05_MF_Life alone_26122013_IMG_8223

Life Alone: Single in Tehran

Majid Farahani

Iran. 2014.

Economic and social pressures have forced many in Iran to delay getting married. Some 75 percent of the population under the age of 35 are single, and as families have been started later new social trends have emerged.

Studies show that 7.1 percent of Iranians live alone, most of them in Tehran, the capital.  The number is high for a traditional country, and Ali Khamenei, the country’s supreme leader, has been concerned enough to publicly encourage people toward marriage – and posterity.

For young singles, however, there is a measure of empowerment. Single women are embracing modernism and a Western lifestyle as they drift from tradition, seeking to prove they can live independently, without any support from their families, just like boys do. Young men look to bachelor life as a way to distance themselves from their traditional families, with whom they find less and less in common.