Ladies, raise your hand if you’ve ever seen this type of quote on social media: “All my friends are getting married and having babies. I just got engaged to this bottle of Jack!" … OK. Now, raise your hand if you’ve ever been personally victimized by Regina George. (I had to do it.)
The first couple times I saw one of these little witty remarks on someecards, I thought it was hilarious. Ya know, because I was 22 and it seemed like everyone really was getting married while I was at the bar being a complete psycho, straight up crying to the bathroom attendant about my life. But, four years later, this whole concept of sort of shaming millennials who are getting married and the “self-deprecating” humor that just comes with still being single at 25 (God Forbid!) has become exasperating. Being single in our 20s and early 30s doesn’t give us free rein to act like silly trolls so let’s stop it.
The other day, I received a message from a friend who told me she felt depressed because one of her good friends had just gotten engaged while she still had zero prospects for marriage. I wanted to comfort her, but I was at a loss for words. Look, we’re human. I understand we can’t always control how we feel. (Admittedly, sometimes, when a dude is mean to me, I convince myself I’m going to die alone while eating cat treats.) But we need to get over this feeling of competition when it comes to life’s big milestones. If it weren’t for social media, you would have zero idea what 95% of the girls from your pledge class are up to on a daily basis. It’s time to quit using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. as a benchmark. Most things you see on there are not what they seem. We’re in our 20s … We’re not the fuckin’ millionaire matchmaker Patti Stanger over here, who’s like 52 and still trolling for a husband to have a kid with (you look amazing, though, Patti!). There’s time.
I know I come across on this blog as a wacko about marriage (I’m scared of signing contracts!). While I do not feel that women should have to “earn” their engagements and prove themselves to men, I am supportive of any (safe, productive) life choice anyone I know wants to make for him or herself, including all unions. I’m genuinely happy to see my friends happy. They are adults who know what’s good for them. As do I. As do you.
So, please, stop pretending like your friends are throwing their lives away while you get to live yours to the fullest … or on the other side of the spectrum, like your life is pathetic and meaningless because your timeline is a little different. Be genuinely happy for your friends, and not just to their faces or in replies to their posts on social media. What I mean is, quit being a green monster and internally shitting on other people’s big moments because of your issues. (Unless they’re oversharing every single fucking detail about their wedding tiara or their kid’s poop schedule. Then you’re completely allowed to be a hater because those annoy everyone.) But these Facebook posts and tweets touting your Ke$ha-based drunken life while specifically pointing out that all your friends are getting married are self-deprecating (not in a funny way), petty and very, very 2009.
Focus on your career, staying healthy, personal improvement … and, if that doesn’t work, remember that your time will come, too. You have zero idea what life has in store for you. Who knows? You could essentially be engaged AND be a parent to a snot-nosed kid by December of this year. (It’s true! Just watch one episode of “I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant.”) Just what every girl dreams of, eh?