I don't see any positives about marriage

I don’t want to offend anybody so please understand I’m only posting my point of view. I would like to see the positives about marriage so please do let me know what they are.

I’m not married and am discerning religious life but family and friends keep encouraging me to date (which I don’t).

I think what is the point of marriage? Rarely anyone finds a good partner that follows the faith, married life is full of problems, all men are only interested in sex, I think why should I bring children into the world to suffer and I think there are too many people in the world anyway and lastly can you really love someone for a lifetime and not get sick of them ?

Please remember I don’t wish to cause offense because there are reasons why I feel this way about marriage (growing up in a broken family, hearing about friends being abused in relationships)

I just don’t get it. But I want to. Please help me see the good in marriage and what God uses it for.

I’m sorry for the painful experiences that have led you to believe this way.

Marriage is for the good of the spouses… to help them get to Heaven. Marriage is also meant for bringing more children into the world, and raising & educating them to be faithful Catholics.

That is the simplest answer. There is immense good in the vocation of marriage. It is a vocation filled with struggle and heartache (all suffering that can bring us closer to Christ) that helps us learn to die to self and love more perfectly.

Choose the religious life if God is calling you to it. But don’t choose religious life by default, because you can’t believe that marriage can also be a worthwhile vocation.


If you don’t easily see or recognize positives, you will also come to find many negatives in living in Religious communities.

You may find yourself stuck with more than one person who makes your life difficult.
Not all Religious prove to have likeable or to have even very bearable natures, even if carefully chosen at time of entry. Life has its effects even on wonderful beginners.
I have this from friends in religious communities themselves, that some members of the community can require an immense amount of patience and forgiveness.

We don’t escape the problems of relationship or life difficulties whether we are single, married, or in religious life.

Each lifetime has its times of peace, joy, but also of conflict, of boredom, of desperation, of loneliness, of misunderstanding, of trying to be a good Christian in a difficult world.

I think that part of the problem is your belief that all men are only interested in sex. It is a stereotype not unlike if someone were to say all women are only interested in shopping. While it is true that most men are more interested in sex then most women, that is not all men think about.

Yes you have stereotyped men there. I know many good, wonderful, caring, sensitive men.
We can’t be well-rounded human beings as singles, marrieds, or religious, if we have a two-dimensional attitude to any part of the human race.

Given your difficult childhood you may need healing before you enter religious life if that is your vocation. We shouldn’t imagine it’s not a tough life also, piety can initially blind us to the fact that will unfold, that like any life, it has difficult personal challenges

May God give you the blessings and guidance that your life requires.

Regarding family pressure to date. That may be their wish but that is their issue, not yours. However I imagine it’s stressful.
Whether you intend marriage or religious life, we need to respect each others right to choose our own time. We may not be ready for commitment so shouldn’t be coerced, whatever our ultimate decision will be.

I imagine you’ve sought your parish priest’s guidance.

God bless you

Can I ask? What caused you to have such a perverted view of marriage? :confused:

A priest once told me if I get married I need to be a “good wife” and sleep with my husband whenever he wanted because the priest said he gets many men go to confession frustrated over their wives lack of interest in sex.
Also, I find it hard to believe as a young person that any man would be willing to wait until marriage because it’s so rare now even amongst Catholics. NONE of my Catholic friends waited until marriage. And they use contraception too. Who would stay with a woman who was a devout Catholic and actually wants to follow the Church’s teachings? This is how I feel you see :frowning:

The priest was probably saddened by the confessions of others. Perhaps he was unwise to impose such a heavy burden on a young girl. It appears to be a response to his helplessness in helping various men in their situations. It might seem unwise to let other confessions bleed into yours, but perhaps he was feeling very worn.

What the priest described was without consideration for the wife’s human needs also. What is required is mutual sensitivity and fairness, which exists in many marriages, though certainly not all, and probably not as many as should exist.

There does need to be mutually respect regarding marital relations. There does need to be mutual giving, not exploitation, in a good Catholic marriage. This is what occurs in many good marriages. Your friends do not necessarily reflect what occurs with all Catholic young people. I do know young people who have remained chaste until married. And sometimes such young men and women, both, post in CAF cherishing their desire to remain chaste until marriage.

One may perhaps not find such a person immediately, but such do exist!
I hope whatever choice you make will lead to stability and happiness. God grant that

Ten years of marriage to a wonderful man here…


Being a “good wife” does not equal having sex on demand. Sometimes, we are recovering from childbirth, or sick, or trying to avoid another baby.

As I enter my thirties, I find my drive is equaling that of my husband at this stage in our lives. We have sex when we both want to. If one of us isn’t “in the mood,” we usually can be PUT “in the mood” with a little bit of loving and fun foreplay.

I really think this is misguided advice. When we truly love as Christ loves (which is the GOAL of marriage), we put other’s needs ahead of our own. If my husband is putting me first, and I am putting him first… we are both well-loved. It is a beautiful thing.

