Dr. before Mrs.

There comes a time in life when you’re considered to be “an adult” and suddenly everyone starts expecting big things from you.

Now, I could go on some feminist rant about how these expectations differ for men and women, but go talk to a real feminist about that if you so care to learn.

All you need to know here is that for a woman of a certain age, the only topic of importance is when the heck someone is going to put a ring on it.

When is this certain age? It’s a secret carefully guarded by the Illuminati, but it’s somewhere between too young (my 22 year old engaged sister) and move it along (my 23 year old friend living with her bf). You shouldn’t rush to get married just to have sex, but you shouldn’t have sex before you’re married. You should be financially stable, but also no one in their 20’s is financially stable these days (thanks, student debt!).

As for me, my response to anyone who starts hinting at how my boyfriend of 2 years needs to make an honest woman of me is that I’ve got a more important goal in sight. I have poured years, tears, and (hundred) dollar bills into my education. I’m well on my way to a doctoral degree that I have had to work my ass off to get. I have been a dedicated student for my entire life to get to this point. I’m not about to let a ring get in the way of getting my degree. I have no time to plan a wedding when I’m in classes 15 hours a week, working (without pay) for 10 hours a week, working (with pay) for 15 hours a week, and spending the rest of my time trying to balance sleep, homework, and some semblance of a social life.

Having someone to come home to every night is a nice idea, sure. But that’s not the first thing on my mind when there are mountains of knowledge in front of me to be conquered. Being a Mrs. is cool, but it’s certainly nothing that I would feel proud of. My parents aren’t going to brag about how their daughter got married. I’m going to be proud of what I have accomplished in my schooling and the career it will lead to. My parents can brag about their daughter, the doctor.

Yes, it is possible to get married and still get my doctoral degree. I understand that. But I have my priorities. And getting my degree is at the top of my list right now. So instead of asking me when I’m getting married, ask me how school is going. Let me tell you all about what I am learning and doing. I guarantee it’s far more exciting and relevant than the color of bridesmaids dresses or the cost of venues.

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