The world is full of unfair stereotypes and even with the rise of woke culture, they don’t seem to be going anywhere. One of the ultimate clichés is that of “The Cat Lady”. Apparently, owning a cat, or two, automatically means that you’re single, lonely, homely and possibly have a few screws loose. Well, even if some of those things are true, it’s time to turn this harsh and ridiculously inaccurate idea on its head.
Cats are among the most common pets people own for a reason – they’re fun, they’re cuddly, and very importantly – they’re independent. Of course, there is going to be an appeal for single people to opt for a cat rather than a dog. With a partner or family, the responsibility of a high maintenance pet can be shared. But if you’re single, and juggling work, exercise, travel and social life, it’s great to have a pet that doesn’t need to be walked twice a day and can easily entertain itself. Cats are also smaller – single people have likely not yet upgraded to buying their first house and if you’re still in a relatively small apartment, having a smaller pet makes much more sense. See? It’s being practical, not pessimistic.
Pets are all about companionship and having something to love and care for. Somehow, this got interpreted as desperation and loneliness through the judgy media lens. There is a reason we see more and more emotional support animals – pets have a huge benefit for a person’s mental health. There is definitely a sexist element to this idea – after all, it’s Cat Lady, not Gentleman. If you see a guy’s online profile and he’s hugging a dog or cat, he’s instantly seen as husband material. A girl with a cat? She’s probably not single by choice. Ridiculous, no?
Society is also seeing a lot of changes in terms of what is considered “normal” and we’re steering further and further away from the Norman Rockwell vision of the nuclear family. More and more people are choosing not to have children and other major life changes with either their mental health, career goals or environmental factors impacting the decision. Very often, having kids precludes having a pet – you might not have the space, you might not be able to afford it, your kids might have allergies. But since more and more people are opting for child-free futures, it makes a lot of sense that they’ll get pets to enrich their lives. This is a good thing and a personal choice, not a sad substitute for a prescribed life you were expected to have!
And you know what, if the world out there is too peopley, and a few someones have screwed you over one too many times, and you prefer fuzzy socks to heels and don’t feel like washing your hair? Pretty sure that’s just your personality and the presence of a cat makes no difference to it. So Netflix and chill with your floofy friends and don’t for one second let social media or anyone else put you down for it. Think of any villain worth their salt – they’re stroking a glorious feline while planning world domination and they’re that much more effective for it.
Just think what the internet would be without all those hilarious cat videos and memes?! Grumpy Cat?! And you know who provides those glorious gems – utterly fabulous Cat Queens, who are over your nonsense and ready for a snack.