• A young woman holds a rose as she waits in a parking area.

A young woman holds a rose as she waits in a parking area. (Photo : Getty Images)

Liu Jianxi went home to enjoy Spring Festival with her family. But instead of enjoying the most important annual event, she was tortured emotionally.

“Spring Festival was a torture for me, a sad truth that I have to admit,” the 25-year-old reporter wrote in the Global Times.

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Like many single people in China, Liu was bombarded with opinions from her very anxious aunts and relatives as to why she should be getting married soon.

"Men will become more attractive as they age, but females won't. This is the way it is.

"I gave birth to two babies when I was your age. You should put your marriage at the top of your agenda. Otherwise, you will be laughed at by others if you are still alone after 25.

"Spend more time dating. Believe me, this is for your own good."

These were just some of the "caring" words that Liu received from the first day of the holiday to the last, as if being "leftover" (a term she thinks is discriminative against women) at 25 is something that she should be embarrassed about.

Honestly, Liu felt uncomfortable and disrespected with her relatives’ unsolicited comments.

While she knew that they only want her to be protected and cared for by the right person, she wanted them to understand her choice to stay single and show less concern about her personal life.

“Marriage is a personal choice that deserves respect. Everyone has the freedom and right to choose his/her way of life,” said Liu.

It may be hard to believe but Liu enjoys being single as compared to her married friends who are buried under baby-related tasks, tedious marital responsibilities, or piles of household chores.

In fact, she enjoys her time and freedom and wouldn't trade it for anything.

“Why bother to ‘catch’ a boyfriend to break the balance of my life?” Liu told herself.

But the sad reality is many people sees men’s self-worth increases as they age especially with their status and wealth, while women are forced to get married, because their looks fade and their chances of getting married and getting pregnant become smaller.

But even then, Liu thinks that times have changed and women who are economically independent shouldn’t worry about being "leftover."

“Females in their 40s, having seen much of the world, are sometimes more appealing than ignorant little girls,” said Liu. “Being single at 25 is nothing strange, a fact that society should accept and respect"