So, you are at a time in your life where marriage does not seem to be for you.
Before we begin – put the thought “Am I normal?” – to rest. Your decision to get married or not should have nothing to do with the idea of normalcy.
Instead, it should align with what you want and what you are willing to do for happiness.
To better understand what your pursuit of happiness is – let us first observe what a good and working marriage is meant to look like.
What Does a Good Marriage Look Like?
A marriage between two people should be loving.
No doubt about it, real and intimate love needs to exist for a marriage to even have a shot. Love can look different for all of us.
For some, love looks like quality time watching TV. For others, it could be talking about any and everything. And at times love can seem like an investment of grand gestures and acts of service.
So, when you ask yourself “Is marriage for me” – think about what marriage would look like for you with love involved.
Chances are a lot of those fantasies are going to be very focused on you in the marriage – which brings us to the next point.
A marriage between two people should include compromise.
Yeesh – compromise, that is a bracing word is it not?
It must exist for a working marriage, though. There has to be a push and pull if the marriage will ever last.
Say your love looks like the grand gestures – your partner should work to give you those gestures as much as monetarily possible.
In return, you spend time with your partner hiking and talking because that is when they feel loved.
Are you a person who is willing to sacrifice your time and preferences because you love another?
If you believe that you are or can be that person then perhaps a marriage or a long-term relationship could be for you.
A marriage between two people is a partnership.
There is love, there is compromise and then there is – partnership.
This term may bring you into the business sphere which can be clinical, but it is accurate. In marriage, you gain a partner in all things. Finances, family, love, intimacy, and so on.
Are you a lone wolf, content to do everything yourself?
Or do you enjoy the idea of having someone with you to build a life?
As partners, you will help each other achieve your goals. Whether it is picking up the slack on chores one week while the other works long hours. Or being the one who stays on top of paying the bills because your partner struggles to remember the dates while they always do laundry because you forget.
We all have weaknesses in our lives – a partner should support those weaknesses with their strengths.
None of this sounds appealing.
If you have read all these points about what a good marriage should look like and find yourself with a bad taste in your mouth, then…
Marriage may not be for you.
Does this make you abnormal?
As of 2018 35% of Americans are not married. 35 percent – that means 39 million Americans, give or take, have never been married or they remain unmarried after a divorce. If there are 39 million people all around you in the same city who all remain single then you would not feel as if you were not normal.
Anyone who considered marriage would be the abnormal one!
It is all a matter of perspective.
So, you have decided that marriage is not for you.
What does this mean for your future as a single person?
You have more time to pursue your goals –
Marriages are complicated and deserve time to figure out. Devoting yourself to another person means devoting time to their needs. Without a partner, you have a lot of time to do what you desire.
If you want to go back to school full time – great, you’ve got every night free to do that.
Do you want to try out a throwing ax class? Go for it – you control your schedule and yours alone.
You have more time to make all kinds of friends –
Married couples either flock to other couples or they stay in and become an inseparable duo.
Being single is great but it does not have to mean that you are alone.
Instead, you can attend Meetups, Conventions, Seminars, Special Groups, and more. You can go into a crowd and meet people with the same interests as you. You can open your home to a friend for a game night or head over to the skating rink down the block to meet someone.
Just because you may not be the marrying kind, it does not mean you have to go without companionship.
You can still have sex –
If you are a person who enjoys casual sex and dating – there are plenty of apps for that. And in this day if you understand protection and openly communicate what you want, you can scratch that itch.
You can still have love-
And if you are someone who finds the idea of sex and romance to be boring you could be someone who just enjoys being around other people.
What is important here is to realize that marriage is not the ultimate form of love.
Love can be found in family members, friends, children (if you want them), and yes, romantic partners. However, if you are fulfilled just as you are then why push for anything more?
As the outspoken and gloriously single Samantha Jones from Sex in the City once said to the man who tried to marry her-
“I love you, but I love me more.”
And in a society that pushes the narrative that we are not enough, that idea of radical self-love is enough to topple traditions.
Ditch the word normal and embrace the idea that this is who you are. And that is enough.
Loving yourself and respecting your values is more important than a ring on your finger could ever be.