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I'm just a girl in the world.. that kind of likes to write. Mom of 2 teen girls & work as Talent Attraction & Marketing professional. Oh, & I'm addicted to my phone, Social Media, HR/Talent Marketing & Caffeine... you can learn more about me at www.linkedin.com/in/theonecrystal

Not the ‘Marrying Kind of Girl’

Lately it seems all I’ve done is work… and care for my girls, of course.  But outside of that, I’ve not had time to do much of anything:  gym, tanning, friends, even dating has been put on the back-burner.  Of course, to those that know me well?  That last category comes as no surprise.  I’ve done that for years; so much so that when my friend Deb came into town a week ago we had an interesting conversation…. because the last time she’d come into town?  Was the first time she’d ever seen me in a relationship.

Of course, I’d been in ‘relationships’ of one sort or another prior to that – varying degrees of “seriousness;” but nothing that made me consider taking – or even talking – about marriage.  So, Deb was rightly shocked a couple of holiday seasons ago when I admitted I was considering the concept of settling down with the then-boyfriend; as it was the first she’d heard of in nearly a decade.  Of course, it was nonsense; but as a friend, she was dutifully supportive.  Now that the relationship was far past ‘over;’ I guess she felt safe to express what she really thought:  I’m not ‘marriage material.’

Don’t get me wrong,” she said, “It’s not that you’re not good enough to marry… you’re just not the marrying kind of girl.” 

I seriously think it would have stung less if she’d slapped me outright.  Not the ‘marrying kind?’  Was I defective or something??

Seeing my obvious discomfort (1) she started babbling, trying to make it better,  “I mean it as a compliment, really.  You don’t need someone to take care of you; not everyone’s like that.  You have all these dreams and things you want to do and you’re just going to do them; not letting a husband ground you.  And they do, you know.

Suddenly, I felt like I was back in the 1950s; the conversation felt surreal.  Were we back to the point where women had to choose?  Where “wife” was the title, with eventual promotion to “Wife/Mother” and “family” the Company a woman worked for; with the kitchen as her office??   It seemed as though I should have been asking for my obligatory copy of “When You Marry” by Duvall/Hill – or perhaps my well-intentioned friend was pointing out that I clearly missed it when it would have mattered.

But this is not the 1950s; women no longer have to be subjected to thoughts such as the ones published in Life magazine, where they stated, “[Women] should use their minds in every conceivable way… so long as their primary focus and activity is of the home.”  We’ve thankfully moved to a point where it’s well understood that, just like men, women can have both a family & aspirations outside of that; without the two being mutually exclusive.

For me, they’re not.  I actually was married once; albeit I was practically an infant when I became a wife, and then subsequently a Mother. (2)  I truly love being a parent and I enjoyed a lot that comes with being married. (3)  As with how I approach everything, for awhile I threw myself into that 1950s housewife role.  I learned to cook, I laid my husband’s clothing out at the end of the bed & can say that I never put my kids in daycare and often brought my husband his lunches.  It’s not that it wasn’t enough, it’s that it wasn’t the right person.  For the first several years of my marriage, I ran around being the ‘faithful fool’ (4) to an ideal that wasn’t real.  The institution wasn’t the problem; it was the partner I entered into it with.

I learned my lesson and it’s served me well.  While I could have been married a few times over in the last decade; they weren’t right.  The point of what was written above was that there was a time in our history where the choice we had to make was either/or; in some ways, that was probably simpler.  Today, we have to discern something far more difficult:

  • what fits with what we want from life
  • who is best suited to take that journey with us
  • how do we fit into what they want?

That all has to sync and it’s a tall order; which is probably why the guy in the suit performing the ceremony starts out with, “Marriage is not to be entered into lightly, but reverently, and with great consideration…”

I turn 34 this July; I’ve already had my children.  Not part of the rush to procreate, I’m able to look at marriage as what I see it to be:  a partnership… the ability to share my life with someone & share theirs in return.  I’m all for that; when I meet someone with whom that partnership makes sense.  My friend was wrong; I am the ‘marrying kind;’ just not the ‘marry anyone kind.’  While I want to be able to bake my cakes, like the wives of yesteryear; I want to be able to also eat & sell them, too… it’s not either/or, it’s BOTH.  

Kitchen and cleaning appliances like washing machines, fridges and Hoovers were advertised as being ‘every woman’s dream’.” 
Learn History – USA A Divided Union – Women in the Fifties

(1)  She said I was frowning; I knew I had to bite my lip to keep from saying something stupid, so I don’t doubt it

 (2) I kept the Mother title happily.

(3) I’ll concede I’ll always be happier with a housekeeper; while I enjoy dusting, there’s not much else I really like about housework & I’m horrid when it comes to ironing.

 (4) To fully understand this reference, you’d need to listen to  “Faithful Fool,” from the now-defunct band, Copperwound – I’d tried to find a copy of it online somewhere, but couldn’t – so, here’s the download.  This is who I was, and my biggest fear when it comes to relationships, I guess.  Good song, regardless. 🙂

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7 Comments on “Not the ‘Marrying Kind of Girl’”

  1. JacPoindexter (@ValueIntoWords) 06/03/2012 at 10:23 am #

    Great post, Crystal. It’s ‘worth the wait’ and you’ll know when you’ve found your ‘it’ guy. I was 43 when I remarried (after my first marriage, which wasn’t to my ‘it’ guy). There is no timeline for remarriage! I often saw my divorced friends remarrying within a year or 2 or so after their divorces, and I thought, ‘wow,’ lucky them for finding that someone so soon! I dated … and like you, found opportunities to remarry, but they didn’t ‘fit!’

    But waiting for the right fit was worth it, as it will be for you! I love how you succinctly and impactfully described what we have to ‘discern’ in today’s world:

    * what fits with what we want from life
    * who is best suited to take that journey with us
    * how do we fit into what they want?

    I am nodding yes, yes, yes (with vigor) to all 3 of the above! Continuing your patient, focused journey will result in the relationship of your dreams!

    Best wishes to you!

    Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter

    • TheOneCrystal 06/04/2012 at 9:33 am #

      Thanks, Jacqui! Always nice to hear I’m not totally off my rocker in my line of thinking & so glad to hear you found the ‘right fit’ for you. :).
      Cheers, CM

      • Andrea 06/19/2012 at 3:40 am #

        I love the picture of the housewife cleaning the dishes. Can you tell me where I can download that picture in high resolution?

      • TheOneCrystal 06/19/2012 at 8:53 am #

        Andrea, I originally got it from a blog called “Heart of my Husband.” You can find it here. http://heartofmyhusband.blogspot.com/2011/08/50s.html

      • Andrea 06/19/2012 at 9:01 am #

        Thank you for your quick answer!

        I have found the picture somewhere else. Plan59.com

  2. Rayanne Thorn 06/03/2012 at 5:27 pm #

    I love this post. After two marriages, I thought I was not the “marrying kind” as I had decided it was not the institution with which I wanted a membership.

    You are right on target with the lesson you learned. Marriage AND partnerships, both, require a little give and take.

    I am 48 and finally found “the one” – don’t give up! And I do not agree with Deb, you are the marrying kind, you just aren’t a marrying fool.



  3. Brittny 06/04/2012 at 9:24 am #

    So, are you still friends with Deb? Love this post by the way:)

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