Sometimes when I walk down the hall of mirrors, I can almost physically smell it. It oozes off the girl in the black shirt in front of me. She’s hanging on to every morsel of male attention she can muster. She probably thinks
that 20 is a terribly advanced age to be single. After all, her parents met in college. Her aunts and uncles met in college. And if her pet Chihuahua had been able to go to college, she probably would have met the love of her life there too.
Not to mention, what will happen when she goes to graduate school? She’ll no longer be in the land of cute, young Christian men. Surely life will end there.
The worst part about all of this is that she probably doesn’t even sense her own desperation… but every healthy, well-balanced guy does. It’s not that I don’t understand the frustration and growing fear that can come from being single. What I am more concerned about are people jumping into bad relationships and making terrible choices.
After watching what has happened to desperate upperclassmen before me, I’m astonished to find that not one of them has ended up happy. Not one. I also find it remarkable how self-defeating grasping desperation can be. To put it plainly, behaving desperate either scares people or invites people to use you.
I think one of the most obvious marks of a desperate girl is that she defines herself by her singlehood. Instead of being grateful for the love around her, she obsesses over how very lonely she is. She also struggles with being genuinely happy for those who are in a good relationship.
Author Dawn Eden lends a lovely contrast to this malaise in her book “The Thrill of the Chaste.” Dawn’s friend Babs is a 28-year-old single woman (gasp).
Although Babs does desire to get married, she chooses to focus on being there for her friends and family rather than going out “man-hunting” every weekend.
One special thing about Babs is that she doesn’t define herself by the love she is lacking in her life. Instead, she defines herself by how much love she is able to give to others.
One evening, Babs – true to her character – goes to support her friend Dawn at a café. Richard, Dawn’s really cute musician friend, stops by to visit Dawn as well. Much to Dawn’s chagrin, Richard immediately takes an interest in Babs. It’s not that Dawn is interested in him, though she used to be. She just doesn’t understand how Babs can so easily attract the love of her life without trying when she had been doing everything that the magazines prescribed.
“The truth is, she was trying,” Dawn realizes. “She was completely open to meeting the right man – and she was trying every day to be the best human being she could be. I don’t think anyone can try harder than that – or with better results.”
I am not inviting anyone to shun the opposite gender. I am genuinely concerned about some of the decisions people make because they think the only Christians are at ORU.
I believe in having high standards when it comes to the kind of person you’re looking for. It’s important to remember though that you should expect to match whatever standards you set. As one very wise woman once told me, if you want to be with a Mr. Darcy, you must first be an Elizabeth.