In this week’s installment, Anonymous Married Dude reflects on how he went from single to married and gives some amazingly good advice to unmarried Dudes everywhere. Read on and enjoy.
So, tell me about yourself, vaguely.
I was raised in a Christian home, but I was not born again until my adult years. I came to seminary single, and did not marry until after graduation. I was single until my 30s.
Current relationship status?
Dude, what’s UP with the Christian dating scene? Seriously. Diagnose.
I can’t speak much to our particular church’s dating scene, because my wife didn’t attend there until we became engaged. I can speak a little about the seminary dating scene, and yes, it’s a little weird. It seems to be one of two extremes. On one extreme is the hyper manly dude who vomits professions of undying love and concrete plans on a girl at the first meeting. He thinks it’s godly and manly to gush forth the plan of God for both their lives – of course, God neglected to tell the girl the plan. If the girl isn’t interested, then he thinks God calls him to be annoying until the girl gives in (this can happen, but it isn’t the norm).
The other extreme is the guy who thinks he has to be best friends with a girl before he can even ask her for coffee, as though, if it’s “God’s will” for them to be together, then that means he doesn’t have to stick his neck out.
What did you learn growing up about this nightmare that is Christian dating? Any particular influences? How have your views changed over time?
I learned that guys have to be honest, open, and intentional pursuers of woman. Pursuing a woman in this way makes good things happen during dating and it leads to the ability to look back on dating with no regrets.
The main ways my views have changed are in the area of “the gift of singleness.” It is not a special curse. It is not a gift in the sense that God gives you special powers to not want sex or not want to be married. It is a gift in the sense that every area and season of your life is a good thing that God can use for his glory. All good gifts are from God.
How many girls do you think you’ve asked out in your life? Estimate.
Do you think guys can be something besides the stereotypical alpha male, and still be successful?
Guys don’t have to be a stereotypical alpha male, but they do have to man up. They have to risk something in pursuing a woman. Risking and pursuing means something different for every couple. But at some level, be it public embarrassment or merely private “rejection,” a guy needs to risk rejection and pursue a woman. I think ladies are gracious in this area. Most of them appreciate how hard it can be for guys to make a move. A guy may just stumble into a marriage without pursuing the lady, but I think in hindsight, both of them will regret the absence of risk and pursuit.
What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve had to overcome in the dating arena?
The biggest obstacle I had to overcome in dating was putting too much of my heart into a hoped for relationship before the lady was interested. In other words, I dreamed up big plans before a girl even liked me. I made big plans before I told them of my interest, and even after they turned me down, I kept hoping for something that was never to be.
What was your biggest advantage in this area?
The dating arena is now in my rear-view mirror, but by God’s grace, I can look back and say that I didn’t play games with the ladies I pursued as a Christian, and I was honest with them about my intentions.
Tune in on Monday when Anonymous Married Dude tells us about the DTR he had with his wife and gives a bunch more stellar advice to men and women alike.