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Single and Sick: Nika Beamon Takes It On December 12, 2013

Posted by Onely in As If!, Food for Thought, Marital Status Discrimination.
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1 comment so far

Copious Readers,

We at Onely are trying to write more about the issues of being single and sick (health insurance inequalities being one of the main bullsh!t factors creating a more difficult situation for singles with chronic illnesses).

So we were thrilled to see that Bella dePaulo, longtime singles advocate and social scientist, posted a guest article by Nika Beamon about dating and living with a chronic immune disorder.

Read it here.

We also tweeted it, so we request you retweet so that we can get the dialog going!

–CC

 

Single? Blogfest Explains How to Get Screwed 1,000 Times! April 15, 2013

Posted by Onely in As If!, Bad Onely Activities, Food for Thought, Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, Marital Status Discrimination, Singled Out, Singles Resource, Take action, Your Responses Requested!.
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4 comments

Screen Shot 2013-01-15 at 11.43.08 PMMarital Status Discrimination: Today, Onely joins forces with dozens of other bloggers to highlight the problem of Marital Status Discrimination. Why? Because on Tax Day, Uncle Sam picks the pockets of singles at the same time he’s rewarding couples for getting married.

So what? So this: The U.S. government–a democratic government, a government “By the People and For the People” and all that–discriminates against fifty percent of its population: unmarried people. Our federal code alone contains over 1,000 laws where marital status is a factor, and in most cases single people lose out.

Because this phenomenon was a problem with no name, we at Onely christened it “institutionalized” Marital Status Discrimination. In January we made a big slam-dunk stink about it in The Atlantic.

The Million-Dollar Difference: According to our very conservative and basic calculations, a single person earning $80,000/year could easily pay at least a million dollars more over her lifetime than her married counterpart, based on only a few of the most discriminatory laws (such as Income Tax, IRAs, and Social Security).

What’s more, our hypothetical scenarios did not consider state laws, nor the many ways Marital Status Discrimination shows up in corporate policies–such as when singles pay more for all sorts of insurance. These factors could easily push the million-dollar figure higher. Much higher.

But money isn’t everything:  That’s why our government has thoughtfully provided other laws that don’t impact single people’s pocketbooks. These laws instead impact single people’s peace of mind. For example, as we described in 2010 on Psychology Today, an anti-stalking law promises protection to the victim’s spouse. Phew! But a single person being stalked is offered no such additional protection for a loved ones.

Any stalker who does his research (and we imagine this is all of them) would know exactly whom his stalkee loves most. R.I.P. Grandma; if only you had married your grandson maybe there would have been cops by your door when his stalker came calling. . .

The U.S. Government thinks being unmarried means: a life free of connections and cares, and full of discretionary spending. Unfortunately, even if this were true (and we at Onely fervently wish it were), no society is at its best when half its members are treated differently from the other half.

So let’s get started obliterating Marital Status Discrimination! Our first step is to. . uh. . . We will start by. . . ahem. . . Our next move should be. . . um. . .  Well, as you can see, while we at Onely are skilled at pointing out these problems, we aren’t so sure what we should do next.

So, Copious Readers, here’s where we need your help: Now that we’ve gotten the dialog started, what do you think our “next steps” should be? How do you think we should take action (and by “we,” we mean the collective blogosphere standing up for single people everywhere)? What subject matter experts are best positioned to spread the word or propose legislative change? Do you know tax professionals or legislators friendly to our cause? (Or can you convince them to embrace our cause?)

Please share your insights and spread the word: Comment below. Or tweet #UnmarriedEquality and #SinglesBlogfest. Or share this article on Facebook!

If you have more questions about Singles Blogfest, please write to Onely@onely.org or to contact.clue@gmail.com. Huh? Clue? Yes:

The Communication League for Unmarried Equality (CLUE):

We at Onely were not the only ones who instigated this effort. We were honored to have had lots of help from three of the most active voices in the progressive singles’ movement, who jumped on board the Singles Blogfest project with unparalleled enthusiasm and expertise:

Bella DePaulo (Ph.D., Harvard), author of Singled Out and the “Living Single” blog at Psychology Today (belladepaulo@gmail.com)

Eleanore Wells, blogger and author of The Spinsterlicious Life (Eleanore@TheSpinsterliciousLife.com)

Cindy Butler, of Unmarried Equality  (cbutler@unmarried.org)

Thanks Copious Readers, We Love You!

