It’s not a hidden fact that things are changing in the dating game. Women are becoming stronger and wanting more out of life than just children and babies. We now want it all, but we still want to find prince charming and want our happy ending.
I have a job that is intimidating to many men , but it does not still take away the hope that one day prince charming will come on his white horse and rescue me. Well, maybe I’m not that clichéd anyway and maybe I don’ need to be rescued, but I do believe in true love, and that there is someone for everyone. I would rather wait and find the right one to spend my life with then settle and be miserable or worse, find myself in a heart breaking situation.
The Catholic Church seems to disagree with me saying that, “ Women should marry earlier and not be too picky if they want to avoid an Aussie man drought”. (Have they really counted every single man in this country and don’ t they have better things to do with their time?).
I have always been taught to be fussy when it comes to the opposite sex and I think that it is a good thing. I have respect for myself and I know how I want and deserve to be treated. But Father Tony Kerin maintains we are too choosy and missing out. He also says, “the rate of marriage had halved despite nearly 4 in 5 people still wanting to settle down.” Father Tony, marriage is not for everyone, and we can still settle without saying I do. (And I would love to know if your research is from within your Catholic following or the entire population of Australia). And if you want more people to marry than why not legalise same sex marriage too?
It seems to me recently that there are so many messages telling women to give up on their fantasies and settle, all for the sake of marriage and children. As previously having worked as a family mediator, assisting in the process of divorce, I’m not sure it sits so well with me. After seeing the impact of marital conflict on young children and future generations, I am concerned about these messages from the church. Are they doing good by telling us to walk down the aisle early or helping us to contribute to the ever increasing divorce rate and adding pressure to our already hectic schedules? One of the reasons I became a sexologist was to unlock the code to happy and satisfying relationships and this just seems to be one giant leap backwards!
Recently, I commented in my blog on an article in The Daily Telegraph – “Waiting for Mr Right can be wrong.” This article demonstrated a similar message stating that, ““Aussie women are being urged not to be too proud in their search for Mr Right, as new research reveals many are shocked to find it hard to conceive after 35. “
However, ironically in the same paper I also found an article title, “The Baby Breakthrough: Can We Give Birth Forever?” This article outlined new research from Massachusetts, which reveals a significant breakthrough in combating infertility. The findings suggest that stem cells in ovaries could be harnessed to produce eggs in older women as well as younger women who have undergone invasive cancer treatments.
Would I want to settle for the sake of conceiving easily and run the risk of divorce and harm to my children (who never asked to be born or brought into this world?). Or find Mr Right later in life and have to struggle with conceiving. I will take the risk! I would rather be happy then miserable. I would rather give my children the best chance in life, then put them at risk for my selfish decision to bring them into a family that might not be ideal or ready.
I have also not ruled out adoption. There are so many children in this world who need saving. If for some reason I couldn’t conceive naturally, I would think it as a privilege to be able to give an innocent child a second chance at life. (If Ange and Brad can do it ……)
I do understand what the Church is saying and why they are saying it. But this thought is along the lines of seeing marriage and children as the ultimate happiness in life. I’m not saying that it isn’t entirely, but I have seen people hold this as the be all and end all, and when they get there, that feeling of, “it’s just not what I thought it would be”, can kick in. Marriage and children are hard work. Yes they make you happy and fulfilled, but I think it is important for women to have another life, and something else to focus on. And I do think we can have it all, there is no harm in trying anyway.
There are no certainties in life, expect for the fact that we are born and eventually die. Unfortunately, I am not going to be able to tell you it will all work out. You could get married to the man of your dreams later in life and end up being divorced. (You could also end up being divorced and really happy). With this level of uncertainty looming around us, shouldn’t we just focus on what makes us happy now and gives meaning and purpose to our lives, whatever that may be – having it all or giving it all up for a family. Prince charming might just be a fantasy for some of us, but no one should take away the hope that we can find him. There is a point where we can be too fussy, but this is not it. Let the search for Mr Right and a fairytale ending continue!
To the Catholic Church, (and please don’t think I am dismissing the entire religion nor loosing respect), please leave women alone! We have enough troubles, issues and problems without you telling us we need to give up our hopes and dreams to have children and settle down with Mr Average. Let us be, and let us be happy! A happy parent is a better parent anyway. If you really care about people and future generations and not just procreating the world, then support us in our endeavor to have it all and provide a better life for our children.
Happy doing exactly what you want in life,
Dr Nikki G