As a single, Black, Christian woman in my 30s, I often talk to my friends and acquaintances about being single. These are the phrases that I’ve heard the most and my other single friends have encountered with frequency.
- “Maybe if you lower your standards, you’ll find a man.” or “Maybe your standards are just too high.” We have standards for a reason. While some may have unrealistic or out of this world standards, many have reasonable standards. Why should we have to settle for things that we don’t want? Often, accepting less than what you want will lead to the relationship ending or being in a relationship and feeling frustrated most of the time. It’s okay for us to want, what we want!WE SAID WHAT WE SAID!
- “Just because he doesn’t go to church doesn’t mean he’s not a good man.” This indeed is true. There are a lot of good men out there who don’t go to church and/or aren’t Christians. However, it doesn’t change the fact that what we want is a Christian man. A man who acknowledges Jesus as his savior and lives the life of a true believer. We aren’t looking for perfection, but looking for a man who is actively engaged in a relationship with the Lord. Because if he loves the Lord and lives to please God, then that means he will do his best to lead his wife and children according to God’s will.
- “Maybe you should try dating outside of your race.” Who said we weren’t open to dating outside of our race? Of course, I can only speak for myself, but I don’t really get approached by white men or other non-black men that often. So, don’t assume that we are saving ourselves exclusively for black men. If a Christian Thor look-alike asked me out, I wound’t be mad at it.
- “Maybe you can date a guy and win him to Christ.” I don’t want to start a relationship on the hope that one day the guy will want to become a Christian. I want to be with someone who is moving in the same direction as me. I don’t want to be have to drag someone along or be pulled in the opposite direction. The bible says, that we should not be “unequally yoked”. Imagine being in a three legged race with a toddler. You would have to slow down significantly to make sure you don’t end up dragging the toddler along. In many cases, dating and eventually marrying an unbeliever can slow you down spiritually. And can lead to one spouse trying to drag the other to church.
- “You’re not going to the right places to meet men.” Some women are still single despite the fact that they are out here at every event, being a social butterfly and living their best life. Also, it isn’t like there is a designated space or event to go meet other Christians (who are seeking relationships) outside of church related gatherings. And online dating sites such as christian mingle (does anyone still use that these days) aren’t much better.
- “Well, you know blank % of black women are not married.” Gee thanks so much for reminding me that I’m a statistic.
- “It’ll happen exactly when you’re not looking.”
I appreciate the sentiment…I really do. But there have been times where I was not actively seeking a relationship…and nothing. So please, save the clichés and trade them in for a “girl, i hear you…”
In conclusion, sometimes it’s nice to just have someone be a compassionate listener. While we know our friends mean well, sometimes it just feels good to have someone acknowledge our lived experience instead of telling us everything that we are doing “wrong” or all the things we “should” be doing.
What’s your favorite or least favorite thing your friends say to you?
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