11 things you should know about the older Mormon YSA crowd

By Katie Bastian

For From Little Things Come Big Things

Published: Friday, Nov. 15 2013 12:00 p.m. MST

Being a 29-year-old single member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints these days is interesting. This stage of life is a whole different ball game from the younger single years, and I wanted to share some thoughts on what it's like.

Keep in mind that while I speak for all us (the older LDS YSA crowd) in this post, my opinions are mine alone, and not everyone will feel the same way. This list is to clear up a lot of misconceptions about our group. Yes, there will always be some who DO fit the stereotypes, but most of us don't.

So, without further ado, 11 things you should know about the older YSA crowd:

1. We do not all have dark holes of emptiness and misery in our souls because we are not married.

I admit it ... I was the girl whose plan was to go to college, find a husband, get a college degree and then live happily ever after as a stay-at-home mom.

When I was a freshman at Utah State University and first met my 21-year-old resident assistant roommate, I remember thinking, "Wait. But she's a senior in college ... and NOT MARRIED. How is that even possible?"

Yes, I eventually ate my words, and I quickly realized that 21 is basically still a baby in the world of adulthood. (This coming from the obviously older and wiser 29-year-old who clearly knows everything. Let's be honest, I'm still a baby.)

At some point, when our lives don't go as planned and we find ourselves all grown up with no spouse, it gets confusing. There's a moment of, "Wait a second. There's a big piece of my plan missing, and now I don't know what to do with myself." But guess what? With a little time, we usually figure it out.

We learn that we can be happy by ourselves. We begin to understand how fulfilling life can be when we work, serve and play. We develop our talents in ways that can benefit others. And we are happy. Despite popular belief, we are not sitting on the couch woefully awaiting the day when that special person will just magically appear and grant us the happiness we never knew.

Will marriage add to our happiness? I sure hope so!

Will it create it? Nope.

There are too many young adults in our culture who expect a fairy tale marriage to magically make everything wonderful in their world. But you have to be whole as an individual before a relationship can be whole.

So, we work to progress and become better, all the while enjoying the moment.

2. We are not all bitter toward the opposite sex.

Yes, guys are confusing and frustrating sometimes. But so are girls. I am not ignorant to the frustration I've put many a guy through because of my own indecisiveness and lack of communication. I feel that having that experience helps me be more patient with guys when they confuse me. Sure, there are a few legitimate scumbags out there, but I figure most guys are just trying their hardest, like I am, and if they end up hurting me, it is likely not intentional.

3. We are not all bitter when our friends get married and have families.

We've all seen it — the people who attend their best friends' wedding receptions with a fake smile, trying to hide the anger and bitterness deep inside, all because it's NOT THEM. And let's be honest, we've all probably been there at one time or another. Years ago, both of my roommates got engaged within a month after I called off my wedding. It was hard and painful, and though I knew it would all make sense someday, at the time, it seemed so ... unfair. Why did they deserve it, but not me?

After some time and some healing, I realized that was a completely selfish attitude. I was making others' relationship success about ME.

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