I want what everyone in my family has: a strong, intimate marriage. But the men I meet lose interest or imply I’m gay if I don’t have sex minutes after meeting them. I get a better orgasm from giving an ex-boyfriend a sensual back rub (no sex involved) than from the one-night stands I’ve tried to enjoy in the last year. My guy friends say I intimidate men because I am independent and well-educated. They say men use sex to decide if they like a woman, so I should sleep around but not expect intimacy. My girlfriends say, “Stick to your values; the right guy will come along.” I’m inclined to agree, but I want to have kids before I am too old. I am 32 and own a well-organized business that affords me time to baby-sit, so I know I would be a good mother. Artificial insemination is easy and affordable ($500), so maybe that’s the answer. Is it selfish to take matters into my own hands? Is it wrong to bring a child into the world without a father? Is waiting for Mr. Right (who isn’t easy to find) the right thing to do?
The only thing to do is to put brakes on your brain and stop your train of thought. Let’s review: Kid-sitting has convinced you that you are ready for motherhood. Thus, you traverse bars and bookstores with an unconscious vibe that says, “I want children!” and then are surprised when men offer sex. Because neither the man nor the marriage proposal is happening according to your schedule, you consider artificial insemination because it’s something you can control.
Consider the biblical concepts of kronos and kairos. You’ve learned how to manipulate kronos, the daily schedule of clock time that supports and creates our ego structure. Now, you think you can control kairos, sacred time and space. However, kairos remains beyond human authority. To be fully human is to live deeply from both realities. Then, free of fears, you can see that you are too young to believe you are old; that a man who is intimidated by you is insecure and not a healthy partner for you; and that men who try to intimidate you into sex are bullies, not potential boyfriends. You also would have to be honest: Friends do not give friends sensual backrubs.
Why not use that $500 to foot the bill at a retreat center? There, through prayer and meditation, you can quietly discern whether you are willing to prepare for what you say you want: a strong, intimate marriage (i.e., a desire to belong, to love, to be loved, to be known and to know another). This is one of the most important experiences in your life. Don’t fixate on the destination. Enjoy the journey.
My friend’s mother lives in Central America, where she is plagued by crimes common to gringos there. She’s had jewelry ripped off her neck by a passing motorcyclist and been robbed in her home at gunpoint. My friend stresses so much about his mother that she is afraid to tell him anything. The growing rift between them is making him miserable. He refuses my suggestion that he respect his mother’s choice.
Your friend is trying to parent his mother, but it is helpless to do so. She’s an adult and is making choices for herself. It’s important that you do not try to parent your friend. Let him stew if that is what he chooses. When he gets edgy, listen but don’t try to solve his problem. You can’t. Sadly, theft is common to anyone living in a big city.