No Good Men?

So how do I get married?

Question of the week:

I’m a 37yr old female, my only daughter is almost 18yrs. I’m not married and I would like to meet someone serious enough for marriage.

Most men find independent women intimidating or some want to be taken care of as if they are children rather than taking the position of a provider. I’m very old school and find the whole dating thing difficult especially when most men are only interested in having sex with no intentions to marry.

I left the father of my daughter after realizing that he has no intention of getting employment and he will always depend on me to support him financially. We were together for 17yrs and he has never been employed during all this time.

My question is how to get the right man and how are such men still available?

Grace K.

Dear Grace,

If you have listened either to my (RDL’s) podcast or to our television show on TCT, you may have heard us say that we don’t see our job as massaging our listeners and viewers with warm butter. The same is true for our responses to those who write to us.

It sounds like you endured nearly twenty years of an unfulfilling relationship. The effects of that don’t end when the relationship ends.  We are guessing that this was never a marriage which makes it all a little more understandable though no more pleasant.  While your emotions and reaction are to be expected, we suggest that before you look for the right man, or become capable of recognizing him, you need to work on getting yourself psychologically, spiritually and emotionally healthy. In other words, we are suggesting that becoming the right woman is the indispensable first step in finding the right man.

May we ask you to reread your second paragraph above? You may have good reasons to dislike and distrust some men, but if most men are  as you describe them, then you are not yet ready to meet a good one. In your worldview, they barely exist.

This is especially important because you have a daughter who is herself not far off from meeting a mate and has been watching you for years and continues to watch you. What a gift you will be giving her in terms of her future relationships if she can see you work on yourself until you have a less jaundiced view of men and marriage.

It is very important to know yourself before you can welcome someone else into your life. Without knowing any more about you than what you wrote to us, we can almost guarantee that you weren’t blameless in your partner’s behavior. While he is responsible for failing the marriage, before you can move on you have to accept that you participated in the failure as well. We can’t tell you what you did wrong or failed to do right, but here are a few possibilities: Did you fall into the trap of treating him like a child? Were you respectful and honoring towards him both privately and in front of your daughter? Were you okay with supporting him when you got married? What was the plan back then? What kept you in the relationship for 17 years and did you seek guidance and advice during that time? Please understand that if your daughter has learned over the years to despise her father and other men, then she too would greatly benefit from guidance.

We understand the desire to be in a wonderful marriage where you can receive the nurturing and affection that you have lacked for so long. The real world, however, doesn’t work like that. You first need to abandon the negative patterns and thoughts that have absorbed you for so long and only then can you open yourself to receiving new ways of thinking and acting that will allow you to build  the relationship you so strongly desire.

You articulate your question in terms of “How do I get the right man?” This sounds a lot like someone saying “How do I get a Maserati?” or “How do I get a mansion?” There are important  differences between mansions and Maseratis on the one hand and men on the other.  While mansions and motor cars are passive objects and can thus be ‘gotten’, men are not objects and have a say in whether they are ‘gotten’. Furthermore, most men actually prefer to do the getting than to be ‘gotten’.

So it might be worth exploring how comfortable you are with rephrasing your question from “How do I get the right man” to “How do I attract the right man?”

We advise you to find a faith family where you see models of the type of marriage you want to have. Slowly and carefully pay attention to the way the men and women interact. Once you have taken the time to make sure you trust the community, see if the leadership can guide you to counseling. Be a giver in the community and work to develop friendships with those who can be models for you.

Wishing you exciting and transformational times that will lead to a blessed marriage with the right man.

Rabbi Daniel and Susan Lapin


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29 thoughts on “No Good Men?”

  1. A young man told me he was having trouble “getting a girlfriend.” I told him as long as he thought in terms of “getting” it was probably best for everyone involved that he remained alone! 🙂

  2. Rabbi Lapin, You could not have answered in the most articulate way and the very proper answer/questions. SMH! She spend a whole lot a time wasted. What a bum of a man! Mercy! I just don’t get it. I really don’t. How can an adult be a free loader?

    1. “How can an adult be a free loader? ”

      The answer is hidden in your question. He is adult only by age not by any mental or spiritual growth.
      It used to be kinda rare 30 years ago, today it is no longer uncommon.

      All these guys need and care about are 3 things:
      A computer to play
      A stable internet connection to connect to a virtual world where they can be who in the real world, they are not.
      Frequent S*x; in the best case with a real woman (like in this example) but if thats not an option, pixel-women on certain internet pages will do just fine.

      Hedonistic pleasure is the main goal here and everything else is just a means to an end.

  3. I was one who use to ask “where are all the good women?” There are no guarantees any where in the world, but it seems best to go fishing where the fish you want are. Church or Synagogues are a good good place to start. Also read up on warnings signs, and ask good friends and family members that have good long relationships for possible suiters. Also talking to a good councilor can help in seeing why you picked and stayed with a bad catch .

  4. Terry V. Fuquay

    Dear Rabbi Lapin, when will we be receiving and starting the next phase of Strolling Through The Scriptures.

    1. Hi Terry. We are in midst of taping Unit 2. There is quite a lot of work post-taping with editing, graphics and the workbook, but we are steadily moving along.