We have cycles of love “feelings” that are more intense and less intense (infatuation, excitement, etc). But “love” is not a feeling, it is an action. We choose to die to self and love one another daily. This is something that you will find in any vocation. Marriage is just the one God called me to.

I will pray for you.

No, men aren’t only interested in sex.

There is also joy in life, so you don’t bring children into the world to suffer.

There aren’t too many people in the world.

And yes, you can love someone for a lifetime and not get sick of them.

My husband, for one. I’m sure there are a lot of women on this forum who could say the same. It’s too bad that you think all men are only interested in sex- this is untrue and also unfair to paint all men with such a broad brush. There are plenty of good, decent men out there who ask where all the good women are, too.

Married life is also not “full of problems”. I am truly sorry that you had such bad experiences that led you to believe that, but good marriages exist and they are not full of problems. In a good marriage, spouses make each others’ lives easier, not harder. Sure, there are arguments and certain things that are difficult sometimes, but I think my husband and I work well together and make each other better people. I can say that my life has a sense of peace with him in it, and I think that’s a sign you’re in the right vocation.

If you’re discerning religious life, make sure it’s not just because you have a distorted view of marriage. Religious life is an entirely separate vocation, and not something you run to when you are disgusted with men. Whether your friends and family think you should date is irrelevant and they need to mind their own business. Even if you were not discerning a religious calling, I don’t think you would be ready to date or be in a mature relationship, feeling the way you do. Whatever you are called to do, I do hope that you encounter some of the many happily married people who are doing their best to live holy lives.

Before I head to bed for the night, (as both being Australians, should be your goal as well as mine, because at least in my part of Australia we’re fast approaching Monday midnight) yes I do understand your concerns.
I don’t wish to make you feel misunderstood, that we don’t get what worries you, and are glossing over difficulties. Those bad things do happen in some marriages.
I feel anxious that you do make the right choices for your life, that you will have the maturity and hope to make whatever (or even whomever) is the right and best choice for your life and happiness.
So before I go to sleep I’ll be praying for you.
God bless you, Love. Sleep peacefully.

I find this helpful thanks for the posts.

Well no offense to you but you do realize you’re being very ironic here? You claim to be discerning a religious vocation yet are singing the same anthem of the population control camp. Bringing in children to suffer in the world? Can you even call yourself religious when you share the same mentality as abortionists and contraceptive suppliers?

I say this even as I myself only so much oppose abortion and have grown lax in my attitude towards contraceptives. It would’ve been one thing for you to have said you were just another liberal-minded fellow. Yet since you’re discerning a religious vocation, I’m afraid you’re even worse than they are. At the very least, they are honest enough to admit that theirs is no longer the Catholic position. :shrug:

If I were you, I’d just come out and say it: You’re not looking for a vocation. You just want to stay single. You can’t stand the idea of marriage. Period. Why muddle what others consider a sacred calling?

Unfortunately, I’m not really you. I may not even be religious but even I can think of some pretty impressive justifications for why I’d like to get married. (You’re hearing this from a guy by the way. :thumbsup:) You may not appreciate the idea of passing something on to the next generation or getting closer to (if not going beyond) understanding what your own parents went through to raise you… but I do.

The first idea strikes me as another form of immortality. There’s just really something uplifting about doing something that will make your own kids proud of you someday. Why? It’s because those kids will be telling their friends, then their own children, and then on and on… Passing on the family line keeps that family rooted in mankind’s greater history and there’s just really something glorious about being another step in one’s traced ancestry. (They did it with Jesus too you know. :thumbsup:)

As for the second, I actually think it can make some good out of the errors made by one’s own parents. You know what they did was wrong. What better way to rise from the trauma than to actually do it right? My parents often told me that when I get kids of my own, that’s when I’ll have a right to really criticize the way they raised me. And guess what? You bet your wallet that I’m raring to do just that! I don’t know about you but I’m not gonna run away from an opportunity to actually exceed my mother and father at certain things. :thumbsup:

Thank you all for the responses so far. I will pray God can help me see the good in marriage also.
I do know of a lovely older Catholic couple at Church who run RCIA together and they are inspirational. But I would like to see younger people like this. I rarely see any couples in their 20’s or 30’s in my current Parish unless it’s Christmas/Easter or a baptism.

Yes, there are a lot of people (even many Catholics) doing things that are not in accord with Catholic teaching. But it’s not universal. Good guys do exist. :slight_smile:

Many of us have traumas in our past that we need to be healed from. That healing comes from God and can often take time. That’s probably a good place to focus. We want to strive to be the people we were created to be, regardless of whether we end up married, single, or in religious life.

Focus on the healing love of the Lord. People aren’t just “problems” whose sole purpose on earth is to sin, suffer, and die in depravity. God created each one of us out of love in His own image and likeness so that we can come to know, love, and serve Him in this life and be happy with Him forever in the next. Bringing children into that is an awesome thing.

