Press Release of the Week: It's a lonely, lonely, lonely world

According to a recent survey, roughly 36% of single American adults said they feel "additional pressure to be in a relationship" around the holidays, 58% didn't want to attend office holiday parties by themselves and 30% "have actually stayed home from events because they didn't have a date."

And who, you might ask, is sponsoring this completely heartbreaking study? Maybe the American Psychiatric Association? Or some non-profit society looking to curb holiday-related depression?

Come on, people. Act like you've read this feature before.

Behind the study is, of course, a company that has no problem both reporting on these statistics and simultaneously capitalizing on them ... Match.com.

In a press release timed specifically for the start of the Thanksgiving-Christmas-New Year's season, Match.com wants to emphasize that being single is depressing and if you're sad about being in a relationship, there's not something wrong with you ... or, well, there probably is, but nothing that can't be solved with the help of your personal computer.

"The holidays are full of fun and family celebrations, but they can also be very stressful, especially for single people," according to "relationship expert" and Match.com consultant Dawn Yanek.

You hear that, single people? Your lives are empty and meaningless! And stressful! If you don't go out and find a match RIGHT THIS VERY MINUTE, YOU MIGHT AS WELL PULL THE FORK OUT OF THAT TURKEY AND STAB YOURSELF RIGHT IN YOUR LONELY, LONELY HEART.

The good news, according to Match.com, is that the holidays are actually "one of the best times of the year to expand your romantic possibilities." Especially if you're willing to check out Match.com's new, very special holiday guide to dating.

There are a number of things that are creepy and wrong about Match.com's holiday dating guide, but maybe the creepiest is how it makes dating sound like a business plan:

"The special holiday edition of the Match.com dating guide helps individuals actively sort out their priorities, re-evaluate their approach to holiday dating and change their outlook so that every holiday gathering or item on their holiday 'to do' list becomes an opportunity to find the next great date."

So the message seems to be this: if you'll just treat dating like a job, become proactive and maybe change your paradigm and think outside the box, you're sure to snag yourself a completely practical and loveless relationship in time for that mistletoe-laden holiday party the week before Christmas. Use synergy, people! And maybe a spreadsheet or two.

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