If enduring your family's barrage of questions regarding your marital state is as much of a holiday tradition as mistletoe and Christmas cookies, you're in luck. This season, when someone asks you why you're not married, offer one of these clever comebacks.

If you're single, chances are you've been asked some variation of the following question:

"Why aren't you married?"

As you already know, you can provide many different answers to this question. Happily, some even place the blame somewhere other than on yourself and/or your thighs.

If you still need some responses in your arsenal this holiday season, I've provided some feisty comebacks to fling at anyone who dares to question your single status. You should feel good about your singlehood in order to better defend yourself against those who try to make you feel like less of a person, just because you're not half of a couple.

Trust me. It's worth it to hold out for a soul mate instead of a mere cell mate to share your life with.

1. There is plenty of time to be married, so what's the hurry? In the beginning, people only lived to see their 40s, if they were lucky. The pressure was on to get married before age 25. Today, thanks to medical advances, we can all hope to live to age 80. Even if we get married when we're 40, we still have 35, 45, even 55 years to spend with a mate.

2. Married people are not necessarily better catches simply because they were caught. Even Frankenstein's monster got married. Obviously, married people are not superior people.

3. There's no such thing as a Stepford single woman.

4. Some of our coolest role models were single. Catwoman? Single. Buddha? Single. The Lone Ranger? Single.

5. Even God is single. And God is the head of a single-parent household!

6. There are loads of wonderful expressions, all of which originate with the idea of "one" being the ideal. "One of a kind," "singled out," "saving the best for last" and "the best is yet to come" are some personal favorites.

7. It's easy to become married. Millions of people do it every year. If you want to pressure me to become something, why not pick something a little more challenging? Why not an astrophysicist?

8. Biological clocks now come with a helpful snooze alarm so I can hold out for the right partner.

9. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, single women are reported to be happier than their married counterparts. Ironic, then, that single women get branded as "unhappy" and "lonely." In reality, single women are boldly holding out for the right situation, rather than marrying someone for the sake of saying they are married.

10. True love is rare. That's why it's called "love" and not "really like" or "settling." And it's why we don't say, "I'm settling for you, honey," over candlelit dinners. True love is worth waiting for.

What do you say to well-meaning relatives and friends who pester you about getting married? What works? What doesn't? Tell us!

Karen Salmansohn is a best-selling author known for creating self-help for people who wouldn't be caught dead reading self-help. Get more information on finding a loving, happier-ever-after relationship in her book Prince Harming Syndrome.

More from Karen Salmansohn
The opinions expressed by Oprah.com contributors are strictly their own.


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