I recently read the article, All the Single Ladies. The author, Kate Bolick, makes the point that it can be hard to find a good husband in a bad economy.
Is it the Economy or Something Else?
It’s true that men usually need to feel like they can provide before they’re ready to get married.
But, Ms. Bolick, also shares that when she was growing up her mother discouraged her from getting married. Today Ms. Bolick is 39 and still single. She would like to get married and maybe even have a child. But, she’s not optimistic about her prospects.
My heart goes out to Ms. Bolick. It’s normal to want someone to share your life with. And historical and economical factors can make it harder to find love. But, more often, it’s our own personal history that gets in the way.
What’s Really Keeping You Single
We all know our families affect our relationships and our relationship choices. But, sometimes we don’t realize how deep it goes. If you’re single and you feel like you just can’t find love, at some level you may have learned that it’s not good to get too close to someone. At some level you may believe – it’s better to stay single. You may actually have a fear of intimacy.
Part of You Wants to Get Married
I know, this sounds crazy. Because you want to be loved and you want to get married. And that’s true. Or at least partly true. Part of you wants to get married. But, part of you may be holding on to being single. You may have experienced one or more of the following:
- One or both of your parents telling you why marriage is bad or its better to be single
- You saw one or both of your parents unhappy in the marriage
- Your parents got divorced
- Your parents weren’t there for you
So, part of you really wants to get married. But, part of you believes that you would be giving something up. Maybe you’re afraid you’d have the same marriage your parents had. Or you’re afraid you’ll get divorced. Or you’re worried you won’t get what you need. It’s a little different for everybody. But, the part that’s the same is that feeling deep down that it’s safer to just be single.
You Can Create the Kind of Marriage that’s Right for You!
So, what’s a girl (or guy) to do? First you have to discover what those family messages are and then you can change them. This is usually done through counseling* or some sort of family-of-origin work. You can also make these kinds of changes in a support or 12-step group.
Then you get to decide what kind of partner or marriage would be right for you. You get to make your own choices, instead of living out your parents’ messages about love and marriage. You can have a marriage that makes your life bigger instead of smaller. You can love someone and get your needs met.
And what could be better than that?