I recently decided to sell my townhouse and move to another state. I’ve lived at my current residence for almost a decade and a half. It’s a nice home, and it has served me well. However, as time has gone on, I have outgrown the townhouse, and I am now “busting at the seams.”
It’s an interesting thing to see the reactions of others, when you make a big life decision. Their judgements and opinions of you come dancing and leaping into the light. At times, without them even realizing it.
The conversations end with comments like, “You don’t need a house that big. It’s not like you have a family.” And, “You couldn’t possibly take care of a house by yourself,” or “What do you need all of those bedrooms for?” Then there are the friends and loved ones who feel that you are somehow making a statement about their lives and success (or lack thereof). They offer gems like, “You couldn’t possibly afford that kind of house. Isn’t it extravagant?”
The best was from a dear loved one, who kept sending me house listings for homes that were almost half the size of the one I would be moving from. She noted, “I wouldn’t need something that bid, so you shouldn’t. They’re cute and quaint. What would you need all that room for, anyway?”
It’s as though the world thinks that, if you’re single, you shouldn’t take up that much space. As if you should leave the world without making any sort of mark. And it’s presumptuous and arrogant, if you want more than what they think you are entitled to. I get the distinct impression that the attitude is that, if you are unmarried, you have not earned your right to have a home of your own.
Truth be told, the purchase of a house would be A LOT more manageable with a contributing, romantic counterpart. However, it has been my personal experience that men have no inclination to be a “contributor,” and are happy with any sort of life that they do not have to give money toward. Now, I will note that I know many men who are NOT that way. They are decent human beings and would not use a counterpart for comfort or financial gain.
Even the process of selling my townhouse is not without its judgement. I bought the home when I was 30 years old. An average age for new homeownership, a townhouse was the perfect purchase. I did begin my life as a homeowner with a boyfriend who lived with me for the first seven years. For all intents and purposes, he was a renter. He barely paid his fair half, and at seven years, expected to be a part-owner of the property. To his surprise, common-law marriage was not a thing in my state of residence. In fact, I made sure of that, before I ever agreed to live with him. Call me a “pessimist,” but better to be safe than sorry. Once he did confirm that he would not just be handed half of a property that he made no investments in, he manhandled me once, then was asked to move out. He truly felt that not even contributing the minimum entitled him to half of what I had. My response to him was, “Why would I commit half of my home to you, when you wouldn’t even make the commitment of marriage to me?” One of the only times I witnessed him speechless.
You are entitled to what you earn, in this life. It doesn’t matter if you’re married, single, childless, parent a hoard of children, so on . . . If you pave your own way, and make enough to purchase your dream home, you should do so with gusto and pride. Do not let anyone steal your thunder, or judge you for wanting a home of your own.