Never-Married Women in Their 30s Are Total Losers, Mizzou Study Finds

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Behold: the future of every single woman. (Because we couldn't find a picture of a dead woman in an apartment being eaten by dogs.)
​It's tough being a never-married woman in your 30s. Well-meaning older people are always asking you when you're going to settle down. Self-help books imply that you're a neurotic harpy with impossibly-high standards. Married people -- especially if they happen to be your younger sister -- treat you like an incompetent child.

And now the worst humiliation of all: Larry Ganong, a professor of the University of Missouri and co-author of the new study "I'm a Loser, I'm Not Married, Let's Just All Look at Me" that "examine[s] the familial and social messages given to women who are not married by their mid-30s" (in the words of the press release) won't return my goddamned calls.

He knows. He knows about my naked ring finger. He knows that on my census form I marked that only one person lives in my apartment. Or maybe he just read my hard-hitting report on viewing the movie Valentine's Day on Valentine's Day.

He probably thinks I spend my entire life feeling invisible, thanks to my singletude, and should be used to shit like this and therefore accept his spurning my phone calls with equanimity. Such is the lot of the never-married woman in her 30s.

Thanks a lot Dr. Ganong. You fucker.

Just in case you're curious, here are the details of Ganong's study (gleaned from the press release):

Ganong and his co-researcher, Elizabeth Sharp, a professor at Texas Tech, interviewed 32 middle-class, never-married women. (There's a sample totally large enough for generalizations.)

"We found that never-married women's social environments are characterized by pressure to conform to the conventional life pathway," Ganong said, as quoted in the press release. "This pressure was manifested in women feeling highly visible and invisible. Heightened visibility came from feelings of exposure and invisibility came from assumptions made by others."

Specifically, single women's social worlds include:
  • Awareness of shifting reality as they become older; for example, the shrinking pool of eligible men and increased pregnancy risks.
  • Reminders that they are on different life paths than most women when others inquire about their single status and during events, including social gatherings and weddings.
  • Feelings of insecurity and displacement in their families of origin when parents and siblings remark about their singlehood and make jokes or rude comments.

Ganong and Sharp found that women felt the most social stigma between the ages of 25 and 35, "a time of intense contemplation and concern for single women regarding their future family trajectories." After that, though, they become content with their lot as spinsters and presumably start adopting cats.

The great culprit, our intrepid researchers claim, is Sex and the City because it "portray[s] female protagonists who are hyper-focused on finding men, and end with the majority of those characters getting married."

Yeah, keep blaming poor old Sex and the City. Even though the series ended with two of the main characters happily unmarried and had a major plotline about a lousy marriage and subsequent divorce. What was our whipping girl before Sex and the City anyway? Jane Austen? (The version without zombies and sea monsters.)

What I am curious to know is why it's only the single women who feel like such losers? Or are made to feel like such losers? Why does nobody feel the need to speculate on the shortcomings of single men? Why has there been no study about how their brains have been warped from watching too much Entourage?

Oh, wait. Single men are cool. They're free. No wonder they avoid single women like the plague. God. I pity them. So pathetic.


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130 comments
peter.south81
peter.south81

As a man I tend to avoid these women because they are only after one thing and that thing is not in my best interest.

Sort of how sexless 20 something men are considered losers by women.

Now it's your turn.

comptoir2011
comptoir2011

Looser yes if a relationship brings you many advantages like discovering own limits and improving one's caracter, and in most cases (the most important) improving one's wealth. If you are unable of bringing these advantages in your favor then what is the point. Better not losing time and stay cocooned into one's lonely happy little selfish life !

elle300
elle300

I am a 31 year old woman that has never been married. I spent a lot of my 20's in school working up to my masters and breaking into my career. Yes, of course i still have a dating life and have relationships and sex. It is old fashioned and lame to say that a woman who isn't married by 30 is a loser. It's funny how in real life people like to see an unmarried woman in her 30's as worthless but when they see movies with unmarried women in their 30's with a successful career they see her as sexy, witty, and confident. Yes, there are plently of guys who would bash this post simply becuase men love to bash women over the dumbest shit.

hotpink2005
hotpink2005

In my opinion love happens at any age when real chemistry happens. Why is aged 30 and above a red flag marker? how utterly ridiculous.  Both men and women want to be loved. Men are not as heartless as women make them out to be, they are just emotionally handicapped, because sometimes they cannot read women and what we really want. However back to my main point, that love will happen when it will happen, and that's the beauty of it!! it is the one thing humans cannot control, hence why it drives us crazy, especially when we settle, with fear of being alone. if we allow ourselves to fall in love with who we should be with rather than those we 'think' we should be with, relationships will be more fulfilled and long lasting.

