Hi Pastor Kitoto,
Thank you for the good work you are doing advising us on how to nurture healthy relationships. In our family, we are two sisters and I am the younger one.
My elder sister is married but she doesn’t seem to be in a happy relationship. Still, she keeps telling me that I need to get married and have a family.
She has a point because I feel lonely. In fact, it has reached a point where I am willing to settle for any man who is God-fearing and lonely so we can comfort each other. I have a stable job and a nice house but I feel empty inside. To make matters worse, people keep talking to me about marriage and it is quite depressing. I am 35 and willing to settle down with a serious man. Would you know such a man and is it possible for you to link us up?
Thank you for being an avid reader of the column. Life is tough and we can never downplay what people go through. Now, regarding your question, in this life, you will be faced with tough choices, but your priorities must determine the direction you take.
First, the choices you have made to make sure you are able to fend for yourself are important. One can survive without a spouse but not without basic needs. Be grateful that your job is able to provide for you.
Second, as much as marriage is a lovely, fulfilling, and honourable institution, it requires preparedness. You need to marry for the right reasons without compromising on your core values. In this column, we do not do matching or linking services in relationships because marriage is a personal decision. It’s something you need to do for yourself and take ample time to make the right choice.
That said, the aim of marriage is not to fix loneliness or to make one whole. I know of many lonely married spouses. It is important to get your drive right from the very beginning. Unless one has learned to enjoy life and affirm herself/himself and be their own best encourager, then marriage may never do this for them.
There are many lonely people who find themselves in marriage only to wonder whether this is what they are looking for. I was reading somewhere that 62.5% of lonely and overly anxious adult persons were married and living with their partner.
Although marriage is about companionship and building of family, such a dream can be elusive and difficult to reach if we fail to set the right foundation. So, as you desire marriage, analyse your intentions and align these to the principles of building a healthy and happy relationship. Be cautious of people who impose on you their skewed interpretation of marriage make you feel like you are incomplete or a failure just because you are single.
Third, learn to intelligently deal with your anxieties and to celebrate your singlehood as you build yourself up to be the woman a man would desire. Your ability to get a home, car, and advance yourself in your career are great achievements that deserve celebration. However, don’t let the fact that your sister is married intimidate you; nor let her faults in marriage discourage you.
Remember, marriage is about two spouses seeking to build an intimate union between them. Make the choice to deal with issues of insecurity and fear. This man you are looking for will also have their own fears and baggage to deal with. I would pray that marriage does not become your sole focus to the extent that you miss out on preparedness. I guess the question that many have is how to find the right partner to marry in today’s world. My answer is, that it is not about finding a person who will accept you as you are but working on yourself to overcome the unrealistic expectations you have set on yourself and those around you.
Also read: Marriage works if you are intentional
Being married or single should be taken as a gift. There are those who are single through God’s appointment, by the actions of others or by a personal choice. My suggestion is: First, don’t allow yourself or others to demean who and where you are at in life: Be proud and thankful for your single state and enjoy it to the full with dignity till God makes a way otherwise. Be focused and model yourself after women you admire d.
Second, don’t appear to be giving yourself away: When you find the right man, it will be evident because they will compliment who you are. The lie many believe is that marriage will complete me. Accept yourself for who you are now because who you are is what will offer you stability in the rough moments of any relationship. Insecurities are created when we allow external factors to dictate how we feel about ourselves. Don’t let the feeling of, “my time is running out” fill you with anxiety.
Although marriage should be part of your life goals don’t let people or unhealthy inner talk push you into making such an important decision. Unhealthy choices will negatively influence your life outcomes. Try to think beyond your current circumstances so as to avoid decisions that could cause you the greatest heartache of your life.
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