Being Single During Christmas (by J. Acuff)
(The follow up post:
(Link): The 39 worst things folks said to people who are single during the holidays.)
- … So instead of simply remixing an old post, I decided to create a holiday-focused scorecard. Think of it like a seasonal ale they put nutmeg in during January. It only comes around this time of year. Without further ado, I give you:
Being single during Christmas at church:
5. You good friends hold secret “couples holiday dinners” they don’t invite you to because they don’t want you to feel awkward. = + 3 points
6. They wince when the world’s worst commercials, Jared’s jewelry, come on TV and some horrible actress gets engaged right in front of you. = +4 points
8. They try desperately to find the silver lining and say things like, “It must be nice not to have to shop for anyone. My husband is so hard to get gifts for!” = +2 points
10. They feel slightly guilty for watching romantic Christmas movies in your presence, like “Love Actually.” = +3 points
11. Someone tells you, “Being single doesn’t have to mean being alone.” = +2 points
12. Your friends have stopped saying “When you get married” because they’re not sure you’ve got it in you. = +1 point
21. People spend an exorbitant amount of time telling you marriage success stories, e.g. “The instant my friend Jill stopped looking for a boyfriend this incredible guy came along and swept her off her feet.” = + 1 point
22. You’re divorced and someone gives you the incredibly encouraging advice, “God will bring you someone who will overlook your past.” = + 2 points
24. Someone makes a horrible joke about how this Christmas, you got the “gift of celibacy.” = +10 points
25. Married friends feel compelled to over tell you how difficult marriage is so that you don’t feel like it’s a winter wonderland of constant awesomeness. = +3 points
32. People try to romanticize the tremendous amounts of free time you must have during the holidays without a family to bother you. = +3 points
Some select reader comments:
- Sydney says
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 3:46 PM
As the oldest grandchild and neice on both sides of my family I have recently been given the guilt trip from my grandparents: “We might not have many more Cristmases left, we need some grandchildren!”
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:12 PM
Yup, I started to hear similar comments in the last couple years (and I’m only 24!). Like from my grandfather “Do you have a boyfriend yet? You need to get married before I die.” As if boyfriends magically appear out of force of sheer will.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 3:48 PM
“It’s so courageous of you to decorate your apartment for the holidays and send out Christmas cards, as if you had a family”.
Yep. From a family member.
I don’t know how many ‘points’ is equal to spending Christmas afternoon in my bedroom crying. Alone, of course. Maybe +20?
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 10:17 AM
So true! My grandfather gives all my (married) siblings/cousins money (triple digits) for Christmas. Being single, I get $0. Its not so much about the money, but not being considered as “equally deserving of a gift.”
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 1:01 PM
Me too, Carly! Me too! The exact same thing happens to me.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 3:43 PM
Same here!! I always think, I have bills too and nobody to help me pay them! Am I not worthy of a check at Christmas just because I didn’t provide a son-in-law and grandchildren??
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:28 PM
[In response to someone who says she hates #21 on the list, 21 reads,
21. People spend an exorbitant amount of time telling you marriage success stories, e.g. “The instant my friend Jill stopped looking for a boyfriend this incredible guy came along and swept her off her feet.” = + 1 point]
As if God is dangling a gift in front of you and will only give it to you when you stop reaching for it or wanting it! So screwy, but I can’t tell you how many people have thrown this at me in my 35 years of singleness.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:53 PM
I cannot stand #21 or any spin-offs that deal with, “Well, when you focus fully on God, he’ll be right beside you!”
It implies that all married people are somehow on a separate spiritual playing field than singles. Like they are the first-string players that know how to focus on Jesus better or something—AND FOR THAT, THEY GET A REWARD!
But not you single people. Go read your ESV study bible and pray a little more. Better luck next season!
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:20 PM
I’m sick of people saying I should get more involved in church and that I will meet him there. I already go to church and have been for a looong time. No dice. Sitting between my parents each Sunday doesn’t really help either, huh?
