So! A few weeks ago, I introduced a new app that Savvy and I are designing called EDGE, the Dating App for Interesting Christians. Basically, it was in response to a handful of my friends (admittedly, mostly guys) who expressed how they want to meet a Christian girl – but a really cool, interesting Christian girl.
Honestly, I understand this COMPLETELY. When I was single, I was looking for a guy who would choose wine-tasting over a game of Uno. Relationships can make your life so much more exciting and you don’t want to settle for someone who hardly causes a ripple in your typical day-to-day life. And in my limited personal experience, Christian bachelors and bachelorettes appear to lead a more relaxed, p.c. life that, well, isn’t very exciting.
However misinformed this observation is, it still doesn’t deflate from the number of singles (again, mostly male) who complain about not meeting any interesting Christian singles.
But let’s examine this from a more critical point of view. Any of you heard of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl? Film students, you got me.
“Let’s say you’re a soulful, brooding male hero, living a sheltered, emotionless existence. If only someone could come along and open your heart to the great, wondrous adventure of life… Have no fear, the Manic Pixie Dream Girl is here to give new meaning to the male hero’s life! She’s stunningly attractive, high on life, full of wacky quirks and idiosyncrasies… She’s inexplicably obsessed with our stuffed-shirt hero…”
As you can imagine, the Manic Pixie Dream Girl has made her rounds in feminist discourses. Plenty of films have worked to directly challenge the trope. In the Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Kate Winslet’s hair-color-changing character Clementine tells her brooding love interest, “Too many guys think I’m a concept or I complete them, or I’m gonna make them alive. But I’m just a fucked-up girl who’s looking for my own peace of mind.”
My lovely co-blogger, Savvy, even touched on this topic on her blog piece about Christian fiction with its “ideal godly woman” and “ideal godly man.”
So now I wonder if my fellow brothers in Christ are craving a Manic Pixie Church Girl. In their monotonous, churchboy lives, what they need is a burst of energy. Someone who’s worldly but spiritual, adventurous but able to make it to church, and sexy but modest.
It sounds problematic but why wouldn’t someone want that? We should look for someone who shares our interests and has similar levels of energy.
But, if I may say, we should also look for someone who’s just as complex as we are. Not just sharing in our interests, but sharing in our insecurities. Someone who can relate to a side of us that’s not so glamorous – and they can relate to us that way because they also have a side that’s not so glamorous. Instead of someone who distracts us from our vulnerabilities, find someone who makes us realize how we’re not alone in our vulnerabilities. Through that, we can feel stronger and more joyful in our companionship. Or, as Christians, we like to call it ‘fellowship.’
If the Manic Pixie Churchgirl has no vulnerabilities, then she has no way to relate to you. And, level with me, you need someone who can level with you.
So! There’s no problem in seeking an ‘interesting Christian.’ But that should not be the priority. Not to mention, I personally believe that you can take the most mundane-looking churchgoer and realize that there’s so much more under the surface. To me, those hidden complexities are much “edgier” than an interest in skydiving.
But, who knows, maybe I’m wrong?
Happy Belated Valentine’s Day, everyone! ❤