Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Too Smart for Marriage.

When I was little and made little girl assumptions about things, my mom would always say, "it's a good thing you're smarter than everyone else, isn't it?" It was a lesson in sarcasm and humility all in one. (Good one, Mom.) Today I think it's about the same...Maybe it's just human nature to believe we're doing what's right, and it must be everyone else who's a little bit misguided. In any case, many people tell me the reason I'm still single is not (as Anonymous so delicately pointed out) because I'm not "do-able, but because I simply haven't met the right man yet. Which always sounds like a cop-out, but out of the mouth of multiple witnesses? I suppose that could be true. Additional explanations offered by others? I move too often, travel too much, I'm too independent and too smart. Yes. I've been told I'm too smart for marriage. More than once. (I got that one a lot at BYU. Which was particularly cruel, since I went to BYU in order to get even smarter. O, the Burn..) Even by the father of someone I was dating. Seriously.

I had always believed that the general consensus on delaying marriage was because of the increase in education (it's much the reason for delay in child-bearing, after all). Then, Kory sends me this article this morning, telling me it reminds her of Blogg. The article suggests that it is an across the board delay- that whether people are educated, well-traveled or not, they are not hitching their wagons before 30 the way they were even just 5 years ago! It's not because we're too SMART for marriage- we're just not committing via matrimony anymore! It has less to do with education, intelligence, careers, etc. as it does to do with the lack of morality, cohabitation, and "Sex & The City" selfish-lifestyle living choices.

This isn't justifying anyone or anything...Nor am I saying that I am too good for marriage or that I don't want an eternal relationship one day. But I will say this. I was too smart to marry any of those schlumpy guys I had dated. I have traveled a lot. And I'm grateful and thankful for those experiences and places I have lived. I love that I had such an amazing opportunity as to start my own business, that I was blessed with the abundant energy to work as hard as I have and that I have had the freedom to develop my intelligence and relationships and friendships.

Now, maybe I can be ready for something more. And now I'll find someone who's smart enough to find and marry me.


Dainon said...

Well said.

k8 said...

oddly enough though, the final episode of Sex and the City leaves all of our girl in stable, committed relationships. I think folks are delaying marriage, but they are still doing it.

chloe elizabeth said...

But committed relationships aren't marriage. Not that I'm saying that they are bad, but they aren't marriage. I know so many people who just aren't marrying. Even people in the church. I know at least four couples that have been together 4+ years and they aren't even engaged. Outside of the LDS world, this wouldn't strike me as odd in the slightest, but in the church, where we believe in the sanctity of marriage and morality, I think it's a little off.

Great post, my friend! And, while I do want to get married, I am definitely glad I called off my first opportunity.

k8 said...

actually two of them WERE married. and i guess my point was that I think humans in general want to pair up. i just get kind of flared up when we act like our religious community is the only one that values marriage. the overwhelming majority of folks i know want to get married.

k8 said...

ok, sorry to be obsessive about this but the paragraph in the article you linked that discusses the reasons folks are delaying marriage was interesting to me

"The trend toward delaying marriage has emerged over several decades as economic and social forces have made it more difficult for those in their 20s to reach independence. Sociologists and demographers say other factors are also at work, including increasing numbers of cohabiting couples, more highly educated women who have fewer highly educated men of comparable age to partner with, and more choices open to women than in decades past."

it actually says that the economy, lack of educated men and more choices for women are also contributing to the slow down of marriage for twenty somethings. The article doesn't give any data about when people are marrying but it doesn't say they aren't.

f*bomb. said...

That's just it...People are still committing- just not marrying. Lack of educated men being a deterrent...Clearly those men have not seen me jogging by in my "I date college boys" shirt. Like I said, funny when I was 25. Funnier when I'm 30.

But I find it odd that independance is MORE difficult now than it was only 10 years ago...How is that so? And how sad that it says women have fewer choices in men who are as educated as they are, but more choices in the ways of education and opportunity for themselves! I heard that President Hinkley said much the same thing in the last Priesthood session of General Conference.

β♂ said...

Well, let's see. What are the reasons a young lady of zion could remain single into her late twenties/early thirties?

