EDITOR'S NOTE: He Said-She Said is a biweekly advice column for singles featuring a question from a Crosswalk.com reader with responses from a male and female point of view. If you've got a question about anything related to singleness or living the single life, please submit it to email@example.com (selected questions will be posted anonymously).
QUESTION: There is a group of 9 of us, 4 couples and one "odd man out." This single guy is by ALL accounts a lovely fellow, respected even by people who loathe him. Judging by the way he treats women (including the ladies in our friend group) and children, the chances are he'd be a brilliant husband and father. Women have generally noticed these good qualities about him; he never need be short of female company.
However he rarely dates, which puzzles us. He will be 33, and says he would love to be with someone, but he says he finds "masculine women" a turn off. (He pointed to "masculine" traits in the ladies in our group as an example. Yes, it caused offense at the time, but they actually have happier relationships now they have made some changes). On the other hand, he has always been clear that he does not want a partner who is a "wallpaper" or a "shrinking violet."
Unfortunately, "masculine" ladies are all around these days as "femininity" in women is scoffed at. Does this mean Dan is going to remain single?
Coming from a position comparable to that of your friend, I may be able to speak to some of his curious behavior.
Dating in a church setting can be similar to that of being back in high school. There are usually many well-meaning folks who actively, anxiously and emotionally get involved. If things don’t work out, it sometimes causes a post-relationship awkwardness that can affect a congregation. Along those lines, guys can sometimes get re-classified as being a “player” if too many of these relationships go astray.
Maybe Dan is just trying to get to know women in a non-dating friendship before asking out the one he seriously wants to pursue.
I’m not quite sure what you mean by a “masculine woman,” but as we Singles grow older (alone), we all (out of necessity) have to be more independent in order to survive, especially women. I have single female friends who own chain saws, power tools, shoot guns and drive trucks, but they are still very feminine and extremely attractive. At times their “femininity” may be overshadowed by their abilities to get things done and some of their actions may seem “masculine” in nature, but in no way that constitutes them as being “masculine women” (in my book).
As you saw firsthand with some of your friends, we all have room for and are capable of making alterations and improvements, and maybe some of the women around your area just haven’t had the motivation to do so, or had the opportunity for someone else to take charge.
Every Single has their list of wants and desires, but what I had on my list at twenty was no longer applicable at thirty, which was no longer desired at forty. As we age (and hopefully mature) some things just aren’t as important as we once thought.
Sophie Tucker, singer, comedian and actress, put it this way: “From birth to age 18 a girl needs good parents. From 18 to 35 she needs good looks. From 35 to 55 she needs a good personality. From 55 on, she needs good cash.”
Maybe Dan just needs to edit his list so he will find that non-masculine yet non-shrinking violet he is looking for.
It is hard to know where the line is, as a woman. When do you stand up for equal rights, or be assertive with confidence? When do you be soft, smell great, and ask for help? I don't always know where that line is, nor do I think most men do. In today's times our roles continue to change.
So, is Dan going to remain single? Only God knows that answer. But, based on what you are sharing, he has created a list of what he wants in a woman. He is looking for a woman who can "bring home the bacon but also fry it up in pan," to quote an old perfume commercial from the 1980's. I think today most woman are doing that. But, from a spiritual stand point, he is also looking for a woman who would give up her career to stay home with the kids, homeschool them in Christian values, and conduct an intellectually challenging conversation over dinner. Shoot, I would love the same in a husband!
So is he being too picky, choosing to wait on the right girl with the right balance, as opposed to dating just to date? No, he is being wise. You have but one heart. Please be choosy when it comes time to give it away. In the meantime, support and encourage Dan, don't push. Learn from his wisdom of waiting for God's best.
…Turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding
HE is … Cliff Young, a Crosswalk.com contributing writer and a veteran single of many decades. He has traveled the world in search of fresh experiences, serving opportunities, and the perfect woman (for him) and has found that his investments in God, career and youth ministry have paid off in priceless dividends.
SHE is ... Kris Swiatocho, the President and Director of TheSinglesNetwork.org Ministries and FromHisHands.com Ministries. Kris has served in ministry in various capacities for the last 25 years. An accomplished trainer and mentor, Kris has a heart to reach and grow leaders so they will in turn reach and grow others. She is also the author of three books.
DISCLAIMER: We are not trained psychologists or licensed professionals. We're just average folk who understand what it's like to live the solo life in the twenty-first century. We believe that the Bible is our go-to guide for answers to all of life's questions, and it's where we'll go for guidance when responding to your questions. Also, it's important to note that we write our answers separately.
GOT A QUESTION? If you've got a question about anything related to singleness or living the single life, please submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org (selected questions will be posted anonymously). While we are unable to answer every inquiry, we do hope that this column will be an encouragement to you. Click here to visit the He Said-She Said archives.
Publication date: June 25, 2015