I think this year could be called The Year Of The Wedding. I am invited to a lot of weddings this year.
Attending a wedding as a single person can be a tricky thing. Should I bring a date? (The majority of polled CatholicMatchers said they fly solo, especially the men.) Will I be at a table with a bunch of married people? Will I have a good time? We tend to fixate on ourselves instead of the excitement of the day. But I’m sure we all think about another wedding that is not our own.
As my close girlfriends get engaged and move on to be wives and mothers, I am genuinely happy for them, but there is an element of sadness too.
I reflect on all the good times spent with my single girlfriends: basketball trips in college, deep discussions with a bottle of wine at the vineyard, beach weekends and mission trips. These are times when we were learning what it meant to be good friends, what it meant to grow up and what it meant to be Catholic.
These girlfriends are the ones I would call late into the night, right when I was upset about a break-up. These are the women who I would go to for advice about hair color, book picks and life choices. They were there whenever I needed them and I was there for them.
But the reality is, relationships change. If we remained stagnant we would not be fulfilling the things God wanted us to do…and just be really boring. We find new careers, meet our spouses and grow into the people God wants us to be. Growth and change are good things. But sometimes change hurts.
When my close girlfriend gets married, her vocation is to her husband and next to her children. She is still my friend, but the relationship changes. She cannot be there for me all the time. In truth, she shouldn’t be.
As I watch my close friends get married, to be honest: Yes, I am jealous. I wonder when it will be my turn. Yes, I am sad, because our time as single girlfriends is over and we won’t have those spontaneous trips, late-night phone conversations or the security of knowing someone is always there to listen.
If you have close friends getting married, realize it is OK to be sad. Allow yourself to grieve the loss of a close relationship, because it will change.
But please, don’t stop there. Be generous to your friend who is getting married. Don’t allow your jealousy to consume you. Let them talk about the wedding plans. They have fears too. Take advantage of that time you have with them and share in their joy.
What is your advice for the single during wedding season? Do you have a hard time attending weddings?