(Deseret News) A pedestal too high: Is marriage too good for people?

Ciara Vesey is an enthusiastic and newly minted lawyer in Iowa who has no plans on getting married anytime soon, thank you very much.

“It just comes down to time,” she says. “I don’t have the time to get to know someone for a year. Then get engaged. It’s a 3-year process. I have to build my career.”
Vesey, 26, comes from a large family. Her parents have been married for more than 30 years. Ditto her grandparents. Her dad is even a pastor, and preaches the importance of marriage from the pulpit. Her three older brothers (ages 37, 36 and 35) all went to college and got married right after graduation.

But she and her four younger siblings are different. While they also went to college, none of them are married. “Obviously some kind of shift is going on here,” Vesey said.

Read it all.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, Children, Marriage & Family, Religion & Culture

8 comments on “(Deseret News) A pedestal too high: Is marriage too good for people?

  1. Brian of Maryland says:

    And after sacrificing her life to the counterfeit god of ambition, she’ll wonder why her personal relationships go nowhere and have not a clue.

  2. Capt. Father Warren says:

    1. And she’ll spend a lot of that gold she acquires in therapy

    2. To dull her pain; alcohol, drugs, gambling, sex

    3. And if the distractions of #2 don’t do the trick, she’ll either write a book, go on a journey to find herself, or commit suicide

    4. But if she is fortunate to make it past #3, maybe a Christian friend will be able to bring her to Jesus

  3. Sarah1 says:

    I’d like to wearily raise a point *for* the unmarried woman featured in the article. I don’t think her stance necessarily precludes marriage in the future, or means a life of therapy, “alcohol, drugs, gambling and sex” — nor committing suicide.

    I am older than she is, unmarried, and content and very happy. [i]That does not mean I do not value marriage or have closed the door on marriage should God call to my attention a likely spouse.[/i]

    I think several things are going on amongst millennials.

    [b]1)[/b] They’ve seen far too many actual marriages that involve masses of therapy, “alcohol, drugs, gambling and sex” — plus committing suicide!

    In fact, we Gen-Xers have seen the same thing. I can’t tell you the countless number of times we’ve looked at our fellow singles and said — later on in private — “wow, sure wouldn’t want to have that marriage” or “remind me never to have children” — often said with irony.

    It is hardly an argument against singleness and a serious focus on work and hobbies to say “careful — I foresee a life of misery, loneliness, alcohol, therapy, drugs, and eventual suicide unless you get married” when we’ve already seen all of that in marriage!

    The fact is . . . as society continues to melt down and our institutions fail dramatically and catastrophically, the same thing is happening to families and marriages. One has to be immensely confident — perhaps arrogant — to say “hey, I can do this so so so much better than what I’m seeing all around me!”

    [b]2)[/b] I think, more important and fundamentally worrisome than divorcing the idea of children/family from marriage [though certainly the RCs continue to promote this as a massive problem because of their own theological beliefs] is [i]the divorce of marriage from The Church and the sacramental.[/i]

    I see this everywhere, including among Christians, some of whom are not even bothering to have the sacrament of marriage at all, instead relying on justice of the peace or common law marriage.

    [i]Losing marriage actually first means losing Church and losing Christ.[/i] And the fact is that American society has far and away lost both. And that should curdle our blood far more than losing marriage, which is a mere symptom of the former.

    [b]3)[/b] There is not merely a “counterfeit god of ambition” — there is also a “counterfeit god of relationships.” I’ve found that everyone can be divided into two categories [heh] — those who gain their self-esteem and significance from their work, and those who gain their self-esteem and significance from their relationships. [i]Both are very very slender reeds from which to gain worth and value and meaning.[/i] Both are deeply impermanent and can be taken from us in a heartbeat. Both can become — and usually *are* — idols.

