Thursday, May 17, 2007

"I guess that's just not your thing"

I was talking with a friend the other day on the ever present subject of "Singleness". Did anyone else just hear the song from Star Wars where Darth Vadar makes his entrance (daa dum da dum dum da dum da dum da dummmm)? My friend told me about attending a baby shower and seeing a woman whom she has known from childhood. Their conversation went a little like this:

"So is there a special man in your life?"

"No, not really, it's just me"

"Oh, I guess that's just not your thing, huh?" (I assume that the sympathetic head tilt with bobbing movement was part of this show.)

My friend looked at her dumbfounded not quite knowing how to respond to a question/statement like that. But in relating the story to me she had some good responses with my favorite being:

"Nope, I'm just a sad single woman. In fact, let me pull my hair back in a bun, parting it down the middle of course, and live all by my lonesome with tons of cats." (ok I might have added just a little bit but the bun comment was all her's)

Why is it that at a certain age being single is a no win situation. If you're single and wanting to be married the rebuke is "CONTENTMENT". And yet, is you're single and content you are charged with the battle cry of "GET OUT THERE, MAKE YOURSELF AVAILABLE."

So which is it?

Someone explain to me how this works. I'm supposed to not be looking (because of course "it" comes to you when you're not looking) and yet I'm also supposed to be available, approachable, and strategically placed (like a well placed commercial for ice cream in the middle of a Hallmark made for TV movie).

Personally, I'm pretty well adjusted to my singleness and yet still holding on pretty tightly to the hope that I will be married one day. So if I'm ok with it, why does everyone else feel the need to weigh in with pressure from both sides?

That said, I burst out laughing in shock and awe when my friend told me that woman's response. In fact I think I will borrow that nugget from her as my new answer to the every present question.

"So Katie, are you dating anyone?"

"Nope, it's just not my thing."

I have a feeling that will stop that conversation in its tracks.


Anonymous jes said...

What a socially awkward comment. I don't know how your friend kept her mouth shut. I don't know that I could have!

5/17/2007 1:21 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

And that Jes is why I think I should have a wire on me at all times that you can listen in on as well as an earbud so that I can relay your combacks. That would make me so much more witty and funny.

5/17/2007 1:23 PM  
Blogger Jimmy said...

Piper preached a great sermon on being single last month should you really want to shut down someone's ignorance:

5/17/2007 8:32 PM  
Blogger Jimmy said...

Ummm, let me try it this way:

Single in Christ

5/17/2007 8:33 PM  
Anonymous Jayleigh said...

"So if I'm ok with it, why does everyone else feel the need to weigh in with pressure from both sides?"

Everyone on Earth will keep on telling you what they thinkg and asking questions simply because it is none of their business.

Did my own uncle need to ask me if I didn't WANT kids, or just my "girl parts" don't work right?

Um. No.

But he did anyway. Thanks so much.

It's like a herd of lemmings going over a cliff: people start down that road and they cannot help but follow through with the questions. They might even see the cliff is coming up, but they cannot help themselves.

A coworker's son and his wife couldn't conceive. Another of my coworkers said to the first, "Is the problem with your Son, or his Wife?" The first gal said, "Does it MATTER?" And there the conversation ended.

5/17/2007 11:21 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

I say be "available, approachable, and strategically placed (like a well placed commercial for ice cream in the middle of a Hallmark made for TV movie)."

Who can turn down Icecream?

Especially Shiney Blonde Haired Icecream.

HA! That was a great line Katie.

5/18/2007 9:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ya know I love katie for katie..... you could say if it were to be posed at you (this question).

I'm so wonderful and great I don't want to share it with no man! Then shake your hips and head as you snap your fingers

ya, i'm a freak too! ~C

5/18/2007 11:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, Jimmy--thanks for posting that link to Piper. I've long admired him, but that message hit it out of the ballpark.
And imagine--a sermon preached about singles/singleness--to the whole stinkin' church! Not just to a group of singles at a retreat!
How many times are sermons about marriage preached, or a speaker uses marriage as their sermon illustration (try every Sunday), while half the adult US population are single adults!

I've grown up in church, and have worked in the church for all of my adult life, and as such I've longed for that marriage & family paradigm that's simply accepted church culture. I've endured all the sermons and comments and slights by pastors and church staff--unintentional they may be--yet still hurtful and stigmatizing. A preacher's incessant reference to marriage perputates that "normal church culture" which equals marriage and family after you meet that someone wonderful in the church college group....

And what do you do if it hasn't happened for you, even after many years, and there doesn't appear to be possibilities on your horizon? What do to "they" do with you?

God's helping me to be a more grace-filled listener, and I know I've got a bit of ways to go :-), but I think it's pure laziness on the part of speakers/pastors to neglect a huge segment of their church, and an even bigger segment of the world at large, with the default marriage illustrations and sermons (among other things). Every Sunday, it's pounded in your head and heart in one way or another that you're not included, you're not part of this club, you don't really fit...

