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5 Forever Single People Reveal Why They've Never Been in a Relationship

Sometimes it's a conscious choice—and sometimes it isn't.

It might seem as if everyone racks up at least a few exes before settling down with the "right" person—but that's not always the case. Some people go their whole lives without dating any of the "wrong" people either. In fact, 35 percent of unmarried adults in the U.S. say they've never been in a committed romantic relationship, according to the Pew Research Center.

People stay single for many different reasons: sometimes it's a conscious choice, and sometimes it's not. Read on to hear from five "forever single" people who revealed why they've never been in a serious romantic relationship.

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They're focused on other priorities.

woman working at computer

Sometimes being forever single comes down to where your focus lies. Sophie Fennelly, who works as the head content writer for SalesTQ, tells Best Life that despite being in her early 30s, she's never been in a relationship. "It's something that I've been asked about a lot," Fennelly admits. But according to the writer, it's not because she hasn't had the opportunity, or because she's only been on bad dates. Instead, finding a partner just "hasn't been a priority" for her, she says.

"It's just that I've always been focused on my career and building a successful life for myself. I've always put my professional goals and personal growth first," Fennelly explains. "I know that some people might think I'm missing out on something by not being in a relationship, but for me, it's just not something I need right now. And I'm okay with that."

They don't want to settle.


In a 2020 AskWomen thread, Reddit user @endofcarrots revealed that while she does date, she's "never been in a relationship." Like Fennelly, this is mostly by choice: "If I'm being completely honest, I'd rather be single than settle," the user wrote. "I want someone I can laugh with, someone I can banter with and so far I haven't found that."

She's not committed to staying forever single if she finds the right person, however. "I'll continue to look for it and maybe that's what stops me from being dissatisfied, the fact that I'll keep looking and hoping that the right person is out there for me," she wrote.

They're battling societal challenges.

Mid adult woman arranging clothes looking in the mirror at home

Elyse Andrews, a wellness advisor who works in higher education and founded the self-development blog Daisy In The Dust, tells Best Life that she won't place "all the fault on the opposite sex" for her forever single status. "I would love a committed relationship," Andrews, age 34, says. "Over the years I have become honest with myself that I too bear responsibility for my status."

Still, Andrews acknowledges that early societal challenges have played a major role in her never having been in a relationship. "As a Black woman, I grew up in an all-white area, where I didn't fit the standard of beauty, so throughout school boys didn't like me romantically," she explains. According to Andrews, this set the stage for other factors that contribute to her singlehood. "There was a time when I didn't love myself, and I truly believed that there was no one out there for me. I didn't feel worthy of love," she says. "As cliché as it sounds, if you don't love yourself, how can you love anyone else, or expect anyone to love you?"

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They're turned off by other people's troubled relationships.

couple fighting and not talking

Some people just aren't keen to take on the potential problems that may come with having a romantic partner. In an April 2022 Reddit thread discussion, user @starya wrote that at age 32, they wear their forever single status "like a badge of honor."

"I think I've been turned off of it by my other siblings who have had troubled relationships. So [as] far as I am concerned, I am happy being single," they explained. "I've liked plenty of people, and it's always a headache. I really can't imagine myself being in an actual relationship where someone feels the same about me."

They don't want to put in the work to find someone.

couple on their first date at a bar
Shutterstock / AlessandroBiascioli

On the other hand, some people simply don't want to face the hassle of finding a partner at all. David, a 61-year-old straight man living in North Carolina, told HuffPost in 2021 that he has made "absolutely no effort" to find a significant other. "One of the clichés of romantic fiction is that as soon as you stop looking, the right person will come along. In my experience, however, if you stop looking, you just stay alone." At one point in his 20s, David said he signed up for a dating service but only went on one date, which he called "uncomfortable," adding that "the whole thing seemed forced and insincere."

"If I'm being honest, I think one reason I've stayed single is that it was easier than pursuing a relationship," he told the news outlet. "I am, by nature, a very lazy person, and finding someone and then having a long-term romantic and sexual relationship with that person is hard work—from what I've seen anyway. One of my goals since childhood was to have my life be as simple and uncomplicated as possible, and not pursuing romantic and sexual relationships has been a key part of achieving that."

Kali Coleman
Kali Coleman is a Senior Editor at Best Life. Her primary focus is covering news, where she often keeps readers informed on the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and up-to-date on the latest retail closures. Read more
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