Last week, Angela Lambert argued that dynamic, busy 25- to 30- year-olds living alone were, in truth, profoundly lonely. Single and happy Fran Abrams begs to disagree
Ithink I'll have to let Angela Lambert into the secret. I'm a member of the lonely, single, 25-35 generation whose humdrum, TV-dinner existence she described in these pages last week, and it feels great.

So she thinks our lives are empty because we didn't get married at 20 and devote our waking hours to ironing and baby-changing by 25? I'd laugh if it wasn't so sad. So she thinks her generation never wondered, as it surveyed its laundry-chapped hands, what it was missing? Then how come so many of them took flight into the divorce courts at the first whiff of a more liberal regime?

Now I can't speak for the male half of my age group: I've always had a strong suspicion that they got a pretty good deal out of family life anyway. But just stop and think for a minute about the advantages that single women enjoy.

If we no longer travel hopefully, that's because we've arrived and we like what we've found. Yes, sometimes we spend our evenings watching television or reading a book. That's because we don't have to cook dinner for five people, wash up, help with homework and read a bed-time story before we pick our husbands up from the pub. Sad? You must be joking!

Unfortunately, I don't know anyone who lives in a warehouse development or a converted church, so I can't comment on their evils. Nor have I or most of my acquaintances much experience of take-away meals, lonely hearts ads, lifestyle magazines, body-building classes, sexual tourism or singles holidays. We're far too busy eating good food and enjoying ourselves with our friends.

Yes, I like earning a decent wage - why shouldn't I? Middle-class men have enjoyed this advantage for generations, but they didn't see fit to share it with their wives. We singles never, ever have to go cap in hand to another human being for permission to buy new shoes, have the car serviced or visit the dentist. Nor do we gripe about our hard-earned cash being squandered without our knowledge on a quiet bet or some expensive hi-fi equipment.

Angela Lambert has noticed that people who live alone don't admit to being lonely. Call me wildly irrational if you like, but I have a sneaking feeling that perhaps this is because they aren't. Just imagine: no endless football matches droning away on the television, no dirty socks on the bedroom floor, no continually raised loo seat. Sounds like hell, doesn't it?

And unlike the one woman in four who has suffered physical abuse from a male partner, those of us who remain single remain free from the threat of domestic violence.

If we don't feel guilty, that isn't because we don't care about all the injustice in the world - I haven't noticed the massed ranks of married people taking to the streets much recently, either. But we have relieved ourselves of the burden of guilt that comes with trying to juggle a career and child-raising. Nor do we have to agonise about what it will do to the little ones if we leave our boorish husbands.

Take a closer look at some of the figures used to back up the argument that we're unhappy. Mori asked people to list what they disliked about being single. A leading question if ever I heard one, and one which on further investigation turns out to have been commissioned by that bastion of even-handed social inquiry, the Sun. Despite that, almost seven out of 10 said they weren't lonely, more than eight out of 10 were unconcerned by emotional insecurity or sleeping alone, and more than nine out of 10 had no worries about being "unprotected", remaining childless or cooking for one. Turned on its head it looks rather different, doesn't it?

As for the assertion that we don't get married because we're all the products of broken homes, I'm sure Angela Lambert will be very impressed to hear that my parents will celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary next year. At least, I think they'll be celebrating.

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