Powerful piece. I'll shamelessly suggest that all -- not some, but all -- of the following are probably necessary if she wants to have a shot at marriage:

1. Lose weight.

2. Consider whether her standards for men are unrealistically high

3. Ask some good husbands she knows whether there are aspects of her personality that she should work on

4. Engage with some sort of "trad" community (e.g. church) where the men are more likely to be marriage-minded than cads

5. Don't put out until (at the absolute least) having a serious talk about marriage, or (preferably) having a ring and a wedding date, or (best of all) the wedding night

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Aaron, enjoyed these thoughts.

My impression is that, other than losing weight and otherwise improving their self-adornment, women aren't taught anything true and useful about *how* to land a husband. I wonder, what's the best source of good advice that would make a difference? I have a daughter now and am concerned largely for her sake.

Men are given plenty of useless advice about what attracts women, which Aaron has perceptively pointed out. But luckily the basic script that men are given for life is still a reasonable start: be athletic, get educated, get a good career. Plus men tend to naturally gain confidence as we age. And of course, men are inclined to seek out women, even if sex is sometimes the primary motivator, and men aren't receiving a potent, high-status message not to seek out women. And even if we were, men have a stronger inner compass in general and are less easily persuaded to follow society's script when it contradicts that compass.

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A stirring article. I liked your advice to pastors at the end. I wasn't married until my late 20s, and while I accept some responsibility for that, it was not voluntary to wait until then. Pastors who married at 22 often come across as clueless.

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Moving and poignant piece. Thanks.

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“My impression is that many single women in Key’s age bracket are far more unhappy about their status than they are letting on”

The really frightening, almost incomprehensibly cruel aspect is that so many of these women, rather than open up about their pain like she does, instead lie to young women and tell them girlboss lies about fulfillment in career and meaningless sex, instead of encouraging them to have a family and experience the joy that these older women long for. It seems the denial and self-justification is so deep they’d rather destroy another generation while pretending to be happy than do the right thing and warn others from their fate.

As for the real reason for so much misery, I wrote about that (and how coffee beans don’t cause epidemics) today, courtesy of Augustine:

“you have made us for yourself, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.”


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