In the mid-90s, at 18 years old, it never occurred to me that a woman would go to college for the primary purpose of securing a spouse. Even attending a conservative Christian college, I never heard the term "MRS. degree" until many years later, when I lived on campus as a resident director of a dorm with 150-plus women.
Something changed between when I went to college as an undergrad and when I returned to work on campus. Maybe it was just a lack of awareness on my part about what others were discussing; after all, this was before social media. We weren't constantly connected by cell phones and Facebook (now the prime destination for "relationship status" updates and engagement pictures). Maybe it had to do with my personality, friends, and interests. Back then, girls and guys talked philosophy, theology, and music. Sure, my friends and I all wanted to get married, but we weren't obsessed with it. Now, the pressure of college matchmaking has become palpable. I can't even count the number of times I've heard, "My mom and dad told me that if I don't find a husband now when there are so many to choose from, then chances are slim that I'll find one after college."
They feel the need to make the most out of every opportunity, out of every chance encounter with a guy, to prove they are marriage material. Even though guys too have told me that male-female relationships become about sizing up marriage prospects, ladies feel like the onus to snag a husband is on them. Guys, they say, have their pick because on our campus, the women outnumber the men. Just a few weeks ago, several female nursing students told me, "Now that it is spring, it seems like all of our friends ...1
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