I like to think that I am very much an independent woman of the 21st century. I'm educated (BA, MSc if we're really going to go into it), I live alone, I have a job, my rent gets paid, my bills get paid on time (more or less) and I buy all my own shoes.
I feel very strongly about advocating for the independent ladies of this world and it's more than just being financially dependent on yourself, although that's probably a great place to start. As someone who has always relied too much on a boyfriend to complete me I honestly stand firmly by being an independent women. There's a great sense of freedom that comes with being able to support and take care of yourself. I'm very proud of the fact that after, what was for me quite a traumatic break up, I managed to pick myself up and carry on with my life. During the week I am up at 6:30am, I do my job to the best of my ability and make plans with friends. It's such a satisfying feeling not having to depend on anyone else for your happiness. You're giving someone else a great deal of power by handing them the key to your contentment and confidence.
There are times however where living alone and being a strong independent woman is hard. I battle with opening jars, I battle with the cap opener (which for some bizarre reason is for left handed people) and I can't put things on high shelves because I can never reach anything. I have to deal with power cuts by myself including googling 'fuse box - where?' using my pitiful 3G. Having no one help you with changing bedding is also traumatic.
Being an independent woman doesn't mean hating men or not wanting a boyfriend. I of course miss having someone in my life whom I share everything with and with whom I share a closeness (and occasionally cry on when life gets overwhelming). When I'm pitifully trying to open a can or figure out how to reconnect the u-bend pipe under my kitchen sink, I sometimes wish I had a boyfriend that I could call and who would take some of life's burdens off my shoulders. But then I think back to the times where I've compromised or ignored issues just because I didn't want to be alone, and how much misery that caused me.
So right now it's better for me to be alone dealing with power cuts and broken kitchen pipes than to settle for some mediocre guy who's just going to disappoint me somewhere down the line. In the meantime, my landlord has become the most stable man in my life. I may not have a boyfriend on speed dial to fix my kitchen pipe, but I always have Richard.