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 12:15 AM
I attend a church and live in a town that has very few single Christian men. My church has none. And I am one of two single ladies myself. Getting more involved will not do anything.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:22 PM
That is fantastic, haha! Yeah, it’s a very good point. A lot of people make comments that imply you’re single because you somehow aren’t putting God first in your life, no matter what you’re actually doing.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:10 PM
ST.WIPS: Stupid Things Well-Intentioned People Say.
“It’ll happen when…” (and then fill in the blank with any sort of random statement like “when you’re least expecting it…” blah blah blah)
“God is your husband!”
“Maybe you should…” (and then fill in the blank with any sort of random advice that is usually a little bit mean. I usually want to respond, “Maybe you should kiss my grits.”
“Have you prayed about it?” Oh! Now there’s a brilliant idea that I’ve never considered!
Jon–How many points does one get for being single, alone, and OVERSEAS at Christmas? About 100?
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 9:51 PM
Blechk! Im 35, and married now but wow, did i hate that “youre not putting urself in the right situations…” Its bs im sorry. I was told for many years my husband would come to my church one day. And the non-church people i knew were telling me i needed to go to club to find a man. Otherwise i was dooomed.
Well every1 was wrong. I just kept living my life and future hubby came to my WORK PLACE. LOL so there!
And i vowed when i got married i will not become “one of them”. And im didnt. Godmhelp me if i ever do…
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 12:58 PM
I tell the Church ladies that there is no one single my age at church, so I’m gonna start going to the bars to find a husband.
That shuts them up quick.
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 3:20 PM
I once told a girl at my Bible study that I’d been keeping my hair long because a) I’ve been enjoying doing fun updos with it and b) I read that guys prefer longer hair (which is true) . . . but I’d also considered doing a cute pixie cut. I’m just afraid that if I did everyone would think I was a butch lesbian, so if I get to 35 and I’m still not married I might go ahead and give the pixie a shot, since by then I expect most people will think I’m a butch lesbian anyway . . . LOL. (It’s been thought before, even when I’ve had long hair . . . I’m sorry to say).
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:17 PM
Yup, some of these are accurate already. Like the lady at church who always asks me if I have a boyfriend yet because she has to know as soon as it happens. I have a few friends who like to tell me how lucky I am to be single and how guys are so much more trouble than they’re worth. Yeah, so nice to be told that from the person who has been married or in a relationship for years to the girl who has never had a bf. They all mean well, but there comes a point when every single piece of “advice” or “encouragement” someone gives you about your love life becomes kind of insulting and aggravating. I despise those cliched comments from people.
[In reply to a married about what marrieds can say to singles]
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 12:52 AM
Everything else about my life? Because part of what makes it so frustrating/hurtful, is those questions are essentially implying, “it doesn’t really matter what you’ve done or accomplished. Your life isn’t truly valid until you’re in a relationship/married/have kids. Didn’t you know you are defined by your marital status?”
I have a job I’ve worked hard for and really enjoy (and I work with some really fascinating stuff, which I might tell you about if you showed interest in knowing something beyond my 30-second job summary).
I have a master’s degree.
I’ve traveled all over the world.
I have friends and family all over the country/world.
I’ve been remodeling my house over the last 3 years.
I’m in a book club and love to read.
I enjoy working in my yard/garden.
I love to bake and cook.
I love going to the theater and trying new restaurants.
And yes, I have two cats. And they entertain me to no end.
But yet somehow, there are people who can’t think of anything to ask me about or comment on except my relationship status?!
So, what would encourage me and make me feel appreciated? Showing interest in what my life IS (everything listed above), rather than what it might be lacking (a significant other). Celebrating/congratulating me on what I’ve accomplished (job, education, house reno, etc.), rather than focusing on what I haven’t (a husband). Recognizing that I and my life are legitimate and acceptable right now and as is – just as acceptable and legitimate as they would be with a spouse, not just as “it’s nice to see you’re using your time well until you meet someone.”.
Hope that helps!
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:28 PM
Yes! I also stopped telling stories to my parents that involves and single guy within 20 years of me. They completely tone-out what I’m saying and become fixed on that guy. “So you just said Jake, who is Jake, how old is he? Are you interested, is he cute?” And they remember him and check-in on how “jake and I ” are doing for months.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:25 PM
Ooo, wait, can we add watching all the Christmas engagement posts starting to pop up on facebook with the nauseatingly sappy captions??? Seriously.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:25 PM
Being a widow, I get a lot of “at least…” statements, such as “at least you had the time together that you did. “.
