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Single Living

My single friends and I often bemoan our childless state—especially when so many women around us are pregnant.

We both gained a few nieces and nephews this year, and now it is our friends’ turns to bring new life into the world. It’s seems like we just managed to survive wedding season, and before we know it—it’s baby season!

I love babies. My life plan from the time I was a little girl was to get married and have lots of babies. The number sometimes varied, but it was always high.

I think I settled on nine boys when I was in college—for a baseball team, of course. Yet here I am: 30, single, childless, and everyone else seems to be living my life. The one I wanted.

It’s not that I begrudge the lives of my friends and family. I don’t. I’m genuinely happy when great couples tie the knot and increase the Catholic population. I love rocking my sister’s new babies and teaching the older ones piano.

At the same time, it’s easy to get depressed that I’m not able to hold my own baby, or homeschool my own children, or cook dinner for my own husband.

I think it’s easy for women to feel sorry for themselves merely for wanting a good thing. I want a good Catholic husband and a lot of little Catholic children. That’s not a bad thing, right?

There are so many couples who aren’t practicing their Faith and yet they are getting married and having children. I try to live a good life and obey “the rules,” but still don’t get my own way. It seems so unfair! Why won’t God give it to me?

Then I remember that God has a plan for each one of us. It’s not about what I want, but what God’s will is for me. Sometimes I feel like I’m just treading water until a husband comes my way, but it’s important that whether or not I ever do get married, I should take advantage of the time that I have now.

Everything around us makes marriage look so glamorous and exciting. Weddings are getting more extravagant by the year. The married life seems so appealing. And yet, sometimes we forget about the quarrels, the dirty dishes, the 2am bottles—the things that every couple will experience that are neither glamorous nor exciting.

I don’t have to worry about making dinner for anyone else—if I want it, I’ll throw something together. I don’t have to consult my husband if I want a night out at the movies.

When I go shoe shopping, I don’t have to consider a family budget. I’ve been to eight European countries over the past few years—if I had a family, I would not have been able to pull up stakes every summer to travel.

It’s difficult to put everything in perspective sometimes, but it is important that I start looking at my single state as a blessing in disguise. I’m not going to despair that I may never marry or that I may never have children.

I’m going to make more of an effort to embrace the free time and lack of responsibility that I have now. If it is God’s will that I do end up marrying and having a basketball team full of boys, I’ll remember that I spent my time wisely.

(This post has been read 5,763 times)

59 Comments

  1. Tamera-984944 July 7, 2013

    Thanks for sharing your perspective. So easy to feel sorry for ourselves when we feel like we’re still waiting for our lives to start…I speak from experience and still grapple with that. And I’m 42, single and childless. It’s not easy when it seems all we do is watch other people be blessed with their happiness, and all we can do is wait on God. Good to hear from someone else feeling the same, though believe me you have plenty of time…30 is still plenty young to look forward to having children…if that’s what’s to be like you said.

  2. Sarah-702868 July 7, 2013

    Wow…you just put the way I have been feeling lately into words!!! I’m right there with you! But, I also do my very best to keep the faith that God does have a plan and this is mine right now. Patience is the hardest part for me.

  3. James-141787 July 7, 2013

    Wake up Catholic Church! This is a HUGE institutional problem. For us individuals, who never imagined we’d be single and childless, who followed the rules and planned and worked for a family, but still can’t find a spouse, I agree that we need to realize that God has a plan for each of one of and we just have to trust that it is all for the best. But let’s get serious here. On the institutional level, there is a pandemic of faithful single Catholics who can’t get married no matter what they do. There is something objectively wrong with this situation. It is also demoralizing and discouraging to watch all the people that don’t follow Catholic teaching still get married–after a fashion–and have children when we are still counting the years alone. Online dating is a start, but there is a whole culture of marriage that is missing from the Church nowadays. It is like no one in the institutional Church has a clue or cares that it so hard for practicing single Catholics to get married nowadays. We like to think that the marriage crisis afflicts only people outside the Church, but the reality is that faithful single Catholics living alone or in sparse communities may be hit worst of all, in the sense that a historically unprecedented percentage of us will probably never marry, and many of those who do will marry too late to have children. The best pastoral advice to individual people may be to offer their suffering up to God. But protracted, involuntary, unwanted singleness has become such a pervasive problem that we need to think about institutional and community-level solutions. It is time we had a New Evangelism of marriage–one that took concrete steps to help single Catholics get married in secular society where every social trend is running against us.

    • Douglas-902438 July 7, 2013

      you are a very intelligent man/

    • Celio-969870 July 8, 2013

      Brilliant point James!!!!!

    • BIll-154597 July 9, 2013

      I am not sure that the Catholic Church is doing anything but lip service concerning marriage.

    • Elizabeth W. July 9, 2013

      God chose for me to become ill with a severe mental illness from the age of 5 to the age of 38. I didn’t ask for this and i suffered horrendously with job losses, isolation, no family support, homelessness, and feeling suicidal. I could not enjoy life at all because my illness prevented joy. It always made me exhausted, depressed, and angry for no reason and destroyed relationships with people. I prayed for years to be cured and finally I found someone who cured me completely of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder – schizoaffective disorder. I found someone to marry in that psychotic state. who stayed with me through it all until I found a cure.

      There are worse things than not having children. Some paths that God chooses for us are terrible, but the experience has given me insight into another world completely of what it is like to almost die, to have everything taken from you, to be a leper and rejected by society. In that respect, I came closest to experiencing the sufferings of Christ.

      I grew up in a wealthy family and went from university educated to homeless and then living on disability and unable to fill in a form or help myself. I lived with alcoholics, drug addicts, other mentally ill people and homeless people.

      If I had remained wealthy and gotten a professional job, I would have turned out to be the most judgemental person you can imagine. I would have been one of those people who shunned the “losers” of society, because that was how my family raised me.

