If you are a single person above the age of 23, you’ve probably been pressured at some point to date or get into a relationship.
At this young age, it’s often just mild pressure from friends who have begun dating themselves and have tasted relationship things.
Soon enough, parents and siblings and family members will join in and become part of the pressure group, subtly and expressly calling for you to become romantically involved with someone.
This is done with good intentions, no doubt. Friends, family… these are people who would normally want nothing but the best for you.
However, these good intentions and the concerns they birth soon become all shades of disturbing and annoying.
This is because hardly do they consider what you want. They usually think any plans for your life that does not involve marrying at 26 for ladies and 32 for guys isn’t good enough.
You could break down your plans and goals in the simplest terms, showing them in a chart how marriage at 30 has no place in the scheme you've mapped out for yourself, but they’ll still try to convince you to sneak a relationship/marriage into the equation.
Urging people to date when they say they are unprepared is basically projecting a course for their life based on your own personal experiences and the existing socially-acceptable modes and timing of relationships.
You know, it’s a little understandable and pardonable with parents – they’re from a different time and of course, they’re all filled with a faux knowledge of what’s good for you. (We all know this often comes in the shape of a man or woman who has plenty money, who is homely and loves the Lord. Hallelujah!)
However, one expects friends to know better. So it’s sad that some friends are the worst culprits in this matter.
How do you explain it when young, educated people absorb and relate with others with a mentality that their accomplishments and basically their existence is nothing because they are yet to get into a romantic relationship or marriage?
It probably doesn’t sound like much of a problem if you are not one of the people getting all the marriage-related questions from basically everyone simply because they are done with University and NYSC or because they've had the misfortune of being on the wrong side of 25.
[No available link text]Yeah, it’s easy to say it’s not so deep, but for those who have to bat away questions all the time, it is.
Distant Auntie - “you are 25 now, , why are you not in a relationship?”
Mum - “ what are you waiting for? See Femi that’s your junior, he’s engaged to be married already.”
Friends - “, say yes to na, he looks like a decent guy.
“Look at all of us your friends, we are in a relationship, aren’t you tired of being the odd one out? Better behave so you can have someone to call yours."
ALSO READ:Why are you rushing to get married?
People need to realize that these things get to some people and while I wouldn’t stand in the way of expressing genuine concern and care for your friends and loved ones, let’s all know where to draw the line.
If someone says they are not ready, we need to stop harassing them. There's a limit to how much you should even jokingly taunt them about it. We really need to let people be.
The whole of life does not revolve around relationships and cute dates and lovey-dovey phonecalls and those beautiful selfies that elicit major heart-eyes.
Let’s all learn to respect people’s choices and the pace at which they've chosen to live their lives.
Not every woman needs to marry at 25, not every man should have to kill himself with worry because he's unmarried at 32.
Love is always there, waiting to embrace people who are ready. Let people enter Cupid's embrace willingly, please.
Yeah, you can’t force a horse to drink even if you force it to the river. But then, let's not forget that peer pressure is actually real and people do easily cave in .
Don’t be the one who influences someone with incessant badgering till they dive into something they should not be doing.
We really do need to drop the act of subtly and overtly pressurizing people into relationships and marriages in 2017.
Can I get an amen?