–Christina Campbell and Lisa A. of Onely.org, (pronounced wun-lee), a blog that challenges stereotypes about singles (Onely@onely.org)

Photo Credit: The Atlantic.com

Satisfied Singles Need a Rallying Cry October 8, 2010

Posted by Onely in Your Responses Requested!.
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19 comments

Leading singles advocate Bella DePaulo recently posted an intriguing thought at the Alternatives to Marriage Project: Why don’t singles’ advocates have a rallying cry, and if we did, what would it be?

Successful social movements have rallying cries that become known throughout the land. For example:

Black is beautiful
Sisterhood is powerful
We’re queer, we’re here, get used to it
We shall overcome

So where is the expression of group identification and pride trumpeted by singles activists?. . .Does the mere thought of hoisting a “singlehood is powerful” sign make you feel embarrassed and self-conscious? That right there is a big hint as to why we do not have a singles movement in the United States.

The take-away lesson here would seem to be: if singles can find a catchy slogan, then we’ll have a movement, and then we’ll have (eventually) rights and respect on a par with couples/marrieds. Yay! Unfortuately, we here at Onely–who are proud to have brought you such word gems as “heteronormahole“–now have Slogan Block.  So Copious Readers, it’s time for you to step up!

Here’s a few to get you started:

Single doesn’t suck

Onely not lonely

One equals two

(Um, you can see why we asked for help!)

–Christina

Photo credit: The Searcher

Day Seven (Finale!): National Unmarried and Single Americans Week September 25, 2010

Posted by Onely in Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, single and happy, Singles Resource, Your Responses Requested!.
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So what did you do today to celebrate National Unmarried and Single Americans Week? Lisa and Christina both spent some time reframing personal goals so we don’t get overwhelmed or needlessly critical of ourselves. We’re sure you’re up to similar good things and we want to hear about it — so please let us know in the comments below!

We hope you’ll visit the seventh and FINAL stop on the second annual Blog Crawl for NUSA Week: Dr. Bella DePaulo of Living Single on Psychology Today posts on the Alternatives to Marriage Project!

Thanks to Single Women Rule for organizing the crawl, and to sponsors Cheek’d and Luscious Lifestyle for supporting it!

– Lisa and Christina

Day Four: National Unmarried and Single Americans Week September 22, 2010

Posted by Onely in Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, single and happy, Singles Resource, Your Responses Requested!.
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2 comments

So what did you do today to celebrate National Unmarried and Single Americans Week? We discovered some new pro-singles blogs that we’ll be bringing to your attention over the next couple of weeks. We’re sure you’re up to similar good things and we want to hear about it — so please let us know in the comments below!

We hope you’ll visit the fourth stop on the second annual Blog Crawl for NUSA Week: Christina and Lisa of Onely (hey, that’s us!) post on Bella DePaulo’s Living Single series on Psychology Today!

We’ll be linking to our fellow singles-savvy bloggers throughout the week. Check back here for the latest links.

– Lisa and Christina

Day Three: National Unmarried and Single Americans Week September 21, 2010

Posted by Onely in Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, single and happy, Singles Resource, Your Responses Requested!.
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2 comments

So what did you do today to celebrate National Unmarried and Single Americans Week? Lisa went trail running for the first time with a group of strangers she connected with through Meetup. Christina posted a link to the Alternatives to Marriage Project on her Facebook page and wished all her friends happy Singles week. We’re sure you’re up to similar good things and we want to hear about it — so please let us know in the comments below!

We hope you’ll visit the third stop on the second annual Blog Crawl for NUSA Week: Rachel Buddeberg of Rachel’s Musings posts on All Things Single by Dr. Bella DePaulo!

We’ll be linking to our fellow singles-savvy bloggers throughout the week. Check back here for the latest links.

– Lisa and Christina

But Who Will Kiss My Broken Cheek? October 3, 2009

Posted by Onely in Bad Onely Activities, Just Saying..
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18 comments

From friends, teachers, blogs, magazines, newscasters, and our inner monologues we hear about how much work it is to maintain a healthy committed romantic relationship. We seldom hear about how much work it is to maintain a healthy network of friends and family. I worry sometimes that  I’m not doing a good enough job of cultivating a friends-and-family support system. Is this the enlightened-single’s equivalent of worrying about not getting married, as in, “Oh no, if I don’t have enough good friends I will die alone and be eaten by cats!”?  I have a lot of friends here in the D.C. area, but I don’t know who I could call if I fell down and broke my face. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to see my bloody boogers. 

