January 25, 2007

The Devil’s Advocate

Posted in Blog Backlash at 8:50 pm by devilwearsbrooksbrothers

I think some clarification may be in order.

I am a 28 year old legal assistant.  While I like my job, it isn’t something I see myself doing for the rest of my life.  Why?  Well, A) I want to grow up and be a writer and B) a psychic in New Orleans told me this isn’t what I was going to do with the rest of my life.  As such, this really isn’t a very practical time for me to settle down.  I have a lot up in the air right now and if I decide next week that I need to move to Iowa and earn my MFA in creative non-fiction, well, it just doesn’t seem fair to turn to my significant other and say “Honey, trust me, you’ll love Iowa City.”

And I like being single.  I like going out with my friends and spending obscene amounts of money on clothes and pocketbooks.  I like coming home whenever I want and flirting with whatever boys I want.  And you know what; I’m good at being single. 

Does this mean that I want to spend the rest of my life unattached?  No.  For instance, just today I was going to talk about how much I want to marry Peyton Manning.  That is until I found out he was already married and then all of this hubabaloo started. 

What I was celebrating, in this space last week, is that being single is no longer a death sentence or an all or nothing decision. 

What this most recent census represents is that women are making the choice to stay single longer.  Or just to be single, period.  Whereas before, a woman’s single status was never looked at as a choice, but as something she had to suffer through or scratch and claw her way out of, now is seen as something we choose to enjoy. 

I wanted to celebrate that the next time my mother starts to complain that I have not settled down, I no longer have just Gloria Steinem to turn to as an example of a woman that chose to be single until marriage was right for her.  Now, I have 51% of American women also making decisions based on what they want out of life (marriage is certainly not all there is right?) and not an arbitrarily determined expiration date.   

But — and this is the part I want to make really clear — I don’t think women that get married or coupled off are traitors to the cause. (That’s just it, singledom isn’t a “cause,” its just a way that some women live)  I do not think they are void of drive or ambition or common sense.  I will also not be cutting off a breast and moving in with a bunch of uni-breasted women who hunt men for purely procreational purposes; because I like boys, oh sorry, men. It’s just that those of us who don’t have someone are thrilled that we can now be okay with choosing to focus on other areas of personal and professional fulfillment, instead of always feeling we have to justify ourselves. It isn’t about “us” versus “them.” It’s about whatever makes a person happy. 

And yes Mom, I know this post (and the fact that Peyton is married) brings you no closer to grandkids, but that topic is for a whole other time. 

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