The Brief: To be self-partnered means to not be in a relationship with a significant other, but committed to oneself.
Generally, “self-partnered” is another term for “single,” that focuses on the fulfillment and self-love that single people can experience without an SO. Emma Watson used the term in an interview with British Vogue, as a response to the societal pressure she feels to be married and have children by age 30. Watson explained:
“I never believed the whole ‘I’m happy single’ spiel,” she continues. “I was like, ‘This is totally spiel.’ It took me a long time, but I’m very happy [being single]. I call it being self-partnered.”
Online responses to Watson’s use of the term include shows of support and ridicule. While some people have begun applying the term to themselves, others make fun of Watson’s avoidance of using the traditional term “single.” And, of course, some jokes have been circulating about “self-partnering” being a new euphemism for masturbation.
Thanks to Emma Watson the term 'self-partnered' will now be over-used on Twitter. pic.twitter.com/ZiKgdIXfFi
— Alex Newman (@23Newms) November 5, 2019
Emma Watson using the term "self partnering" sounds like someone who is reframing negative thinking to gain a kinder relationship to her self. But we should definitely tear her apart, can't let anyone get too cocky on Keanu Reeves Isn't Dating A 22 Year Old Bikini Model Day
— Sara Schaefer (@saraschaefer1) November 5, 2019
I heard she removed two of her ribs so she could self partner herself. https://t.co/09o3WioCPs
— Bússaí (@AlpacaQueers) November 5, 2019