    [b]4)[/b] I do think that some people are called to singleness — and that back in the early part of the 20th century, that call was more muted by the societal pressure of “getting married and having children.” Not everyone is called to marriage and building a family. It has spectacular rewards. But so does singleness, if the state is not spent in wasting time, not seeing its advantages, and pining after another state, of marriage and children.

  4. Capt. Father Warren says:

    Singleness is a sacred calling. I did not mean my comments in post #2 to be any sort of condemnation of that sacred calling. And truly not all are called to marriage, forming families, etc. Those who recognized this are to be praised, because we in the Church [or in society] do not have to pick up the pieces after they have realized this too late.

    But, the woman in the story [as it was related, or as I read it] appears not to be partaking in a sacred calling toward singleness. She is in fact not listening to God at all; other than the gods of career, money, ambition, etc.

    As I noted in #2, I hope she finds Jesus and the freedom in perfect slavery to Him. But, given her situation as depicted in the article, I have seen sooooo many who do not. And those who do not, very often go down the very unfortunate path I described. I don’t have a link, but there was a recent story about the VAST number of women [single and married] who are abusing legal drugs, to escape the pain of life. I have personally seen such cases and many sound like clones of this woman.

    On the flip side, I have a friend who has lived an 85 year life of sacred singleness. That her life was truly blessed this way is reflected in her joy and lack of regrets that she lived the path God called her to be on.

  5. Capn Jack Sparrow says:

    Thanks to Sarah and #4. So, so true. The words of Paul are manifestly true to me, having been happily married for 18 plus years. Marriage is difficult; and absolutely wonderful! Singleness is a special gift as well–much, much needed in the church.

    Sarah, your singleness, if offered up as a gift to God, is indeed a sacred calling. Use it well.

    I Corinthians 7:17-24
    Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him. This is my rule in all the churches. Was anyone at the time of his call already circumcised? Let him not seek to remove the marks of circumcision. Was anyone at the time of his call uncircumcised? Let him not seek circumcision. For neither circumcision counts for anything nor uncircumcision, but keeping the commandments of God. Each one should remain in the condition in which he was called. Were you a bondservant when called? Do not be concerned about it. (But if you can gain your freedom, avail yourself of the opportunity.) For he who was called in the Lord as a bondservant is a freedman of the Lord. Likewise he who was free when called is a bondservant of Christ. You were bought with a price; do not become bondservants[e] of men. So, brothers, in whatever condition each was called, there let him remain with God.

    I Corinthians 7:32-35

    I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided. And the unmarried or betrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband. I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.

  6. Ralph Webb says:

    My first reaction was this: She’s only 26. Yes, in decades past, that would have been enough for some people to conclude that she’ll never get married, but relatively few get married by that age these days. (The main exception seems to be in some Christian college ministry circles where a large number get married right out of college.) That’s especially true in metropolitan areas, where it’s pretty rare to see people getting married before 30.

    That’s not necessarily selfish. Many people don’t settle into what might be a solid career until their 30s (and these days, that solidity is very much up for grabs). With studies showing a lot of college grads moving back home in their 20s, often because they cannot get enough work to support themselves (some are finding that employers are not letting anyone work more than 30 hours a week due to Obamacare), waiting may well be for the best.

  7. Capt. Father Warren says:

    [i]waiting may well be for the best[/i]

    If one views the blessed state of Holy Matrimony as being dependent on:
    -going to college
    -finishing college
    -finding work
    -moving away from mommy and daddy
    -establishing a career
    -buying enough things

    Then yes, I agree. By all means do wait, or, go read the bible, or go see a minister who can explain what Holy Matrimony is about.

  8. Country Doc says:

    My single son who is very successful and happy and preaches each week was communicating with a young seminarian in a Reformed seminary about questions he wanted help about, such as exclusive Psalmody, church order, various theological questions. He finally confided with my son that he was really struggling with lust and was loosing. He asked for his advice. I perked up to see what he would say. He replied that Apostle Paul said first to get a wife! He also had other points but that really was great.