An Open Letter To My Married Friends
Dear My Married friends,
Let me start by explaining that all my words are coming out of utmost love and respect for you. I am happy that you are married. I applaud you for not giving up on marriage like I did. There is no bitterness here at all. In talking to my single friends over the years, I realize that there is a common feeling we all have about you. I am therefore writing this letter to you on behalf of all my single friends. Again, please note that this letter is coming from a good place and that I have the highest respect for the institution of marriage.
Here are 3 things we want all our married friends to know.
The marital problems and difficulties you share with us impacts us more than you know
We were friends before you got married and we remain friends after you got hitched. In some cases, we met after you got married. No matter how we met, you know we will always be here for you. We will never discourage you from sharing or complaining to us about your marital problems. We all complain about our relationships to a third party sometimes. Complaining about relationships problems is not unique to married folks only. We, your single friends come to you for advice or to complain sometimes.
Here is the problem though. The single issues and drama we share with you will not impact or affect you in any way. Your marriage problems and difficulties on the other hand, does impact us when you share them. Your marital drama either make us glad that we are still single or you scare the crap out of us.
Let me explain further. First of all, you may not realize it but you are brutally honest with your single friends when you share your marital problems. There is a reason why you are brutally honest with us. You know we will not judge you. We have all the time in the world to listen to you. You tell us things you will be ashamed to share with your priest or your pastor. You are brutally honest with us because your married friends may set you straight if you go to them with your problems. Your married friends will make you feel like your problems are nothing compared to theirs. You need your married friends to know that your union is perfect.
You won’t hear this response from me. “Is that what you complaining about? You should hear what my husband does to me.”
Sometimes, we learn a thing or two from you when you share your marital issues. I must admit that sometimes we find your drama very entertaining. You are giving me a break from my sometimes lonely existence.
So I am all ears. Screw Netflix! Hit me with some real life drama!
Tell me again about how your wife just lays there like a piece of log during sex
Tell me again about how your husband has lost his freaky side
Tell me again about how your husband does not believe in Valentine’s day anymore; about how he never takes you out to nice restaurants anymore
Tell me again about how your wife is no longer sexually appealing to you because she gained weight after childbirth
Tell me again about how after 10 years of marriage, the same person who could not keep his hands of you barely touches you. I especially love the part where you guys used to do it in the backseat of your car, in the kitchen, in the guest bathroom at your parent’s house
Tell me again about how your husband is “so African” because he won’t hold your hand in public
Tell me again about how your husband is “so African” because he won’t say I love you or kiss goodnight
Tell me again about how your wife is draining you financially because of her extended family needs back in the motherland
I am your marriage therapist. Of course, I am highly qualified for the role because I am not married. It is interesting how you want me to just listen and not offer any advice. I am a sounding board to you. But hey, like I said, I do not mind listening to you. I do not mind been your sounding board. I do not mind dedicating hours listening to your sometimes painful marital problems. I just want you to be aware of a fact you may be ignoring every time you come to me.
The fact that your marital problems impacts my outlook of marriage.
Remember how you always tell me that I am lucky because I am single? Remember how you tell me you wish you were in my shoes sometimes? Your marital drama is so messed up, you actually make me question if marriage is even worth it. Every time you tell me I am lucky, I am not sure how to feel. It is no longer fun when all our conversations somehow end up with you talking about how difficult marriage is and how it is just the worst decision anyone could make. How do you think I feel given the fact that I want to get married one day?
When I get off the phone with some of you, I am reminded suddenly that I actually enjoy the sound of silence; that I miss the sound of silence.
We do not wish to remain single forever
I want you to consider a sobering fact. Despite your views and thoughts about us, please know that most of us actually want to join your club. We do not wish to stay single forever. Do not look at our Facebook postings and think we do not want to settle down. Most of our outings have a dual purpose. We want to be out of the house and have some fun. At the same time, we are hoping to meet that one special person and join your club. We do want to get married despite the image you see us portray. We know marriage is not an easy club to join. We don’t walk around thinking ours will be better than yours.