      God gave me the experience of loss, desperation, and hopelessness, and then took it away at the age of 38, i’m completely cured by alternative medicine. Now, I run an alternative mental health page on facebook and try to help as many people as i can be cured.

      If you suffer a loss, you can use it to help others accept their losses as well, once you overcome yours. It is about carrying each other through the turmoil.

      Remember that suffering is what leads us to salvation. I am 38 and just recovered and have to decide now to study to make money or have children. I am infertile and I am receiving acupuncture treatments twice a week to make me fertile. If God deems that it won’t work, I’m not going to be disheartened because I have a lot to be happy about. I have my health back and without your health, you have no joy, no happiness, and little peace. I feel sorry for people who are sick and dying and disabled. For whatever reason, God keeps them in that state and it is probably a test for us and for them.

      God only gives us what we can handle and if you can handle being childless, you can handle quite a lot.

  4. William-607613 July 7, 2013

    That’s very well said, James.

  5. Chris-427945 July 7, 2013

    I agree, James. To second William–well said.

  6. Caterina-828390 July 7, 2013

    Well put both Catherine and James! I agree with both of you. God does have a plan for each and every one of us, but we also do have to look at marriage in a new light. It seems now a days marriage isn’t as much a priority as it once was. Which is a very sad thing in my opinion.

    As for me, I have always wanted to get married and have children, but unfortunately I have met men that haven’t had their acts together and that was the last thing they wanted in life. In some ways, I have wasted time dating the wrong men, but in the same respect all the relationships have taught me important lessons. I feel that God wanted me to learn these so that when the right one does come along, I will know without a doubt, that we were meant to be with one another. I hope that will be sometime soon, but it’s in God’s hands not mine.

  7. Carlos-977696 July 8, 2013

    Well said Catherine and James. I’ve noticed many Catholic singles are influenced by pop culture, where chemistry, as a feeling is what determines if you get married or not, as something you just get with the snap of a finger. What’s wrong here is that true chemistry only comes in time. You cannot tell someone, for example, with whom you have lots in common(common interests, humor, faith, mutual physical attraction, quirks), that you are not compatible just because you didn’t feel the “kick”. That’s just so wrong, and unfair.

  8. James-141787 July 8, 2013

    Caterina raises a great point. So much of the Church’s ministry to singles is this tippy-toe stuff that you have to discern about discerning and then some day you will know it’s right and then you have a vocation to marriage.

    Wrong! This endless discernment message doesn’t help either sex, but it is especially corrosive to young men. Young men need to be told that if they don’t have a vocation to the priesthood or religious life, and if they don’t plan to live a life of celibacy, then they have a vocation to marriage and it is time to get ready. It is not okay to just hook up on weekends until you are pushing 40 and ready to settle down. We have a lot of frustrated, disappointed, and in many cases single-for-life young women in our community now because the young men are not stepping up. Not to bash on the men, because a lot of honorable guys feel that they can’t even start dating until they have a job that will support a family, and the economy is lousy right now, especially for men, but there is never any practical encouragement from the Church or lay Catholic organizations for young men to develop that courage that it needs to start a family even before they have landed their dream job. You don’t need your dream job, but you do need a plan, and as Caterina says, you need to have your act together on a very basic level.

    Carlos makes a good point too. In our culture, single is normative, and married is the weird exception. We tend to treat singleness as an end in itself. It is definitely a period of freedom, and definitely a time in which we can both develop ourselves and contribute to others, but it is very easy for singleness to become a time of drift as well. You need intentionality and a plan. It is not all spur of the moment, emotional stuff. If you just want to wait until the marriage fairy shows up, it is never going to happen. You can have a vocation to marriage long before you have a specific vocation to marry a particular person, and if you don’t work on that vocation, you are going to lose it.

    I don’t mean to beat up on the guys in this post. I could make some comments on the ladies as well. But the reality is that we have a big, cultural problem in the Catholic community, in which as Carlos notes, we let pop culture be our guide. We have adopted the values of secular society, in which marriage just happens, or it doesn’t and either way is fine, because it is God’s decision and not ours. This is true, but only up to a point. God does have a plan for each one of us. But it is our responsibility to cooperate with God’s plan. We have got to take some action too.

    The message for Catholic singles is that we can’t just sit around passively and spend years at a time discerning. The men in particular need to get a plan and get moving. But for the rest of the Catholic community: THIS IS YOUR PROBLEM TOO. Catholic singles stay single so long because we get no support for from the community. That’s why the men leave once they have hooked up once too often–or when they have just gotten discouraged with waiting–and the women stay single into their 40s. When was the last time your parish prayed at intercessions for “single people seeking marriage?” Probably never.

    I appreciate the good advice that people who are sad or frustrated at being single should offer up their sufferings to good, but that is only half the picture. There is a problem here. It is time that we as a community started fixing the problem.

    • Kathryn-872445 July 8, 2013

      James,

      I very much agree that we have a societal problem here. I want to give you just a ray of hope though. I don’t know where you’re from, but I’ve noticed in my neck of the woods that our Catholic community has acknowledged the lack of focus on marriage that you’ve mentioned and have put much more of a focus on marriage ministry. I think it is a great step forward and begins to highlight the importance of marriage in an increasingly free society.

    • Um-370126 July 11, 2013

      I personally am glad that my Catholic church does not pump up marriage as the ‘be all, end all’…if I wanted that holy roller garbae I would roll into one of the many ‘Word of God’ churches in the area.

      Plus your arguement about so many single ladies in your area doesn’t pass the smell test. In the greater DC/northern VA are the ratio of men to women is ~ 5 to 1.

  9. Mark R. July 8, 2013

    “I should take advantage of the time that I have now.”

    “I don’t have to worry about making dinner for anyone else—if I want it, I’ll throw something together. I don’t have to consult my husband if I want a night out at the movies.

    When I go shoe shopping, I don’t have to consider a family budget. I’ve been to eight European countries over the past few years—if I had a family, I would not have been able to pull up stakes every summer to travel.”

