Kelly In Catty

This blog is Kell's attempt to keep in touch with friends far away who complain that I don't e-mail nearly enough.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

The Blissful Oldlyweds

NOTE: Here I go again - talking about faith issues. My beef isn't with faith, hope, charity, love, forgiveness or righteousness.... It's about Christians (I can hear HP chanting, Preach it, sistah!)

More specifically, it's about Christians who want to make other Christians in their own image... Ok, I'll shut up about it and just tell the story.

At a recent church social, I found my near 30 friend "Tina" near tears. "What's the matter?"

"Oh," she began, "Another married guy came up to me and said, 'If I were only single I'd ask you out!' - It just hit me the wrong way - I'm wondering why jerks like him get husbands and I don't.... Bob and Lisa want to pray with me."

The hair on the back of my unwed neck stood on end. Single women should never, as a rule, let married people pray for them in the event they're unhappy with their singleness. It just gives the blissful oldlyweds something to misinterpret...

"I'm coming too," I said as I ran to catch up.

Once inside the prayer area (a storage closet), Tina repeated her story. I looked at Bob, his eyes full of pity and sympathy (note I did not say empathy. I'm pretty sure Bob has been married since he was 12. He's normally an empathetic man - but he was clearly out of his league.)

"Dear Lord," he began - and then prayed that Tina would know the man of her dreams was out there... that she would be patient and understanding...

Screw that, is what I say.

I prayed, "Lord, help Tina remeber that she's not a second rate citizen, is a whole person, and that there's nothing wrong with her. Help her understand that she's not too picky - but just picky enough. Amen."


The next day, I wrote Bob an e-mail telling him that being single at my church is a difficult, if not ridiculous thing to be... That I want a buck for every blissful oldlywed who approaches me and says one of the following things:

"Kell, you're so smart and talented. Why aren't you married?"

"Kell, you're just too picky."

"Kell, when you want me to stop praying for a husband for you - you just come up and tell me so..."

"Kell, do you ever think you could just settle down and love one man?"

"Kell, meet Gary. He's single too!"

"Kell, I know you live in America, but I have a friend who lives in Russia who's visiting - and since I know you like travel, why don't you come to dinner and meet him?"

"Kell - are you gay? If you are, it's okay..."

"Kell, you look good... My wife also looked good 40 pounds ago..."

"Kell, I'm sorry I didn't say hello to you the other day. My wife gets angry at me when I talk to you..."

"Maybe God will bless you with children some day..."

Bob simply laughed at me - which is distressing, as where the above comments are kind of funny en masse - they didn't feel all that great at the time they were delivered.

Why isn't Bob reminded that Jesus (regardless of what the DaVinci Code says) was single? Paul was single? Blissful unweddeds throughout the centuries - with the exact same amount of baggage as the dis-blissful divorcees, (un)happy oldlyweds, and transient migrant workers - have fallen in and out of love, made a difference in their worlds, and even survived people who said idiotic things like, "Hey. Tina's still single. She must have baggage. What's wrong with her?"

I once pondered making t-shirts with slogans that say things like "No, I'm not interested in your husband," or "Less Baggage than the average Bear..." or something like that.

What's wrong with the blissful oldlyweds? It seems to me that they, of all people, should understand that everyone is not exactly like them...

So hang in there, Tina! We love you just the way you are.

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  • At 5:44 PM, Blogger Sarabeth said…

    Well, yes, but I wouldn't use the word "preach".

    I had a conversation with another Kelly about her being single. She told me that she was very glad that neither my husband or I ever say to her, "Oh, being single was much better than being married. There's only one person to worry about."

    So, she's getting the opposite than you areffrom your helpful church friends.

  • At 3:00 AM, Blogger Kell said…

    Just know it's not all of them - it only takes a handful of blissfuls to ruin the day, however...

  • At 1:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Kel, it was fun getting caught up with your blog after two weeks in Alaska (where I'm moving as soon as I can find a job there...)--until I got to this one. I'm sorry that you've encountered what you have at nc4. FYI-you switched names in the middle of you posting (I don't know if you did that on purpose or not).


  • At 9:33 AM, Blogger Tiecen said…

    Every once in a while my mom gets anxious for me to get married and start producing grandchildren and she starts trying to set me up on dates with nice Mormon boys. (I'm Mormon) The problem with this is that I already have a boyfriend. She pays no attention to him and just powers through. People can act crazy when they think they know what's best for you. The bright side is all their irritation and nosiness is usually because they love you and have your best interest at heart.

  • At 7:01 AM, Anonymous DF said…

    Kell, You wrote a beautiful and (unfortunately) funny account of your dueling out-loud prayer session. You have a gift of encouragement and a healthy desire for justice. Brava, bella.

    As to the terrible things people say to you... pray for those folks. They may need it more than you think. My marriage ended partly because my wife focused all her energy outwards onto others' problems and denied that we had any ourselves. Marrieds who seem blissful may be anything but.

    Prayer by oneself is a great thing. You get the concern off your chest without hurting others, and at the same time you're leaving the fixing to God.

    Hang in there.



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