Being single is hard. We unfortunately don’t live in episodes of Entourage or Sex and the City where the life of a singleton is crammed with parties, where hot singles mingle until a hop, skip and jump later, you’re discussing the events of the night with your friends the next morning. We may go to endless parties and still struggle to find that one person that makes us see sparks.
So it’s sometimes frustrating and painful but, just because we’re a little low on dating mojo, this does not mean we have to be pushed towards marriage. Do we not owe it to ourselves to take the time to find the right person without feeling the pressure? When you reach a certain age, it becomes impossible to have a conversation without the merits of married life being thrust in your face. Single women have it harder, especially when someone brings up the “B” word — biological clock.
Married people seem to have the unique ability to sniff you out when you’re at your lowest. Half consoling, partially condescending, and completely matter of fact, they take you through the marital pitch. The pitch is what amuses me the most, not only because of how dated it sounds, but because it sometimes has the tendency to make you feel slightly pathetic. They say one thing, but read between the lines, and it’s another matter all together. Allow me to elaborate…
When someone says, “You’ve been together so long, the next step is marriage”, what they mean is, “You need to nab this arrangement fast before your midriff gets any wider.” Or sometimes, they’ll paint a picture of someone they know with glee in their eyes: “He’s well settled. He doesn’t have a brother and his mother has just been through cancer”.
Translation — “He’s rich, been around the block a few times and no one else will have him. You won’t have to deal with nagging sisters-in-law or sibling rivalry and his mother doesn’t have any fight left in her.”
Another little gem I hear all the time: “She’s pretty and has a good reputation”. Translation — “She’s only had sex about three times in her life, so don’t worry about anyone thinking she’s promiscuous”. Now I can’t claim to know much about the institution of marriage, but what I do know is that it’s a status, not an identity. It should let you soar, not take away your autonomy.
Don’t get married unless you truly want to be married. Fall in love, and take your time. Don’t listen to people who say that getting married at a younger age makes it easier to adjust to another personality.
Create your own love story, and don’t settle for anything less. But if you must marry, make sure you have a rock solid pre-nuptial agreement ready, because monogamy is for animals and people who live till 35, but we’ll save that for next week…