It is hard when you don’t have the good examples around you. You may need to look further. There are good people here. :slight_smile: And, of course, you can be that good example for others.

I think what is the point of marriage? Rarely anyone finds a good partner that follows the faith, married life is full of problems, all men are only interested in sex, I think why should I bring children into the world to suffer and I think there are too many people in the world anyway and lastly can you really love someone for a lifetime and not get sick of them ?

Friend, I think it is first important to reiterate that not all men and women are called to the vocation of marriage. This we know and this we can be confident in. But to your post…

  1. Rarely anyone finds a good partner that follows the faith.
    This is untrue. Simply attend a Sunday Mass and you will see that while there are several one-parent families in the pews, there are also several two-parent families in the pews as well. Further, Saint Monica prayed for the conversion of her son Augustine for over 20 years. Being married to someone who is not currently a member of the Faith can very well be the point of the vocation for some. I think of my parents who just celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary. Growing up, dad never came to Mass with us. He would even sometimes challenge my brothers and I about our belief. Today, he is a converted man who attends daily mass, is attentive and loving toward my mother because he has learned to see with God’s eyes, and is exceptionally active in the parish. This is a strong, healthy marriage where the two spouses did not necessarily agree on the Faith until only 10 years ago.

  2. Married life is full of problems.
    Ok, I laughed out loud when I read this line. I don’t mean it to be uncharitable. I simply had to giggle a little at the idea that religious life or even single life is not wrought with problems as well. Here’s the thing, friend, we are called to joy through suffering. Look at our prime example, Christ.

  3. All men are only interested in sex.
    Not to beat a dead horse here, but this is where you unfortunately are so gravely mistaken that it is harmful to you. Do you think that in religious life, you can have a negative attitude such as this to an entire half of God’s creation? It is hugely offensive and blatantly mistaken. I pray that your heart can soften toward men, whether you get married or not in your life.

  4. Too many people in the world.
    Please don’t buy into this hogwash. This claim was invented to mainstream the use of birth control. It is a lie. And why bring children in to suffer? They are not brought into the world only to suffer–suffering is a part of human existence that prepares us for heaven. Good Friday is necessary for Easter.

  5. Can you love somebody a lifetime and not get sick of them?
    Nope! Will you get sick of Mother Superior sometimes? Yep. Loving someone is not a feeling of butterflies and mushy gushy affection. Loving someone is choosing, regardless of your current feeling, to care for the other person, to put their needs before your own, to respect them. You will be called to these exact same characteristics in religious life. When reading the lives of the saints, you may be surprised to find how many sisters and brothers found their daily prayer lives to be cumbersome and a bore. One could say they were “sick of them”. But it is a love, a higher and deeper love, that draws us to continue in our prayer lives and to continue in our self sacrifice and, in married life, to continue to love and respect our partner. And this love does not disappoint.

1 Like

Does anyone have the quote from St. Teresa of Avila in which she told her sisters that they should be glad to be spared marriage? Of course, that statement has to be evaluated in historical context.

I can’t seem to find it and my response was going to be built around that. But the premise still stands: each state of life has ways to build virtue.

In 4th grade, I went to a retreat with the older girls where we listened to three presentations on the three states in life for women: marriage, religious life, and single life.

The single lady presenter wasn’t bitter, unhappy, or lonely. In fact, she made it a point to define alone-ness apart from loneliness. (Homosexuality, asexuality, and consecrated virginity were not discussed.)

The speaker didn’t go into too many reasons why she chose that state in life, but it was presented as a vocation. She didn’t put down marriage or religious life, but was committed to living this way.

Singleness is an option to live for Christ if you’re called to do so. There are ways to do it.

Just make sure it’s for the correct reasons between you and God. Be open to His plan.

I am married and pregnant with our 6th child. I argue with my husband but the children are the best also the closeness we share through thick and thin. Just ask God he wanted me to be married I know that for sure. Whatever path you choose life will be difficult if you choose to follow Jesus. Just remember what the world did to him. Your reward will not be here.Just ask Jesus at mass what he wants you to be. I thought he may want me to live a religious life but weeks after really putting it before him I met my husband. That has been a constant challenge and an adventure.

Thanks for answering my question.

Let me make an observation before I answer your question. You come from a broken family which has shaded your view. And you have a not quite accurate quote from a priest who is only human. And from the way you write I believe you are very young. Don’t be so harsh at such an early age life is full of good things including marriage.

Anyhow your primary premise is what is good about marriage. I can’t speak for everybody, but let me start. I have a wonderful woman that I share my life with, yes the good and the bad. I like to think that we compliment each other in many ways. I am somewhat harsh and aggressive, she is more demure and softer which gives me a different prospective of life from my own. We have two wonderful children and two adorable grandchildren. She is the ying to my yan. We travel together which makes the places we go more interesting because I see them not only through my eyes but hers as well.

I’ll go now but I’m sure others can greatly expound on what I’ve started.

God Bless.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.