Singles advocate and social psychologist Bella DePaulo (who recently guest-posted on Onely!) often mentions how single people tend to have wider networks of friends, cultivate more and varied relationships, and participate more in community activities. Singles build and use a sort of social scaffolding that couple-centric relationships often don’t have. Here’s one of DePaulo’s quotes along those lines (explaining why a study shows that always-single people are healthier than previously-married people):

Perhaps people who have always been single maintain a more diversified relationship portfolio than the married people who invest all of their relationship capital into just one person. Maybe single people have friendships that have endured longer than many marriages. Maybe they attend to those friendships consistently, rather than stowing them on the back burner while focusing on The One. 

Lately I’ve been reading these kind of things and thinking, “Oh crap, my friends-and-family network isn’t diversified enough, or strong enough, and gosh darnit, I don’t volunteer much (er, at all).” Forming and nurturing relationships with close friends, regular friends, new friends, nuclear family, extended family takes a lot of time and energy. If you want your support network to be strong enough so that it is really there for you if you fall down and break your face, then you need to have paid your dues–to have put in your own emotional and supportive energy. This involves calling friends, writing thoughtful emails, asking how they are, listening, scheduling, remembering birthdays perhaps. It requires most, if not all, of the same efforts that go into remaining “tight” with a spouse or sig other, with the difference that as a single person you’re making those efforts many times over.  

If you can pull this off, great. It’s better to (as Bella said) have a diverse portfolio of relationships to fall back on if needed. That way, when you break your face, you might have a calm driver to take you to the emergency room with your broken face, a foodie to make you soup, a gentle friend to kiss your bruised and broken cheek, and  a comical buddy to make you laugh–but not too hard because that irritates your shattered septum. This system may be much better than relying on one romantic partner to fill all these roles, especially if he trips over you and breaks his face too (because then what do you do?).

In my “circles” of friends and family, I have married couples, non-married but exclusive couples, and singles. The former are quickly outnumbering the latter. This phenomenon results in the timeworn singles’ lament, “My coupled friends don’t have time for me anymore”. I’ll see those lamenters and raise them one: “Even my single friends don’t have time for me anymore!” Well, this is not really true. My friends have time to email and Facebook me. They just don’t seem to have time to return my phone calls. I’m torn whether to blame our new cyber-obsessed society or the fact that maybe I “give bad phone” as the saying goes. I have six friends who haven’t returned calls I placed to them, ranging from a week ago to a couple months ago. Yet they all respond regularly over email, usually with some kind of plans to meet up in the near future. Perhaps I “give good email and in-person”, but not good phone? 

If someone doesn’t want to return my innocuous phone calls, how can I ask them to help me when I’ve just fallen and broken my face? I can’t.  Which is why I worry about the state of my support network, which as a single person is supposed to be legendary and far-reaching. And perhaps mine is, except it’s been watered down by a preponderance of superficial electronic interactions–time-filling but emotionally unnutritious, the refined sugar of relationships. 

Most people would balk at a committed romantic partnered relationship consisting mostly of emails, tweets, and phone calls with the occasional get-together-in-person lunch. Yet this is considered fine for even close friendships. That is because people are expected to call their spouse or their boy-girlfriend if they break their face (or maybe a parent, if one is available). So partnered people put a lot of effort into making sure their other half loves them enough to lift them off the sidewalk and stop the bleeding. But what do single people do about a broken face when they don’t have–or necessarily want–that kind of partner and they haven’t been able to keep up a support network beyond emails and occasional meals, either because their friends are busy with their partners, or satisfied with cyber communications, or think the single person gives bad phone? 

–Christina

Pioneering Singles’ Advocate Dr. Bella DePaulo BlogCrawls onto Onely! September 26, 2009

Posted by Onely in Food for Thought, Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, Singled Out.
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23 comments

Happy Last Day of National Singles’ Week!!

final Singled Out TP coverYes, it’s the end of Unmarried and Single Americans Week, but don’t be sad! We’re going out with a bang! Today singles’ advocate extraordinaire Dr. Bella DePaulo relates some personal watershed moments when she realized she didn’t have to find a “Sex and Everything Else Partner” if she didn’t feel like it. One reason Onely hearts Bella is because she has coined some fabulous terms to describe the lopsided treatment of singles in society, including singlism (discrimination and prejudice against single people), matrimania (the myth of marriage as a cure for personal and social ills), and the much underused SEEPie.

How I Discovered that Living Single Was My True Happily Ever After

by Bella DePaulo

In seventh grade, on a break from class, best friends Maureen and Linda took turns walking slowly and deliberately, hands clasped at their waists. They were practicing the walk down the aisle. They also compared notes on their wedding dresses, the bridesmaids’ dresses, and who those bridesmaids would be. No, they were not getting married at age 12 – they were just fantasizing.