 Relationships are failing because people have become bitter with a point scoring/ agenda against the opposite sex. Worst still our pride kills relationships.

felinefixation1982
felinefixation1982

I'm a 30 year old single woman. I believe getting married and having kids is the closest thing to a living death that I can imagine. I hear so many stories about women settling down with complete losers because they feel they need to fulfill some societal role as a wife and mother by their 30s. I don't want to live a small life. I believe life has more to offer me than that, so while you middle class drones are popping out kids, ill be busy traveling the world.

snercher
snercher

Man hater much? Think you can post a sexist comment about men and hide behind a masculine name? But then again, there are a lot of idiotic manginas out there.

You are no doubt a bitter husk of a woman who is dying to use men for your own selfish purposes and you are angry that men are finally figuring that out and staying away from you.

Alternatively, you are a bitter husk of a man who is being controlled by a woman you are too afraid to stand up too so you attack anyone who has the fortitude to stand up against controlling women.

You can't logically refute my comments so you resort to shaming just like many bitter women and manginas do. Well, you have been shamed right back.

About time you stop demonizing and blaming men for your problems, get off the internet and just fuck off already, not that anyone would want to fuck a misinformed, angry moron like you.

What a complete waste you are.

What makes you think I would take orders from you? I will post as I please. You don't like it? Get lost, assuming you could be more lost than you already are. Pathetic loser.

sabrina.messenger
sabrina.messenger

When it comes to women, it seems we're damned if we do and damned if we don't.  When I married in 1980 at age 19, I was criticized for getting married "too young." Never mind I was legally an adult and went into the marriage with my eyes wide open. When I divorced at age 28, I got criticized because some deemed me 'too old' to find another husband.  Six years later when I earned my two BA degrees I had people asking when I was going to get re-married...but of course no one knew anyone "appropriate" for me (read Black.) Now I'm nearly 52, still not married, and if I express a desire for marriage or even a simple coffee date, I get shut down with, what for? You're doing ok on your own, you don't need a man! Then in the next breath I get to hear how I'm not wife material and I'm too intimidating, etc lol.  

araelee
araelee

I am a 32 year old unmarried woman. I am not going to pretend like single life is not lonely because it can be, however at least I have hope that might change. I find my situation far more desirable than that of many of my married friends who feel lonely and trapped in loveless marriages. When they try to tell their husbands they are called "naggers" but when they try to motivate their husbands to be more attentive by being a better wife, He thinks he's doing something right... nothing changes till she leaves, then she's a whore, or a gold digger... unless she keeps nagging, then he cheats and blames it on her. I would say 80% of married women I know fall into this category. I'm not looking for a roommate. I want a husband if I can't find one I may settle when I'm fifty. If I'm weird for that oh well.

GHarison43
GHarison43

I love how society always puts blame on the women.  We're 30 and single, therefore we're "too picky".  Really?  I dated a guy for 4.5 years, who took 4.5 years to tell me that he didn't want kids.  That already pushed me to 28 years.  I've tried dating for the past year, but unfortunately 99% of the guys I dated were after one thing only.  So as a result of this one guy wasting 4.5 years of my life, I'm close to 30 and still single.  So now please explain why I'm the "picky" one here??

underground
underground

What this article really says is: To all women (and men get it too) of a specific age, you must get married, multiply,  and conform to the desires of the real rulers of this world. We need your children to brainwash, break down, and medicate, until they are  transformed into mindless workers, trained to obey authority without question. Your children will then continue to feed the system and support the parasitic ruling class. They make their living off us, we are cattle to them.

makebae30
makebae30

As a 31 year old woman who has no husband and no kids, I'm not at all offended by this.  I'm not offended because I have no maternal desire and I'm iffy on marriage at best. The one thing that bothers me about society is that it seems to expect  all women to get hitched and pop out some mini me's.  I'm not a lesbian by any means, I just enjoy my money and my freedom.  Being a mother to me looks like the end me being an individual and the beginning of mommy-itis.  I also believe that 7 billion people on earth is enough.  If anyone looks at me and thinks of me as pathetic just remember, I go out at will - no babysitters needed, I have disposable income and I sleep in on Saturdays! 

