As a late twentysomething surrounded by friends whose conversations are full of words like “rings,” “showers,” “dresses” and “bachelorette parties,” it’s easy to get sucked into the marriage cyclone that swirls around me constantly. Daily, and despite my best efforts to resist the pressure, I find myself thinking about what I’d ideally want in a ring or a wedding, and especially in a partner. And of course, when you’ve been in a long relationship like I have, The Question is asked anytime anyone brings up the topic of dating, relationships, commitment or marriage. The Question I’m talking about is: “When are you getting married?”
Or worse: “Why aren’t you married yet?”
Tracy McMillan’s new book, Why You’re Not Married…Yet, refocuses all the madness back to the most important question that people should be asking themselves when they’re thinking about taking this life-changing step: Am I ready to be married yet?
McMillan first tackles this question through a true-or-false quiz with prompts like, “I’ve been told I’m needy. Which is bullshit,” and “Nice people bug the shit out of me,” designed to see just how much you need the book and where you should start reading. She then lays out 10 of the biggest reasons why she thinks you may not be ready to be married. McMillan doesn’t mince words, and the chapters have titles like “You’re a Mess,” “You’re Crazy,” and “You’re Shallow.”
Though this may seem intimidating, each chapter explores an issue that may be lurking beneath the surface and poisoning your relationship readiness. For example, in the “You’re a Mess” chapter, McMillan discusses how, if you don’t know yourself or what you want to do with your life, it will be difficult to maintain a lasting relationship because you may not know what you want from a partner either. In “You’re Crazy” she talks about how insecurity can easily lead to acting out, making a scene, overreacting and pushing your partner away. “You’re Shallow” discusses how money and looks shouldn’t be the only things on your mind if you want to build a serious, long-lasting and healthy relationship.
All in all, Why You’re Not Married…Yet has definitely helped me refocus on myself and think about whether I’m really ready despite what may be happening around me. While you may not think you’re “a mess,” “crazy” or “shallow,” several other issues are explored in an in-depth way in this book. I think it definitely lives up to its subtitle: The Straight Talk You Need to Get the Relationship You Deserve.