    -Ah, but perhaps if the author wasn’t so busy traveling, she would actually be married by now. She’s too busy traveling and having fun to notice the potential mates in her life. Or maybe she is scaring guys away by being a “high maintenance” woman who doesn’t want to just have a Catholic family but also wants to be a world traveler. Also, just because you don’t have kids and a husband now, doesn’t mean that you can’t start saving money now for when you do. Plus, the advantage of the single life from the Church’s point of view is that you have more time for prayer and attending the Church services not that you have more money for superfluous travel and shoe shopping. Why was this not mentioned in the article?

    Yes, men and women are at fault, but when women are busy racking up student loan debt and traveling, how will they ever have time to settle down and have children. They are so busy with their higher education degrees and world travel in their 20′s that they are too busy to be interested in potential mates and then by the time they are 30 they are be so entrenched in debt that marriage will not be possible. One of the problems is feminism which teaches women that you can “have it all in life”.

    • Marita-847688 July 8, 2013

      I understand what you are saying, but not all women are like that. Compared to society’s standards, I am about as frugal as it gets. I rarely buy new clothes and shoes. Most of the time the clothes I buy are inexpensive. I only go out of the state about once every several years. Eating out is not something I do all the time. I am trying to save money to prepare for the future. I try to follow God’s plan by giving to my local Church, donating to food pantries, going to Adoration, saying prayers, and saying Novenas. I don’t go to a parish where there are a lot of men my age. I would really like to get married, but I can’t find good Catholic men at my church even remotely close to my age. I like to think of myself as a good “catch”, though.

      • Gabrielle-529849 July 10, 2013

        Marita–I see you are in Austin–have you tried some of the young adult groups in the area? I lived there for three years and had some great luck finding quality people :)

    • James-141787 July 8, 2013

      I am personally rather fed up with people who think that lonely singles live exciting lives of shopping, restaurant dining, and exotic travel. We don’t. We are able to do exceptional things once in a while but we would trade it in in a heartbeat to have a real home and a family. Catholics stay a single a long time because it is just so hard to meet an eligible prospective spouse in a world where all the trends in society are stacked against us.

      I also don’t see graduate school as inherently a problem: if we are following God’s plan, we are never going to “miss” an opportunity get married if there is one.

      On the other hand, there are lots of people, men and women included, who have run up enormous debt and spent precious years pursuing graduate degrees of no economic value whatsoever, or in demanding professional disciplines we just don’t want to pursue. This is the real question for discernment: do you really want to spend two years and rack up $50,000 in debt for that MA in–select the dubious field of your choice–from some not especially distinguished university?

      • Beth-72537 July 9, 2013

        I’ll have a PhD in a few years and I’m a single and practicing Catholic woman. What I gather from all of this, then, is that my love for learning and passion for helping others has, apparently, not been God’s will, but instead some twisted claw of feminism that’s attached itself firmly to my very being. I prayed for many years about my graduate education, and I thank God every day for the experiences I’ve been fortunate to have because of it (yes, like the author, I too have traveled).
        There are moments, as most single Catholics would tell, that I long for a loving husband and children of my own. But, as the author states, it’s God’s will and not our own. If my choices have not been divinely inspired, if the knowledge I’ve gained and the experiences I’ve had will NOT benefit my marriage and my children, well… Then I think all of us, regardless of education, must examine our lives, our jobs, and our choices. If I’m not being led by God, then who do you say that I’m being led by? Because I don’t feel confident nor comfortable telling you, or any of the men and women on this site, that the choices you’ve made (or not) are a poor reflection or enactment of God’s will for you.

        • James-141787 July 9, 2013

          Well, Beth, that’s not what I said. To repeat from above: “I also don’t see graduate school as inherently a problem: if we are following God’s plan, we are never going to “miss” an opportunity get married if there is one.

          I know a lot of people who went to graduate school and specifically law school without really thinking it through and have time-consuming jobs they hate or, if they quit practicing, law school and undergraduate loans to pay off but no source of income to pay them with. For a good number of these folks, children and marriage are now effectively off the table.

          If you are convinced that getting a PhD is the way God wants you to go, more power to you.

      • Elizabeth B. July 9, 2013

        I agree–I don’t see education as the problem although the economy might be. I went to a “work” college and so thankfully have no student loans to pay off. Nonetheless, it has been very difficult to find a job for the past 5 years. I am a certified teacher and have spent those years substitute teaching days/ working at a fast food restaurant nights. In the last year, I did get a full time job in a school–as an aide–for probably one year as the student I worked with is probably leaving.
        On my single income there is no money–or time–for travel to Europe, new shoes without worrying about budget or any of the rest of that….There’s barely money to pay the taxes and routine medical bills (and yes, I have a medical condition too, so “routine” means that it pretty much starts over as fast as it gets paid off.) I also have to take a graduate courses to keep my certification if I want to teach again. At least living in Missouri helps with that! Affordable grad. science coursework for teachers with Missouri Dept. of Conservation/Colleges means that I can eat and keep my certificate both. That’s as good as a trip to Europe in my book!