Caprica1.5
Caprica1.5

I would like to be president of this so called "losers' club". 43 never been married or had children. It's a badge of honor. Yes, sometimes you feel lonely and wish you had a partner to help navigate in this world, but I've weathered enough storms to know I'm darn good at punching through it alone. How did I not get married? Simple really; career, taking care of an elderly parent and not the time to meet the right person. So, does that make me a loser? Maybe it does...to the eyes of others - but I don't share their eyes. I have my own and the view "ain't that bad folks". 

bunyfan1
bunyfan1

if you think 30+ women are losers--try women in their 40's and 50's-especially those who have been divorced, have kids or both. Everytime I meet one of them I have to listen to all the gory details for the reason their marriages failed (even when I tell them I don't want to hear about it). They almost all reek of desperation-based on the almost daily phone calls, text messages, e-mails I used to get. The overiding concern will all of them is a morbid fear of aging alone and destitute---so I stopped dating them PERIOD!!!!

bunyfan1
bunyfan1

if you think single 30+ women are losers---try women in their 40's and 50's-especially those who are divorced or have kids or both. Everyone of them on the first date has to fill me in on all the gory details for the demise of their marriages. Almost everyone of them reek of desperation--based on the daily phone calls/texts/messages you get etc.etc. The central theme from all of them is a profound fear of aging alone and destitute. I will never date one of them again PERIOD!!

Rickyjuice365
Rickyjuice365

We live in a "Monkey See Monkey Do" Society and when you dont seem to conform or be chasing after the same things. In  this case after the age of 30, single women tend to get bugged or feel depressed about thier relationship status. They are even considered to be eccentric with all their nit picking about finding a dream man.  After all they are the ones carrying the bulk of the reproductive organs.

News Flash ladies: Men want to settle down but media tells us there may always be something better around the corner.

Its not easy finding a mate in this day and age; the "Monkeys" are granted to many freedoms and cant seem to make up their minds.

FYI: after a certain age Single men get down right weird and should have a women in their lives to crack a whip and get them in shape.

eadgbe
eadgbe

Most people are miserable in general. I mean married people are sad because they're married, single people are sad because they're single. I see this everyday with my friends and my mother. The problem is not being single or married. It's the fact that we live in a messed up society, economy, etc. The fact that most people work like slaves, lack spiritual development, hate too much, consume polluted and modified food, etc. I mean people are being tortured and their depression is a symptom of brainwashing and poor health. I'm 18, I don't care if I get married, that has nothing to do with general satisfaction. I want to improve the world, I will be happy when there is no more corruption and when I know I can respect myself.

Dmerce
Dmerce

That professor is most likely to be a misogynous creep and probably can't stand single smart and successful women keeping telling him to f.....o......f

Fakemail
Fakemail

As a married man in his 30's with two children and a house in the suburbs I gotta say; Still single women in their 30's are regarded as either closet lesbians, or blatant stalkers. Not losers so much.

Ahto
Ahto

A very well argued article...

Mike
Mike

I'm learning to be patient. I'm learning about myself. About what I like (thanks Facebook, lol). Sure I want to meet someone. I have to be close to myself and know myself before I can share who I am. It may be cliche, but whatever. Plus, these are exciting times. We have a choice to be more social and get online and meet ppl too. Like there's this 'yachtdates.' It is a new online community for ppl who love the outdoors. Maybe one thing to try is online dating. Here is the link to yachtdates for anyone interested. Good luck! 

http://on.fb.me/qfFrm7

John
John

Men are out busting their butt working.

Women who stay single into their 30's generally only take-take-take (money, time, positive energy & feeling) from men who, when they discover it - dump them quickly.

Too may American women feel they are owed simply by virtue of their gender and have ZERO empathy or genuine care for their man. They ALWAYS WANT MORE. And are constantly looking for what they don't have rather than enjoying the things they do.

THIS IS THE MATERIALIZATION & MADISON AVENUE DESTRUCTION OF THE FAMILY - MAKING WOMEN BELIEVE THAT WHAT MATERIALS A MAN CAN PROVIDE ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE INTANGIBLES THAT WILL GET YOU HAPPILY THROUGH LIFE TOGETHER.

MADISON AVENUE HAS CONNED THE MAJORITY OF WOMEN

THAT'S WHY YOU'RE ALL SINGLE AT 30.

stuoisp
stuoisp

Women will say anything to get married - like men will say anything to get laid.

