Sunday, November 20, 2011

They DO Exist!

When I was young... in my late 20s and early 30s, I often heard from friends and relatives that when I finally found my man, I would be amazed at the man he is and that it would be worth the wait.
Such remarks even led me to pray to God to make the man He intends for me to be ready for me, and to be the man I need.  In the same prayer, I ask God to make me the woman that man needed and would love.

Later, when asked why I'm still not married I would say, "God's not finished with him yet."  and later still, "Apparently it's a lot of work to prepare a man for me!"

I had great ideals and great intentions.
I still do.  But these days people seem to think I'm expecting too much.

But, I really do know what sort of husband I want.  Someone who is going to be invested in marriage.  Someone who will communicate with me about marriage's ups and downs and work to keep the passion, the love and to keep God first in our lives.

I honestly don't want to be married to a man who I couldn't trust to do those things.  Therefore, I am still not married.  It's as simple as that.

These days, everyone wants to tell me that I shouldn't be holding out for a perfect man.  You all know how I feel about that comment (and I heard it again this week! Don't get me started!).  I honestly don't think I'm looking for perfect. I am looking for someone who takes marriage seriously.

Just when I started to think no such man exists, look what I found...
I Am 
These are men who blog about marriage.  About good marriage.  About honoring their spouses and honoring God.
Just the sort of men I'm looking for... except I am holding out for a single/ available man - not one who is married!

I'm going to add them to my blogroll because I want their influence here at SingleSolitaryThings. I like the good energy... and I want SST readers to know that there are real husbands out there!!!

I will not listen to the people who say I'm expecting too much.
Why would I settle for a man who is less than what God wants for me?
I will remain single before I marry a man who doesn't expect to commit fully and equally with me.

Ladies... I expect you to do the same.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Nobody's Perfect - What Marrieds Should Never Say to Singles

Being single over age 30-35 is difficult.
Single after that is ... trust me, you don't even want to know!

One of the reasons I started this blog was to give a voice to single adults. I mean, look around out there... everything in society is designed for couples and families.  So much so that even buying groceries can be depressing. Even bananas come in bunches - bound to go bad faster than a single person can eat them. (I usually tear two or three off the bunch - and even then, I often lose one!) 

If the blogosphere is a fair representation of society - and it pretty much is - America is filled with married people with families who don't give a second thought to the single people struggling in the world all alone.
Unless of course it is to pontificate upon why some seemingly 'normal', attractive woman is left single. It's not like they even bother to invite us to dinner and mug on their kids -- even in that regard, Bridget Jones' single life is idealistic compared to reality!

Bridget Jones Dines with Smug Marrieds - Video

Unlike the smug marrieds in Bridget Jones' Diary... they probably don't even talk about... they just draw conclusions about us that couldn't be further from reality.  That we're out there 'playing the field', too focused on our careers (hah!) and my personally most detested assumption... that we're "too picky".

Too picky is the silliest reasoning there is. To prove my theory... go ahead and suggest to a married couple that perhaps they weren't picky in choosing their mate.  Watch the sparks fly! They will be offended that you would suggest that their mate isn't the most perfect match on the planet.  More realistic folks will concede that no one is perfect, and that they put a lot of effort into their marriage, but that what they have is indeed wonderful.

Yet, when I point out that if they didn't settle for a schmuck, yet they're suggesting that I just throw a dart at a phone book - they still don't see how ridiculous their defense is.

Today I received a comment on my FB page from someone who is a friend of my family, saying something along the lines that maybe I'm still single because, "... you're looking for somebody perfect..."

That to me, is the MOST INSULTING thing you can suggest to a woman over 40 who is still actively looking for the love of her life!
Suggesting that I'm holding out for perfect says at once that I must be horribly immature, and the most shallow person on the planet.
Do you think that I don't know that no one is perfect but God? To you think that after 40 years, I'm ridiculous enough to think that there is some perfect man out there for me?

I was so mad and insulted all I could was delete her comment! Anything I would have said would have appeared "overly sensitive" to the majority of people, or too dismissive of the injury of her rudeness to me.

Want to know what burns me the most?  While I've known her and her family all my life, I used to babysit her kids when I was a teenager, but looking back I can't say I've ever even had a conversation with her. We've never had a nice long chat about who I'm dating or how any of my relationships ended.

Remember... I live in a city 10 hours away from my home town, so in the past 25 years I've maybe run into her at the grocery store, or outside of church when I'm home visiting my parents. The deepest conversation we've ever had was about whether her youngest wore a diaper to bed or not.  (and clearly, from the abundance of mommy blogs out there, that's a very serious discussion - because it proves she's a FANTASTIC mother because she was able to FREAKING potty train her kid!  Whoo!  Never mind that a child would eventually stop soiling her pants eventually, with or without a parent's help!!) 

So based on what this woman knows about me, which is essentially that I graduated from college at one point and that I live outside of the state... she feels qualified to diagnose that I am seeking a perfect man.