True, but it doesn’t make it any less lonely. These are often preceded by “Wow, the holidays much be so hard for you, being by yourself and all.”
Thanks for pointing that out, I hadn’t noticed.
Which is immediately followed by the suggestion that I sign up to volunteer at all 11 services over four days.
Just because I’m single doesn’t mean I don’t have a life.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:25 PM
This cracked me up, especially after the question I got yesterday: “Have you tried Christian Mingle yet?”
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 6:40 PM
Ah yes. My old friend. I saw an advert for said company online the other day (thanks, targeted FB advertising) with the terrible, theologically worrying and mildly threatening slogan “Worried about going to heaven alone? Maybe not.” As Charlie Brown says, good grief.
Should definitely be added to the points system.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:29 PM
I’m divorced and in my thirties. At this point, I hear comments about how God will “restore the years the locusts have eaten.”
Little do they know that I’m on a wild adventure and I see no locusts in my history.
I was just starting to write a blog post about Christmas as a single woman! I will have to link to this post.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:30 PM
A sickening Jared’s commercial came on just as I started reading this. Seriously.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:46 PM
It’s not something that’s ever been said to me, so I don’t know how it ranks. But I find it terribly irritating that I buy separate presents for my sister and her husband and yet they get me presents together. Not fair.
Oh, and #25 is perfect. I hear all about how hard marriage is from my friends. Like if I got married I would regret it? How is that supposed to make me feel better?
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 3:09 PM
Oh Kate, if we’re going to talk not-fair in gifts…how bout the fact that we buy eight billion gifts for everybody else’s showers, but we never get a shower…and some of us end up buying everything in our house ourselves? THEN…married women talk about how they wish they could re-register for an anniversary.
Can I register for presents when I turn 40? Surely I should get a shower sometime….
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 8:14 PM
WOW, subtle, mom! Haha that is terrible!
For the first time in my 25 years, I have recently become not-single. But I had 25 years of these comments. Christmas/New Years parties with church friends were the worst – nobody in my church was single except for a few members of the youth group. So I either didn’t get invited, or went and felt all awkward the whole time (everybody gets all snuggly at Christmas time, what is that??), or didn’t go and felt lame the whole evening by myself.
Now, instead of having people say they’ll “help me find someone,” it’s equally as insulting to get comments on how I’ve finally found someone so this holiday season will be “extra special!” Gag me… I’ve loved Christmas every year, thank you very much.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:49 PM
For an “early Christmas present” my mom gave me one of those Jesus books about God’s plan for your love life or something equally unbearable. Idk, haven’t read it. She loved my ex and is now convinced I’m going to be forever alone -_-
I plan to come back and revisit this score card after spending Christmas with the fam 🙂
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 4:54 PM
One year my granny gave me a Barbie and Ken wedding cake topper for Christmas. Not engaged. Not dating anyone and no prospects. Looked to granny and she says “we have been waiting to give this to you and we needed to clean out the attic. Maybe this year dear, maybe this year.”
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:19 PM
I bet they would look awesome melting together in the fireplace. Very romantic.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:00 PM
I’m 25 and have been single for every Christmas so AMEN to every single thing on this list! I’m starting to cross over into the “maybe you have the gift of celibacy” territory and I am learning a lot of self control in the process (as in not punching someone when they say one of these things to me).
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:01 PM
I quite often get asked “so……is there anyone “special” on the scene?”
I also have a well-meaning family friend who’s theory is that somewhere out there, there is a man who’s out of favour with God because he’s not dating me. (“A man who finds a wife….finds favour with The Lord”).
What’s even more disconcerting though is when the questions and well-meaning probing stops. It’s kinda like they’ve given up.
[Response to someone who said he doesn’t like it when people ask him “why” he is still single]:
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 4:08 PM
Well, more importantly, marriage isn’t a “reward” – lots of truly heinous people manage to get married and lots of truly lovely people stay single. Being single isn’t a punishment or a curse – it’s just a different way of living than being married.
