“I want to get married but I’m single” – what’s a girl to do?
Recently, an online Christian personality started a matchmaking thread on Instagram.
How it works is that whenever she puts up a “matchmaking” post, singles drop an introduction in the comments (think dating app profile, just shorter), respond to each other’s comments, slide in the DMs and generally take it up from there.
Lots of singles liked the idea: the posts blew up with thousands of comments. As I read through the introductions however, one thing stood out: the majority were from women.
The women noticed it too. “Where are all the men?” It turns out the men were in the DMs: they were looking at the women’s profiles and striking up conversations privately.
I share this example to illustrate the dilemma many single women face – the longing for marriage but the seeming elusiveness of a meaningful relationship, with potential for marriage.
Today, I want to talk about that unfulfilled desire, but with a twist. I want to dive into what to do when you want to get married but other people, especially married people, don’t get it.
Let’s talk about all the bad advice single women receive from married women when they express a desire for marriage. All too common, singles are on the receiving end of discouraging comments when they express a desire for marriage.
Edit: In case it’s not clear, this post is not a swipe at “matchmaking.” I love the idea of creating opportunities for connection! I’ve thought about doing something similar in the past, but I always arrive at the same conclusion: I know more single women than men. And running a dating App or hosting meetups is a ton of work! Maybe in the future…I’ll keep dreaming!
In this post, we’ll look at the bad advice but we’ll major on the liberating truth that single women should cling to, in form of God-centered self-talk.
If someone dumps on you, you have the ability, through God’s help, to “walk away” from negativity and discouragement in the form of firm boundaries and a healthy self-talk.
Let’s jump in!
I want to get married but I’m single: All the bad advice and the truth to believe
1. “Marriage is so hard, you should be happy you’re single.”
You’re likely trying to be encouraging, attempting to rearrange my understanding of marriage based on your experience.
Notwithstanding, this statement denies my honest desires. Inserting yourself as the “reality-checker,” is not only discouraging, it can be harmful.
Is marriage hard sometimes? I imagine so. Is single life hard sometimes? You’d better believe it. Isn’t all life hard sometimes??
If I want to get married but I’m single, resist the urge to regulate my aspirations.
2. “Oh you think you’re busy? Wait till you have a husband and kids!”
There’s a general perception that single people have all the time in the world: that they are wandering through life like calves in a new paddock – happy-go-lucky, without a care, commitment, or schedule.
But guess what, many single people have the opposite problem – they are too busy. They struggle to say “no,” and create healthy routines for themselves.
You see, a couple’s commitments are more easily regulated because of the demands of their relationship and family. Even the church “understands” their family obligations and will not overburden them.
Single people? Not so much. It’s not unusual to have unceasing demands because “you don’t have a family.”
The truth is, you don’t need to be married to be busy. You just need breath. And single people have breath—lots of it.
So marrieds, please understand that a spouse and kids don’t make your life more laborious than others who don’t have your responsibilities.
Please don’t make us feel less busy and unhelpful because that mindset makes it harder to draw on those desperately needed boundaries and peace.
3. “You are single because God is preparing you for marriage.”
It is neither a sin nor a scourge to be single. Singlehood is the natural state of humankind. We are born single; we will die single, we will stand before God as individuals.
Yes, I want to get married but I’m single, and that doesn’t mean I am standing still. My single status is not all I think about!
God refines and perfects His people for Himself, not for other human beings. Certainly, spouses benefit from each other’s growth, but they were never the reason for it. God is the initiator, sustainer, and purpose for the change.
4. “Have fun while you are single because it’s all downhill after that.”
Marriage is what you make of it. It’s a different season, obviously, with new blessings and responsibilities. But we get out of a relationship what we expect out of it.
If we believe marriage is where all our dreams and fun go to die, we are right. If we think married life is just as amazing, as rich and filled with potential, we are also correct.
5. “Husbands are like firstborn sons.”
Sons have mothers. Husbands have wives—two different women with two different roles.
Not that immaturity doesn’t exist. It does. But a healthy evaluation, aka the dating process, helps address and sort out immaturity in “potentials.”
Generally speaking, it’s disrespectful (perhaps the worst kind of self-fulling prophesy?) to apply this label to men.
6. “Never let a man tell you what to do.”
Well, partnership (which is the foundation of marriage?) has a lot of serving and giving involved.
Anyone who walks into a relationship wearing a giant padlock on their heart and soul are setting themselves up for endless heartache.
The nature of “two becoming one” is two healthy people submitting to each other and becoming better together.
Ps: This does not mean we enable unhealthy decisions or lifestyles.
7. “Always have a plan “B” just in case things don’t work out.“
Secret bank accounts, side conversations, et cetera don’t sound like a great way to foster trust in a relationship. Even regular friendships with family and friends will struggle if we always think, “there’s a chance this won’t work out.”
So instead of planting seeds of secrecy and mistrust in my own heart, it is better use of time to address genuine concerns than apply the “just incase” band aids.
8. “Why is a beautiful girl like you still single?”
It’s not a race. It’s not a competition. We are all in the right season God wants us to be. Marriage and singlehood are both ordained by God.
Also, that is the worst way to build esteem in women.
I want to get married but I’m single..
It is possible to be single and healthy, to want to be married and not hate being single.
I’d love to hear from you! What other “advice” should married women stop giving single women? If you are single, what do you hate to hear?