I know this post may come as a shock to some, but let’s be clear: yes, I want to get married. Without a doubt, I want an amazing, altruistic, reasonably attractive man to get down on one knee and pop the question. However, this doesn’t have to happen tomorrow, or even next year.
So, can society do me and all of us millennial women who are not engaged or in a relationship a favor, and leave us alone?
There is this common idea and misconception, “the American Dream,” that tells us that we should get married in our twenties. This idea almost feels designed to make those of us who did not meet their future spouse in some magical dining hall on a college campus feel less than. But, here’s the thing: while we are not getting any younger, we are getting older, wiser, and more successful. We are aging gracefully (if we’re lucky). With all the cat calls I receive from guys in their early twenties, you cannot tell me I look my age.
A young woman’s relationship or marital status has nothing to do with eligibility, but everything to do with society’s expectations.
A girl is expected to be chosen by a husband, and sadly, this no longer even feels like a choice. Can a woman really choose who they will end up with? I feel like we’re limited to the guys who fall in love with us. My grandmother always told me to go with the guy who loves you more than you love him. We’re also taught to be ladylike, domestic, submissive, and so willing to give up our last name to attract a husband. With all do respect, screw that. I can season some meat, but you won’t catch me dancing around your kitchen in a sundress cooking every night of the week.
At this point, I struggle when it comes to picking an entree off the menu on a first date. I am nowhere near ready to sit there and make the most important decision of my life and risk telling the biggest lie that 50 percent of married adults told, ‘I do.’ Instead, I choose to say, ‘I do not.’
Here are six reasons I am in no hurry to get married.
1. Financial stability is my number one priority. Do I even need to elaborate? I’m sure many single women my age feel this way. Love don’t pay the bills, or student loans. In an era where gold digging is on the rise, I stand independent, capable, and proud. A woman should always have earning potential and marketable skills.
2. I enjoy my freedom. When two people marry, they become one, legally and spiritually. This probably means I can’t just book a weekend flight to Miami without first consulting the man with which I share a bed. To be fair, I have been in a couple of long-term relationships that did not result in marriage. Both relationships lasted as long as they did because my exes let me do what I want. I’m not prepared to make every decision with another human in mind. Sorry, not sorry.
3. I’m jaded AF. I pride myself on being a lover and giver of good vibes, but I’ll admit that I fall short. Anytime I catch feelings for someone, I retract as quickly as a tape measurer. I can’t seem to leverage being a hopeless romantic with guarding my heart from trolls. At this point, the only group of people more disappointing to me than men are the women who voted for Donald Trump.
4. I’m a feminist. I have an arsenal of middle fingers for all of the men who could be potential partners, but view me as some sort of threat to their precious masculinity. If you can’t accept me in all of my ripped denim, dark lipstick, and curly haired glory, then you’re not the one for me anyway. If you can’t stand in solidarity with me, a black female– one of the most marginalized and underpaid members of this society– as I strive and fight to gain something tangible to lose, then I’m not ready to meet you. I don’t want to marry you, let alone know you. Needless to say, a girl like me, one who is forced and taught to be strong, could use a little extra nurturing, and I’m not ready to put that burden on another soul, not just yet. One day, I will be ready to open up again and be vulnerable, but only with the right man.
5. I don’t want to rush into marriage for the wrong reasons. You would think that the tender age of 28 was the new 48. Talk of freezing my eggs or the notion that my biological clock is ticking needs to fucking stop. I don’t want to get married just so that I can have kids in time, and raise a family. Here’s the deal, women can have kids in our 30s. True, you run the risk of complications, but now is the perfect time to maintain a healthy lifestyle until the opportunity arises. Adoption is an option, you know? If all else fails, I’ll get a puppy. I’m not too fond of cats.
6. Everything happens for a reason. I’m a strong believer in fate. There is a reason why you are reading this post. I wrote this for a reason.
The question, ‘what do you want out of dating?’ has been posed to me by friends, and I respond with this post. I respond with the bold idea that those types of answers come in the experience. I am certain to cross paths with the right man at the right time. Until then, I’m just going to go with the flow.
My wants today may differ from my desires next month. Thus, I respond by essentially saying that nothing forced will work. If a guy isn’t ready, he won’t propose, no matter how awesome you are. If a girl like me is not ready, she won’t let her guard down for any man.
Chances are, if you are seeking, you won’t find. I’m going to be myself until I find the answers. In the words of Optimus Prime, “fate rarely calls upon us at a moment of our choosing,” and lastly, the fact that I just quoted The Transformers is perhaps the number one contributor to my fate of being single, for now.