Ask Dr. Rhodes

I’m pursuing a career that I love. My mom is getting nervous that I won’t get married. But I’m not seriously in love with the man I’m dating. Not only that, but at the age of 27, I don’t want to get serious about anyone right now.

Anonymous

You have plenty of time. Your career is important for the long haul. If you want to marry, you should start working towards that goal in a year or two. For now, focus on your career.

—Sonya Rhodes, Ph.D.

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Discuss this:

  • Alex

    This is terrible advice if you want to maximize your chances in finding a good husband. Remember, men and women are looking for different things in a mate: women want a man who is (among other things) confident, powerful, well established with a strong career and social circle. All things that generally increase a lot between the ages of 25 and 35. But most men put a much lower value on those things. They want intelligence, capability, confidence…but the truth is, most men will not be attracted to womem or value them more because of your career. Not that they don’t want you to have one – they will generally be very supportive of it – but it doesn’t create attraction or desire for them the way it does for women. Youth and beauty, on the other hand, do. Call it shallow, call it whatever you want – men are most attracted to women between about 20-25.
    Right now, the asker is just leaving that window. If she’s not really concerned with marriage, that’s fine. But if she really wants to marry, she’s better off making that a priority. Men are at their most attractive between about 28-35, later than women. This makes it easier for women to get a “good deal” earlier on. If they are both 22, she is probably the most attractive she will ever be, but he hasn’t reached that peak yet. 10 years later, she (thought probably still extremely attractive) is likely no longer at her peak, while he is and has the most options he ever will. If she looks for marriage earlier and finds a man who matches her – or even is not quite as attractive and popular/respected as she is – and he will feel he’s got a prize. Meanwhile over the next 10-15 years his maturity, confidence, career, etc will all continue to increase.
    But if they are both 32, he is in his prime – and he probably knows it. Lots of guys who were shy, uncertain, or just focused on school and work in their early 20s may have found it hard to attract the women their age (who were at their peak of options in attracting men). But by 30, he probably has a strong career and social circle, he’s gained a lot of confidence, and he is finding it much easier to attract women – even the younger women that he perceived as “out of his league” when he was the same age. She, on the other hand, no longer has as many options – and the longer she waits, the less she will have. A man who was her equal in attractiveness when both were 22 will probably be “out of her league” when both are 32.
    This isn’t always the case – and lots of women find happy marriages in their late 20s/early 30s. But lots also find themselves feeling they have to settle, because the men they attract at that age are not the men they could attract at 22-25. I’m not saying that it’s right, but that’s the way it is. So for a woman at 27, yes you have plenty of time to focus on your career. But if you aren’t also keeping an eye out for marriage, or worse, are wasting time in a dead-end relationship as it sounds like the asker is, be aware that your options will only be decreasing.