    • Gabrielle-529849 July 9, 2013

      I take great offense to your statements Mark. So much so, this is the first time I’ve ever posted on the forum, or anywhere on Catholic Match other than my profile. First off, I love that you assume that women are not looking for a match while in school. When did it become impossible to not do two things at once? Second, when did debt=a lifetime of singledom? “so entrenched in debt that marriage will not be possible” Why is marriage not possible because they have debt? Do you think women just go to school, rack up tons of debt, and then sit on it? We go to school to enhance our careers, to be able to make a greater difference in the world…and by the way, those things pay. So unless a woman is completely incapable of multitasking, having debt is completely unrelated to marriage. Third, why are women not allowed to advance their educations and their careers? I, as a 33 year old single woman, went back to school to obtain my Ph.D. two years ago. Why? Because I felt it was God’s purpose for my life, and because I WAS STILL SINGLE!!!! I dated more as a graduated student in my twenties than I did as a working professional and yet, I have still not found the right person for me. I’ve tried. Hard. I would give ANYTHING to have a family. To be settled, to have children. But I don’t. Therefore, I must continue to move on with my life–and that moving on for me comes in the form of more education. I’m not just lying around sucking up resources and galavanting around the world. I’m working my butt off to get an education in a field I’m extremely passionate about and to fulfill a dream that no doubt in my mind, God planted within me. I work in a field that 99% of the general population has no interest in, and with children that people shun as being scum of the earth. I don’t doubt that my ability to see beauty in all of these children and to love them more than most people do has been a true blessing from God. When the opportunity to enroll in my Ph.D. program fell in my lap, I discerned it and prayed about it extensively. Yes, it has caused me to accumulate debt, and more than I would like, but really, with true faith and the belief that God will take care of me as long as I continue to follow His Will and work to the best of my ability, who am I to worry? I think people are way too careful these days. Everyone wants a little nest egg, a home, a foundation. Yes, these are all good things, but Wake Up people! This economy SUCKS. Our country is not what it used to be. Jobs are not as abundant, nor flexible and the marriage institution needs to be flexible to accommodate that. I would love my husband to be the sole breadwinner and to stay home and have babies and homeschool my adorable Catholic children, but unfortunately, that’s not in the script anymore. I didn’t meet someone when I was 19. The world has changed since then. Women are going to have to work, people can’t take as many vacations, you likely are going to enter into marriage with debt. Reading the replies on here makes me ask some of you single men…if you could rearrange your thinking to accept debt could you maybe be married? In the meantime, I’m going to work on a paper, for my advanced degree, that I love, and hope someday, some man will look at me for who I am, what I do, and what I CAN contribute to a household BECAUSE OF my advanced (debt incurring degree), appreciate the example I will be to our future children in the work I do, and choose to spend the rest of his life with me.

      • Beth-72537 July 10, 2013

        I love it :)

      • Ginger E. July 10, 2013

        Hi all. I am a Mother and a grandmother, my daughter blessed me with the grand kids.
        My son is a different matter. He is a hard worker and has been with the same job since he was in his early twenties. He is a great son and wants to get married and have a child. He can’t, why you ask? well because he doesn’t make enough money. He has dated countless girls and they seem to want to have a relationship but it seems the minute they find out he can’t support them they leave. He is thirty eight and I would love to see him marry and have a child before I leave this earth. I have said countless novenas to no avail. St. Jude. St. Theresa and many irresistible novenas to our Blessed Lady and as most of you have found it just does not seem to be God’s will. God Bless you all and ladies I would like to hear from you and get your thoughts on this subject as why so many women want to get married but her perspective husband has to be a fantastic breadwinner instead of just being plain old being in LOVE!

        Mom.

  10. Gregory-842430 July 8, 2013

    That’s awesome. We need more Catholic women such as yourself.

  11. Catherine Frank
    Catherine Frank July 8, 2013

    I think the Catholic Church needs to look around at how Protestant churches are getting their congregations involved. They have strong youth groups, focused young adult groups, and a constant stream of classes and gatherings. It is very easy to feel isolated in Catholic parishes when our options for true socializing are so few. I don’t think that Mass, adoration, and confession times are particularly conducive to meeting new people.

    I agree that pop culture has permeated our Catholic society as well as society at large. Women all wait for that fairytale ending that is so common in movies and books. I don’t believe that enough emphasis is put on the sufferings and sacrifices that marriage entails. Also, who even talks about the three ends of matrimony anymore? I remember that chapter in my Baltimore Catechism quite vividly.
    Q. 1010. What are the chief ends of the Sacrament of Matrimony?
    A. The chief ends of the Sacrament of matrimony are:
    To enable the husband and wife to aid each other in securing the salvation of their souls;
    To propagate or keep up the existence of the human race by bringing children into the world to serve God;
    To prevent sins against the holy virtue of purity by faithfully obeying the laws of the marriage state. [http://www.audiosancto.org/inc/BC3/bc3-26.html]

    I understand that men do feel the need to be able to support a family, but I think the expectations of what a family can live on or needs has been greatly exaggerated. I often get remarks about my sister’s large family and they usually run along the lines of “But how can they afford six children?” and “Does she realize that college is expensive?” Unfortunately, while men are trying to land a dream job or get that new promotion, women are getting tired of waiting and going on for more degrees themselves.

    When I got my Master’s, I saw it as a backup plan. If I never get married, I’m going to have to support myself for the rest of my life. I didn’t rush into any of my degrees – I actually took a few years off in between each one to work and ensure that I would never get into debt because of school. After a couple of years of simultaneous full-time and part-time jobs, I was able to take a pilgrimage to Italy – where I met a whole new group of wonderful Catholic people. The past couple of summers, my Catholic girlfriends and I were able to visit many shrines and resting places of our favorite saints throughout Europe. I am so grateful that I was able to do these things while single, because I can’t imagine trekking through the hot streets of Fatima with a baby carriage.

    It is very easy to think that the life of a single woman is carefree and fun-filled, but my daily activities are just as mundane as anyone else’s. I go to the gym, I go to work, I teach piano, I pray the rosary, I go to Mass, I go food shopping, I save money. I rarely go shopping (most of my clothes are college leftovers), I’m not traveling anywhere spectacular this year, my old car seems to be always in the shop for repair work. I attend local Catholic events and I’m quite involved in my Sunday Mass as choir director. I suppose I could stay home every night to pray, but that’s not going to help change my single state much. Being single means that I am able to do things that I might not have a chance to do if I were married. It also gives me more time to spend with family, helping out with home repair projects and babysitting.

    Would I trade my “freedom” for a husband and babies? Of course.

    • James-141787 July 8, 2013

      I once saw another single Catholic lady put it very well. A married woman said to her, “I’d give almost anything for the free time you have.” She answered: “How much free time would you need to give up your husband and children forever?”

