* More than 40 percent of the nation's adults---over 87 million people---are divorced, widowed, or have always been single.
* There are more households comprised of single people living alone than of married parents and their children.
* Americans now spend more of their adult years single than married.
Many of today's single people have engaging jobs, homes that they own, and a network of friends. This is not the 1950s---singles can have sex without marrying, and they can raise smart, successful, and happy children. It should be a great time to be single. Yet too often single people are still asked to defend their single status by an onslaught of judgmental peers and fretful relatives.
Prominent people in politics, the popular press, and the intelligentsia have all taken turns peddling myths about marriage and singlehood. Marry, they promise, and you will live a long, happy, and healthy life, and you will never be lonely again.
Drawing from decades of scientific research and stacks of stories from the front lines of singlehood, Bella DePaulo debunks the myths of singledom---and shows that just about everything you've heard about the benefits of getting married and the perils of staying single are grossly exaggerated or just plain wrong. Although singles are singled out for unfair treatment by the workplace, the marketplace, and the federal tax structure, they are not simply victims of this singlism. Single people really are living happily ever after.
Filled with bracing bursts of truth and dazzling dashes of humor, Singled Out is a spirited and provocative read for the single, the married, and everyone in between.
You will never think about singlehood or marriage the same way again.
Singled Out debunks the Ten Myths of Singlehood, including:
Myth #1: The Wonder of Couples: Marrieds know best.
Myth #3: The Dark Aura of Singlehood: You are miserable and lonely and your life is tragic.
Myth #5: Attention, Single Women: Your work won't love you back and your eggs will dry up. Also, you don't get any and you're promiscuous.
Myth #6: Attention, Single Men: You are horny, slovenly, and irresponsible, and you are the scary criminals. Or you are sexy, fastidious, frivolous, and gay.
Myth #7: Attention, Single Parents: Your kids are doomed.
Myth #9: Poor Soul: You will grow old alone and you will die in a room by yourself where no one will find you for weeks.
Myth #10: Family Values: Let's give all of the perks, benefits, gifts, and cash to couples and call it family values.
"With elegant analysis, wonderfully detailed examples, and clear and witty prose, DePaulo lays out the many, often subtle denigrations and discriminations faced by single adults in the U.S. She addresses, too, the resilience of single women and men in the face of such singlism. A must-read for all single adults, their friends and families, as well as social scientists and policy advocates."
---E. Kay Trimberger, author of The New Single Woman
BELLA DEPAULO, Ph.D., is a social psychologist who did her graduate work at Harvard. She is currently a visiting professor at the University of California at Santa Barbara. DePaulo is single and living happily ever after in Summerland, California.
In 1950, only 22 percent of American adults were single. Today, more than 50 percent of American adults are single, and 31 million—roughly one out of every seven adults—live alone. People who live alone make up 28 percent of all U.S. households, which makes them more common than any other domestic unit, including the nuclear family. In GOING SOLO, renowned sociologist and author Eric Klinenberg proves that these numbers are more than just a passing trend. They are, in fact, evidence of the biggest demographic shift since the Baby Boom: we are learning to go solo, and crafting new ways of living in the process.
Klinenberg explores the dramatic rise of solo living, and examines the seismic impact it’s having on our culture, business, and politics. Though conventional wisdom tells us that living by oneself leads to loneliness and isolation, Klinenberg shows that most solo dwellers are deeply engaged in social and civic life. In fact, compared with their married counterparts, they are more likely to eat out and exercise, go to art and music classes, attend public events and lectures, and volunteer. There’s even evidence that people who live alone enjoy better mental health than unmarried people who live with others and have more environmentally sustainable lifestyles than families, since they favor urban apartments over large suburban homes. Drawing on over three hundred in-depth interviews with men and women of all ages and every class, Klinenberg reaches a startling conclusion: in a world of ubiquitous media and hyperconnectivity, this way of life can help us discover ourselves and appreciate the pleasure of good company.
With eye-opening statistics, original data, and vivid portraits of people who go solo, Klinenberg upends conventional wisdom to deliver the definitive take on how the rise of living alone is transforming the American experience. GOING SOLO is a powerful and necessary assessment of an unprecedented social change.