So how refreshing is it to hear John Piper remind the WHOLE church: Hey people--the Kingdom message is revolutionary! It's a radical reordering of your relationships... "That relationships in Christ are more permanent, and more precious, than relationships in families (and, of course, it is wonderful when relationships in families are also relationships in Christ; but we know that is often not the case);

That marriage is temporary {whoa! you don't hear that every Sunday!}, and finally gives way to the relationship to which it was pointing all along: Christ and the church—the way a picture is no longer needed when you see face to face;

That faithfulness to Christ defines the value of life; all other relationships get their final significance from this. No family relationship is ultimate; relationship to Christ is.

I still long for the day when my status on my tax return is changed from single to married, but I was reminded today that my status with God hasn't changed, and will never change regardless if I should marry or stay single. My life, single or married, will be lived for His glory!

Anyway, thanks.
And, I enjoy your blog. :-)

5/20/2007 9:12 PM  
Blogger Eddo said...

Yikes. that is horrible. It is annoying when people ask you if you are dating someone if you are a guy, but for a girl I can only imagine that it is much worse. It is terrible that our culture forces people to be in a relationship and then half of those marriages end in divorce! Chill out people, we'll get married when we are good and ready! Apparently it isn't all that it is cracked up to be anyway.

5/21/2007 2:32 PM  
Blogger JLR said...

haha! I got asked something very similar to that by my boss's husband recently. I wasn't quite sure what to say. I wanted to trot out a variation of one of the joking responses to ”Why Aren't You Married Yet?” (my favorites being "just lucky, I guess" and "why aren't you thin?").

5/21/2007 2:45 PM  
Blogger green said...

I've been in the single category for a little over three years now and it is no fun. It's nice to have someone to do things with. And sure you can "do things" with your buddies or your girlfriends, but it's just not the same.

5/21/2007 9:35 PM  
Blogger spaghettipie said...

To be honest, my heart breaks when I read your blog and then read the comments.

Your blog breaks my heart because I hate that people who are married say such insensitive things to people who are single - whether intentional or not. Many times we say stupid things because we don't know what to say or how to approach the subject, but I know it doesn't erase the pain that it causes.

Reading the comments breaks my heart, though, because I see how divisive this issue is in our community. Like it's an "us" versus "them" mentality. I understand there is hurt and frustration, but we're still on the same team. I would hope we would strive for mutual understanding, helping each other learn, teaching each other to be more sensitive...but I just get this sense of anger and even resignation. As a married person, I want to know how to be more sensitive to my single friends, but I won't understand unless we engage in dialouge about it.

And I hate to single you out, but Eddo, I hear you on the statistics. Something is obviously wrong with the way we think about and approach marriage. But at the same time, it is all it's cracked up to be - it's an amazing and wonderful experience. I hate for you to have a poor view of marriage because of the inability of humans to live it out as God intended. I'm not saying marriage is somehow a higher state of being than singleness, or the "next level" of's a different facet of life, but one that is awesome in it's own way.

Thanks for letting me ramble. K, you know this is a topic close to my heart.

5/21/2007 10:57 PM  
Blogger Bobby said...

Our pastor just preached on singleness, and it was really refreshing to hear a Biblical approach. Singles and marrieds each have unique opportunities to share the gospel and present Christ in their life. And life in Christ is a gift, whether single or married.

5/22/2007 11:39 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

seems like singleness is a big topic among christian circles. my chirch even did a two-week series on singleness, but what was different about it was that it was given by a single person! chek out the village church podcast on itunes. matt chandler is the lead pastor, but the "single-minded" series was done by one of the other pastors, paul matthies.

i happen to be married by the grace and wonderful plan of God. i hated it when people would tell me "stop looking and you'll find him" or "once you're okay with being single, then God will bring someone into your life." but people also find them when they are looking. and those comments just get you to try and trick yourself into being content.

i think part of the reason it is such a topic is that we are all incomplete. we all have a part of us missing. but it's not missing another human. it's missing God. it doesn't matter if you have a spouse, if you don't have God, you will never feel whole. I think we tend to look for another person to fill that void. heck, i still do that with my husband. but the thing is God said it is good for man to be single as well as it is not good for man to be alone. both are perfect in God's eyes!!

i've been finding what my single friends need from me is to be their friend and show them our Savior and love on them, not pity them because they aren't married. it's not to tell them "someday" because what if it's not someday? what if God has planned for them to be unmarried? who am i to argue with my Maker?

we have a tendency to "feel sorry" for our single friends, but thankfully God has been showing me that there's nothing to be sorry about. He has all things in the palm of his hand, working everything together for his glory. paul wrote a lot of our bible and no one eer says "it's a shame he was single." so why do we have that attitude towards our brothers and sisters? i know i'm starting to ramble, but those are just some thoughts. take 'em or leave 'em, it's up to you.

5/23/2007 8:44 PM  

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