I wish the church would stop treating singles as if they are somehow on God’s “naughty” list just because they haven’t found a spouse. Pretty sure God NEVER calls singleness a curse, and in fact calls it a blessing. Not that it always feels that way – but it’s just horrible to assume that someone is “good” because they are married and “bad because they aren’t. That’s a lie from the pit of hell right there.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:12 PM
A co-worker of mine said yesterday, “we need to put some mistletoe up in the office to get you a husband!”— then turns to the other single guy(co-worker) at the table, and says “we need to put some mistletoe in the office to get you a wife” — yep we are basically the only two single ppl at this job, everyone’s spouse works together. We often get uncomfortable “hints” that we need to be together like that… It’s truly the worst!
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:16 PM
I will never buy anything at Jared because of their commercials. I’m also compelled to shriek, “It can only be JAR-ED!!!” whenever I pass their store.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:23 PM
I work at a Christian book store, so I get all of these every day. One day, a lady came in handing out cards from her “greeting card ministry.” She walked up to me and said, “I’m giving everyone one of my cards, but I noticed you’re single, so you get two because you need extra encouragement.” I was so stunned, all I could do was smile and thank her.
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 4:14 PM
LOL. Aww, backhanded compliments . . . I think most people don’t even realize it. I’d be thankful for the thought though – if poorly executed.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:25 PM
I have moved past the point of comments, I’m divorced with three children. The ultimate undateable girl!
My dad told me, “Once you have three kids not many men will be willing to take that on.” As well as, “Anyone who would want to be with you is just crazy!”
My mom told me, encouragingly, “Well at least your dad prays that the right man will come along for you.” (She is actually my staunchest supporter and doesn’t expect me to look for happiness in another person.)
And everytime I comment on Facebook that some singer, or writer is amazing, my Aunt comments, “Are you finally getting married?!? When do we get to meet him!!” Oh, sorry to disappoint you, he’s some guy wrote some book I love, he’s just like all the other guys who don’t know I’m alive…
Seriously, why is a persons worth (especially a WOMAN’S worth!!) dependent upon their marital status? And my secular friends are the ones who will invite me to holiday parties and not be weird about me being single. Thanks church friends.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:27 PM
From an older lady in church, “Why are you still single, honey? Can’t you cook?” Yes, a lack of culinary skills has made marriage illusive. Darn you, pot roast! Someday I will master you, and my mate will magically appear!
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 1:11 AM
Alas! I’ve gotten plenty of “you’re a great cook/baker, how are you not married?!”
Oh, I don’t know, maybe I’m looking for something IN ADDITION to an appreciation of good food?!
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:32 PM
I always tell them that Jesus is my husband and it is great since he never leaves the toilet seat up or dirty underwear on the floor for me to pick up. Can’t say that for their spouse 🙂
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:46 PM
“Have you thought about what age you’d like to be when you get married?”
The number is the least of the problems….like finding a person…and if I get to the age I “decided” on, do I just marry the first guy I see? Is that a thing?
Weird comments abound at Christmas. Thankful for this post to see the weirdness isn’t just around me.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 5:51 PM
I’m not an unattractive guy, but my best friend is considered very attractive. He also has an amazing career which pays well. Good intentioned friends are always coming up to me and saying things like, “Why is Alex still single? I just don’t get it!” But I guess they get why I’m single? Sometimes they catch themselves and say they don’t get why I’m single either, but that almost makes it worse.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 6:02 PM
Being well on my way to my sixties and still single I scored a nice 33 on the above, lol.
I’ve heard so many so-called funny, concerned and downright rude remarks on my private life that I don’t listen anymore.
The latest one was from someone I only knew briefly who told me in all earnest, “Well, when you are happy with yourself you will find someone. You just needed a long time to get to that point apparently.”
I mean, seriously …
And how about that pastor who, every time we had a engagement or wedding in church, walked over to me, patted me on the back and told me for everyone to hear, “Your day will come, my dear.”
I left that church 😉
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 6:10 PM
I lost count after I reached 25pts but definitely the worst thing anyone ever posted was on a christian singles web page that was supposed to be encouraging us single folks said in a general post that singelness is ONLY caused by being unfaithful to God….
