Missing the Days Before You Were Married

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About Gint Aras

Gint Aras has two decades of experience teaching, over ten of them in a Chicago-area community college. He writes a weekly column, True Community, about young men and education. His writing has appeared in St. Petersburg Review (forthcoming, 2014), Antique Children, Criminal Class Review, Curbside Splendor, Dialogo, Šiaurės Atėnai and other publications. He's a photographer and the author of the cult novel, Finding the Moon in Sugar. Check out his website, Liquid Ink and follow Gint on Twitter @Gint_Aras.


  1. I don’t miss it. I was chronically single, terrible at dating, painfully celibate for many years in my 20s, and women just didn’t warm up to me when meeting or even after first dates (if I was able to get that far). Even then I felt most comfortable at home and would only go out to bars to meet women and be social with friends. The drinking was never something I enjoyed either.

    Now married I have a wonderful partner who loves and appreciates me for my strengths and puts up with my faults. I have a regular sex life for the first time in my life (even if it’s not as much as i’d like it’s still regular). I still race home every day after work but now go to my “castle” that I bought and we built into a home as a couple instead of to a one bedroom apartment on the third floor. I don’t go out unless I really want to, and when I do I almost always have my best friend with me and we enjoy it together. I wouldn’t trade my married life for my single 20s life for anything.

  2. Having wandered the world from my teens into my 30s, I understand this particular freedom, with its perfect pitch of adventures, and its occasional loneliness. Sometimes the wandering is enough. Sometimes the freedom itself becomes a burden.

    As for marriage, if the union is an empty one, its loneliness can be the worst of all. We did our seeking, and didn’t find. And the children? For men and women both, hopefully, the compromises are small compared to the beauty of the journey.

  3. I have a unique POV on this one.

    Six months ago, I was a relatively happy husband and father of three kids. I had the crazy busy schedule.

    And then my wife told me she had been unhappy for a really long time. Then the sheriffs came to kick me out of my home because my wife and children needed to be protected from me.

    The space that was created where I wasn’t dealing with all the pressure of the wife and kids felt amazingly refreshing. I felt a tad guilty for liking the vacation like feeling I had.

    Fast forward to today and I have my own apartment, I see my kids almost 50% of the time, and I’m having a single life that is fueled by a confidence that I never had prior to meeting my wife.

    This wasn’t my choice. But, I’m going to make the most of it.

    One of the things I’ve learned in the past six months is that I have the power to be happy regardless of the hurricane that is surrounding me.

    I hope any guy that is married (especially with kids) and pines for the single life changes his life view and focuses on those things that make married with kids life great.

  4. ‘I was really lonely before I met my wife….”

    My BF (now husband) , when he was in his twenties, was really overwhelmed with facing the challenges and pressures of career training in his profession (well, so was I….but I digress)….I could see he was really self-absorbed and not quite settled enough to start thinking about making any long term commitments….even though I loved him, I didn’t want to waste any more years (3 years already!) hanging around him if he did not envision any long term future for our relationship….although, it really killed me inside, I made the decision to fly 3000 miles away to focus on my own career , instead of being some pathetic Wait-y Katie ["well, it was nice knowing you....g'bye!"]….

    I think, at first, his mother was relieved that now he could find the nice young Jewish girl (of her dreams) and enjoy the single, unattached life in NYC….except that did not happen, at all….he missed me a whole lot and after we got back together (after 3 years apart), everyone told me (including total strangers and eventually, even his mom) that he was miserable without me….[plus working 80 plus hours a week is not much fun either]….

    Not everybody is a happy-go-lucky PUA….

  5. Wow, powerful Gint. Very cool.

  6. I am glad you found what makes you happy…at the moment. We all engage in nostalgia to some degree but the truth is that the past was neither as great (or terrible) as we recall. The paradox is that the freedom of youth allows us to forge ahead on journeys unencumbered by fear or responsibility, while age brings the experience that would simultaneously allow us to appreciate the it & apprehend from its pursuit. The important thing is to occasionally look in the rearview mirror for context but keep your eyes on the road in front of you. And hesitate from placing immediate value on every experience…


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