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Book Review: What They Don’t Tell You About Being Single

by in Relationships on 22nd August, 2019

Tumi Olaoshun, a 30-year-old history teacher from Edgeware, tells an incredibly relatable tale of being single in 2018. Olaoshun, who has published her first book, ‘What they don’t tell you about being single’ reveals the trials and tribulations of dating and explores it all from a religious lens, the positives to be taken from being placed in this position, at this given time as a Christian.

What’s the book about?

This book addresses a very important topic of conversation which I could relate to on so many levels. Firstly,  since I completed my final exams at University (and even before then tbh), the main question I’ve gotten from family and friends has been “when will you marry?” or “so when are we meeting him?” and many others relating to this basically. I love that the author, Tumininu shares her journey as a single woman, reflections on some of the challenges she has faced as a Christian, millennial twenty-something with practical, Godly solutions. The major takeaway from this, for me, was living a God-centred and intentional life through everything I do, including and especially through this journey of seeking marriage.

There are several things I love I about the book such as:

  • Length: The book is just about 100 pages long which makes it easy to read
  •  Reflective nature: I’m a very reflective person and I love reading the books that cause me to take action. I think “What they don’t tell you about being single” is an epitome of a great book because you can apply what you read almost immediately. I especially love the inclusion of reflective questions and action points after each chapter. She also includes a few bible verses relating to the topics discussed in the chapter and the questions at the end. As a Muslim, I loved this concept because it is a constant reminder that we should turn to God at all times in our lives. Although she shares her experiences, there is a reminder that it is through God we can get ultimate direction.
  • Prayer Points: I love how she includes prayer points at the end of each chapter. The beauty of the prayers is that they are intentional and focused on the topic addressed in the chapter.

This book is infused with so many lessons and actionable takeaways.

Top things I learnt from this gem:

  1. Always ensure God is at the centre of all that you do. This point resonated with me a lot because I’ve been trying to ensure that I check in with God before I take any step; I do this through prayer—mainly, istikhara. And for a step as big as getting married, I think it’s highly important that everyone does this. You can never know someone fully and you may not be 100% certain. However, if you turn to God at all times through every step of the way, you can never go wrong.
  2. Know your worth and have some self-respect. Don’t settle for anyone simply because you want to get married.
  3. Do your research and seek advice. She shares questions to ask and discuss with wise counsel (a small group of elderlies who you respect their opinion and judgement). My favourite question was “is he actually available?” mainly because she doesn’t fail to emphasise that availability applies in the mental, spiritual and emotional sense. This is highly important because if you spend precious time getting to know someone who isn’t actually available, you would end up feeling hurt. So it’s essential to ask the right questions upfront to ensure you’re not setting yourself up for failure.
  4. Being single is not the end of the world, just as getting married isn’t the end of the road. Work on yourself in the meantime. Take care of yourself. Although marriage is important (subjective), there are other good things happening in your life. Choose to enjoy every single one of those moments.

The book can be purchased here [] and both physical copy and ebook versions are available.

Suad Kamardeen

Suad Kamardeen

Suad Kamardeen is a British-Nigerian Muslim writer, editor, engineering graduate and a Creative Writing Masters student at the University of Oxford. She is also a founding editor at WAYF journal. She is committed to documenting histories and cultures, as well as impacting people’s lives positively through storytelling. Her young adult novel, Never Enough, won the SI Leeds Literary Prize 2022, and her adult novel was shortlisted for the Stylist Prize for Feminist Fiction 2021. Her writing has also appeared in Bad Form Review and Sapelo Square. You can find her on Twitter/IG: @suadkamardeen