Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Rebuttle to "Settling."

Holy crap, guys!
That was the LONGEST f*ing article I've ever had to plow through IN MY LIFE. I swear to never ever subject you to something like that load of horsepucky ever again. I think I may have gone blind in-between the moments where I slipped into a coma trying to read something I posted on my own blog. That may have been the most depressing and atrocious excuse for marriage I have ever heard (next to marrying for money over attraction). What is this? 1952? What? All of a sudden, as a woman with a career and a brain and ambition, I no longer have options?!?!
Settle? HELL's NO!

Now that THAT is off my chest, here is my justification:

I should probably begin by saying that my 'standards' (ahem), are not so high. Meaning, I've never had a "type." No height requirement (it's pretty hard to find someone shorter than me in general), no "look"- in fact, I've been accused by my own mother of being attracted to 'ugly' men (her words, not mine). I could care less if he had style or not- but if he takes longer to get ready than me, it's a seriously furrowed brow item. I find there to be a drastic difference between "attractive" and "attractED." And that the qualities an individual possesses- whether it is intelligence or some esoteric passion for art or music or business even (sigh) sports, most people have something quirky and interesting about them that sets them apart and makes them special. And when I find myself attracted to the man who is worthy of giving me a blessing or who is willing to sit still and be alone with me when all I need is a shoulder to nestle in or someone who is thoughtful and insightful, I am just thankful to be blessed enough to know people I admire and respect so much as to trust them with myself. And recognizing those qualities- the ones which compose us as individuals (not as chattel or manufactured products to fit an image, as our society would have us feel) is usually what makes me find appreciation and thereby attraction to an individual.

On the flip side, I don't think it's necessary to budge on my standards of living. Meaning, I am willing to live my life according to certain principles of kindness, consideration and I appreciate intelligence, humor, and a certain level of adventure- and whatever I am prepared to live (or sacrifice), I would expect it's possible for a man to do the same. And no- I don't think it's asking too much in expecting someone else to be willing to do anything I am able to do. Do I expect him to sacrifice everything to make gobs of money? Well...I haven't found that to be a motivating factor to do so myself, so...No. Do I expect him to do everything within his power to live righteously and serve faithfully according to his level of understanding in the gospel? Well...I am striving to continually learn and grow according to my faith. Is it so much to expect a man that would be making the efforts to do the same?

We're all on different timetables, with different experiences and varying degrees of understanding. But that doesn't mean we can't have similar directions and expectations for how we want to live our lives! As entertaining as it may be to complain or bemoan the state of single life, the reality is, we choose to be single. We choose to live the life we're leading because (hopefully) we're consistently making choices for the greater good and for longstanding joy. Find faith in this experience- please- I'm begging you- and stop saying it's because of someone else that you're in this mess. Empower yourself by taking accountability and responsibility for who you are and what you're doing today. Now. And if you don't like what you see, change it. Because, in the end, single or otherwise, the only person who can make you happy with who you are, is you.

5 comments:

The Meesh said...

I've thought a lot about that freaking long article and while I also completely disagree with her reasons for settling it's made me think about what it means to "Settle" in general. Specifically that to settle means to have defined standards that someone or something doesn't meet and yet choosing that option anyway. So the question I have is, are those defined standards too high? I think half the time what we really truly think we want, in reality if we got it, it wouldn't be right for us. I wrote some more about this topic here: http://themeesh.blogspot.com/

brent said...

Farrah, I LOVED this post. Really, truly. Especially this paragraph:
"We're all on different timetables, with different experiences and varying degrees of understanding. But that doesn't mean we can't have similar directions and expectations for how we want to live our lives! As entertaining as it may be to complain or bemoan the state of single life, the reality is, we choose to be single. We choose to live the life we're leading because (hopefully) we're consistently making choices for the greater good and for longstanding joy. Find faith in this experience- please- I'm begging you- and stop saying it's because of someone else that you're in this mess. Empower yourself by taking accountability and responsibility for who you are and what you're doing today. Now. And if you don't like what you see, change it. Because, in the end, single or otherwise, the only person who can make you happy with who you are, is you.

Thanks for this. It's a huge shot in the arm.

f*bomb. said...

Really? Because I usually specialize with a kick in the @$$.

Let's hope that words of inspiration translate into positive action. There was a great discussion in my institute class the other night about repentance. Repentance is the ultimate form of self-empowerment; repentance isn't merely feeling bad or suffering for sin: it is the embodiment of changing for good through your own will and desire to be better than what you are presently.

I guess we can all start with the man in the mirror.

CoCo said...

Two LONG thoughts:

1) how we interpret the word settle - The positive spin is that it IS a good idea for people to "settle". And by settle, I mean ESTABLISH relationships (e.g I have currently SETTLED into a life in California and while it's greatly different from my east coast roots, it's a good relationship; not one that will neccessarily be for eternity, but good for now). If the word "settle" was substituted for "give-and-take" (putting more emphasis on the practice of compromise rather than sacrifice), would it change the response?

2a) You make a point about "the desire to be better" that deserves to be fleshed out. (N.B. I am not going to flesh out that idea.)

2b) An associated thought that I have is of an early memory: grown men (similar to my own father) who in public settings (e.g. fast and testimony meeting) earnestly shared their appreciation for their selection of a partner who had been instrumental in helping them become the person they were at that time; a better person. Referencing their gratitude that their "spouse" was able to overlook their faults and see their potential. Those examples dovetailed with a recent side conversation about the "settle" article in which it was mentioned that while the women of the world are looking for "Mr. Good Enough", they should proactively be trying to beome the "Mrs. Good Enough" (the reverse is true).

f*bomb. said...

CoCoCorue-
I absolutely agree.
Personally, my standard is to be and strive to become my best ("best" being whatever I consider to be most important in character to me). And I think it is perfectly fair and rational to expect that there is a man out there who is doing the same for himself.
Bottom line: I would like an equal who is willing to get in the trenches to make the best of our lives, and I don't expect anything more in someone else than what I am willing to work for in my own life. And I feel just fine about that.