    • Elizabeth B. July 9, 2013

      There is “cultural” interference in that as well. I have a parish priest who is working as hard as he can to promote parish involvement in multiple ways–youth groups, social events, bible studies. Part of the reason is what parishioners told him they wanted when he came. Sadly though, when it comes to the pinch, no matter how hard he works to come up with available groups, youth activities, camps, etc.–even offering to pay fees for students who might not be able to afford them himself–it seems that most of the “youth” have more important things to do….
      He has spoken out about this more than once. If we say that our lives belong to Christ, ask for opportunities to learn and serve, and then when offered the opportunities, basically respond with variations of “Oh, but I have a T-Ball game that night” or “American Idol” is on that night.” then we cannot complain that the Church gave us no opportunities. The Church runs more schools, hospitals, charities, etc. than any other church in the world. My local church has two “personal” out of parish charities as well as its in parish assistance fund (not limited to parishioners) and the school. EVERY Parish that I’ve ever been a member of has Knights of Columbus, Squires, Ladies Sodality, etc., Every one has parish breakfasts, picnics, etc. of some form or another (even those that have to share a priest with another parish do this) Again, if you’re not meeting people in your parish–find out what’s going on, there will be an opportunity! That doesn’t mean there will be someone for you to meet/marry if that is God’s plan for you, but there are things happening!

  12. Brian-987904 July 9, 2013

    I am sorry the writer feels sad at times. I think everything will come together for her in God’s time. It is great you have had time to go see the world in your single time. Thank you for the great story.

  13. Naomi-698107 July 9, 2013

    Then there’s always the risk of getting married to that perfect Catholic husband and find out children aren’t as easy to get as previously imagined. I know quite a few couples who married and hey presto, fertility issues. One of those couples are practising Catholics, so IVF and reproductive technologies are out for them; its very hard for them to hear from people “Just do IVF”. And we all know the state of the adoption waiting lists.

    We all have our crosses to bare, and for the most part, these are “first world problems”.

  14. Emil L. July 9, 2013

    I would love to introduce you to my Son.
    29 with a good build and good looking.
    He has a great sense of humor and is athletic(mainly watersports)
    But on the relationship side it has just not happened for him.
    We live in Durban South Africa by the way.:O)

  15. John K. July 9, 2013

    I cannot believe I am actually posting on here, but I actually got encouraged by James. I figured I’d add on to James’ comments. I usually do not post out of avoidance of being ripped apart by the Catholic Match community for my views, but maybe, just maybe if James is getting away with it…

    I’ve spent a lot of the last 5 to almost 10 years flirting with a whole lot of jewish girls. And I am Catholic, to the core, Mass every Sunday, Adoration once in a while, and make sure there is a confession periodically for the dirty laundry. I have found that not only are the jewish girls passionate and gorgeous, but they don’t tend to seem to judge a whole lot. This may be because many of them are actually “liberated” jews, i.e. not really practicing, like many of us “Chreaster Catholics” out here, but the point is, they don’t seem to judge.

    I used to spend a whole lot more time being involved in the community. Church events, prayer meetings, youth and young adult groups. Basically the whole 9 yards, 1 2 3 let’s get together as one big family sort of thing. The problem would be that I would bring my talents and energy to the group(s), and theyyy didn’t seem to like what I had to offer. I’m big into music, dance, and (beautiful) women. I have six gorgeous sisters, we all dance, PASSIONATELY, and as partners, don’t blame me sort of thing. Things took a turn for the worse, and eventually I was asked to leave several of the groups.

    So I then somehow found the Jewish. They ACTUALLY LIKED everything and anything I apparently had to offer.. dance, energy, cute young charming sexy guy. And they had the connectiveness that a whole lot of Catholics that I knew would not even touch, even though the Theology of the Body ITSELF says to do so. Yes, I am referring to sexual energy included, here. And I asked myself, *why on EARTH can’t the catholics behave this way?*

    So now I am the point in my life where I am still trying to give a cute young catholic girl a shot, but all the “faithful practicing” ones judge me to hell for not only my beliefs, but also my actions. And, it just makes me want to continue running off to a “jewish” type atmosphere bar and dancing the night away with all the hot little japs who happen to be drinking their fill and having a workout on the dance floor in public. Yes, they do exist, as huge groups, taking over almost a whole bar, and I am not talking about torah on tap. Talk about community, right at a BAR with BOOZE.

    As Catholics, we don’t like sex. Ya, we like it inside of marriage..sort of.. But we run away from any sort of sexual energy, contact (do I hear holding hands for $100? do I hear doing the tango CORRECTLY for $500?), or maybe a liiiittle bit of buzzed flirting..well actually not buzzed..just flirting at ALL. Quite frankly, I don’t like sex outside of marriage myself. So much so I’ve not done it yet (yes you heard v-card). HOWEVER. There is a whole lot of activity that young people CAN DO that the Bible and the Catechism do NOT condemn that we run from all the time. I think it is sad, and I think the Church community needs to WAKE UP (there you go James haha).

    There are a whole lot of single people out here just waiting for the chance to love and to be loved. If the Church community as a whole would stop judging, maybe we would start connecting. Much like the Jews. YAY!

    • Marie-110909 July 9, 2013

      I like your style John.

    • Elizabeth B. July 9, 2013

      Be careful. It might be fun to flirt with a Jewish girl but when you’re looking at a long-term relationship, some of those liberated views can get in the way. My best friend whom I used to teach with is Jewish (and you’re right non-practicing, describes herself as a “cultural, gastronomical” Jew.) However, we have to tap-dance very carefully around some issues in our conversations. As a lifelong pro-lifer, it’s somewhat strange to me that you can’t make the connection between Holocaust and Abortion; but she was actually surprised shortly after I met her to learn that the “blob of tissue” argument had been debunked (this was in 2003!)

