As women, it’s easy for us to identify and understand our own issues when dealing with expectations. Now these expectations can include: career, marriage, and kids, brought to us by society, religion, or family. But rarely do we think about the expectations of the opposite sex. What’s going on in a man’s world, what is it like for them? It’s hard for us to ever really understand them because men are just complex human beings, but I think it’s time for us to try to put ourselves in their shoes. Women…I’m prepared for you to hate me.
Although it is 2018 and women are rising more than ever (woohoo), the general societal role of a man is still popularly known as the provider. In the United States it’s more likely for a woman to be the head of a household but it is not a part of the majority when considering the rest of the world that hasn’t caught up with our beliefs yet. With that being said; there is a lot of pressure on a man to live up to his “role”. Men believe that there is a certain age to complete career goals and if those goals aren’t met by a certain age they feel unaccomplished and discouraged. Understand how hard and unfair that is. Let me make this clear, I’m not saying that you should be lazy and wait forever to make your dreams happen, but I’m saying that great things take time. And It is okay to make career changes at 28 and go with something that maybe doesn’t make as much money but makes you happy. Also, anyone that you’re with shouldn’t hold you back from doing what you need to do. Especially if you are in a relationship, these are the things you need to be selfish about because the same woman who is keeping you from your dreams, saying that you need to hurry up so she can get her ring, is the same woman that you could sacrifice it all for and then wake up the next morning and can leave you. Which leads me to my next point….
But besides career, an expectation I’d like to focus on is marriage. After speaking to a lot of different men, a lot of men that I know feel like they MUST get married before or around 30. *if only I could insert my favorite emoji here*. That really boggles me. The other day I had a conversation with my cousin on the fact that fewer men are getting married today and that more men are wanting to either live the bachelor lifestyle or just remain in long-term relationships. I was looked at crazy when I said I totally agree with and support that lifestyle. Let me just add in that I’ve never really believed in marriage. I’ve always thought marriage was beyond pointless and could ruin relationships. So that’s probably why I have the philosophies I have. BUT, I don’t think that anyone should get married until they are ready to because there is no age limit for that. I know men that have just married because they felt it was “time” or had pressure from their significant other because they were approaching 30 or 31 and that is the biggest mistake you could make. You should get married because you are in love and because you genuinely feel like it’s something you are ready for, not because you feel like you must. Are you really being true to yourself and the person you’re marrying if you do that? No, you are not and your intuition (see previous post) will tell you so.
Let me speak to my ladies for a second, you don’t get kudos if you’re pressuring your man for a ring because he’s turning 30. First of all, you should never pressure anyone to do anything especially propose to you. Chances are if they’re not doing it, *hint hint* they’re not ready. This is what I meant when I said it’s easy for us to acknowledge our own expectations and what we want but we don’t always put ourselves in a man’s shoes. Well, maybe we should begin to look at things from another POV. If you find yourself with a man who’s getting older but not popping the question, maybe it’s time to have a talk instead of an argument and ask them what they feel like they need. If they say they need more time and you don’t want to wait, then let them go and give them the time they need from a distance. Before pressuring someone to marry you, go find someone who can give you what you need without the pressure. Now back to the men, I’m all for living the bachelor lifestyle or being involved in a long-term relationship if marriage is never an option for you but it’s also important to let possible prospects aware of your intentions. It is never okay to string someone along knowing damn well that you can never give them the things that they desire. Let that person go to find someone who can provide them with what they need and find yourself someone who has the same agendas as you. Believe me, there are plenty of women out there that do NOT want to get married.
Men, I want to speak to you the same way I speak to my female friends because in the end we all want to be equal right? It’s okay to feel stuck, it’s okay to be 30 and not have your career figured out. It’s also okay to not be in a rush to make any life changing decisions like having kids and getting married. It’s actually okay if you never want to get married either. I don’t judge you, I salute you for being true to yourself and your happiness. Women have broken out of stereotypes of only being housewives and child bearers, I think it’s time to break out of your stereotype also. You don’t have to be the provider or bold and strong for a family, you don’t even have to start a family if you don’t want to. Live in your happiness, whatever that may entail.
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