Saturday, July 14, 2012

3 Things Not to Say to Your Single Friends

I've been thinking a lot about singleness lately.  Not moping about it, just thinking.  In a lot of ways it's not a bad thing (sole possession of the remote control, right?) but in a lot of ways it can be hard.  Especially in the South where nearly all of my friends got married right out of college, at times I just feel out of place in groups of adults.  I struggle with whether or not I should have turned Mr. X down just because of various and sundry reasons, I wonder whether or not there is something wrong with me (or with everyone else because clearly it can't be the former), and I've even declared that I must have been chosen for celibacy (don't worry, Mom, those moments are typically few and far between).  It's an up and down sort of thing, but what seems to be consistent is that everyone has advice (or this great guy they want you to meet who lives in another part of the state/country/world).  The following are a few things I've heard in the last few years that now make me laugh and why you should avoid saying them to your friend who might not be so jazzed about singleness.

  1. Statement: I found my husband when I was finally content with being alone.  What it sounds like they're saying: You're being punished for not being content in all circumstances and you need to be more like me.
  2. Statement: Your standards are too high.  What it sounds like they're saying: Settle, you should snatch the first guy who asks you out and thank your lucky stars that he did.
  3. Statement: Nothing sanctifies you like marriage.  What it sounds like they're saying: You're not getting the special brand of sanctification I'm getting and if you never get married you never will.
These sorts of comments sometimes bug me, but lately they've just been making me laugh...specifically at myself.  Most likely, the married person making the above statements is well intentioned and really just wants to help.  The problem isn't so much the pride I imagine them saying these things with but rather Who I am trusting to provide for me; whether it be a marriage or sanctification.  God has the best plan for each of His children (Romans 8:28) and that is the lens through which all of us need to look.

Still, the next time you consider one of the above statements in regards to a single friend, think about how they might hear it and consider another alternative.

1 comment:

marigirl said...

for #3, consider nodding sympathetically and saying, "I guess some people need more sanctifying than others..." :)