      A similar explanation of partial-birth abortion to her once surprised her. She’s never had a child, but does no that a breech birth is more dangerous than a natural one so having to explain that a “doctor” would forcibly induce labor AND turn the baby to ensure that it never took a breath because the only difference between that abortion and infanticide was a single breath was a real eye-opener for her.

      Have fun…. but remember, those who are “liberated” are sometimes liberated in ways that are harmful as well as those that are harmless.

      • John-4627 July 10, 2013

        So as I said, they are Less Judgmental. I don’t exactly agree with everything the liberated jewish stand for. But I also don’t agree with everything a “conservative Catholic” stands for either.

        Unfortunately, in my experience, the Catholic has problems with what I stand for and won’t have me around…and the jew doesn’t. Either way, the typical jap jewgirl these days is taught by her mother to retain her rights as a woman. Therefore, when someone is trying to take those rights away, she gets furious…much like ANY woman does, or at least should. Unfortunately, most women in the Church just “submit” to the “authority” of (fallen) men. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t agree with abortion, nor contraceptives…but I also don’t agree with rape, controlling women, etc. Verrrry sticky issue. I am aware that maybe, just mayyybe, they are being hypocritical with the Holocaust and Abortion ties.

        Either way, views aside, the point I was making… It has been a very lonely road for me trying to find someone in the Catholic Church who walks the fine balance between faithful Catholic, and fun, energetic, dare I say sexy and charming, non-judgmental. Unfortunately it doesn’t seem like it is going to work out with the typical faithful Catholic girl. That makes me sad. :(

        • Beth-72537 July 10, 2013

          I understand where you’re coming from. I enjoy some things of this world but that doesn’t mean I’m of this world, ya know? I dance, I drink, I go to rock concerts and I love God and Jesus with my whole being!

  16. Joshua-852400 July 9, 2013

    What it all boils down to is this:
    State entrenched feminism.

    No perceptive and thoughtful man will marry a woman who has been granted (by the state) the ultimate power, at her slightest whim, to utterly destroy him and take his children.

    We men are not without our faults. In fact, it’s all our fault because of our lifelong adolescence and failure to lead. This is based on our failure to train ourselves to become legitimate in our authority.

    Yes, I said authority. Man must wield it for the good of his family.

    We also must cast away political correctness in all of its forms. We must route out this poisonous and family-destroying virus root and branch or it will destroy us.

    I am a 6’3″ 200lb healthy employed single Catholic man and I approve this message.

    • Elizabeth B. July 9, 2013

      “I approve this message…” This doesn’t mean you’re a politician does it?
      They don’t have a good record in the honesty department, so I’m not sure I would borrow their favorite phrase if I were you.
      I actually quite enjoy politics–just not all that crazy about what some of them do if we don’t keep an eye on them–they’re pretty good at forgetting that they work for us, not the other way around.

  17. Lisa-933589 July 9, 2013

    James,

    It would be great if priests could speak on this from the pulpit—-with the same fervor, fire & wisdom that you just did. My spiritual director has said, men need to find a nice Catholic girl to settle down with. Simple, he say’s, things have become way to complicated. Intention & decisiveness are key, and yet sadly there is the “discerning to discern, discernment” which leads to nowhere or somewhere very late.

    John, I agree that being Catholic does not have to mean boring & lifeless—-It needs to be integrated, and yes TOB really needs to be learned & understand…dancing (especially partner) is a great way to connect, communicate and have lots of fun! The fervor & fire applies here as well, God smiles when we are enjoying the moment, establishing friendships and enjoying life while also working & taking care of family, business etc..

    May the light of Jesus Christ shine upon us all,
    Lisa

  18. Joan-351524 July 9, 2013

    From my hard won experience and lessons through life and a bad marriage I left, being blessed with the right husband is far more important any day than being a Mom. This is not to say I don’t sometimes wish I had even one child that I could raise as I see fit including bringing them up in the Church. I would never wish to be a single parent though! I have had opportunity to assist my best friend with her children from birth throughout a couple of wrong marriages. That as well as my own family are perfect examples of children raised in the Church who do not STAY in the Church. There are no guarantees but the love of our Lord. I used to see some of these more B/W, for example divorce. That was a bigger rude awakening than I ever expected. I never expected the level of ongoing deceit and illness I married. We had no business having children. That water under the bridge. I long for marriage as it is intended, with someone who actually shares my passions in life. I now know I must be open to my husband coming to the relationship with or without children or grown children. I am very much OK with that.

    As single Catholics, it is our choice to create a full life for ourselves. Our future spouse is counting on that. I have found that is what makes a whole person ready to create and complete a marriage.

  19. Michele-978184 July 9, 2013

    Catechism of the Catholic Church 2nd ed.: paragraph 2349:

    “People should cultivate [chastity] in the way that is suited to their state of life. Some profess virginity or consecrated celibacy which enables them to give themselves to God alone with an undivided heart in a remarkable manner. Others live in the way prescribed for all by the moral law, whether they are married or single.” Married people are called to live conjugal chastity; others practice chastity in continence:

    There are three forms of the virtue of chastity: the first is that of spouses, the second that of widows, and the third that of virgins. We do not praise any one of them to the exclusion of the others. . . . This is what makes for the richness of the discipline of the Church.”
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    APOSTOLIC LETTER: MULIERIS DIGNITATEM
    OF THE SUPREME PONTIFF JOHN PAUL II
    ON THE DIGNITY AND VOCATION OF WOMEN

    “…the Church gives thanks for each and every woman: for mothers, for sisters, for wives; for women consecrated to God in virginity; for women dedicated to the many human beings who await the gratuitous love of another person; for women who watch over the human persons in the family, which is the fundamental sign of the human community; for women who work professionally, and who at times are burdened by a great social responsibility; for “perfect” women and for “weak” women – for all women as they have come forth from the heart of God in all the beauty and richness of their femininity; as they have been embraced by his eternal love; as, together with men, they are pilgrims on this earth, which is the temporal “homeland” of all people and is transformed sometimes into a “valley of tears”; as they assume, together with men, a common responsibility for the destiny of humanity according to daily necessities and according to that definitive destiny which the human family has in God himself, in the bosom of the ineffable Trinity.

