Since when did being a single, career-driven female become cool? About one year ago, when I decided to move to San Francisco.
Don’t get me wrong – San Francisco is chock-full of eligible bachelors. In fact, census data shows that there are more single men than single women under the age of 65 living in SF. Facebook even conducted a study of its users last fall that showed San Francisco as having the highest ratio of single men to single women of any major American city. So why does it seem like every woman I know in San Francisco is single?
Meet the Alpha Female
Urban Dictionary defines the Alpha Female as, “A dominant female in a group. She dates as many males as she wants, is strong, confident and a hard worker, as well as often busy. Alpha Females are intelligent, intellectual problem solvers.”
San Francisco is filled with Alpha Females. This shouldn’t be surprising though, as San Francisco is known to be a city full of educated women and men, techies and startup geniuses. According to a recent Forbes article, Silicon Valley is home to nine out of the 20 richest self-made women in America, most likely due to the booming tech scene. Yet while Alpha Females thrive in the workplace, how do they rank overall as daters? And does this have anything to do with the high percentage of single males who make up SF?
Based on personal experience, I’d say that dating as an Alpha Female is a lot more difficult than one would imagine. First, finding the time to date as a career driven woman can be challenging. Some of my closest friends are women CEOs, for example, and they often find it hard to even schedule time to sleep at night. Working endless hours, traveling around the world and 100% devotion and energy are all required when heading a startup. If an Alpha Female isn’t already married, or in a long-term relationship, she will most likely be single.
I was fortunate to interview Amanda Bradford, CEO and Founder of The League. As a self-described Alpha Female, Amanda mentioned to me that she tries to meet someone new at least once a month, yet finding the time to date is often a difficult task. When asked about her experience dating in SF, she explained that casual dating in San Francisco is easy, but finding a lasting relationship is hard. Amanda explained,
“The guy I’m dating has to be okay with having a girlfriend who he’s only going to see once a week before 10pm at night. He also has to be understanding if I’m unable to go with him and his friends to something where all the other girlfriends are going to be.”
Ms. Bradford’s frustrations with dating as an Alpha Female ultimately lead her to create The League, an exclusive dating app that caters to the needs of career-driven woman. In a recent LinkedIn post, Ms. Bradford explained,
“I wanted to build a community where smart, outspoken, high-achieving women are celebrated and encouraged to progress in their career full-time. I wanted to never EVER hear a woman be worried that her educational achievements or career ambition would be a turn-off.”
The goal behind The League is to pair up ambitious people with other ambitious people, all while creating a community where women and men strive for an equal partnership.
Single is Indeed the New Black
The high percentage of Alpha Females who make up San Francisco might be another reason why the Bay Area is filled with single men. Yet one would think that living in a city full of both career driven women and men would actually make dating easier – right? This isn’t the case, however, at least not in my opinion. While the majority of males in SF aren’t afraid of building a company, for example, they seem to fear women who come off as being their “equals.” This often results in going on a ton of first and second dates, but not getting much further than that because most men in SF tend to get scared off by Alpha Females.
Yes, being a single Alpha Female in San Francisco is not only the norm, but I also believe it has become the latest trend. And just like any other trendsetter, it’s time that we flaunt our singleness, because I don’t think it’s going out of fashion anytime soon. Now is the time to accept that being single doesn’t mean that there is something wrong with us, but rather that we are strong, independent women who are focused on our careers and personal growth.
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