Friday, February 18, 2011

So, When Are You Getting Married?

Twenty-five is such an interesting age. Some could even call it awkward. What I find most fascinating is other peoples opinion of what a woman’s life should be like at 25. Everyone loves to tell you about your life, right?

My recent favorite are the people who tell me I shouldn’t feel bad for not being married. Oh gee, thanks – I hadn’t thought twice about that til you so graciously brought it up, again. Let me put something out there that may shock and appall you all – I don’t want to be married. Someday, sure. But not today. Not yesterday. And not even tomorrow. There are a lot of other things I want first, want more. I want to travel. I want to achieve my dream job. I want to write and publish my first book. I want an MBA. I want to pay off my first home and own it outright. And maybe someday if I find the right person, I want to spend the rest of my life (the one I’m building now) with them.

I’ve tried to figure out why it is people are so obsessed with marriage. Don’t get me wrong, I think marriage is fabulous. My sweet parents have been happily married for 30 years and I love that. My sister and bro-in-law are one of those amazing married couples that make strangers smile they’re so fun. But why when people meet someone my age do they immediately want to know about your love life? They don’t ask me where I want to be in 5 years, they only want to know who I’m going to be with. I mean really, what is that about?

Sometimes people say something sweet to accompany their disappointment they won’t be receiving an invite to my wedding soon (or ever – since I want to have a destination wedding) by saying, ‘I just think you’d make some lucky guy SO happy’. This is kind. This is giving me too much credit. And this is sadly misguided since to be honest, being someone else’s happiness really doesn’t rank on my priority list at the moment.

To be fair, I’m honest when people talk to me about it and say, ‘I’m casually dating’. But the truth is, I’m always a little disappointed because those people who only ask me (regularly) about my dating life are missing out on all the really cool things going on in my life. They miss out on really knowing me. I have this incredibly fulfilling life full of great people, a job I’m passionate about, serving the Lord in my church, leading an amazing group of girls in bible study every week, reading, writing, blogging, running, traveling. What’s NOT to love about my life, even if you exclude my actual ‘love life’?

Sometimes these particular people make me snarky. I just want to say something to the effect of ‘if only I were married, barefoot, and pregnant my life would be complete' or ‘isn’t is so sad that I have to work an actual job? Oh the horror’. I know this is terrible since people are *usually* well meaning - so I usually bite my tongue. But really people, 25 isn’t old and not all of us want to be married little baby makers. Some do, and that's great, but just because I'm a woman doesn't mean my goal in life (or even one of them) is to be a wife and mother. No one picks on guys who are 25 and tells THEM they shouldn't be worried they're not married yet.

Fine, this was kind of a rant. I don’t apologize.


Ps: if you enjoyed this post you may also like this one.


Lindsay Barta said...

Love it love it love it!

Don't fit in ANYONE ELSE'S mould!

And never have kids... they're the worst.

Rebecca Perkins said...

hey bec -

it's been a really long time! i've enjoyed reading a little bit of your blog and 'catching up' with you a little - even if it might qualify as slightly stalkerish. :)

the thing about those questions (because i'm now getting the, so when are you going to have kids?) is that, whether you want it or not, the question is obnoxious. getting married and having babies are kind of hard things to control. and so one of two things is going on: you don't really want to be married (or have babies), and so it comes off as telling you how to live your life; or, you do want to be married (or have babies) in which case the question is just a painful reminder. and that's my five second rant. ;)

please tell your precious fam hello!

rebecca (steadings) perkins

Theresa said...

I love this post.

I feel like I go through similar interactions when people find out I've been dating Casey for four years and marriage still isn't on my priority list. Everyone assumes there's "something wrong" in our relationship or I'm just going through the motions. Totally unfair because, and I 100% agree with you, I have other ambitions at the moment and don't need bling to be happy with the direction I'm headed.

Response rant, but I feel better. Thanks :)

Helen said...

Awesome post! I managed to avoid it until recently when a whole bunch of my friends all got engaged at the same time. So now I get "Are you married?" or "You're next!"

And when i say I'm not planning on getting marred any time soon they either say "trust me, it'll happen soon!" or else "but he looks so happy! Of course he's going to propose!"

Which is kind of ridiculous because if he did I would say no. We're very happy but have no reason to think about that yet, and I have a lot of other things to do first.

People just don't seem to understand that I have ambitions in life other than getting married and having babies!

Sorry, you seem to be inspiring the rants today!