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 6:11 PM
As a single, seminary graduate I can add a lot of comments to this! Of course most are around Scripture that is taken out of context. I can also say that the older I get the more people are concerned with my eggs and if I am and will freeze them. Really??
I think sadly my nonbeliever friends are more kind and don’t see me as something broken, like most believers who are married. Crazy, but true!!
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 7:32 PM
I used to say, with surprise, “You know the Bible, so you should know why I’m not married.” At their blank look, I’d say slowly,
“You know…Paul, the Apostle who wrote most of the New Testament? Who said single women should remain unmarried? Yeah, you’d think some people have taken a marker and blacked out Paul’s words since they obviously don’t take him seriously. In fact, I’m rather troubled that singles aren’t applauded and celebrated for remaining that way from the pulpit. (whispering) It makes me wonder if some pastors think they have more wisdom than PAUL. Sad, isn’t it?”
LOL Those people never brought up my singleness again.
But now that I’m married, I have a whole new group asking about kids!
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 4:27 PM
I love to cook and craft so I started a homemaking blog (I’m a firm believer that you don’t have to be married to be a homemaker) where I share my projects and such.
Part of promoting it to build an audience means sharing my best content on blog parties. Many of the other posters are Christian mommy bloggers, and singleness is treated almost universally as a curse. I finally wrote a post about it (http://www.modernishhomemaker.com/2013/09/please-stop-treating-singleness-as-curse.html, Please Stop Treating Singleness as a Curse)
. . . It’s addressed to Christian mommy bloggers, but I think it holds up to most of contemporary church culture, especially evangelical circles.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 6:37 PM
I get #21 & #25 all the time.
However, the worst comment I have been given was fairly recently.
My aunt (mom’s sister) told me that I should be ashamed of myself for not getting married and giving my parents grandchildren.
The interesting thing is that she has been single with no children her whole life.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 6:51 PM
So I scored a 43. A lot of my points came from when I came home from the gym one night last year at Christmas time and my roommate and her fiancé had started an eharmony account for me. Since then my favorite comment from people is “Have you considered online dating again? Are you really trying?”
I also got “I’m surprised you put up a tree. I don’t think I did that when I was single” this year.
Mmm singleness during the holidays….
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 7:32 PM
About 15 years ago, my Grandma gave me the afghan she made for me for my wedding day. She figured “she’d better give it to me so I had it before she died”.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 9:05 PM
How many points for being told that the reason you’re not married is because you received too much positive affection and affirmation from your father as a child and therefore are less likely to look for that from other guys? Bonus points if it was your older brother?
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 10:06 PM
This just in from a Christmas party: “You’re divorced with kids…that’s a lot of baggage. (slurring) You come across so strong, independent and happy about it. Maybe if you looked a little more like a ‘damsel in distress’ (she uses air quotes with eyes closed) then you would seem more approachable.”
At that point she sloshed her drink and asked where the bathroom was at this shindig.
Hmmmm. Compliment? I’ll take it.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 10:27 PM
I find it interesting that most of these comments are coming from women.
My number one response (at least when thinking back over these conversations later) is that I want to be pursued and it isn’t my job to do the pursuing or put myself out there.
It’s so ironic to me that it’s the church who so quickly forgets that marriage is a picture of Christ’s pursuit of His beloved, the church.
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 4:50 PM
That’s because 60% of the church is female . . . so we outnumber the men. Greatly.
DECEMBER 14, 2013 AT 11:27 PM
I didn’t keep track of my points, but I’m pretty sure I get to negate them all. I’m single but I send out a photo Christmas card of MYSELF every year. Take THAT engagement, wedding, pet, family, baby, adorable kid pictures!
I WANT SOME REFRIGERATOR REAL ESTATE. So, yeah…I put my big ol’ face right on a card (usually with something about baby Jesus too)…and proclaim to the world that I am worth fussing over…even if it’s just ME.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 12:19 AM
Last Christmas (I was 20):
Grandma- “Emma, do you have a boyfriend?”
Grandma- “Are you straight?”
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 8:05 AM
When I was 20 or 21, my aunt asked my mom, in front of me, if perhaps I was a lesbian, since I had no boyfriend. Nice.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 12:58 AM
Score 14. Got a lot from uncles who have wives that like to spend money!!
