Sunday Shout Out: How Quick is Too Quick?


One of our readers on Facebook brought out a good question. She wanted to know what everyone thought about the fact that Joshua Ohlman and Laura Camp only knew each other a grand total of two hours before the betrothal was signed.

Is it better to take more time than a few hours to decide if this is the person you are willing to spend the rest of your life with?

You can sound off below in the comments or if you wish to write a longer piece for publication on this subject you can drop me a line at CaluluNLQ(at)gmail(dot)com  Results published next Sunday!

Comments open below






NLQ Recommended Reading …

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment‘ by Janet Heimlich

Quivering Daughters‘ by Hillary McFarland

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement‘ by Kathryn Joyce


Quoting Quiverfull: If You Don’t Love God, You Cannot Love Your Husband?
Thoughts on Conservative Christian Colleges From a Liberty Graduate
Dianna Anderson’s ‘Damaged Goods’ Book Review
Quoting Quiverfull: Forced Obedience or Voluntary Obedience in Submission – Is There Much of a Difference?
About Suzanne Calulu
  • pibaba

    I’m excited to hear what people have to say.

    This scenario brings up interesting feelings in me— some part of younger-me would have LOVED to have had a perfect betrothal where I didn’t have to navigate the murky waters of dating. I remember thinking, “you mean my dad could find me the PERFECT man? And I don’t have to even think about it/take a risk with a break-up? Sweet!” When I was younger (and had read many, many ‘courtship’ books) this scenario sounded awesome because I’ve always been excited about marriage, but dating sounded exhausting, lol :D

    Of course, what I realize in hindsight now was that my desire for a predictable courtship/betrothal (in my case) signaled my lack of developed agency, a lack of critical thinking and mindset that would have had me put up with crap in the name of ‘doing marriage right’. Thank God my dad was never into all the conservative homeschooling stuff– and I’ve now had three boyfriends, managed breakups, grown stronger and more assertive– things I might never had learned if my wish for an ‘easy/correct’ courtship had come true.

    Furthermore, I now work with a co-worker of Palestinian descent– her mother (and aunts on both sides of her family) had arranged marriages. She and I have had MANY conversations about the horrible, debilitating patriarchy that runs in their Catholic Arab family. As I listen to her, I often exclaim ‘that’s just like some homeschool ideology, too!’ Hence, my view of betrothal as ‘being right’ or a way to an ‘ideal marriage’ breaks down as i hear stories of countless (in this case) Arab women stuck in arranged marriages with overbearing husbands.

  • Phatchick

    If it was just the two of them, talking to each other, maybe plenty. But with interfering parents manipulating them; 10 years might not be enough.

  • Trollface McGee

    Wow. Any major life decision where life and limb aren’t at stake should be taken with a lot of consideration. A few hours? I hope that’s an exaggeration because I can think of several dozen far more mundane things I consider for more than a few hours before doing them.
    A marriage without planning can be a disaster waiting to happen. Divorce can be messy even when couples are prepared. And just because you don’t expect to divorce, you still should because statistically you just might. Even without divorce, there’s death, illness, taxes, credit scores, criminal history, health history that is essential to know before you get married. Then there’s all the basic compatibility stuff, which I know they consider unimportant because it’s going to be whatever the male wants.
    I get young people thinking this is in some way “romantic” because they’re young and horny and have had the “no sex before marriage” drilled into their head. The fact that the grown father would advocate such irresponsibility is maddening.

  • Amaranth

    Good grief. My husband and I have already spent more time than that picking out paint colors for our new house. 2 hours? Oi.

  • lareveuse73

    Who can’t fake something for two hours? Sheesh. Absolutely not. This guy could be a serial killer or a puppy eater and she’d be stuck with him. No way.

  • Coleslaw

    Intellectually, I agree with all the comments made this far about two hours not being enough time, etc, etc, but I feel like a hypocrite. Because even though I don’t believe in love at first sight, it happened to me.

    With my first (ex) husband, I did everything right. I knew him for three years before we got married. We met in a church singles group Methodist), group dated and were friends before dating and falling in love. But he turned out to be an abuser and I suspect a functioning alcoholic.

    A few years after divorce, I was a member of another singles group that held a weekly volleyball game. One night I saw my now husband across the volleyball court and thought, “Him! I want him!” I also thought it was an improbable match because he looked about ten years younger than me (turned out to be six), but eight weeks later we were engaged, in less than a year we were married, and 25 years later we are still married. I still look at him across the room and think, “Him! I want him!”

