Here’s the scenario: you meet a girl in a bar, some flirting ensues, and after a few drinks, she whispers in your ear if she can swing by your place. If you live on your own, you know you’ve hit jackpot. Every trick of the Kama Sutra will be put to good use in your spiffy bachelor’s pad with the sultry lady in your arms. But if you’re still co-habiting with a roommate or worse, your parents, then better luck next time, padre.
Guys, let’s fess up and be man enough to admit this truism: most of us are mama’s boys, whether we like it or not. Filipino men are notorious for being very attached to their nanays, much to the chagrin of ladies who find it difficult or even impossible to compete with mommie dearest.
One of the classic symptoms of this condition is when you’re still living with your mom (and dad) and you’re perfectly fine with it, even when you have your own job. Unlike most Western countries, our culture doesn’t encourage autonomy, leading to deep-seated dependency issues. The bottomline is that you have to fly the coop someday if you want to fully experience the joys of being a bachelor. Living solo can be daunting but given the right mindset, it can be very rewarding. If you’re an independent dude with your own pad, you probably already know the benefits of solitary living, but just for kicks, here’s a rundown of the major perks of being the king of your own place.
Martial Law Lifted: No Curfews
Let’s start with one of the best things about living alone: you can come and go as you please, and no one will bug you about arriving home before midnight.
“I can go home anytime I want, and I can sleep anytime I want. There’s no one who will nag me after an all-night drinking session or tell me to turn off the lights at 2 AM,” shares Ronald O., who works for an insurance firm. Corollary to this is that you can sleep in and wake up as late as you want to. This means more zzzz’s for you, instead of having to bring out the trash or clean up your family dog’s turd come sunrise.
You’re in Control of the TV
Congratulations: the reign of teleseryes, chick flicks and sappy TV shows in your life is over. From now on, you can watch all the basketball, wrestling, blow-’em-up action movies and—yes—porn that your eyeballs can handle. This might seem like a small victory but gone are the days when you have to struggle for control over the remote or the times when you are forced to sit through inane variety shows.
“I take my entertainment seriously, so I breathed a sigh of relief when I got my own place. I can be a couch potato all I want, without having to worry if my sister demands the channel to be switched to American Idol,” says Sean B., a call center supervisor who recently moved in into his apartment.
Welcome to the Love Shack
Part of the attraction of getting your own place is that you can bring girls home as often as you want. You don’t have to rely on motels, be pressured to finish you lovemakin’ in the regular three-hour “short-time”, or enact that awkward moment when you have to meet his dad in the morning after banging his kid.
Ronald, who is single, found it very convenient that he can take home a girl that he meets in a party or a club. “If I go to a motel with a girl, I’m expected to pay since I’m the guy. So it’s actually wise, financially speaking, to have your own place.” In the case of Sean, his sex life improved tremendously. “My girlfriend and I do it more frequently now, compared to the time when I was living with my family. In a way, it improved our relationship, so I’m happy about this development.”
Operation: Pig Out
Do you want a beer to go with your dinner? How does pizza sound for breakfast? If you’ve always been restricted by the food you’re forced to eat by your folks, then consider getting your own place, where you’ll be able to drink and consume as you wish.
“I can eat all my favorites: grilled liempo, fried chicken, kare-kare,” says Ronald. “The downside is that I have to prepare or buy the food myself, but it’s worth it.” For all we care, he could be chowing down on raw bacon but the important thing is that no one’s stopping him. Living on your own is having the freedom to eat, do and get exactly what you want and exactly when you want it.
Dress Code: Briefs
Your solitary lifestyle permits you to finally wear briefs (which, we agree, is the most comfortable attire after a hard day’s work) when you’re home. Or if you have nudist tendencies, nothing at all. The privacy provided by the walls of your own place is boundless. You can chill out the way you’ve always dreamed about. Moreover, you can sing as much as you want or play heavy metal at full blast without your mom complaining about it. Just be mindful if you have neighbours: if they can hear your screeching or your stereo, it’s time to shut it.
Grow as a Person (And All That Shnazz)
A lot of the perks might emphasize the various aspects of how you can devolve into a slobbering Neanderthal, but there’s more to solitary living than the freedom to make a mess in your own space. Cheesy as it may sound, living alone gives you the opportunity to develop your character. You’ll learn how to be independent, financially responsible and self-sufficient. You will also pick up valuable lessons along the way, such as knowing how to cook, clean and budget. “I think I’ve improved a lot over the years since I stayed in my own place,” Ronald reflects. “It can be difficult at first, but I got used to it.”
“Although you’re free in many ways, you have to remember that you’re responsible for your own health and safety. It’s also important to connect with your family for them to know that you’re okay,” says Sean. Ultimately, living solo is a rite that every gentleman worth his salt has to go through—and survive. It’s about time you heed the call. Mama’s boys of the world, unite and get your own digs: you have nothing to lose but your chains.