We are really imposters masquerading as if we don’t want to get married.
We also have our own issues. The process we go through trying to find someone can be very frustrating and difficult. Our hearts are getting broken out there, our hopes are getting dashed, we are hemorrhaging money on dates and the search, we are dealing with constant harassment from people we don’t want to be with. Let’s not forget the messy break ups and the constant reminders from you and our families to settle down. None of these issues we are facing is having an impact on you, right?
Here is what you should do sometimes:
You should ask us sometimes how we are feeling about going through life without a partner
You should ask us sometimes the challenges we face living alone and not having someone to share our lives with
You should ask us sometimes about our success stories and our big moments; not a lot of people are interested in our accomplishments and stories
You should ask us about our fears of living alone; our fear that we may not wake up one day and no one will know for days
You should ask us about how we take care of ourselves when we get sick
You should ask us how we manage to pay all the bills by ourselves with one income
When you come crying to us, you are adding to our worries. We care about you so we hurt when you are hurting. Over the years, we have heard some of you say, “I remember what it was like to be in your shoes.” Sometimes we wonder if you really do remember. We wonder if you remember the fact that the single life can be extremely lonely. The single life can be rough on certain days’ especially holidays.
All we are asking is that you remember what it was like for you before you start telling us about your marital issues. All we are ask is that you be considerate of the impact you having on our views of marriage when you talk to us about your problems.
Don’t bring your other half EVERYWHERE
We are friends and we like to connect with you still. We are however, lone wolves. We don’t always like to be a third wheel. We have nothing against your partners but you do not have to always bring them along every time we meet up. Sometimes we just want to catch up with you over lunch or dinner. We have single juicy secrets and stories to share with you and laugh about. It gets awkward if you show up with Adwoa swinging from your arm.
Do come out and listen to us sometimes, encourage us, give us hope, be in our corner. We do not want to hear about how your husband Abiola, snores like a horse and keeps you up at night. Do pick up the tab for us sometimes. We could use a break from the cash we are spending on dates.
Today, we just want to chill and have some laughs with you. Tomorrow, you can call me and tell me all about Abiola’s snoring.
Let me just add that we are not a bad influence on your other half. Yes, I know you think I am a bad influence on your partner. Your other half told me. Like I said, you are all brutally honest with us. Seriously though, we have no intentions of taking your other half on a date hunting expedition. Trust me, if we are on the prowl, we are rolling with other lone wolves. We are not taking your other half to a place full of insanely hot singles and tempting him or her.
When we do go out with your other half, we are very protective of them. Don’t think your other half is doing the naughty things his or her single friends are doing at a bar or a club. Have some faith in your other half. If your partner steps out of line, we’ve got your back. The last thing we want is to be blamed for your failed marriage.
My Married Friends, we will always be here for you. You know we love you. We have remained friends with you through your crazy moments, through your marriage drama, your little moments and your big moments. We remained friends with you when you went back to your partner after you caught him or her cheating. We don’t get mad when we see you in public swooning over the same person you were complaining about last night. We don’t want you to stop coming to us. We just want you to be aware of the impact you are having on us. We just want you to ask us how we are doing sometimes, check on us, encourage us.
I know my advice does not mean much to you. However, I have had a front row seat to your marriages so let me just say this.
Fight for each other
Go to God when you are having problems. Make Him your sounding board
Surround yourself with good Christian friends and couples
Be considerate when you run crying to your single friends about the difficulties in your marriage
Let me conclude this letter with these wise words by Jimmy Durante from his song “The Glory of Love.”
You gotta laugh a little
You gotta cry a little
You gotta win a little
You gotta lose a little
That is the story of Love
That is the glory of Love
Your Single Brothers and Sisters
PS: We have decided to start charging for our listening services. It not much. Just $100 every hour we have to listen to your drama. We think the price is reasonable. I am sure you will agree 🙂