can counter them by saying, “Wow, if one of you dies first the other will be so sad and lonely, how would you handle that?” Turn it back on them a little.

    “Have you ever been alone?”

    “Do you feel you need the radio/TV on in the background all the time?”

    “What would you do if you were alone on a desert island?”

    “Would you ever do a solo campout, to have a direct experience with God?”

    “Why do you think everyone needs a mate?”

    Don’t ask these questions defensively. Ask with curiosity. You might have a Real conversation and make them self-reflect!




    21 is when you are growing and becoming more of the authentic you. Do not, under any circumstances, let others choose your path for you. They are hurrying you towards something they feel they need, not something you need. I have no idea why anyone would get married or in a serious relationship in their twenties since that is when you need to be figuring out you. If you really look at their relationships, you are likely to see a bunch of codependent people. No one can make you happy except for you. The fact that you get this and they don’t is a reflection of your maturity and your stability.


    Great, thank you all for your responses! Jodi & Tir- I appreciate your reassurance in my belief that a boyfriend isn’t just going to automatically make me a happier person! That youtube video was interesting, and had some good points. And yes, I could ask my parents and friend those questions; but my intent isn’t to upset anyone by posing the “what-if-your-partner-died-or-left-you” scenario- I just want them to understand that I’m not unhappy being single. Again, thank you all for the responses and encouraging words!


    Both your friends and your parents are wrong. You are 21 and that is the golden age when you should be traveling, having fun, studying, maturing and figuring out life (by yourself). You are currently on the right track and there is no need to deviate from the path you’ve set for yourself.

    However, understand that your parents and friends have good intent. From their own personal experience, they’ve learned that sharing life with the person they love increases happiness, but that’s because they’ve met the right person. Your situation is different, you haven’t met that person yet, and before you do, enjoy every moment of your single life (because it won’t last).

    Remember that words are just words, you are the one handling the steering wheel and are already doing a great job. No one has a better understanding of your life than you do, so there is no need to become annoyed by their comments.

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