I apologize for the clickbait title, but this is how I feel. Ever since I entered the church I wished for a husband. I prayed to St. Joseph and to God every day.
I prayed for all my friends, and they all found spouses very quickly when I prayed for them. I would tell them to pray to my favorite Saints, and they would credit me for finding their significant others right after doing so.
I pray for those discerning religious life and they work it out.
I have prayed for my own husband for years, and not only does it not get answered, but my dating life gets increasingly sparse, and whenever I meet a single guy that might be of interest, he isn’t interested in me…but at this point I have to almost make myself try to be open to guys, because I keep meeting ones that do nothing for me, except the ones who go into seminary.
I have also been open to the idea of religious life, but it’s impossible. I have bipolar, and am treated and doing well, but I require outside help that is not conducive or realistic to community life. I have been rejected from two convents, although they liked me, for this reason.
I am close friends with many men in seminary. They are the real men that I know, and none of the laymen I know compare, no matter how hard I try to give them a chance. They are all becoming priests and have their own lives to focus on, though.
I have been a member of a Third Order. I will be blunt although I am remiss to say this; the chapter I was in was a bit disappointing. I felt it was elitist about education and reading and not spiritual enough, although I was fond of some of the members. I could not keep up and it stressed me out. And I felt that some people were even mean to me.
I am now, after a year out of that, trying to enter another chapter, and I cannot even get a call back from the members to arrange a meeting.
The one thing I don’t want to to is be free floating single forever or in consecrated lay state. Well-meaning people try to “help” me by suggesting this, or pityingly implying that I’m too broken for any other state, and suggest I should do this or be “single vocation” forever.
I hate receiving this pity. I am not required to do a default vocation that I have no interest in. People who are consecrated virgins and similar actually want it; I don’t.
This may be where I am at, but I am not going to pretend that this is my calling in life, when every single day I feel that I am missing out on the real purpose God has for me. Sure, I could listen to a lecture about how I’m clearly missing all the meaning in what God is letting me do right now, but it is hard to take seriously when we all know God doesn’t want this, and that is why he gives serious vocations and callings in life.
Oh, and I offer it up to Him as my prayer. In fact that feels like ALL I do. Everyone else has a positive purpose, something they are contributing directly, as well as offering up their trials. I don’t. I just stay on the fringe. I pray hard and…nothing. It all seems less and less likely. I am not in my 20s anymore. I don’t have lots of time.
So? Why does God not want me to have my OWN LIFE? Since I was a kid, I was the therapist to my parents as they put me in the middle of them, punishing me for being related to the other, and I am also the black sheep to many in the family for the same reasons. Also, for being Catholic. They then want me around to be their support, but are very willing to bluntly tell me how unwelcome I am at times or just be extremely rude and insulting, and then there is other deeper problems too. That causes me to feel pity and concern for anyone who dates me, having to deal with my family, which causes me to push people away. I wish I could fix this but it doesn’t happen easily.
I help my dad, help my mom, help my siblings, help my Brother friends, help my friends who are dating. I volunteer, lead young adult groups, plan events…send presents and cards to people who won’t do the same for me…but where is MY family? Where is MY community? Who do I go home to? When will I be done listening to the judgments and gossip?
And I know I am not the only young person feeling this way, although at times even those who are single and without a vocation at the very least, they seem to have many close friends and a job that matters. I’m not even stable in my work. I don’t feel called to just be out in the world making money for my life; I have talents that are being wasted right now.
Anyway, I don’t know what else to say, but I am tired of the humiliation of not having my own life, and I am kind of sickened by the pity of people implying that someone with a treated psychiatric difficulty doesn’t deserve a vocation, or that I’m just not “accepting” the call God has for me to just be picking up slack and praying for everybody else who has their own life. I don’t understand why He seems to have forgotten to give me my heart’s desire, as it comes from a desire to serve Him better.
I also an tired of people telling me I’m not supposed to feel this way. Sarah in the book of Tobit was so humiliated by demons taking all her previous 7 husbands she prayed for death than to be humiliated anymore. Elizabeth was barren and said her shame was finally gone when she became pregnant with John the Baptist. I’m allowed to feel this way, and it’s normal. I even have said the prayer of Sarah before.
Anyway, I wish you all would pray for me because it’s getting old and it’s cold comfort to hear from others for whom marriage or religious life or a meaningful life career “just happened.” Thanks.