Last week I watched a video experiment on human behavior, where shoppers were given varying degrees of information and asked to price an item.
It was interesting how subtle influences altered the buyers thinking. In one experiment, they were given a lot of information, and most of them ended up with more accurate assessment of the price.
In another instance, little to no information was supplied and their guesses were completely off the mark. In another case, subtle coercion was exerted to lead them in a particular direction, and almost everyone took the bait.
As I pondered on this experiment on human behavior, I thought about how married women have been entrusted with the reputation of marriage.
While it would be a stretch to say the destiny of marriage rests in our hands, God does expect us to be active, positive ambassadors for marriage.
“Let everything you say be good and helpful so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.” Ephesians 4:29 says
Unfortunately, many married women are guilty of sharing wrong information, knowing or unknowingly, with the single women around us.
Here are 7 of those errors and why we need to quit saying them
7 Things Married Women Should Not Say to Single Women about Marriage
1. “You are single because God is still preparing you for marriage.”
I get why we say this. Maybe there’s a grain of truth as far as general maturity is concerned; if you can’t take care of yourself, you’ll struggle with added responsibility.
But often these words are spoken to responsible, mature women.
When a Jesus-loving-holding-down-a-job-got-my-act-together single girl hears these words, she hears “You are not worthy of a man, God is holding out on you.” And “I am a better because I am married; I graduated, I have a man. you need to style up”
As a married woman, you might not be meaning to say all that, but that’s what the single woman hears.
To be honest, if God had a committee on marriage-worthiness and I was part of that gathering, I would have struggled to choose me as the next matrimony candidate.
See, I had my act together on the outside, but inside I was a tantrum-waiting-to happen. I was completely responsibility-phobic (mostly domestically), and I exploded after “I do”.
So, I am thankful that human beings don’t have a say.
Because God, knowing how childish I was when it came to managing a home, still gave me guy – and not just any guy, but my Tommy.
So let us just agree that we don’t know what God is doing in people’s hearts. We don’t know who deserves what. In fact, we all deserve nothing but He gave us His best: Himself.
It’s funny how the people who we think should be married by now are still single, and those who cannot (presumably) hold their lives together were snatched up a long time ago.
Therefore, it is not about what we think the word “mature” means, it’s about God’s seasons and timings.
And by the way, God works in us to prepare us for Himself, not for men.
2. “You think single-hood is hard? Wait until you get married.”
Can I just be honest with you and confess that I am guilty of saying this in one form or another? Reason being that marriage is challenging.
Harder than singlehood? I am not sure. More responsibility certainly but probably not harder.
We all face difficulties in life, whether single or married. I think it is time to stop comparing who has it harder and instead focus on ways to encourage and cheer each other up, regardless of our seasons.
Let us stop raining on people’s parties – appointing ourselves as soberness police to eager singles longing for marriage.
I mean let’s face it, no one wants to get married to be miserable; we want joy and happiness. Our belly-aching does not help at all.
Let us choose instead to spread a more balanced message about marriage;
marriage is beautiful; it is wonderful to want to get married. Matrimony is also more responsibility, and it doesn’t work by itself. But that is why we have the Holy Spirit to guide us before marriage (who we should marry) and after the wedding (how to make the marriage work)
I did not like it when people rained on my I’d-like-to-get-married-someday dream, and I certainly don’t want to be seen like that.
I’d rather be known as the one who shares a balanced picture of marriage when talking to single people.
3. “A husband is a firstborn son.”
It is entirely disrespectful to call a grown up man a child. Different? Yes. A child? No.
God did not give him female intuition, and we should all thank Him for it because the world would be a big maternal mess if he were exactly like us.
When you tell a single woman that husbands are kids, they come into marriage and start mothering their men.
And unfortunately, some men don’t mind being mothered and it’s a headache to the wife who longs for him to step up but doesn’t know how to help him because someone told her husbands are children.
Instead, let us talk about how our differences make a marriage work. Different isn’t necessarily wrong, it’s Godly.
God created us differently and concluded “it is very good” (Genesis 1:31)
Here are a few posts on our different make-up and how it works for the good of a relationship
4. ‘Sex is not all its cut out to be. Don’t have your hopes too high!”
And the equally-awful twin “Sex is about your husband; it is not about you. Do your Godly duty and service him and he’ll be all right.”
I can’t get into details for obvious reasons but if you are single, and someone tells you that, do yourself a favor and let it the words go out through the other ear. In other words, don’t hold on to them.
Think about it, if sex was meant only for a husband’s pleasure, what’s the longing and feelings of intimacy we have as women?
Why would God wire us like that and then snatch it back once married “oops sorry, you are not meant to enjoy it, it is just for him!”
Sex is meant for both husband and wife to enjoy. For the most part, men have higher sex drives (like in 80 percent of marriages), and they are also visual, hence the mistake belief that sex is meant for men alone.
But let us go back to the garden where God said and “I will make a helper suitable for him.” Genesis 2:18. Suitable helper means fitting in all areas; we complement each other everywhere, including the bedroom.
Yes, great intimacy is not without effort. Like every other area of marriage, you have to work at it to get better. But just remember that when you face challenges, you have God by your side.
Here are a few related posts
Related posts for singles
Related posts for married
5. “Marriage is effortless; you won’t have to change.”
If someone tells you that, they are lying, or they have a terrible relationship.
Because marriage is God’s idea to help us become more like Him. If marriage is not stretching you and growing you then somethings wrong.
For example, here’s how marriage has changed me;
6. “You can keep all your friends from the single days.”
This should probably go into #5, but it deserves a special mention because women are relational beings. Most guys are not.
What that means is that you will have a legion of relationships from your single days, including guys, that will not make it past your wedding.
Sometimes because hubby won’t dig some guys or you’ll not longer have a lot of time to do girlfriend things. Your relationships are going to change and just be ready for that.
You can’t call your mom to discuss your home decisions. “Mom, John and I were talking about what colors to paint the living room and I want white, but he hates it; he wants blue. What do you think, I should get white, right?”
If mama is wise, she will take the opportunity to explain what it means to be married.
Bottom line, as a married woman, you have to draw up new boundaries with girlfriends, your family and opposite sex
Here are a few posts explaining the changes/boundaries
7. “Never let a man tell you what to do.”
The Bible does not say “wives submit to a man.” It’s rather specific “wives submit to your own husband”. Ephesians 5:22-23
So we are talking about a husband here. The man you chose. The one you prayed about, cried for, sought counsel, made vows to.
That should count towards something, right? And if you cannot listen to the man you chose, what does that say about you? #selah
Women who say this have either been hurt, dealing with pride or simply have no clue what it means to be a team in marriage.
Submission is not a “have to”; it’s a “get to”, something you offer your husband out of your free will. It does not mean the absence of a will; it’s a yielding of your will, first to God.
Submission does not mean you don’t have a brain or say; you are his helpmate. God created you to help him, but not through manipulation or coercion or force, but through the spirit of God working in you.
Here are a a few posts explaining what it means to work as a team/submit/lead.
And these are the seven things I think married women should stop saying to single women about marriage.
Now, it is your turn! What things did (well meaning) folks tell you when you were single? If you are single, what things do you not like to hear about marriage and what would you rather learn instead?
*Remember to share the post with your friends if you enjoyed it! Also check out my book, Blues to Bliss: Creating Your Happily Ever After In The Early Years. Kick out the old-wives tales, learn God’s truth and enjoy marriage as God intended!
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