Feb 9, 2016

In Every Season: The Surveys


Hey y'all! I wanted to share a bit about the two surveys I sent out in preparation for this series, "In Every Season". If you missed yesterday's post about the series, that may be a good place to start for this post to have any context (read it HERE).  This may be a bit dry, but I thought it would be important to share some background about the surveys that would play a big part in the weeks ahead.

 My goal for these surveys was to gather information about what women from the two target groups (Christian single and young married women) felt could improve community between them and women in different seasons. I wanted to learn about what women felt were struggles as well as joys in these seasons. My hope was that it would encourage other women to be more intentional in starting conversations and building friendships with women in different seasons as themselves.

Season of Singleness Survey 
In the survey for single women, I sent the survey to fifty single friends and acquaintances  and 31 responded by completing the survey. Of these participants, the age group was represented as shown below:

These participants varied in occupations, schooling, and life experiences. It was an anonymous survey, so I do not know which thirty-one of the fifty women responded, but there was variety in the single Christian women that were contacted for the survey. They were from different states in the U.S. and different cultural background.

There were seven questions in long-answer format asking questions including:
  • What is the hardest (or most frustrating) thing about being single?
  • Has any woman who is dating or married given you advice regarding your singleness that annoyed you, was not helpful, or unintentionally hurt you? Why do you think it bothered or hurt you?
  • Do you feel you can still connect with women who are dating, engaged, married, and/or mothers? If yes, then how so? If not, then what is the hardest part of connecting?
  • What has helped you most in your season of singleness? (Examples include, but are not limited to: having other single friends to talk to, reading Christian articles or books about singleness, prayer, Bible studies geared toward women, etc)
  • Are there any books you would recommend to other single women that have helped you in your season of singleness?
  • Do you have at least one older Christian woman in your life who you see as a mentor or someone who you can be honest with, encouraged by, pray with, and/or feel connected with? If so, what makes her special and how often do you interact? If not, is this something you have ever desired?     
  • What are some ways that Christian women who are no longer single can help you, love you, serve you, and encourage you during your season of singleness?
Young Marrieds Survey 
In the survey for young married Christian women, I received 51 responses from women who have been married 1 month - 10 years. Here is the breakdown:

 The questions in the survey included:
  • Did you and your husband go through pre-marital counseling in preparation for marriage? If so, what was most beneficial? Would you recommend pre-marital counseling for newly engaged couples?
  • Are there any topics that you wish you knew more about in preparation for marriage?  (such as sex, communication, or finances)?
  • What would you say is the best advice in preparation of marriage for women who are dating or engaged?
  • What are some memorable/useful lessons you've learned on communicating with your husband?
  • Are there any books about marriage that helped you and/or your husband on topics such as dating, marriage, and godly womanhood and manhood? If so, what are the titles? Are there any books/passages from the Bible that have helped?
  • Do you have an older Christian woman who you can receive mentorship, encouragement, prayer, and/or learn by her godly example? If yes, what makes her special? If no, is this something you wish you could have?
  • What are some practical ways that older Christian women can encourage, minister, and love newlywed wives and/or young mothers?
  • If you could ask an older, godly married woman one or two questions relating to marriage or motherhood, what would you ask her?

The responses from both surveys were honest, raw, and some made me tear up. Thank you, thank you, thank you to all the women who participated in these surveys and shared a bit of their hearts with me! I am humbled by all of your responses and am excited to share some thoughts in the weeks and months ahead. I will use the surveys as a backbone for the structure of the In Every Season series. They will help direct the topics for the posts, such as an upcoming post on what NOT to say to single women,  written mainly with responses from the second question of the survey for singles. 

I goal for the surveys was to gain a myriad of voices other than my own. I had my own experience as a single woman and now as a newlywed and often share these on the blog. But I wanted to also bring in more voices to explain their own experiences in different life seasons as well as an opportunity for them to share their wisdom. 

Stay tuned for the next post for In Every Season series, The Hard Parts of Singleness. 



2 comments:

  1. Oh what a great idea! I'm sure you got some wonderful answers. I'm excited to follow along in the series.

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  2. Great work in doing detailed research to prepare for your series. "Write what you know" is great advice, but it also gets boring if you aren't learning anything new!

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Elle Alice