After the endless questions about whether or not I will ever get married, Mom said she would stop asking.
Seems that yet another person close to my age (25) from Church was left high and dry in a divorce.
I can now and maybe forever enjoy my beer in peace and quiet.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 1:21 AM
Let’s not forget these conversations with the relatives you see once a year:
“Do you have a boyfriend?”
“Oh.” (walks away)
Because there’s just nothing else worth talking about if you’re single.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 3:43 AM
My church used to have New Year’s Eve parties where they would hand out Hershey’s Kisses to the teens and single adults so that they, too, could have a “new year’s kiss”.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 9:43 AM
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 9:03 AM
The one I’ve been getting from my family these days is “well, it’s better to be single than married to the wrong person.” The age threshold must be 30 because no one says “when” anymore to me.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 9:31 AM
I got the comments like that from my family until I started dating my ex. Then when I broke up with the ex and started not giving a rats behind about the comments and started living I very much enjoyed being single. Loved it!!
So much so that I noticed I was getting the ‘shaming’ comments from my friends who were married w/ kids.
“Oh you should help out here or there because you don’t have children, what else have you got to do??”
My reply, was no thank you. Not when the question is laced with such disrespect.
I’m 38 and still single and while I am dating a guy, I’m still loving my singleness!!
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 9:39 AM
Or, another one of my favorites:
“I feel like I can minister to other women so much better now that I’m in a relationship.. but I’m sure you do a good job too.”
OR, oh man, this one is even better:
“I don’t believe a woman is a woman until she finds her man of God. And I’m saying this to encourage you, because someday, Lena, you will find that man of God who makes you a woman.”
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 10:09 AM
I used to get the single comments along with the “your child-rearing time is coming to an end” comments.
Once people discovered that I have no desire to have children, the comments on my singleness stopped pretty quickly, because obviously, if I don’t want kids, I can’t get married.
People are super fun.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 12:22 PM
I nearly ended a friendship with a most beloved co-worker when she told me, “Well, maybe God wants you to marry a divorcee when you’re 40, that way his kids are mostly grown and he won’t want anymore.”
I laugh (hysterically) now, but at that moment I must have been shooting death rays with my eyes!
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 1:28 PM
I’ve had this from two or three people in my church, too. They never believed that I really knew what I was saying when I told them, as a teen, that I had no desire for children.
Now that I’m 30 and my sister has kids, they believe me when I say that I DO NOT want to have children.
Apparently they feel that since I am so backslidden as to fly in the face of God’s command to be fruitful and multiply, I deserve to suffer the affliction of singleness for the rest of my life (sarcasm there…lots and lots of sarcasm).
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 10:24 AM
This is my second Christmas to be -1 after a 20 year marriage and quite frankly other than my daughter telling me to hit the bars and meet men with money I get no comments.
After the surprise and excruciating pain of a divorce I did not want, I made it quite plain that I would not put myself in the position to feel this way again. Cuts off the comments pretty quickly.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 10:28 AM
When I was 18, my uncle asked if I had a boyfriend. He then asked, “why not? Are you a lesbian or something?” I was EIGHTEEN.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 10:43 AM
I love all these comments. I also love Christmas and decorate for Christmas, because I am special. One of the best comments I get is “Sarah had a baby when she was 100, so there’s still some time for you.” My reply, “She didn’t meet Abraham when she was 99.”
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 10:54 AM
Yes! Have heard MANY of these and I’m only 26.
My former best friend used to always back out of doing things with me because she would say, “I have to do _____ for my husband.”
And the “my husband” part was always in THE TONE you know the tone.
The thing is…each time she would say that one antes to say, “I’m the freaking reason you MET your husband! Say his name not ‘my husband.’”
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 11:26 AM
From my less than well intentioned grandmother…
“Maybe you should lower your standards”
And the one time I made the mistake of telling her about a prospect (it was a moment of weakness, I just wanted her to leave me alone)…
“Well, why hasn’t he been snatched up already?”
