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I Have Never Been In A Relationship And I Am 26

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I am currently in a bit of a dilemma as regards  my singleness. I have been feeling lonely excessively and it’s a sort of loneliness that needs a companion to fill. I have never been in a relationship before so I don’t really know the feeling of being in one. I have close and trusted friends that I relate with but I desire that feeling of having just one person who would be there for me as I am there for her. I know I am ready for a relationship at this time.

The above is an excerpt from an email we received from one of our readers. Here are a couple of things I’ll say;

1. Your desire to be with someone is okay, but…

We are relational beings, we thrive on relationships and companionship. As we advance in age, as we outgrow the companionship that was primarily provided by our parents and siblings, we tend to want something special, something unique, a relationship that is beyond just trust and friendship, which so far we have found in friends and family, we want something exclusive and romantic. And that is perfectly normal.

As we get older we want something exclusive and romantic. And that is perfectly normal. Click To Tweet

But it is also very important to know where that need for companionship is coming from because if it’s initiated and fed by the wrong thing, you’ll seek the wrong thing or person to fill it. Or it might just be premature.

A few years back, about a year after a relationship I was in then ended, I moved in with a friend who was always on the phone with his girlfriend, and he wasn’t the cool caller, he was very loud and expressive. 

So imagine constantly being in a place where someone unknowingly to him and innocently making the fact that I have no one to talk to on the phone till after midnight, to wake me up in the morning, to pray together on the phone…very obvious to me. In short, I craved a relationship again.

It is also very important to know where that need for companionship is coming from because if it’s initiated and fed by the wrong thing, you’ll seek the wrong thing or person to fill it. Click To Tweet

So, look around you and ask sincerely why you feel lonely so much at the moment.

If for instance you have achieved a level of stability, and you are ready to actively plan for a married life, then that’s very okay. But if it’s cos all your friends are getting married and proposing to their baes, then you might need to reorientate your desire.

There is also a societal pattern that expects a young man 25 and above to have a girlfriend and be actively walking towards settling down and sane for ladies from their 22nd birthday.

But we know as much as it is okay for young men and women to settle down early, this mustn’t be because of the pressure put on them by the society or even their families. This is one of the reasons why we have so many immature couples and dysfunctional marriages.

So examine the source of your loneliness and evaluate it realistically.

For many bachelors, what they need is a cook and not a wife, if they are very sincere with themselves.

Examine the source of your loneliness and evaluate it realistically. Example; for many bachelors, what they really need is a cook and not a wife, if they are very sincere with themselves. Click To Tweet

2. Why have I been single for this long?

Like you stated in your email, you said you are 26 and you’ve never been in a relationship before. I’ll like to ask, why is that?

  • Have you been single for this long because you dont wanna date casually?

Is it because you don’t see the value in serial dating and you believe you should date only for the purpose of journey with someone to marriage and till now you haven’t found someone who fits that image of forever for you? If that is the case, then that’s beautiful and commendable.

Although, it is also important to evaluate what exactly it is you are looking for. Does that someone exist? Make sure you aren’t looking to date the Holy Spirit or a character from a book or a movie.

Make sure you aren't looking to date the Holy Spirit or a character from a book or a movie. Click To Tweet

I am forever for the school of thought of never settle for less but it is also important to be very realistic about what it is you like in a partner.

Never settle for less but it is also important to be very realistic about what it is you like in a partner. Click To Tweet

Read Are Your Standards Too High?  and Choosing a Life Partner: Dealing with Lofty Expectations and Factual Differences

  • Have you been single for this long because you think you are not ready?

You have some work to do on yourself, your character, your personality…things you shouldn’t carry into a relationship and marriage? If that is the case, then beautiful and commendable. But please don’t take forever, because there is actully no end to growing and improving.

I hear many brothers say they aren’t ready for marriage because they don’t have some million of Naira stashed somewhere, but as much as it is irresponsible of a man to not be capable to taking care of his home, it is irresponsibility to wait till you have a certain figure in the account before you start taking steps towards that future.

Make friends with the tendency of knowing someone enough to pick a partner. You don’t want to start searching when you are financially stable.

Make friends with the tendency of knowing someone enough to pick a partner. You don't want to start searching when you are financially stable. Click To Tweet
  • Are you scared of committing?

There are so many other reasons why people wait for so long before entering a relationship, reasons like being afraid of a commitment.

For some, it is the thought of being tied to one person and one person alone. They want the taste of variety. They don’t want to belong to just one person. Or it could be the fear of being tied to the wrong person.

Or for me at a point, it was the thought that there was something better somewhere in the future, so why get tied down now? But this thought is a trap, because there will always be something better in the future, but you have to live in the now, you have to choose now and commit to it. That is what commitment means, choosing someone and closing your mind to any possibilities of meeting anyone in the future.

Commitment means, choosing someone and closing your mind to any possibilities of meeting anyone in the future Click To Tweet
  • Are you positioning yourself to find someone?

Where do you find a babe? A wisdom I learned as early as my Junior Secondary school days says “Have as many female friends as possible, because it’s from them you’ll pick the person you will marry”. I cannot deny that there is wisdom in that.

You will get married to a person, you will get married to someone you like and likes you, you will get married to someone you have at least a level of mutual knowledge and understanding of. All these demands that you are in a place where you can meet such a person, and become familiar enough to get fond of each other, build a friendship that might lead to a relationship.

Have as many female/male friends as possible, because it's from them you'll pick the person you will marry Click To Tweet

Sadly, not many people are positioning themselves for this to happen. Both male and female.

Some either live a secluded life that they don’t meet anyone, or they don’t stay around people enough to meet them or be met by people. Not to talk of building friendships that could lead to a relationship.

Be intentional about meeting people and building great friendships Click To Tweet

Read these 2 articles, we addressed making new friends here; 6 Tips To Make New Friends and we highlighted actions that might still be keeping you single here; Reasons Why You Might Still Be Single

I will wrap this up here and continue answering the second part of the question (What to do if you have been waiting for her response for months) in another article, but in the mean time, kindly leave a contribution as a comment and share this article, kindly help a friend who might need what’s written here.

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