Marriage or Freedom?

Marriage or Freedom?

They say doing what you like is freedom. Liking what you do is happiness. But sharing that freedom and happiness with someone you love – well, could there be anything sweeter?

I am happy, single, and good at being alone. Actually, great at being alone. One of the defining characteristics of my life has been a huge need for freedom and I’ve cultivated a lifestyle that supports that.

Lately though, I’ve been thinking about marriage, and how nice it would be to share life’s ups and downs with someone. Someone who I was willing to make that ultimate commitment to, and who was willing to make that same commitment to me. Someone I could truly be “me” with, and enjoy physical and emotional intimacy, not just on weekends, but for the rest of our lives. Does it have to be marriage? Maybe not, but to me legalizing a union shows deep commitment and faith in the partnership. As a married friend of mine says, “Out of all the people on the planet, someone picks you to start a family with and make that lifelong commitment.” That is deeply affirming. It must provide a wonderful sense of security. It also strikes me as a big, fuzzy, warm blanket that could smother you if you choose badly.

The truth of the matter is, as much as I want it, the marriage and cohabitation thing scares me. On a lot of levels. Mostly, because it seems like the death of possibility. Of Friday nights doing whatever the hell I want. And mostly, I fear the mundane. I’ve never wanted the minivan, the kids, and the white picket fence. I’ve never fantasized about my wedding day. Ever since I was young, I pictured myself boarding planes, and setting off on some adventure. I wanted an exciting life doing what I love – travelling, writing, and doing something meaningful with my talents. It’s a tricky thing, finding someone who wants a similar (child free) lifestyle and is willing to share in the journey.

While I sometimes envy the emotional safety net of my friends’ marriages, they envy my freedom. More than once, I’ve been told they live “vicariously” through me. (If that’s not a red flag for marriage and kids, I don’t know what is.)

I enjoy my freedom. As a bachelorette, I can spend my money and time however I like. Live in Spain? Yes please. Chocolate cake for breakfast? Yum. Write a book? Sounds good to me. No one’s going to judge me or interfere with my dreams.

Am I sounding like a commitment-phobic guy? Maybe. Women have these concerns too. But I think for women, in general, our need to be loved is greater than our need for freedom.

Me, I want it all. Marriage plus freedom.

I’d like to think I can have my (chocolate) cake and eat it too.

Next: Signs you may be dating a douche bag.

 

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Author Adele Frizzell/Sophie Winters

Sophie Winters is the author of two books on dating and relationships. Sophie’s real name is Adele Frizzell. She enjoys travel, hiking, and lifting heavy weights. She is a competitive bench presser, certified yoga teacher, and mountain addict. She loves inspiring people to get more out of life.

Her first book, The Cha Cha Club Dating Man-ifesto is written for all the single ladies, while her second relationship advice book, It’s Not You, It’s Us: A Guide for Living Together Without Growing Apart is for couples who want more joy, intimacy and respect in their relationship. She is working on her third book.


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