If I get to forty and I don’t have a spouse…
When working with children, it’s pretty typical for them to ask about your personal life, and they are especially interested in whether you’re married or have any kids. In Kentucky, not only do they ask, but they express concern if you are not where they expect you to be in life.
For a long time, my favorite story on this topic was a little boy who asked me if I was married. When I told him I wasn’t, he looked at me for a second and said “Well, you’re pretty enough to be.” Very sweet, if a little misguided about what is important for a marriage.
This story was more than surpassed last week by a group of Girl Scouts I was driving home from camp. Naturally, the first thing one of the girls asked me was if I was married. When I told her I wasn’t, a different girl (we’ll call her Annie) replied “Oh, so you’re lonely.” Not a question, but a statement. I was pretty much speechless for a few seconds, but then recovered with “Actually, I’m not lonely – I live with seven other people.” This impressed them. “Seven people?” “Wow, you really aren’t lonely.” “How big is your house?” But Annie wasn’t convinced. “Oh, I thought you were one of those women with a lot of cats.”
Erin C. is a long-term volunteer in Educational and Recreational Programming. She is a member of Jackson Volunteer Community.