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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The 90-10 "Who's Getting Asked Out" Rule - A Follow-up

[Dear Readers,

The following is a follow up to "The 90-10 Rule" posted on March 29, 2013.  You can read the original article by clicking HERE.

Enjoy!

- Bro Jo]



Dear Bro Jo,

I recently came across a post with an email (about the 90-10 rule) I wrote about awhile ago.

A lot has changed since then, and I feel like maybe the original needs revisiting.

I'm going to start by saying something that I don't think girls in the church are told nearly enough: Being single/ not being asked on dates frequently does NOT mean something is wrong with you.

I know that probably seems obvious to you. But to most teenage and young adult women, it's a real issue.

Not being asked on dates seriously affects our self esteem, especially if we see other girls who are being asked on dates. And part of it has to do with how much pressure the LDS community puts on YSAs to get married.

Don't get me wrong, marriage is important, and it does need to be stressed . . .

But Satan has a way of twisting that message into "Good LDS girls get married, and if you're not getting married, something is wrong with you."

When I read letters on your site where girls are complaining about not being asked out, I can almost always feel insecurity behind the annoyance or desperation that's on the surface.

Looking back at my letter, I know I was insecure.

I assumed that I wasn't getting asked out because there was something wrong with me.

Not just that I was doing something wrong, because I really was trying my hardest, but that there was something inherently wrong with me.

Of course there are things girls can do to make themselves more datable. I was doing and have continued doing those things.

I am social, I take good care of myself, I invest time in improving myself spiritually, emotionally, and mentally.

I was not being lazy or idly waiting (despite my poorly chosen pen name).

Anyway, my point is that sometimes you do everything you can and you still don't get as much attention as you'd like from boys.

Sometimes you just have to get to a point where you say "I've done everything I can and that's good enough".

Then you trust God and know that if you've done your part He'll do His.

I do go on a lot more dates now than I did, even if most of them are set up.

None of them have really gone anywhere, but that's OK because I don't need dates or a boyfriend to build my self esteem on anymore.

Sure it's still frustrating sometimes.

All my married friends ask why I'm still single.

I want to move away from the BYU bubble when I graduate next year, but don't feel like I can because I want to stay in an environment where there LDS guys to date.

I get tired of my family placing bets on how long it will take me to get married.

And sometimes being single is just kinda lonely.

But it's OK.

It works out.

I'm happy with who I am, and I'm willing to wait to find somebody who's happy with me too.

I hope girls everywhere can come to peace with their dating lives and learn to find validation somewhere besides their love lives.

Sincerely,

- Happy to be Me




Dear Happy,

Good for you!

And I agree with everything you've said.

Wishing you much joy and happiness,

- Bro Jo

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

I know that it seems like there are far more guys to date in the BYU bubble and while that's technically true, I would encourage Happy to be Me to consider other options that will allow her to grow spiritually, professionally, and personally, while still being around a lot of guys to date. Washington DC has a very large young LDS population and so do areas of Arizona and California.

Arthur Lee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Arthur Lee said...

Not trying to bash on the wonderful people here at BYU...but I think the main problem with many people, even myself included, is not being realistic. Whether that's a byproduct of the media or just misfocused parenting, I don't know.

As a convert YSA, I feel everyone has some sort of "prince" or even "princess syndromes", where they look for person(s) (even things) that either do not exist or unrealistic to apply to 2 standard deviations of the population.

Due to these preconceived notions, many great folks are left out because they are never good enough for the other person. Likewise, many folks won't give a second look or thought to establishing meaningful friendships.

There's a reason why in For the Strength of Youth that friendship came before the sections under dating. I would also like to emphasize the friendship section clearly stated that we should have meaningful relationships regardless of our age.

See the problem? I do believe the BYU culture has the tendency to put two completely random persons together with little to no basis to their existing relationship. It's true that any two persons can make things work, but added external pressure for real life often makes it more difficult to make that compromise, especially for the unprepared.

It's also somewhat ironic in the sense that a Church so focused on family produced many children who seem to have no idea what they want in life or what they look for in a potential eternal companion. I know we have our agency, but something seems to be off here. It's as if we let ourselves go through the motion of devotion without being converted to it.

Good ecclesiastical leaders sometimes underplay challenging circumstances such as financial, family, or even tough programs etc., where a young person would have to devote more time to fend off problems in order to survive.

This isn't the good old times when most people have families to fall back upon when the going gets tough. No to mention, gone are the days when you can just get a job (almost any job) to provide for the basic necessities for yourself and/or a small family.

As imperfect as this seems, it's undeniable that BYU is a great place. However, I think our perception of reality becomes warped the longer we stay in this sphere as pointed out the sister here who, at a time, was tempted by Satan and believed there was something wrong with her.

Arthur Lee said...

Not trying to bash on the wonderful people here at BYU...but I think the main problem with many people, even myself included, is not being realistic. Whether that's a byproduct of the media or just misfocused parenting, I don't know.

As a convert YSA, I feel everyone has some sort of "prince" or even "princess syndromes", where they look for person(s) (even things) that either do not exist or unrealistic to apply to 2 standard deviations of the population.

Due to these preconceived notions, many great folks are left out because they are never good enough for the other person. Likewise, many folks won't give a second look or thought to establishing meaningful friendships.

There's a reason why in For the Strength of Youth that friendship came before the sections under dating. I would also like to emphasize the friendship section clearly stated that we should have meaningful relationships regardless of our age.

See the problem? I do believe the BYU culture has the tendency to put two completely random persons together with little to no basis to their existing relationship. It's true that any two persons can make things work, but added external pressure for real life often makes it more difficult to make that compromise, especially for the unprepared.

It's also somewhat ironic in the sense that a Church so focused on family produced many children who seem to have no idea what they want in life or what they look for in a potential eternal companion. I know we have our agency, but something seems to be off here. It's as if we let ourselves go through the motion of devotion without being converted to it.

Good ecclesiastical leaders sometimes underplay challenging circumstances such as financial, family, or even tough programs etc., where a young person would have to devote more time to fend off problems in order to survive.

This isn't the good old times when most people have families to fall back upon when the going gets tough. No to mention, gone are the days when you can just get a job (almost any job) to provide for the basic necessities for yourself and/or a small family.

As imperfect as this seems, it's undeniable that BYU is a great place. However, I think our perception of reality becomes warped the longer we stay in this sphere as pointed out the sister here who, at a time, was tempted by Satan and believed there was something wrong with her.