  5. Williams Anaab Abanwai

    Daddy Rabbi And Mommy Susan, I really love your kind of demeanor and advice. God richly bless you.
    I wish I can get in touch through your mailing list if you have one.
    Thank you.

    1. Rabbi Daniel Lapin

      Dear Williams–
      Absolutely. Join our happy warriors group (www.weHappyWarriors.com)
      Cordially
      RDL

  6. Just my opinion and I don’t want to appear disrespectful, but I think men find independent (perhaps bossy) women more unattractive than intimidating. If a man imagines an attractive woman, she is thin, has long hair, wears soft fabrics, heels, and basically exudes a lot of vulnerability. Women have been indoctrinated to compete with men and take up masculine traits, which strips away their femininity. A wise woman embraces her vulnerability and uses it to sift men rather than conquer them, because she knows weak men prey on vulnerability while strong men protect it. She wants a strong man for a healthy family and understands submission creates a leadership vacuum for him to fill. Her softness and vulnerability are her honor and she has no room for a man that needs to be mothered.

    1. Adrian, no need to worry about being disrespectful when you are sharing an opinion. If I could replace the word ‘vulnerable’ with ‘feminine’ I would agree with your general point. Feminine women are very strong – however, they are usually looking for a man whose strengths will complement theirs rather than compete with them. That means acknowledging a willingness to accept leadership.

      1. A “wife” was originally created by Father God to be a helper for her husband. I sincerely think that to be equally “yoked”— inside of a Godly marriage covenant— means that the man’s (husband) inadequacies or deficits are “helped” as the wife submits her strengths to him.

  7. “Don’t try to be a great man. Just be a man, and let history make it’s own judgment.” One of the better quotes from Star Trek, and probably lifted from someone else.
    There are many resources in culture today to teach men how to be women, and many to teach men how to be thugs. Very few platforms nowadays to teach men how to be real MEN. Thank you Rabbi and Susan for being the light and leading the way.

    1. TP, every once in a while I wonder if we are missing something by not having watched Star Trek!

  8. Sandy Redmond

    Wow…such a great response! And so appropriate to express men (or people) are not objects that you can “get”. The focus should be on how do I attract the right man. And learning to become the person I want to be in a relationship instead of what I want. Brilliant!
    I have many young women come to me with this same concern or complaint. I hope you don’t mind if I borrow your wisdom and share this advice with them.

    1. Sandy, it isn’t our wisdom, it is God’s. I’m sure He is happy for you to share it.

    2. Rabbi Daniel Lapin

      Dear Sandy–
      How good to hear from you.
      We’re happy to know that we are serving you in your ministry to young women.
      Warmest wishes
      RDL

  9. Once upon a time there was a woman, who was always looking for the perfect man. She met him once, but he was looking for the perfect woman. Selah.

  10. Thank you so much Rabbi Daniel and Mam Suzan. I believe I need to take a step back and work on myself and understand the dynamics of a healthy union.

    Thank you all the panels for your responses also, they were very insightful.

  11. Back in the late 90’s, I took a climbing (Mt Kilimanjaro) and safari trip to Tanzania which was about three weeks long. I became friends with one of our drivers, a Masai, and since we were spending a lot of time in a vehicle, both of us got into some very interesting conversations. One of the conversations turned to dating and marriage in regards to our respective cultures. Something that Shangai said that has always stayed with me is “If you’re looking for the right coconut, you will not find it”. FYI – I’m an older American conservative single (at the moment) woman.

  12. Susan,
    I think Adrian’s ‘vulnerable’ in this context is actually preferable to your ‘feminine’ because feminine is virtually guaranteed to be misinterpreted nowadays. Don’t you think, for example, that Grace K. probably believes she is feminine while absolutely sure she isn’t vulnerable? This, I think essential, vulnerability only need be accompanied by clear-eyed God-fearing circumspection. The former attracts the males and the latter sorts out the Men. The prospect need not even be aware of his gauntlet.
    Respectfully,

  13. So from a different perspective. The first thing is it sounds like she has a major chip on her shoulder which most guys are going to pick up on right away and flee.
    The reality is that you really only get one chance to ” get it right” and face it, for the most part young people are not trained to look for a good spouse anymore. Go out into the world and “make the big mistakes” seems to be the ideal. One of the major flaws they fail to mention is that the “big mistakes” compromise you for the rest of your life. Or I have seen numerous women breed a bunch of children with anyone willing to donate sperm, then they look for a husband and, surprise! nobody wants to deal with the mess.
    Both my wife and I got married last year for the first time. We are both in our early forties, we both dated a single parent or two but recognized that we had no interest in dealing with all of the chaos of mixed families, visitation, ex’s etc.
    I guess my long winded point is “good” marriage partners got married, and are still married. Except for a few.
    Not to say that there aren’t some good divorced people, those that have never married or widow(ers) but in most cases you are marrying more than one person , you marry into a messy situation for life. For my wife and I, that was a deal breaker and being alone was the better option.

  14. And don’t forget, no quality men would want to do anything with single mom that is near her 40. She had her priorities wrong all the time throughout her life, unfortunately. An accomplished man can choose, so why would he choose a woman with so much baggage? If accomplished man has 37, then he doesn’t need single mom. Nor woman of his age bracket, but younger. That’s not shallowness but one’s having standard.

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