Clearly, anyone who would show the slightest interest in me, needs to be defective in some way. Thank you grandma for your vote of confidence. This gentleman obviously deserves someone better than me. Could you do me a favor and tell him that yourself, because he thinks I’m making you up.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 11:32 AM
I am now 42 and having been hearing the age old “when am I gonna have another grandchild”, “you need to put yourself out there and find someone”, have you tried E-Harmony (why yes I have but for some reason they have no one on this planet that they can match me with and that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside, how about you!!!!),
but my favorite and really the one that hurts that most started when I was around 35 I began hearing or being asked if I was even interested in guys or if I was a lesbian
(SERIOUSLY?!?!?!?! if you are over 30, female and still single that automatically puts you in the you have to be a lesbian field).
I have 2 full time jobs (wanting to be debt free by the end of next year, want to travel more and I have a love/hate relationship with my singleness but geez people love me for who I am not who is on my arm!!
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 11:49 AM
This post is tragically close to home and my score is so embarrassingly high.
At least once a month, my mother talks about her “friend” who got her eggs frozen. I think she’s given up on me getting married and would now approve of any means of getting grandchildren.
Where are all the single Christian men?!
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 12:51 PM
If people would just cut to the chase when they offer their amazingly helpful comments…er…veiled insults… it would be easier to swallow. Just be honest…”you’re not married because you/your life decisions/your spiritually sucks.”
Of course they would never dream of admitting that’s what they are really saying…
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 3:26 PM
That might go in the minority column of what a lot of people are thinking. Others are simply wondering if the still-singles are gay.
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 1:50 PM
I call people out on it now. I usually say, “so what you’re really saying is…”
They’ve made me uncomfortable for the last decade… seems only fair I get to watch them squirm a little as they desperately try to backpedal on their stupid comment.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 3:20 PM
I’ve had a friend with a husband and 3 kids look at me knowingly and say, “Girl, you have no IDEA how lucky you are!”
From the friend who goes on and on about how awesome her family is.
I always want to ask her, “Would you trade them away to be single? No? Then SHUT YOUR MOUTH!”
Oh, and an aunt who told me I could sit with the “big people” at Christmas dinner. Because apparently being unmarried and without kids is obviously deserving of eating at the kiddie table and it was such a concession on their part to make room for me to sit with the other adults. *sigh*
And the whole deal of asking everyone else about conflicts with dates for family gatherings and not bothering to ask me because of course I have no life and am available night and day for anything. *sigh again*
Now I’m getting annoyed just thinking about it
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 5:21 PM
True. Whenever I see friends whining about their husbands or children – I tell them I’d gladly take their problems off their hands. It’s like “first world problems” – someone out there would view your “curses” as blessings – so stop whining!
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 8:53 PM
I sort of understand? I have a couple friends who tend to complain about how infrequently they get to see their husband/boyfriend.
I am sympathetic, I know that must suck…but at least they have that.
And it’s very hard not to throw that comment in their face.
It’s like they’ve already forgotten what it was like to be in the state of singleness I currently find myself.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 3:25 PM
At 52, divorced and having been single for 23 years, I’ve heard my share of hurtful comments.
While avoiding the pursuit of a man who was completely inappropriate – “.., maybe you should lower your expectations.”
When breaking up with a man who was cheating on me – a family member: “Well, we couldn’t figure out why he was going out with you anyway, it’s not like you’re a model or anything.” And then there is the “you did have a chance” comment.
And finally “you’re not getting any younger…better get on eHarmony.” I went so long not dating at one point that I had people sure I was secretly gay and seemed shocked when I did date a man…
Bottom line is that I feel mostly that NOT dating means not wasting the time that my serial dating friends so waste with wrong people.
And I wish this wasn’t true …and I say this without bitterness now (took some time to get over what I think is true though) …the hardest place to be single is often in the church o_o
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 3:31 PM
I am a 49 year old woman who has never been married. I scored a whopping 238. Yay! me!?! Seriously, my own mother asked me if I was a lesbian – ugh!!!
I have been told everything from all sorts of people, most were trying to be kind, a few were not.
I get ignored for the most part, like a piece of furniture or a fixture that has no emotion. I see people congregating and they are completely oblivious to the hurting person sitting just a few feet away.
