In a recent Huffington Post article, television writer Tracy McMillan detailed the reasons why single women haven’t yet landed a husband.
“Why You’re Not Married” explained that all those single women fall into one (or all) of the following categories:
1) You’re a Bitch
2) You’re Shallow
3) You’re a “Slut”
4) You’re a Liar
5) You’re Selfish
6) You’re Not Good Enough
McMillan fancies herself a bit of an expert, in that she has been married three times and brags that she was “born knowing how to get married.” It is worth pointing out that McMillan has also been divorced three times. So while certainly an expert in the field of getting hitched, she is not very good at maintaining such a state. Which is sort of the point. Having never been married (or even engaged!), I humbly suggest I might have some insight into the situation; after all, I haven’t married the wrong guy! Not even once!
McMillan’s article stems from a larger problem; the assumption in the media and popular culture that single women are doing something wrong. I would argue that we are actually doing everything right.
Here are the six real reasons why women – perhaps yourself, perhaps the amazing friend who is perpetually single – are not yet married:
1) You’re Patient
Many women are wary about rushing down the aisle to the quickening rhythm of their biological clocks, and if they have to wait years for the right guy to come along, they will. Marriage should always be more about the person you find than the age at which you find them. Setting strict deadlines (age 25, 30, 35) to wed essentially sets people up for disappointment. The Bachelor is a good example of why, nine times out of 10, whirlwind courtships and marriage simply do not work.
2) You’re Confident
We’ve all seen it; women with low self-esteem tend to latch onto inappropriate men (oh hi, Britney Spears!) in lieu of being alone. When a woman is independent, self-sufficient and doesn’t require male validation in order to function day-to-day, it can mean being single by choice – for now.
3) You’re Beautiful
In a fascinating article on Slate.com entitled “The Eligible-Bachelor Paradox” by Mark Gimein, he suggests that beautiful women – confident that they have game – hold out for something great for a longer period of time because they know they can. It is the less attractive females – those with fewer chips with which to bet – who “bid decisively,” aggressively latching onto whoever will take them. (No offense, married ladies! I’m sure most of you wed for true love instead of out of quiet desperation.)
4) You’re Successful
Some men are intimidated by successful women – ask any female lawyer, doctor or entrepreneur. (When Harvard-educated lawyer Miranda Hobbes on Sex and The City found her career was killing her romantic life, she claimed to be a flight attendant.) The right guy will be in awe of these accomplishments.
5) You Won’t Accept Less Than You Deserve
It takes a significant amount of strength to end an otherwise good relationship that potentially could lead to marriage because one partner is not treating the other with the attentiveness, tenderness and/or respect that they deserve. Remember: you are better off single than in a lousy relationship.
6) You Know What You Want
McMillan suggests that single women are too picky – find a man of character and lock him down! Character is key, but there are so many other factors necessary in a successful partnership. Connection. Friendship. Compatibility. Chemistry. McMillan dismisses the need for sexual attraction as shallow, but unless you’re marrying J. Howard Marshall, it’s clearly essential. As writer Sloane Crosley puts it: “Husbands are like tattoos–you should wait until you come across something you want on your body for the rest of your life”¦”
The world should stand back to admire single women instead of perpetually trying to fix us or fix us up. We’re smart enough to know that Prince Charming is the stuff of make believe, but we’re definitely going to hold out for a hero.
Sexy Typewriter blogs about her dating failures – online and otherwise – at Sexytypewriter.