Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Cruel

A friend suggested the following:

You want to know how to find love? Don't look for it. Instead, do service work, using your talents and gifts to help others in ways that honor God. You'll soon find your mind focused on what you can do to help other people. Then some great guy is going to see you giving your talents to help people, and fall in love with you. But don't keep looking over your shoulder to see if it is happening, instead just ignore the whole question of men, since helping others is more important than men or marriage anyway.

References to "God" aside, it's not that this isn't good advice. It's perfectly fine advice, but it shouldn't be presented as a prescription for how to find a man. I've been using my talents in service of others for years and it hasn't led to a relationship.

Also, it's cruel to tell a lonely person that she'll find a relationship as soon as she stops looking for one. It's like telling a starving person they can have a meal as soon as they stop feeling hungry. As long as I have a beating heart, I'll be looking for a man. To tell me I'll find one when I stop looking is to say I'm not going to find one as long as I am looking. And that's just a mean thing to say.

No one who is alive ever stops feeling hunger, thirst or the desire for intimacy with others. It's just not reasonable to suggest that someone shut off a natural desire and part of their humanity.

No comments: