Let me start by telling you I love you and I love our time together.
All except your breathless speech about how to find a “good man”, “settle down”, “stop being an idealist”, and “stop evaluating too much”. I know you want me to get married this second, but I want to tell you, that’s not possible.
When you recommend people I should meet and I say I am not sure about them and you attack after a pause, when you remind me that I am a thirty-something and this is the time to settle if I want children, I want to tell you that I love you; I love your children; but they do sometimes scream too much. I am not sure children will give meaning to my life.
I think I have been in my head too long, but I am pretty comfortable being alone and, sorry to burst your bubble, but I am not dying to tie the knot today. Your lectures, and the lectures of others like you, are stressing me out though. All around, I see intelligent, beautiful and amazing women and men breaking down and throwing themselves at possible partners who do not deserve their attention one bit. They are disrespectful, useless and, frankly, just juvenile.
I am not sure which life problem you and these people think marriage can actually solve: What meaning can it provide? What fun? Or stimulation? People nagging you will never stop. Isn’t marriage a natural expression of a strong, almost spiritual, bond between you and a romantic partner? Did I miss the memo that declared it the answer of your life’s woes?
Marriage, to me, is a delicate balance of freedom and connectedness. I want to continue to live freely, to explore, to wonder, to run around, to create. And I certainly want to be connected, come back ‘home’ to someone who respects me and loves me for who I am. Do you, my married friend, who feels so entitled to bestow your wisdom on me, honestly say that you have both freedom and connectedness?
For the record, I do want to get married. But more than that, I want to meet the right person for me. If that takes time and I wait like a hopeless idiot, and don’t have children, then so be it. But I won’t let your cynical view of the world make me jump in the same blackhole of self-righteousness that you feel so comfortable disappearing in.
— your Single 30-Something Friend
Noor Masood studied International Development at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and has worked at The World Bank and Harvard University. She is passionate about teaching adaptive leadership, singing, and spirituality.
Published in The Express Tribune, Ms T, March 3rd, 2013.
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