If a man is 30 and hasn't had sex - he's considered a freak.  This, despite the fact that he may simply be ugly, short, poorly-endowed, etc.

So it's perfectly fair (if not fairer) to say that a woman who's in her 30s and hasn't had the bare minimal social skills to find a husband (since most women just marry for money and then divorce a couple years later) is either too picky or just not attractive. 

Women who say "I love being single" are full of shit.  

peter.south81
peter.south81

@elle300

It's not so much that you're a loser but as men get older their interest in sex dwindles and since that is the main reason for wanting to get married...

Yes, men do marry for sex as dumb as that sounds and feelings of affection are closely tied to sex.

Sex short circuits the decision making process. The problem is when men want to get married in their twenties, many have trouble even getting a date let alone a wife.

As men get older we become more rational, the women get fatter and uglier, we have a lot to lose and we come to our senses. We also hear horror stories from other men about sexless marriages and the legal system.

If you want men to marry you have to catch them when we are young and stupid.

So in a way it does make you a loser, meaning you set yourself up to fail.

Most women are dating way out of their league and find that the men they can get as boyfriends will not marry them.


snercher
snercher

@sabrina.messenger Well, getting married at 19 is kind of extreme. You should have been in school focusing on building your own life rather than marrying someone. I don't know who told you that 28 is too old to find another husband but perhaps you should have found people who don't share such extreme views.

And you have to admit, why would someone be single for so long and then suddenly decide they want to be married at 52? What suddenly changed - a mid-life crisis? Yes, you can change your mind but why make sudden lifestyle changes when you are middle-aged? A potential partner will be interested to know why you suddenly became interested in marriage after so many years of being single.

I agree with you. You are doing okay on your own and you shouldn't get married. It seems that you make impulsive decisions and marriage should not be based on an impulse.

turnitupcon
turnitupcon

I agree with your information about the loveless marriages. That is exactly how I feel. Lose-lose situation. I am female almost 30 and in the process of a divorce.

hotpink2005
hotpink2005

@GHarison43 why do women stay in relationships willingly, then complain that a guy wasted their life? i dont see any time as wasted at all. you had free will to leave at any point but you chose not to, so why blame the guy, like you are a victim who was imprisoned, and when he was not playing ball you threw a tantrum and left.

snercher
snercher

@GHarison43 No one said you were picky. From what you typed, it seems that you don't really want a commitment. You spent 4.5 years with a man only to find out that he doesn't share your life goals? How does that happen? I think you stayed with the guy because the relationship was fun and when the excitement wore off you decided to break it off.

And now you say that 99% of the guys you date are only after one thing? Where do you find these guys? And what about the 1% who are not only after one thing? You don't want them either?

Many people say they want commitment and family, but their behavior indicates otherwise. Find out what you really want and don't blame others for your behavior.

snercher
snercher

@makebae30 Finally, a woman who knows what she wants and doesn't blame others for her own decisions. Bravo!

sabrina.messenger
sabrina.messenger

All of them? Really? did you talk to them all or is that just your own bias talking?  You're doing those women a favor by not dating them...never send in a boy to do a man's job!

snercher
snercher

@Rickyjuice365 If you need someone in your life to crack a whip in order to prevent you from becoming weird and to get you into shape, then you are dysfunctional and not worthy of a mate. High-quality individuals want partners to share their lives with, not parental figures to prevent their lives from spiraling down the drain.

Rylly
Rylly

If a woman doesn't WANT to be married, this article should not offend you.  If it offends you ....maybe its time to look in the mirror and face the truth.

Stunned
Stunned

Wow...I just read the entire blog and I'm pretty stunned at the generalizations, the anger, the mistrust...but isn't everyone's story different?!  I joined the military at 19 and threw myself 100% into taking the hardest assignments and challenging myself (as a woman!) in a man's world.  I was even deployed to two combat zones.  In that time I've also achieved two masters degrees.  So now that I have a moment to step back and reflect, as I come upon my 36th birthday...where do I fit in within this blog and the generalization?  I cannot have children biologically, nor do I really desire them.  I'd like to find a man who would be a partner and equal.  I have my own money and no desire to take anyone else's earnings/hardwork...I'm fit and easily pass for 25 years of age (so I'm told a lot).  Yet I am so discouraged by the immediate perceptions or assumptions of single- white- female- age -36- no children- that I don't even attempt to date.  I am pretty content, but sure it would be nice to have a man around.  I won't DIE if I don't.  but I won't let it ruin my life either...Online dating to me feels like a trip to the grocery store.  You scan the aisles and only pick up something that catches your eye.  Only then might you read the label  then decide if its worthy to "buy" or put back on the shelf.  This is why I never tried it.  Now that I am a medical practitioner, I certainly can't date my patients.  I hate bars.  So what's left?  Honestly, it is pure indifference on my part at this point.  And I admit with one of the other posts here, out of all my friends that are married, only 2 couples are actually happy...Anyway, just sharing my thoughts on the first blog I've ever read.   I'm still shaking my head and thinking, wow...