    I have no idea why some marriages last and others don’t, but I think it is possible that even though the circumstances of this couple’s meeting was through an arrangement between the parents, that the groom at least looked at the bride to be and thought, “Her! I want her!” I wouldn’t completely rule it out.

  • Hannah

    It’s too quick if you haven’t gotten to know the person behind the facade. We all wear a mask, the person you marry should be the one who you can take off your mask for, and they can take off their mask for you. Those masks will come off eventually; it’s better to know what’s behind it before you commit your life to that person.

  • aletha

    I think the situation would be slightly less absurd if the betrothed had been given the tools necessary to be individual people. It seems scary to me that 2 people who have never been out of their parents house, never really experienced life, and never really had the opportunity to think for themselves- are going to be thrown together and expected to have a perfect marriage.

  • Alynnef

    The couple looks happy in the picture on her blog. It is going to be a big change for her if she moves to Lubbock to be with his family. She looks happy now, I hope she knows what she is doing. From the pictures of the two families, they seem similar in nature so maybe it will be an easy transition for her. I might not agree (at all) with this whole arrangement but I hope she will be happy.

  • Madame

    I have nothing against love at first sight, and I think your story is beautiful. I wonder what made you feel so certain about him!

    But you got to choose for yourself. You got to date and be around men. You didn’t have to say yes to this man after two hours, you could have taken a lot more time if you had wanted to.

    I don’t know if Josh and Laura were given the chance to accept or reject their parents’ choice of a mate for them, and now, after only 2 hours of knowing each other, they have signed a binding contract for the rest of their lives.

    IMO, how long they got to be around each other is not the issue here, but the lack of personal opinion, experience with other relationships, or the right to opt out of the betrothal should they reconsider.

  • Madame

    I agree!
    You put it a lot more succintly!

  • Nightshade

    Truly beautiful, but I think the exception to the rule. It was your choice, however, and even though you were sure he was the one you wanted you still had more than two hours to reconsider that initial impression, could have decided that impulse was wrong, and if you came to believe it was a mistake you could have changed your mind. That’s the real issue here, I think…regardless of the time involved, ten years, two hours, or a momentary glance across a volleyball court the people involved MUST have the option of going forward or bailing, not simply be told by parents ‘you’re betrothed, there’s no way out, deal with it.’

  • pibaba

    Obviously, I personally don’t know Laura, but they DO seem happy— and I think that’s what troubles me.

    I was perusing Laura’s earlier posts on her blog (I’m fascinated by all this) and I found this post :

    Laura writes:

    “Why do you get the pretty ‘Love’ mug, while I get the ugly ‘Opinion’ one?” I jokingly complained one day as I stood at Papa’s desk drinking some hot chocolate.

    Papa looked up at me and smiled. “Because I’ve already found my Love,” he replied. Then after a moment, he added, “And it’s your opinion that keeps you from finding yours!”

    Point taken, Dad. Thanks.”

    I feel inadequate to knowing ‘what she really meant’ in this post, but I think this speaks to the environment she was raised in— so she feels content in this new situation.

  • Saraquill

    Betrothal after only two hours sounds horribly slapdash. I would insist on months of getting to know one another, each other’s families, and other important details.

  • Lucreza Borgia

    Add to that the fact that divorce in certain Gulf states is exceptionally easy for men and isn’t seen as bad for the man. Yet many got married through betrothal. I guess Vaughn would blame Islam then for the fact that half of marriages there end in divorce?

  • aletha

    If opinions are what keeps people from love, then, apparently,either most commentators here are single, or opinionless…

    Also, if her dad was pro-betrothal, isn’t is HIS fault his daughter hadn’t found her love?

  • Theo Darling


  • Madame

    You probably mean his DAUGHTER, not wife. In which case you are right, unless he was letting her have the last word.

  • aletha

    Good catch. I fixed it!

  • gimpi1

    I have joked for years that my husband and I got married for our 20th anniversary. We met when he was engaged to my cousin, They broke up, and I think he asked me out on the rebound. (I look a bit like her.) We dated for a couple of years, then moved in together. We lived together for 4 years or so, split up, but remained good friends. We got back together after a couple of years, moved back in together, and married after living together for 8 years (the second time). We’ve been married for 14 years, and we’re doing fine. To say we knew each other would be a profound understatement.