When you’re 30 or older, many people expect you to be married, engaged, or desperately looking for a husband. I am none of the above, and that often triggers an onslaught of tactless comments from relatives, friends, and complete strangers who don’t believe that empowered women like me are completely fine with our singleness, and that we have no deadline for finding the right person.
No matter how much I explain to “concerned citizens” that I am happy with my life and don’t adhere to traditional gender roles, they continue to pester me with the question, “When are you going to get married?” Here are the most unbelievable things ever said to me about my single status.
1. Go lesbian.
A classmate I hadn’t seen in years was so baffled at my relationship status, so she started pointing out all the random guys that would pass by. “O ayan, ayaw mo diyan?” After I said no to all her instant prospects, she lectured me about why women my age need to desperately find a husband. “Yung kaibigan ko nga eh, wala na talagang mahanap na lalaki, so ayun, pumatol na lang sa tomboy!” I was so appalled at her logic. I said that her friend coming out as lesbian is not an act of desperation. That was the last time I ever met up with her.
2. Lower your standards.
A relative started pestering my mother to tell me to start lowering my standards or I will never get married. Thank God my mother is on my side.
3. Stop envying your married sister.
I was happily playing with my sister’s son, my nephew, when a “concerned” friend suddenly said, “'Wag ka na kasing mainggit. Gumawa ka na lang ng sarili mo. Kailan ka ba magpapakasal?” Since when did becoming a doting Tita equate envy?
4. Because guys are not loyal.
At a dinner with friends, one of them said to me, “Ha? Wala ka pa ring boyfriend? Aba Kate, tumatanda na tayo!” I told her I just can’t settle for just any guy. I explained that I want a guy who’s loyal and not the traditional Pinoy who wants a subservient wife. She said, “Bakit? Ano bang akala mo, na may natitira pang lalaki sa mundo na loyal?” to which I replied, “Why? Is your husband cheating? You mean you’ll just accept it when your man cheats?” She looked at the ground.
5. Old moms are not cool.
A friend explained her theory on why I should have kids immediately. “Kailangan malapit lang ang age mo sa anak mo, para pag laki nya, para lang kayong magkabarkada. Hindi maganda kung matanda ka na tapos may anak kang sobrang bata.”
6. QOL – Question Out Loud
I was at a party when a person started asking out loud for the whole room to hear, but without even facing me or making eye contact, “Kaaaaate! May tanong kami sayo!” I already knew what was coming. “Kailan ka daw magpapakasal?” she asked with a Mean Girls tone. That person happens to be a childless and single senior citizen, so I replied in an equally loud manner, “You first.”
7. Diyos ko, ‘day.
A distant relative wouldn’t stop pestering me about being unmarried and childless. I told her that I refuse to marry just any guy immediately for the sake of pleasing society. I said I’m open to adopting children and raising them as a single mom, or even artificial insemination if I have enough funds. Then another relative butted in, “Pero kasalanan 'yun sa Diyos!”
8. He’s single, so marry him.
At a party, a younger friend kept insisting that I meet her guy friend that she’s dying to set me up with. When I finally met him, I was neither attracted nor able to strike a decent conversation with him. The only word he could muster was, “Hi.” I asked her, “What is it about him that makes you think we’re a good match, anyway?” Her reply: “He’s single and he’s your age.” I asked, “What else?” She paused. “He’s single!” Face palm.
CGs, don’t ever let society make you feel that you are a lesser human being without a husband or children. Each person’s journey is different and you cannot force love. Marriage is a lifetime commitment, and you should never get in it for all the wrong reasons. If you have similar stories to share, sound off in the comments section below.