It is that time of the year again - when married people endure problem in-laws and everyone has to deal with their own problem family members, and when some unmarried people sitting around a Thanksgiving meal endure from family the questioning, nagging, teasing, and whatever else about why they're not married or why they don't have kids yet.
Don't get me wrong. I think it is acceptable to ask a family member who is currently expecting a child and will not be giving the child up for adoption about getting married. But if someone isn't in that position, they should not have to endure yearly or more frequent pressure from other family members about getting married.
See a previous posting of mine on this subject and a more recent one.
If you have endured such questioning, have you come up with any good things to say that stop the questioning and pressure?
The answers would likely be different depending on one's personal beliefs and the general family's traditional belief. For example, if the family is very religious and so are you, you can say, "God just hasn't brought me the right person yet."
But if most people at the table aren't religious, especially not you, it is very easy (at least for a man) to reply honestly with, "What would I get by being married that I can't get being unmarried?"
Either way, perhaps a good response is...
"I like my life the way it is right now. I get to do what I want when I want. Nobody argues or fights with me, or nags me in my own home. I never have to sleep on the couch. I get to have my place the way I like it. And I get to come here and endure this line of questioning from the likes of you instead of having to spend the holiday with someone else's family."
Two common questions asked of those with no plans to marry are, "Aren't you worried about growing old alone?" and the related "Don't you want someone to take care of you?"
But plenty of people who marry and have children end up growing old alone and in a horrible nursing home. Most of the people who sit in nursing homes with little or no visitation from family had children. And as far as being alone, there are these wonderful people called... friends. And when your friend gets mad at you and decides not to deal with you any more (or you decide not to deal with your friend anymore), you don't have to lose your home and pay that friend money.
Have any of you endured this line of questioning? How have you handled it?