“WE HAVE THE PERFECT JOB FOR YOU!” exclaimed Church Lady. She was our Bible study leader, and a woman who I had trusted with my dreams and goals. “YOU SHOULD MOVE TO KENYA AND TEACH ENGLISH!”
Sunday mornings are usually pretty groggy for me. It was somewhere around 8 a.m., and I had no coffee in my system. So I couldn’t really be sure I had heard Church Lady correctly. It could have been my Sunday morning stupor clouding my ability to process English words–let alone teach them.
“You want me to what?” I asked. Politely, but candidly.
“Well, we just thought since you didn’t have anything holding you down here–you’d be perfect,” she said, eyeing my full cup of coffee. “You should go to Kenya!”
I blinked, running my fingers over the foam rim of my church-coffee cup, hoping the action would somehow stir movement in my brain.
It did not.
Nothing against Kenya, of course. But did she really believe my time and energy was best spent in Africa? Was my singleness my only qualification? Did she not believe my pursuit of my graduate degree, my friends and my family was strong enough to keep me planted in the United States?
Somehow, in the midst of a two-minute conversation, Church Lady had managed to unravel my very existence. I had already been struggling with questions of my worth.
Clearly, if I wasn’t good enough for a man here, maybe my only answer was Africa...
Church Lady had no idea that suggesting a woman move out of the country solely because she was unattached was on the “no-no” list of things to say to the unwed.
Here are a few more things Church Lady, and other happily-married, engaged, or otherwise coupled friends–with your good, lovely intentions–should avoid saying to singles.