Even as a 7th grader, I found this strange. I just didn’t see the appeal of planning, or even thinking about a wedding. Turns out, I never would.

I have always lived single, and never yearned to live any other way. For a long time, though, I was puzzled by the disconnect between the way I liked to live, and the kind of life so many others seemed to wish for, and expected me to wish for, too.

I tried out several solutions to this. I had a bug hypothesis for a while – marriage was a bug, and I just hadn’t caught it yet. Eventually, it would get me. (Looking back, I’m now bemused that I did believe in a disease model all along – but the disease was marriage, not singlehood.) Then I tried out the long-distance version of the longing – maybe I’d like it if I had a long-distance relationship. That way, I could have my time and space to myself all week, and have a partner for the weekends. I thought about it, but I never felt it.

I don’t think there was a specific moment when I realized: I LIKE living single. This is who I am. It is not going to change.

To get to that point, I think I had to understand a bigger point – it is fine (good, even) to live the life that is most meaningful to you, even if your way is not the most conventional one. (more…)

Better than a Pub Crawl: National Singles’ Week Blog Crawl! September 18, 2009

Posted by Onely in Guest Bloggers, Guest Posts, single and happy, Singles Resource, Some Like It Single.
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5 comments

Happy National Singles’ Week!!

To celebrate, we’re thrilled to be participating in a first-ever blog crawl! For the next six days, when you hit us here, we’ll redirect you elsewhere (details below). And next Saturday, September 26th, to conclude the crawl, we’ll be hosting Singles-Advocate Extraordinaire, Dr. Bella DePaulo here at Onely!

So, Copious Readers: Pull up a chair, pour a glass of wine, and let’s get our READ on!

***

Join millions of people as they crawl the web’s most popular blogs for singles, during the first SingleWomenRule.com’s Blog Crawl for National Singles Week. In the virtual world, a blog crawl works like a pub crawl, or museum crawl in the real world; each day, you’ll visit a designated blog to read featured blog posts from our favorite voices in the singles community.

“The Blog Crawl is an excellent example of the strength and connectivity of the online singles community,” said Terry Hernon MacDonald of SingleWomenRule.com.  Hernon MacDonald, author of the e-book, How to Attract and Marry the Man of Your Dreams, co-founded SingleWomenRule.com last August.

Featured guest bloggers include Dr. Bella DePaulo, notable psychologist and author of Singled Out: How Singles Are Stereotyped, Stigmatized, and Ignored, and Still Live Happily Ever After; author of the novel The Divorce Party, Laura Dave; dating/relationship writer and author of The Real Reasons Men Commit, Kimberly Dawn Neumann, writer Simone Grant of Sex, Lies and Dating, dating coach Ronnie Ann Ryan of NeverTooLate.biz, and Maryanne Comaroto, author of Hindsight: What You Need to Know Before You Drop Your Drawers.

“We hand-picked the guest bloggers and host blogs for their tenacious spirit and voice,” said Hernon MacDonald.  “Guiding readers from blog to blog in a crawl helps each blog build their readership, while bringing a fresh perspective and new audience via the guest bloggers, each day.” (more…)

Dr. Lillis Makes Onely Cry! Tell Him to Apologize! July 19, 2009

Posted by Onely in As If!, blog reviews, Heteronormativity.
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20 comments

If any of our Copious Readers have friends who buy into the (flawed) “marriage-makes-healthy” studies, send them to Singletude‘s 15 July post. Singletude professionally and eruditely tears into Dr. Christopher Lillis, an internist with Chancellor Internal Medicine in Fredricksburg, Virginia.  High on his recent nuptials, Dr. Lillis basically says that:

1) Everyone needs to get married so that their spouse will remind them to take care of their health! Singles wither away because they don’t remember go to the doctor! 

2) People who remain single are likely to be genetically inferior to marrieds! (This isn’t at *all* like eugenics, is it? Lisa says, “What, is he going to measure the size of our heads?”)

3) Scientists who discount the “marriage-makes-healthy” studies are bitter because they never have time to get out of the lab to find true love!  (Here he admits to hyperbole, but claims he’s allowed to say such things, because it’s his essay and he “just got hitched”. Careful of that bit and bridle, Doc. I can see it’s already squeezing on your brain.)

4) “Getting married reduces depressive symptoms, and getting divorced increases them.”

(more…)

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