How alarmingly insulting!

Dear Smug Marrieds,  
If you have never met anyone I've dated. If we've never talked about relationships. If we haven't had a ten minute conversation more than once every ten years... YOU HAVE NOT EARNED THE RIGHT TO COMMENT ON MY SELECTION PROCESS. DO NOT PRESUME TO TELL ME THAT I'M JUST TOO PICKY, AND NEED TO STOP LOOKING FOR A PERFECT MAN. 
If you got married at age 22, and have probably only dated three men in your life and one was your prom date... you CANNOT PRETEND TO KNOW WHAT IT IS LIKE TO DATE FOR THE MAJORITY OF YOUR LIFE. 
I know you think you are an expert at obtaining a husband because the guy you've been married to for 20 years is the one who nailed you in the back seat of his car when you were 19 years old. (how romantic!)  You don't know what it is like to turn down dozens and dozens of men who expect you have sex with them on the third date.  But it's pretty damn obvious to you that I'm too picky. 


Among the things I should have responded... "No dear. The reason is that... under my clothes my body is full of scales. Men just can't look passed it."

Edited to add things I thought about saying:

"Wow,  you must thing I'm really immature."

"If you had walked even a year in my shoes you would know better than to say something like that."

"Maybe if I had given in to boys in high school, I could have avoided this whole dating thing... like you."

and the one I think would have been most effective:

"Gee.  I never knew you thought I was delusional."

Because really... that's what someone would have to think.  I can see saying something like that to a woman who is 23-26 who has a crazy sense of entitlement (even then it would still be incredibly rude.) But a woman who is 40 knows better. 

What would you liked to have said?  I really like Erin Annie's suggestion via Bridget Jones!

Sunday, November 06, 2011

I Should Have Known

My current dating life is a bit different than ever before.
I intend to date a couple men at a time, so that I'm not wasting time getting overly excited about any one guy until one of them is obviously excited and serious about me.
It's not exactly working out that way. Instead, I meet a guy and date rather casually until it's clear there's not a forever match there... and then a new guy turns up.

So I feel like I can accept a date with anyone - because nothing is so serious with anyone already in the picture that I would be violating a trust or physical bond.  (In this method of dating, one must be very careful with physical intimacy so that there is no 'cheating' or disrespect.  This means, obviously no naked time... but before that - no kissing. Personally, I'm okay with some innocent kissing but no 'passionate'/French kissing.)

Friday, when I left work I had a message from McTwitchy wondering if we could just go out for a drink and chat.
Sure. Why not? We hadn't seen each other in a while and it would be nice to catch up.

He knows that I'm dating... as we caught up, he learned that Mr. Potential fizzled out.  And I swear McTwitchy lit up a bit... until I told him there was a new guy. (No name for him yet)

McTwitchy and I grabbed a quick meal, had some wine... and before we parted I could tell he was working up to something.  Finally, he asked if we could spend more time together.
I asked him to clarify, and it seems he wants to date but without pressure.

I should have known.  The last time he spontaneously wanted to go out for drinks, he did the same thing.   He's not ready to commit to anything but he wants to keep me on a string.  That's not how he sees it of course.
He has so so much complicated stuff going on in his life that he doesn't feel he can provide or have the stability to have a real relationship or commit to anything. That is really his burden and I feel for him... but I can't wait for him to solve a problem he's been shouldering for years.  I can't help him either.

So I said, "McTwitchy, we already tried a second time.  What do you expect to be different?  You know how I feel about you and how we feel about one another.  We have incredible chemistry.  We genuinely like one another and are attracted.  But I don't have time to wait for anyone to be a place where they can move forward.  I need someone who is ready. I can't have you keep me from finding someone who is ready for what I'm ready for."  He agreed with that.
I continued, "We could date, but I would need to date other men too. I can't kiss you and other men.  That's not what you want. Considering our history, there's no point to it... because we already know what we're capable of together and more to the point I know what you are not capable of right now and that's commitment."

I hesitated to say what came next but I decided that he needed to hear it in order to know just how divergent our paths are:  "McTwitchy, what you don't know is... when you were caught up with that freelance job in The Very Big City, and considering their full-time job offer... I was ready to go with you."

He was shocked.  Pleased and shocked and the next part was telling.  He said, "You never told me that!"
I explained, "I couldn't tell you that.  That was for you to ask me."  He nodded.
I told him that his mind wasn't even a little bit focused on that possibility at the time.  I told him that I knew when Thanksgiving rolled around that year, and he hadn't even thought about asking me to join him with his relatives, that we weren't even close to being on the same page. Considering that I had already been prepared to pack up and move for him!!

I knew what I was telling him was painful to hear... but with all the stops and starts he wants to initiate... I just had to point out how misguided he is.

It's a shame.
But at the same time - I'm glad I can recognize how unprepared he is to move forward.