1) it just hasn't happened yet.
2) hasn't met any decent guys/all mormon boys are pu**ies.
3) too independent.
4) selfish lifestyle (doesn't want to give up travel, etc.)
5) too smart. (plausible? well, sure. but i've yet to meet anyone that got "too smart" by attending the BYU.)

perhaps can I add two more?
6) as third-cousin so eloquently surmised over tacos last evening, some girls are "just bitches".
7) some girls are just straight-up kooks. if not bat-sh!t crazy.

(Does the same list apply for guys too? Probably, though "bitch" takes on a different connotation.)

I'm not gonna categorize anyone. And who knows, maybe everyone is a little from column A, and a little from column B...

k8 said...

um, as tanner pointed out over on bree's blog (and i read the same thing on MSN yesterday) 90% of people marry at some point in their lives.

so there's that.

even some batsh!t crazy ones!

Dubious Brown said...

I always thought marriage was for chumps, but as you can read on my blog, I'm joining the ranks and I've never been happier :-)

f*bomb. said...

I'm not knocking the institution itself...But there's no way in hell I'm eager unless it's better than what I've got going right now. And I think every one of you would agree with me.

So, Tom; what exactly is "too independent"? Because that's what people say about me right after "just hasn't met someone" and "too smart." But if I'm not dependent upon a parent, I have a solid job and necessity would clearly show that I must be independent...How is it that someone who's single is "too independent"? By virtue of being single, aren't I automatically independent? Besides; I would hope that by 30, I'd know how to get my own lunch by now.

What really gets me are how those of us who have had time to develop our careers and independence BECAUSE we aren't married, are somehow less desirable than those who settled quickly, had children, and are divorced- but those women are appreciated because (as a man-friend gratefully sighed,) they "just really want to be moms." They already ARE moms! More power to them, but at this point, it's not much of a choice.

If I simply haven't had the opportunity to have children yet, should men assume that I don't want that just as much to be an asset in the home as I want to be in the workforce? I just wish that weren't such the assumption...Because I will be one kickass mom.

Salt H2O said...

Most of my good friends got married later in life and we frequently discuss how much easier marriage would be if we were stupid, or young- or stupid and young.

f*bomb. said...

What's odd to me after this article you sent is that prior statistics said that marriages are something like 80% more likely to last if the couple is over 27 years old rather than if they are in their early-to-mid twenties.

I'd rather adapt as a whole person to accomodate the one I love than mature feeling self-concious around somebody I already married.

Anonymous said...

Whoah, hold up. I never said anything about you being too independent. I don't categorize people. And living in a three-bedroom in Little Provo II with seventeen other girls disqualifies you anyway :).

I've known some "too independent" girls in the past. I even dated one once ("dated" is a strong word... we went out a couple of times before I decided she had horse teeth and stopped calling her). And example of "too independent" is a girl who goes off about how "she don't need no man" to buy her an engagement ring because she can afford, pick out, and buy her own jewelry. etc. etc. Granted, that girl would qualify as number 6 on the list as well.

Having a decent job doesn't make you too independent. Plus I don't think that all girls who have great careers only have them "BECAUSE they aren't married", and, sigh, had to find something else to do with their time...

Tannerama said...

If anyone saw that movie Idiocracy, I feel that the first 5 minutes of the movie makes up one of the best treatises about intelligence and families I have ever seen.

It talks about how nature (at least in the human cross section) no longer favored the strong and the smart... but simply who could reproduce the most. It then proceeds to illustrate a well to do, obviously intelligent couple sitting on a couch enumerating the standard reasons that most affluent people list off for not having kids.("When I am done with school", "it's a big decision.", "Not with how the market is right now.")

Then it shows a hillbilly loser who has six kids and his wife tells him that she is pregnant and then he finds out that his mistress is also pregnant and his oldest son goes on to impregnate a bunch of girls in his high school, and the cycle continues.

If all these "smart" people are so smart then they should understand that not getting hitched is bad for business. If smart people stop having babies, ipso facto, there are less smart babies in the world. Thus, less smart people.

So, us smart folk have got to start trying to keep up with Kletus and his 12 kids and start procreatin'! It's okay cause we have better paying jobs and we can handle finances better. Why? Because we are so smart!

By the way, I effing hate Sex in the City. If those characters were real they would die alone and the cops would have to dig through a pile of balenciaga bags and strappy heels to recover the bodies after the neighbors complained about the smell.

f*bomb. said...

Ooohh, Tannerama- and this is why you are consistently termed "wise beyond your years."

So what about us hillbillies who GOT educated? I can't wait to see my own spawn...