C.B.M.W. Tells Christian Singles Not To Talk To Each Other – aka, How Christian (specifically gender complementarian / biblical womanhood and manhood) Teaching on Dating and the Genders Contributes to Protracted, Unwanted Singleness Among Christians
Here’s a recap for newbies to my blog:
While Christians complain about delayed marriage, lack of marriage, and raising rates of divorce, their own moronic teachings about love, dating, sex, gender roles, and romance actually contributes TO delayed marriage, lack of marriage, and raising divorce rates.
This is especially so for conservative Christians who adhere to something called “biblical gender complementarianism,” also known as “traditional gender roles” or “biblical womanhood / manhood.”
In American culture, the majority of us Americans do not get married via arranged marriages (where in our parents select our mates for us).
We are expected to converse with members of the opposite gender we find interesting and attractive and date them to see if there is any chemistry that can lead to marriage (if marriage is our goal).
Many Christians, though, are so paranoid of fornication (pre marital sex), that often, in their dating advice given in books, sermons, TV shows and blogs, they will instruct the genders to basically stay away from one another.
That’s right. They will tell singles, even adult males over the age of 30, to refrain from taking a grown woman out for a cup of coffee, don’t phone her too often to chat, because coffee dates or phone chats always lead to sex, because (supposedly),
- 1. all men are hormonal, lusty sex driven beasts incapable of love, romance, and sexual self control
2. all single women are jezebel harlots who will screw a man in a heartbeat
I know it’s easy to read those two points and think you are reading secular views of the genders, but no, that’s what evangelical, fundamentalist, Baptist, and Neo Reformed, and above all, gender complementarians, teach.
This brings me to this post by the CBMW (Council For Biblical Manhood and Womanhood) – they are gender comps. They believe that a man talking to a woman can and will lead to sex, or confused expectations in women (though there may be a grain of truth to this point), so single men should not talk to single women.
Given that view, I have no idea how these geniuses (I use that word sarcastically) expect a man and a woman to then date and then marry. This is a recipe for keeping singles single.
There is a certain amount of truth with the fact that Non Christian and Christian males are not asking women out on dates, which yes, leads to frustration on the part of Christian (and Non Christain women, click here to read), but I don’t get this dude’s equating talking to avoiding dating.
This Gunter guy may be warning ladies not to allow men to string them along, which is fine, but the first step to marriage is dating, and first step to dating is talking to and with someone, so I don’t think it’s entirely wise for this guy to depict all talking as being problematic.
(Link): We’re Just “Talking”
Excerpts: By JD Gunter
One of the unique opportunities I have attending seminary, after ten years of marriage, is discipling young men who are single or dating. One of the disadvantages, however, is not being current on the lingo.
This struck me in a recent conversation with a friend who told me he had gone out several times with a young lady and was uncertain about the status of the relationship. Curious, I asked him if he was planning on continuing to date this girl.
“You misunderstand,” he said, “we aren’t dating – we’re just talking.”“Talking?” I replied, a little confused, “you mean like we’re talking right now.”
“No,” he explained, “we’re at the stage of the relationship just before dating. It’s called talking.”
Dumbfounded and feeling a little old and disconnected, I decided to investigate this new pre-dating phenomenon.
“Talking,” I discovered, is a widely accepted stage in current guy/girl relationships wherein a young man and a young woman get to know each other without better defining the relationship.
This isn’t even a real stage of the relationship; it’s a pre-stage. They’re not just friends; they’re not really dating or pursuing marriage; they’re “talking.”
After these conversations, I was left with the question: Do we really need another stage in relationships that are directed toward marriage?
Our culture suffers from a large number of males wallowing around in quasi-manhood for many years. Boys used to grow up, get a job, and move out of the house.
But we have inserted this chain of life stages from adolescence, to the college years, to early career, and so on – all of which permit young men to put off growing up, taking responsibility, and generally acting like a man.
This new phase of pre-dating called “talking” is like adolescence for relationships: an unnecessary stage in the relationship allowing young men to avoid taking responsibility and acting like men. It prevents the man from having to be clear about his intentions to pursue or end the relationship.
If he wants to stop “talking,” he simply walks away, leaving behind a confused, and potentially wounded, young lady.
John Piper defines biblical masculinity as, “a sense of benevolent responsibility to lead, provide for and protect women in ways appropriate to a man’s differing relationships.”
It is the responsibility of the man to take a leadership role in relationships, to be forthright, honest, and clear about his intentions.
This “talking” phase normalizes relationship without responsibility; closeness without clarity; cultural manhood, not biblical manhood.
The young ladies I’ve spoken to share this frustration.
They are left in a state of relational limbo, where they are unsure of the young man’s intentions and the purpose of the relationship. They are stuck going on non-dates with guys who are scared to date.
In their defense, guys tell me they are afraid to ask a lady out because she might immediately assume he wants to marry her.
I understand the concern, but that does not change the need for character – it makes it all the more necessary.
Most women, even Christian ones, are not going to assume you, a man, speaking to her necessarily means you want to marry her. WTF?
- Intentionality Is a Way to Serve Sisters in Christ
First, you should ask girls out that you see as potential wives.
Second, when you don’t see her as a potential wife any longer, explain yourself and then stop asking her out.
Third, throughout the relationship be clear, upfront, and honest about your intentions.
If you just want to get to know her better, tell her so. If you see this relationship turning into something more serious, tell her that too.
If you think she’s a great girl but don’t want to pursue the relationship further, tell her!
That’s the kind of “talking” that should characterize the relationship.
The editorial ends with this cringe inducing remark (it’s a play on that old “I Kissed Dating Goodbye” book, which led to many, many Christian singles staying single forever):
- It’s time to kiss “talking” goodbye. Our brothers and sisters in Christ deserve better than this.
Though I do agree with one aspect of this bit of advice – not that I think women should “follow” men, but if the guy who is chatting you up for weeks or months on end is not stepping up, if he is not taking the relationship to the next level, and you want it to go to the next level, he is wasting your time, so dump his ass, and find a man who will pursue you and marry you:
- If you are a young lady stuck with a guy who isn’t interested in pursuing you but expects your prolonged time and attention as he “talks” to you, ask yourself if this is the type of indecisive boy-man you want to follow for the rest of your life.
One very troubling view in the editorial was this one:
- If things don’t work out, and if you’ve acted like a true man, you’ve gotten to know a sister in Christ better and helped prepare her to meet her future husband. If things do work out, congratulations, you’re married. Those are the only two options for a man of God.
This contradicts the Bible’s teaching that all believers are to fellowship with each other, to be friends with each other.
To hold this view that the ONLY association men can have with females is as potential husbands and/or lovers, is to once more unnecessarily isolate single women and to cast them as nothing but sexual or as potential temptresses.
Men and women can be platonic friends with each other.
It is a secular, not Christian, not biblical, worldview, that says men and women cannot be platonic friends, that male/female relationships must or will ALWAYS lead to sex.
(Link): How the Sexual Revolution Ruined Friendship – Also: If Christians Truly Believed in Celibacy and Virginity, they would stop adhering to certain sexual and gender stereotypes that work against both
Related posts this blog:
(Link): Jesus Christ was not afraid to meet alone with known Prostitutes / Steven Furtick and Elevation Church Perpetuating Anti Singles Bias – ie, Single Women are Supposedly Sexual Temptresses, All Males Can’t Control Their Sex Drives – (but this view conflicts with evangelical propaganda that married sex is great and frequent)