    The Church gives thanks for all the manifestations of the feminine “genius” which have appeared in the course of history, in the midst of all peoples and nations; she gives thanks for all the charisms which the Holy Spirit distributes to women in the history of the People of God, for all the victories which she owes to their faith, hope and charity: she gives thanks for all the fruits of feminine holiness.

    The Church asks at the same time that these invaluable “manifestations of the Spirit” (cf. 1 Cor 12:4ff.), which with great generosity are poured forth upon the “daughters” of the eternal Jerusalem, may be attentively recognized and appreciated so that they may return for the common good of the Church and of humanity, especially in our times. Meditating on the biblical mystery of the “woman”, the Church prays that in this mystery all women may discover themselves and their “supreme vocation”. ”

    Given in Rome, at Saint Peter’s, on 15 August, the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in the year 1988

    Copyright © Libreria Editrice Vaticana http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/apost_letters/documents/hf_jp-ii_apl_15081988_mulieris-dignitatem_en.html

  20. BIll-154597 July 9, 2013

    Some thoughts.

    Husbands, men and marriage are looked down on in much of society today, so for today’s young adult Catholic women you will likely have to try harder to find a man who wants to marry any woman or an American women. Many of the men hesitant to marry are good men with their eyes and ears open to divorce horror stories and women who constantly trash men. Read Dr Helen Smith’s Book about Men on Strike. To many men, marriage can look like the Vietnam War.

    What to do if you are a woman? Don’t constantly trash men for starters. Object to women who put down men and if that does not work, disassociate yourself from them. Many men do not like the big wedding productions: Bridezella ?: so don’t talk about or plan a big wedding unless you are willing to risk your chance on ever marrying. Maybe try to influence your state’s family and marriage laws if those laws are anti male: many are. If marriage ends up being legally gender neutral: ‘same sex marriage’ the courts may wipe out the legal advantages that a hetrosexual woman has in marriage: that might encourage more men consider marrying women?

    Don’t have a ‘princess’ mentality or attitude. To men, you are saying ‘give me, give me, give me’. I would not advertise your travel, cars, clothes, homes, expensive hobbies ect too much. That gives the signal that you expect the best of everything and would dump your husband at the first sign of financial issues. I have seen ‘good Catholic’ women drop their husbands when the finances got stretched.

    It took 30 or so years of feminism and Christians ignoring the warning signs for marriage and family to fall where it is. It will take prayer, time and constant effort to change what has been going on.

  21. Andrew-290721 July 9, 2013

    If we believe that marriage is a vocation, something that really matters, we can’t just kick our heels when we fail to marry and say, “Oh, it really doesn’t matter, la-de-da.” When good Catholics are unable to locate and marry other good Catholics without traveling to other planets or severely watering down the meaning of “good Catholic,” it is a black mark on all of us and a serious defeat for God. We all have legitimate reason for not feeling good about a really bad situation. Whether good Catholics marry or not really does matter and that is why Satan fights us tooth and nail.

  22. Karen-406791 July 10, 2013

    Putting things in perspective, this is a societal problem as the institution of marriage has been severely degraded… part because of feminism, and in my opinion partly because men don’t step up to the plate (fear of commitment or trophy-wife syndrome).

    And then there is the ‘Catholic’ thing and ratios, if you have been to enough Catholic Singles Groups the majority are women, the men with best trades are fought over, girls turn mean and territorial. Dating out of church might be a solution but again that is another set of social/economics problems.

  23. Gilbert-2282 July 10, 2013

    I do not normally chime in on these kinds of things but here is my 2 cents. I see a lot of frustration and in some cases anger at he church and it s view of of how marriage is or should now be. We must all remember that some of us are/were or not meant to be married and that if we do we should be always be happy, this is not the case and if we wish to be married and stay that way we may just have to leave our comfort zone. When we are young we are bolder and there are plenty of fish out there but as we age both boldness and opportunity decrease. Marriage and getting married is not like getting a degree then finding a good job, it is never ending work!!!!! even after we are fortunate to hook that perfect fish.
    Our society (the modern day one in developed countries) has forced women to undertake many of the roles of the man and the men have been forced to yield to PC like behavior.
    Both sides (male and female) lose. I believe the church is right about marriage but it is NOT the Church’s job to find you a spouse! We have free will however it is the job of the Church to insure that you are using your best judgement and will not award or reward us for making bad decisions. I am single and frankly it sucks!!! but my 3 closest friends are either divorced or are going through the process. I guess if they would have listened to mother church or God maybe they would have chosen better. The fact is more than 50 percent of marriages end up in divorce I remember not too long ago it was less that 25 percent and divorce was the D word!!! it was not even mentioned!! How far we have and changed and not for the better I might add. I hate being single but i know why I am but we should look at the bright side perhaps God and the Church saved us from a lot of hell. Perhaps we were wise enough not to make a bad choice may be God and the Church guided us right. These statistics are about 15 years ago but are relevant here.

    1/2 of all divorces occur when neither party goes to church or prays together
    1/3 of all divorces occur when one party prays or goes to church
    It drops to 1 out of 40 when BOTH parties attend church and pray together!!!!

    My conclusion: follow what the Church teaches despite how hard it may be. There is no guarantee any of us will marry if we we do that our marriage will even be a happy one
    It is up to God not us. I am not saying stop trying just try to listen to him and ask him to guide us on our way. God answers our prayers!!! we just may not like what we hear. He will either say Yes or Yes but not right now or he can say no. We should all pray and and hope that we hear his message when he gives us our answer. Heck I am 50 and I am frustrated with being single but I will not give up until my last breath or until I know I am never to marry.

