Stop Blaming Men for Your Singleness
I tried to play it off as a joke, but my words barely masked how hurt I really was. I look back and feel certain that all those years my belief that "no good man would ever ask me out" surfaced in my conversations with men. I vacillated between blaming men and then believing terrible lies about myself, gripping onto my "I don't need you anyway" attitude. It hurt to feel overlooked, and bitterness grew deep. Eventually, I started blaming men for my singleness because that hurt less than assuming I may have played a part.
Many of you struggle to know in your heart that you are worth loving; my heart breaks thinking about you tossing and turning with the question, "Why haven't I been chosen?" I don't take your pain lightly. However, it's what you do with the pain that is pivotal. Blaming men doesn't solve the problem—it only adds to it. Sitting around with our girlfriends talking about the nonexistence of good men erodes our attitudes and can show up in conversations with men. Falling back on the infamous "I'm single because there are no good men left" is excusing our bitterness and potential contribution to the problem.
I understand the statistics have made many lose hope—but don't let statistics become an excuse not to put yourself out there, examine your difficult personality traits, or read books or lists about finding a spouse. I understand that God never promises us a spouse more than he promises good health or retirement at age 60. However, he has promised that he is faithful to us, that he is for us, and we are called to hold unswervingly to hope in him.
In this way, it is imperative we remain hopeful of good men and not attack our brothers whether it's at dinner with our girlfriends, in the subtle lies we believe about men, or letting men "have it" on the internet. What if we opened our hearts up to all the emotions that come with singleness and stopped trying to blame anyone? What if we adopted an attitude of grace toward men and made it a point to offer life-giving words they all long to hear: "You have what it takes"; "You are a good man"; and "I respect you." What if?
Last week, I struck up a conversation with a beautiful African American woman in line at a local sandwich shop. She told me her story of meeting her husband—marveling that even though "most black men aren't living right," God gave her "an amazing family man." I don't think it's a coincidence that she shared her "God story" with me. It's easy for me to give up hope for all my single friends as well. In my conversation with the woman in line, I remembered how important it is not to lose hope—to extend grace instead of resentment to our brothers—and reclaim faith in a God who is bigger than statistics.