16 Explanations You Don’t Owe Anyone (Even Though You Think You Do)

The choices we make define us, so we deserve to be confident in those decisions—No justification necessary. These are the things you should never feel obligated to explain to anyone.

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For your religious and political beliefs

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It’s no secret that tensions are high in our country and around the world, primarily because of differing political opinions and religious practices. (However, political arguments do result in some hilarious quotes and insults.) But what you believe in is your own choice. It’s part of your identity. You can divulge as much or as little about those beliefs as you feel comfortable, but don’t feel like you need to go through all your church’s teachings or your political party’s agenda as justification.

For your relationships

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Don’t let other people take control of your love life. Only you can decide which relationships, romantic or not, will make you the most happy. (These are the signs of a healthy relationship.) If you gush to your friends about the new cutie you met online, and they have no idea what you see in him, you alone get to make the final call on whether a second date is a swipe right or left. Conversely, you don’t need to go on a date with someone just because they asked. You know your heart—and your gut—better than anyone.

For your lack of a relationship

Explanations-You-Don’t-Owe-Anyone-(Even-Though-You-Think-You-Do)Jacob Lund/shutterstock

You are a strong, independent woman or man who doesn’t need family members or friends pressuring you about your singleness. Maybe you enjoy not being attached and having the freedom to find out what makes you truly happy. Or maybe you’re struggling to find a halfway decent person in the chaotic world of online dating. I mean, why can’t people just meet at a bar like in the olden days? Or have an elderly neighbor set you up with her grandson? Either way, you don't need to divulge these thoughts to anyone. (Looking at you, Mom.)

For not apologizing

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If you aren’t sorry, you have no obligation to apologize. You’re kidding yourself if you insincerely say you regret what you did, and it gives the other person a false impression of you and your intentions. While you’re at it, stop apologizing for these 28 things too.

For disagreeing

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You may have one of those friends who thinks he’s always right and is all too eager to share his unabashed opinion on any topic, whether it was asked for or not. Good for him for being so confident, but you have every right to disagree. Don’t shy away from sharing a conflicting view just because it may be uncomfortable. Let your voice be heard.

For refusing to gossip

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No matter how much they learned about the consequences of gossiping in middle school, some adults still do it compulsively. If you hear someone spreading rumors or they ask you to contribute, shut it down right away. Giving in can damage your reputation as much as the person being talked about, so let the chatterboxes know you’re not interested. In that conversation, use the one word that stops gossip in its tracks.

For ending (or intentionally not starting) a friendship

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Some friendships start off well, but they can become toxic overtime. If you have a “friend” who doesn’t respect you, value your friendship, or make you feel like your best self, it’s time to cut ties. Don’t let that “friend” convince you there’s something to be salvaged. On the flip side, don’t feel pressured to start a friendship with someone you know you won’t get along with, no matter what others say.

For your appearance

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Dye your hair. Get that tat. Wear the makeup you feel comfortable in. Dress in your personal style. Love the weight you’re at. How you look is your own business, and once you stop feeling the need to explain why you look a certain way, you’ll start appreciating your own appearance for the one-of-a-kind masterpiece that it is.

For where you live

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Some of us like the city life. Some of us like the suburbs. Disregard any stereotypes others may infer about your neighborhood or your housing situation. So what if you’re temporarily living with your parents in Cranky Corner, Louisiana? The reason is personal. No one should judge you for circumstances they don’t fully understand.

For your career

Explanations-You-Don’t-Owe-Anyone-(Even-Though-You-Think-You-Do)Violetta Nahachevska/shutterstock

If you work at your dream job, good for you! If you don’t, good for you! You put thought into that choice, weighed the pros and cons, and made the decision. Maybe you don’t make a lot of money but love what you do. Maybe you’re bored out of your mind but get the bills paid. Whatever the reason, don’t let someone else dictate your career moves. If you do want to switch careers, this is how to find one you’ll love.

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