American culture, like many others, is strongly biased when it comes to marriage. Health care and tax laws favor married people. And most Americans carry some assumption that they will marry within their lives.
Being single is considered to be a bad thing.
But Why Is Single “Bad?”
Single people tend to be more active in their communities than those that are married. They are typically more generous when it comes to helping others. They also tend to visit their neighbors more, spend more time with their families, and care for aging parents more than married people.
It’s truly sad the number of thirty-something women and men who consider themselves losers because they’re single. No matter how successful they are professionally, family or society or personal expectations still leave them feeling that they are lacking.
Why Is Marriage “Good?”
Now, for some people, marriage is a wonderful thing. If you’re a loyal person who is in love with another loyal person, marriage is a great idea for you. Neither of you is going to even think of straying. People who like routine, commitment and stability flourish in marriage.
Other people aren’t quite so successful at handling monogamy and the needs of another human. Some give up eventually, and some feel like they are constantly sacrificing a part of themselves. If you find yourself dissatisfied, bored, or smothered in the relationships you’ve had, you may consider whether or not a traditional marriage is for you.
Before you marry someone, ask yourself why you’re getting married. If it’s because you think you should, or you want to make your mother happy or fulfill a childhood dream of the perfect wedding, those aren’t the reasons you’re looking for.
If you don’t handle monogamy or other traditional marriage expectations well, but you still want to get married, sit down with your intended and talk everything out. See if there’s a way to make the kind of marriage that you want to have. Maybe, between the two of you, something unique can be worked out.
You don’t have to have the same type of marriage that your parents have. Instead, you can have a marriage that’s specific to the two of you and your situation.
On the other hand, if you’re dreaming of a traditional marriage and feel like you just keep not finding the one, try investing a little more time in developing a life for YOU. Imagine the things that might keep you happy if you stay on your own.
No marriage guarantees we won’t end up alone again for portions of our life. Let yourself see the freedom in that and find the imagination to enjoy it.