Friday, May 02, 2008

This is so ugh.

Marry Him! by Lori Gottlieb

This is a disgusting, arrogant, and depressing article.

The author's a single mom who calls herself a feminist. She waited to get married, she held for her true love, but now she's wiser and knows she should settle. Not until the end of the article does she acknowledge her son again, in a good way, I guess.

And while I have a much higher tolerance for settling than I did back then, now I have my son to consider. It’s one thing to settle for a subpar mate; it’s quite another to settle for a subpar father figure for my child. So while there’s more incentive to settle now, there’s less willingness to settle too much, because that would be a disservice to my son.

Before that, this is what she has to say about her son (and dating):

Before I got pregnant, though, I also read single-mom books such as Choosing Single Motherhood: The Thinking Woman’s Guide, whose chapter titles “Can I Afford It?” and “Dealing With the Stress” seemed like realistic antidotes to the faux-empowering man-hunting manual headings like “A Little Lingerie Can Go a Long Way.” But the book’s author, Mikki Morrissette, held out a tantalizing carrot. In her introduction, she describes having a daughter on her own; then, she writes, a few years later and five months pregnant with her son, “I met a guy I fell in love with. He and my daughter were in the delivery room when my son was born in January 2004.” Each time I read about single women having babies on their own and thriving instead of settling for Mr. Wrong and hiring a divorce lawyer, I felt all jazzed and ready to go. At the time, I truly believed, “I can have it all—a baby now, my soul mate later!”

Well … ha! Hahahaha. And ha.

Just as the relationship books fail to mention what happens after you triumphantly land a husband (you actually have to live with each other), these single-mom books fail to mention that once you have a baby alone, not only do you age about 10 years in the first 10 months, but if you don’t have time to shower, eat, urinate in a timely manner, or even leave the house except for work, where you spend every waking moment that your child is at day care, there’s very little chance that a man—much less The One—is going to knock on your door and join that party.

They also gloss over the cost of dating as a single mom: the time and money spent on online dating (because there are no single men at toddler birthday parties); the babysitter tab for all those boring blind dates; and, most frustrating, hours spent away from your beloved child. Even women who settle but end up divorced might be in a better position than those of us who became mothers on our own, because many ex-wives get both child-support payments and a free night off when the kids go to Dad’s house for a sleepover. Never-married moms don’t get the night off. At the end of the evening, we rush home to pay the babysitter, make any houseguest tiptoe around and speak in a hushed voice, then wake up at 6 a.m. at the first cries of “Mommy!”

Try bringing a guy home to that.

No one forced you to have a kid.

I don't know why she had a kid as a single mom, but taken with her obsession with marriage, marriage, marriage, even if he's "rude to the waiter" she must think she's incomplete without both.

Another thing that bothered me:

and the theme of holding out for true love (whatever that is—look at the divorce rate)

It couldn't be because women got married young to someone they thought they loved, that they settled because they didn't want to be a spinster, no, all divorced couples were fools who thought they knew what love was! I'm sure there was love at first, but marrying someone you're crazy about doesn't necessarily mean you'll end up divorced. Especially if you take your time and don't settle into a marriage too soon. I know that, and I'm only 19!

Even women who settle but end up divorced might be in a better position than those of us who became mothers on our own, because many ex-wives get both child-support payments and a free night off when the kids go to Dad’s house for a sleepover.


Marry a rich guy, no matter how bad he is, so that you can get a divorce and still be rich. The author doesn't want a partner, a lover, she wants a wallet. She wants a body.

My parents' divorce was not hard on my sister or me. But I know plenty of people who weren't so lucky. And if there's money involved, the divorce will be even nastier. She's living in a fantasy world.

Her descriptions of marriages is even more depressing:

The couples my friend and I saw at the park that summer were enviable but not because they seemed so in love—they were enviable because the husbands played with the kids for 20 minutes so their wives could eat lunch. In practice, my married friends with kids don’t spend that much time with their husbands anyway (between work and child care), and in many cases, their biggest complaint seems to be that they never see each other. So if you rarely see your husband—but he’s a decent guy who takes out the trash and sets up the baby gear, and he provides a second income that allows you to spend time with your child instead of working 60 hours a week to support a family on your own—how much does it matter whether the guy you marry is The One?

"You're never going to find 'the One' and you don't want to die alone, do you?"

She is obsessed with not being alone - never mind that she has a child, a child that loves her, a child that will be there for her forever.

One last thing, the bit that made me want to blog about this bullshit:

And all I can say is, if you say you’re not worried, either you’re in denial or you’re lying.

What are you supposed to be worried about? Being 30 and unmarried.

I've got about 10 years and 3 months until I'll be 30. I don't want to get married. I don't want kids. But I'm too young to know any better. I don't like being around little kids, but once I have one, I'll change.

As for marriage? I definitely don't want to settle! Settling sounds like marriage for marriage's sake only, being Mrs. Somebody is all that matters. I believe that that is what my dad did (though he didn't settle when he married my mom! She is so much better than him!) and he's on his 4th divorce. He's got 5 kids and only one kinda sorta likes him. He came from a broken home, and I guess he wanted to create the perfect one. He certainly tried with us - appearances, appearances.

The author knows what's best, and she knows that within 10 years, I will be baby and marriage crazy. Because her feelings are the same as everybody else's.

Settling is depressing, it is a reality, and it is sick to push it as the only alternative to dying alone.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

In denial or lying??

I hate people who claim to know what you're "really" thinking, or what you "really" feel.

Being convinced everyone "really" feels the same way you do shows a depressing lack of imagination.