  24. Gilbert-2282 July 10, 2013

    I do not normally chime in on these kinds of things but here is my 2 cents. I see a lot of frustration and in some cases anger at he church and it s view of of how marriage is or should now be. We must all remember that some of us are/were or not meant to be married and that if we do we should be always be happy, this is not the case and if we wish to be married and stay that way we may just have to leave our comfort zone. When we are young we are bolder and there are plenty of fish out there but as we age both boldness and opportunity decrease. Marriage and getting married is not like getting a degree then finding a good job, it is never ending work!!!!! even after we are fortunate to hook that perfect fish.
    Our society (the modern day one in developed countries) has forced women to undertake many of the roles of the man and the men have been forced to yield to PC like behavior.
    Both sides (male and female) lose. I believe the church is right about marriage but it is NOT the Church’s job to find you a spouse! We have free will however it is the job of the Church to insure that you are using your best judgement and will not award or reward us for making bad decisions. I am single and frankly it sucks!!! but my 3 closest friends are either divorced or are going through the process. I guess if they would have listened to mother church or God maybe they would have chosen better. The fact is more than 50 percent of marriages end up in divorce I remember not too long ago it was less that 25 percent and divorce was the D word!!! it was not even mentioned!! How far we have come and changed and not for the better I might add. I hate being single but I know why I am, but we should look at the bright side perhaps God and the Church saved us from a lot of hell. Perhaps we were wise enough not to make a bad choice maybe God and the Church guided us right. These statistics are about 15 years ago but are relevant here.

    1/2 of all divorces occur when neither party goes to church or prays together
    1/3 of all divorces occur when one party prays or goes to church
    It drops to 1 out of 40 when BOTH parties attend church and pray together!!!!

    My conclusion: follow what the Church teaches despite how hard it may be. There is no guarantee any of us will marry and if we we do, that our marriage will even be a happy one
    It is up to God not us. I am not saying stop trying just try to listen to him and ask him to guide us on our way. God answers our prayers!!! we just may not like what we hear. He will either say Yes or Yes but not right now, or he can say no. We should all pray and and hope that we hear his message when he gives us our answer. Heck I am 50 and I am frustrated with being single, but I will not give up until my last breath or until I know I am never to marry.

  25. Hudson-519364 July 10, 2013

    If we all lived in small villages we would be married off to the person down the road or in the next hut. The plethora of choice has brought many of us to use it as an excuse to say “this is not the right person” (including me). Reality – there are lots of “right people” – if you both put Christ first, spouse second and self third, your marriage will be a success. And yes attractions are important, but one day we all gonna be old and wrinkly… so physical attraction my die to a complete attraction – and what is more attractive than someone who orders their life 1-2-3 as mentioned? Not much beats that. :) So, let’s look towards our friends from long ago – and people we have come to know and love in our friend zones, and over come those constructs for the sake of serving God. Like really – what are we waiting for? I ask myself the same Q!

  26. Katis-526764 July 10, 2013

    Wow what a wonderful article..oddly I just posted about the same thing before reading this

  27. Helen-957316 July 10, 2013

    Not everyone has the financial stability to be able to travel whenever and wherever they want. Marriage is companionship and intimate friendship when two people are mature enough and committed enough to make it work. My marriage has been annulled for years and I would love to meet the right person and get married. Being single is a lonely life and it feels like a half life.

  28. Lucia-551179 July 12, 2013

    I just read James’ post and had to come back and respond to this. The process of dating, online or in real life, is more dynamic than people tend to think. When I was a regular here I didn’t let my profile sit as I wished for a man to show up. I searched and got the support of the friends I made in the chatroom and forums. It ultimately led me to reach out to the one who is my current fellow. Hopefully someday I will be a success story. Dating can’t be done passively. I will say what I always said when people complained that they couldn’t have success here: It works if you work it!

  29. Michele-989480 July 14, 2013

    Great article, Catherine! I embrace my present blessings as a single woman because enjoying my life enriches and prepares me for my future relationships(romantic or not).

  30. Maria-92259 September 22, 2013

    I just love to read everyone’s opinion,they can come from other frustrated people like me dreaming of the idea of meeting “that great man/woman”…I feel like home.
    I could read any suggestion,blog,post ,opinion and idea about finding a good man…but real life is something else.The Catholic churches are full of grandparents praying for their children,I realized also that I was stuck in a generational gap, since Catholics my age were fixing their divorces and child support issues or fixing some other personal issues .There was a day when I decided to not waste my time anymore while trying to start a family,I needed to start working on my possible “redemption” before it was too late.Immediately after seeing the first picture of an aborted child I promised to God that I will fight with “all my cells” to try to stop this from happening, so decided to get involved in a very unpopular ministry ,never looked like a good choice for a mid-aged single woman .It is called the Respect Life Ministry,my joy of living.I chose to volunteer in counseling at a Crisis Pregnancy Center and helping in spreading the word about the Project Rachel ministry for women affected by post abortion trauma.They gave me the opportunity to get involved in putting together the Spanish “Life Issues” workshop in our parishes,while encouraging chastity and a change of lifestyle in people of any age(or sex),I actively promote the education that brings the Catholic message to anyone interested in the secular world .Proudly promote the Natural Family Planning (NFP) methods and the use of Naprotechnology when families discover how difficult it is to conceive a baby…and finally we offer adoption as the most generous and kind solution to any part involved in the process.I am doing what I can in order to promote marriage and protect the most powerful and important institution “the Family”.If I have to get old with my rescue cats,that, only God knows…but I will give my fight to protect what I believe is right and will enjoy every minute knowing that bitterness and sadness will only make my life worse.I will never let go of my hope to start my own family.

  31. Gregory-862210 September 22, 2013

    I don’t experience any “blessing in disguise” in being single and childless. No one to share good times with. No one to share bad times with. No one to stand by my side. No one whose side I can stand by. I feel and believe I have so much to give, and no one to give it to. There’s just…no one. Day after day after day. I don’t see any blessing in that at all. And then I see friends and family live life the “wrong” way, without a lick of religion or faith in their lives, and yet they are married and have children. Where did I go wrong?!

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