ShyGirl82
ShyGirl82

Maybe we just need to admit that not all women are wired the same way. I was interested in getting married and having kids - in my late teens and early 20s, when most of the guys my age were out sowing their wild oats, or were really immature. I had a few relationships/a bit of casual sex, but mostly i was single. I had to get used to it. I got to like it. Now I'm thinking I don't want to give it up. I already meet other people's needs at work, as friends, as a daughter and sister, so I don't feel the lack of someone to care for... So yes, I'm happy being single (though admittedly I would like to have more sex) -  why should that be such a social problem?

Vin
Vin

bingo give this man a prize

carrothorse
carrothorse

@stuoisp  lol! somebody's bitter. Maybe you date the wrong women?


benther
benther

Totally agree. If you listen to these women you will find that they SAY they "love being single" or that it has been "by choice,"  Then you get to know them and they have a "vision board" set up(creepy) and they ask you "where do you see youself in a couple of years, because I want to cut my work hours and have a child before I can't anymore."Wow! Good luck with that.  Advice-  you should not have waited till you were in your 40's and started your "pouncing" mode. Im sure she's back pretending it's "by choice" because she was maybe a 5(at best)and pretended to be a 10. Women ARE full of it

sabrina.messenger
sabrina.messenger

Snercher, you are obviously a troll who just wants to get a rise out of people. Your rude and out of line judgmental comments have absolutely no validity. Now please leave the room and let the ADULTS continue the discussion.

snercher
snercher

@sabrina.messenger Well, Sabrina, did you talk to all of the men before claiming that you don't need them as you did in your first comment? You are doing those men a favor by never getting married. Never send in a girl to do a woman's job!

snercher
snercher

@Stunned Congratulations! I applaud women who know what they want and go after it and who don't feel the need to complain and blame others. Thank goodness there are people like you in our society.

snercher
snercher

@carrothorse Well, following that logic, maybe the reason why so many women who are 30 and older are single is because they date the wrong men.

Growne
Growne

I am a 46 year old man and date 40+ year old women because they don't want children. I have met a few that still do but they are the ones that are very selfish or odd. At my age why on earth would I want this?

Mel_23_ashmo
Mel_23_ashmo

Not everyone is like that.  Some people just haven't found someone who wanted to be with them.  I'll be honest.  I'm a 30 year old women.  I'm a little over weight, BUT I have a great personality, I'm pretty (other people have told me this), I have a master's degree, I can take care of myself (a.k.a. I'm not after money), and I am not an unhappy person.  I'm a good person.  I don't want to be alone forever, but I'm not going to settle.  I don't want kids.  I have never in my life asked someone where they want to be in five years.  You generalize too much.  Not all women are like that...though I will admit that I've met several.

Not Buying Your Bull
Not Buying Your Bull

You are sure makin' me call ya a "Fallacy King." Generalizations, dude. Try some logos.

peter.south81
peter.south81

@sharktwistle


If by "impotent" you mean "doesn't think about sex every waking minute" then yes.


We also have very small peni and live in our mother's basement.


Oh and we play video games, lots of video games.

snercher
snercher

@sabrina.messenger Sabrina, just because I say something you don't agree with doesn't make me a troll. You are not in a position to decide whether anyone's comments are valid or not. People have a right to express their opinions. Furthermore, ADULTS tell it like it is and are capable of facing reality - something that more people should be doing in their lives.

snercher
snercher

@Not Buying Your Bull You could have tried some logos yourself but you didn't. So his statement remains unchallenged. Now who is the "Fallacy King?"

snercher
snercher

@Sherell Being 49 and alone is better than being 49 and in an unhappy marriage or going through a divorce.

Sherell
Sherell

My heart hurts for you. 49 and alone is a sad thought. No need to be angry. You did what you thought was right and now you are alone. If you had a second chance would you change your decisions and do things different?

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