>The "Never Married" stigma

      7 Comments on >The "Never Married" stigma

>All of you divorced people are probably going to disagree with me, but you know that old saying about it being better to have love and lost? Well, apparently it’s correct.

A few weeks ago, I was in an online discussion with @GirlWithMoxie about this situation. My point of view is that society pressures women and men to be married by a certain age. If you saw that a gal was almost 40 and had never been married, you would think one of two things, “She’s gay” or “Ew. What’s wrong with her?”

It used to be age 30 for women, but I think maybe society is getting a clue that some of us just haven’t been lucky enough to find a guy to stick around long enough to ask us for our hand in marriage.

Moxie couldn’t understand where I was coming from.

My friend Jen said it best, “At least a divorced person had someone love them enough to marry them.” We never marrieds can’t even say “At least we tried.” It’s not that we don’t want to try, we just were never given the chance.

Jen also mentioned that she was perusing online dating profiles, saw a guy who was 40 and never married.  She admitted that her reaction was “What’s wrong with him?” We’ve all done it.

Need more evidence? There was an article last month about this little old lady who patronized the same bank for 98 years. Within the article they mentioned that she had never been married and had no children. What the hell does that have to do with someone using the same bank for decades? Absolutely nothing! But, we as a society are so engrained with the marriage thing that familial status is almost always mentioned in news articles, resumes, and just because.

Moxie said that people regard divorcees as failures…well, maybe back in the 1980s, but the divorce rate is hovering around 50% right? It’s pretty common to be divorced…at my age. (CRINGE)  People can look at her and say you gave it a shot…at least someone loved you enough to get that paper recorded at the county assessors’ office.

On Twitter yesterday, I saw a gal lamenting her single status because her 10 year high school reunion is coming up. She wasn’t sure which was more acceptable, lying about her sexuality or admitting to being the only never married at the gathering.

I told her to get back to me when her 20 year reunion looms on the horizon and she’s still in the same never married state…like me.

Apparently, I have ten cats, wear nothing but brown wool sweaters, and I forget to brush my hair…why else would I be single, right?

Even before the onslaught of reality shows like Say Yes to the Dress, My Fair Wedding, The Real House Wives of (Indianapolis?) and even that God awful Bridezillas, romantic comedies always ended with a couple saying “I do.” or at least the implication of it.

So, coupling up via marriage is pretty much part of the fabric of our society. There’s nothing wrong with marriage. I just hate that I feel left out and get looked at sideways for never having joined the club. It’s not my fault no one ever gave me the secret password.

In fact, it would even be more socially acceptable for me to lie and say that I think marriage is an outdated concept.

But screw that…there’s nothing wrong with me.   I’m off to go wash my brown wool sweaters.

7 thoughts on “>The "Never Married" stigma

  1. Bows and Sparrows

    >I like to tell people that I value marriage so much that I only want to do it once…so I'm waiting for the "right" person. I want to get married for the right reasons to the right man. I don't ever want to get divorced.

    Reply
  2. Ms. Chick

    >While I wholeheartedly agree with your reason (and honestly it's why I'm still single), the only problem is that when you get past a certain age, people stop believing it. Seriously, if you are over 35 and female you will be looked at funny by people who don't know you if you are completely unattached.

    If you are in a relationship, some of the stigma disappears because people will just assume that you are on the path to marriage or you are at least coupled up with someone.

    If you are not exclusively dating someone, the Spinster badge gets put on your soul. If you date a bunch of guys, you get the Slut badge. Both of those are stupid.

    I also forgot to mention that even people who have had children out of wedlock get fewer weird looks these days than people who are childless and never married.

    Reply
  3. No Ordinary Day

    >75% of married couples probably wish they weren't married, or are stuck with with the "wrong" person just so that they wouldn't be alone. Now they're 10+ years and 2+ kids into it. Not so easy to "go back." Just too messy with alimony, child support, exes, step-kids, his kids, her kids, who gets the kids this weekend… Really. Just be glad you never went there.

    Embrace your single-ness, your freedom, your independence, yourself! Forget "The Real Housewives of wherever"…more like "Desperate Housewives." Single you can star in your own "Sex in the City" series — and which show is truly the more glamorous one?

    I have a number of friends in their 30's and early 40's who are single and NBM (never-been-married). They are all creative, smart, intelligent, fun women. I honestly think most men are afraid of them or assume that they are in a relationship since they carry themselves with such confidence.

    I think that finding a relationship is like looking for a job. You just gotta put yourself out there, pound the pavement, network, market yourself, advertise! Let people know you're looking. The job isn't going to find YOU – you must find it. And that doesn't mean the first job you get is going to be your dream job or even your career job, but eventually you'll find the one that you can live with and actually enjoy and *bonus* it will pay the bills. That's what I call marriage 🙂

    Reply
  4. Moxie

    >I wish I could find that original message thread where we discussed this topic. I can't remember all of what I said.

    I do have more things to say, though, and I shall do it in a post.

    P.S. I'm on Networked Blogs and SacConnect now, btw – thanks for inspiring me to sign up with both!

    Reply
  5. Ms. Chick

    >I know I can't find it either. Congrats on the SacConnect thing! Can't wait to read your stuff. 🙂

    Reply
  6. Ms. Chick

    >@No Ordinary Day – I put in the work, believe me. The whole damn world knows I'm looking. I blog about it regularly, talk about it regularly in real life too.

    Yes, I comparatively have no baggage. No pyscho exes, no children, no alimony, none of that…yet here I am, while women with TONS of baggage hook up left and right.

    Sure they are probably not hooking up with guys I would consider and they are probably miserable together, but the point is out of the multitude, they found someone and I seemingly cannot. And because of this society looks at me like I have a horn growing out of my head.

    I went out on alot of dates last year and the majority of men rejected me. Didn't even come back for a second date. So, that tells me I have baggage, I just don't know what it is or how to get rid of it.

    Reply
  7. ByJane

    >I used to feel as if I were the lone animal on the Ark, the only person around who wasn't part of a couple. For me, being married or not had nothing to do with it because I had been married.. I'm more or less used to it now and too, I've got a bunch of also-single friends who I can hang out with at parties.

    Reply

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