DECEMBER 15, 2013 AT 9:42 PM
The worst comment I ever got was from a girl who was 2 years younger than me and had been with her boyfriend, now husband, for about 3 months at the time…her comment went something like this….
”If I remember correctly from Christmases when I was single….”.
I have no idea what she said after that cause I tuned her out.
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 9:12 AM
As a 34 yr old never married single lady I can relate to MANY of these. New one this year for me, Close married friends secret Christmas Party. Overheard discussion of it at church yesterday. Oh well…
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 9:18 AM
I was 26, working at a church, and the staff and pastors decided I should marry this guy who sang in the choir with me. We were becoming friends, which to them was reason enough to start planning our lives together.
I got magazine ads of engagement rings left on my desk and the church secretary put “our wedding” on the church calendar.
I finally had to send a not-so-nice email to the entire staff asking them to please back off. Now, 33, still single. Oh and not attending that church anymore.
DECEMBER 16, 2013 AT 3:04 PM
Lol, when I was single, I had several of the men from the senior citizen group my mom worked with say, “If I was 60 years younger, I’d be all over your tail.” Um, disturbing….
DECEMBER 17, 2013 AT 9:35 AM
Still single at 53, but haven’t totally given up.. I’m only now at the point where I believe I have the maturity for a relationship/marriage. Have seen a lot of nonsense; have been passed over for teaching and ministry positions because I’m single (have been told such by the person in charge of making that decision).
Usually don’t date within my church, but have learned that the best way to do that is to be discreet.
Story from a former church I attended: A young couple stood up in Sunday School one morning and announced their engagement, shocking the class because NO ONE KNEW THEY WERE DATING!!!
They had successfully concealed their relationship by not sitting together at church or any other gatherings..
DECEMBER 18, 2013 AT 11:00 PM
Yeah, Geoff. That whole “you can’t serve unless you’re married” thing really bugs me. I’m sorry you got that line.
I really like the church I’m going to now. For some reason, my singleness never even comes up. I actually feel like I’m an equal part of the congregation/church family.
Keep looking! Not all churches are the same.
Michelle Soucy says
DECEMBER 18, 2013 AT 9:29 AM
An elderly man in the nursing home where I was working at the time, asked if I was married.
When I told him I was 30 and never been married, he appeared puzzled and said to me, in a very gentle and comforting voice;
“Well, you’re a very beautiful young lady. It must be your personality.”
I can’t imagine what he’d say now if he knew, 2 years later, that I’m STILL single!
DECEMBER 18, 2013 AT 10:56 PM
Today, my uncle asked me how many years it’s been since I had a boyfriend.
And I lie about how many cats I have (I only have 2!) because the second you say “cats” everyone assumes you’re the spinster, crazy cat lady.
One time I was at a bar (shhhh!) and a creepy guy told me I smelled clean. My married friend told me I should let him hit on me because I need to “take what I can get.”
And where’s the line about everyone telling singles they’re “too picky”. Love that one. I’d much rather be alone than in a bad relationship.
Amber S says
DECEMBER 19, 2013 AT 8:13 AM
One Christmas, a coworker gave everyone homemade Christmas decorations with their last names on them to hang on their front doors. I got a candle because I didn’t “have a permanent last name yet.” Yep, I’ve just been using this temporary one for the past 29 years.
Cat B says
DECEMBER 20, 2013 AT 7:03 PM
Oh I am definitely down for #24. Being a 33 year-old single virgin that has never had time for dating (since I am clearly married to my job and have been since the age of 15), I get that crap every year.
I still run into an older neighbor of mine from when I first moved East and he never says, “Hey! Long time no see!”
It’s always, “I thought you would be married by now!”
Gee, thanks. Like what’s supposed to be on my Christmas list? A sperm donor or a man that was raised as old-fashioned as I was?
DECEMBER 24, 2013 AT 12:51 AM
I just got married last year at age 34. My craziest comment as a single came from a friend’s grandpa, “You are the minister’s daughter right? The one that never got married?” I couldn’t figure out which was worse, the fact that, apparently, not being married was my defining quality, or the fact that he said it in the past tense as if I was past all hope. Ha ha! People just don’t think sometimes…
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