I Used to Like Being Single...What Happened?
- Kris Swiatocho and Cliff Young
- 2013 10 Oct
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 firstname.lastname@example.org (selected questions will be posted anonymously).
QUESTION: Here's my situation: I never wanted to get married. Ever since I was young, I always thought it was God's will for me to be single. I never lamented my singleness. I enjoyed hanging out with guys and even had a few crushes, but never anything serious. A few months ago, an older woman at church tried to set me up with the son of a couple who attends our church. He had come to church occasionally, but I never noticed him before. The "matchmaker" claimed that he was interested in me but was too shy to ask me for my phone number, so I gave it to her to give to him. This young man's and my parents' attend the same Bible study and were very excited that we might "be a match."
After a few weeks, he finally called to ask me out. We went dancing and had a great time. The next weekend, I invited him to go to an opera and we had a great time again. A few days later we went for a long walk where he suddenly started asking questions like, "So what are you looking for in a guy?" and "Do you ever want to get married?" I answered these questions by saying, "I've always felt that God has meant for me to be single, but I'm open to God changing my heart." The next week, he went on a mission trip and I texted him to say that I would pray for him. After he got back, I texted him to find out how the trip went; he called me to say that the trip was good and that he would tell me all about it next time we saw each other. Two days later, he texted me, "Hi, how are you?" I replied, "Fine. You?" That's the last I've heard from him.
One week later: no response. I wasn't too worried about it when the "matchmaker" told me that he had told her that I was "too bold and independent and that there were lots of red flags about me as a potential wife." I was horrified! We have talked at most 4 hours, so how can he claim to know me as a person? Secondly, although I knew our parents secretly were hoping we would hit it off, I was just trying to get to know him as a friend. The fact he dismissed me as "wife material" after seeing me 3 times seems absurd. As a sister in Christ, I am disappointed that he's not even interested in being my friend.
Here's my predicament: should I confront him about the things he divulged to the "matchmaker?" I would like to call him out on the claim of "knowing someone" after 3 outings! I am a very shy person and don't share things quickly, so he doesn't truly know me. Also, God has been changing my heart over the past month and I was definitely becoming interested in him as a potential-more-than-friend. I know that a guy is supposed to do the pursuing of a woman, but I feel that he is tossing me out before really knowing me. Should I just accept that he's not interested and move on? Or should I prayerfully pursue him? I miss being contented with singleness!
Although his assessment of you seems rather hasty, formulating a conclusion after just three times together, I would venture to say he may have given you more time than most would in today’s world.
I am not in any way condoning his response, specifically his short-sighted evaluation or his way of dealing with the situation, but many of us seem to make the same kinds of judgments of others with even less factual information.
We notice a person who is taller or shorter or younger or older than whom we had envisioned for ourselves and discount them as "not the one" for us. We may see someone of another ethnicity or culture and immediately deem them not a prospective mate. We might even make a conclusion about a person based upon how he or she may be dressed (that one time), what they may (or may not) own, where the person lives or with whom they may be fraternizing.
God does not judge by external appearance (Galatians 2:6).
It is not “right” or “fair,” but with the advent of social media we have a false sense of “knowing” people based upon little or no information, and oftentimes don’t take the time to really get to know a person before making a decision or concluding something about them.
For whatever reason (outside of your control), he decided to write you off.
As difficult as it may be, try not to take “his dismissal of you as wife material” personally. In essence, what he may have discovered is you aren’t what he is seeking in a wife. That does not make either of you bad, wrong, deficient, or in any way or not marriage-worthy. It just means he is looking for something else.
Several years ago I wrote an article for Crosswalk.com entitled, What Men Really Think About Successful Independent Women. You may find some interesting (or humorous) thoughts from it and it may shed some light on your situation.
If you do have an opportunity to run into him, you could just ask, “Why did you quit calling?” and let him explain, but confronting him with what you heard from a third-party may put your “matchmaker” in a difficult confidentiality position.
Honestly, this guy does not seem interested in finding a friend; he's interested in finding a wife. To me, the fact that you went out alone each time indicates a date (romantic) not a friendship (especially if he paid). And because he was looking for wife-material and not just a friend, you were not who he had in mind. Now whether his way of determining that is right or wrong, it will still end up in the same place...you are not the one. And to be honest, even if you had the opportunity to ask him how he could possibly know enough about you to make this decision after 3 dates, it still won't matter.
I can tell you from my own experience of dating and being single a long time that I personally can know the first few minutes of conversation whether I think a guy has potential to be my husband. But at the same time, I always, always try and pursue a friendship because like you, I want God to be in control. I may at first not see any potential, but over time God could change my heart. I would like to think that this guy would have done the same - that he would have been clear up front that he would like to hang with you, get to know you, be friends, be around groups of others, etc. before officially having a "date." But, it seems you both jumped past the friendship and went straight to the dating part. If he is solely focused on getting married, he is not going to take that time (even if he should) to be friends.
So my advice is to let it go. You know who you are in Christ. You want who God has for you, not second best. If you are independent and he doesn't like that, then there will be a guy that will come along who values that. Remember, what is a red flag to one guy is not to another. You do not have to defend yourself. You do not owe this guy anything. It's good you found out now then later. In time, your heart will heal.
Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails (Proverbs 19:21).
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 email@example.com (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: October 10, 2013