I met Chris at a rock show, and after three drinks and about twice as many not-too-subtle glances, we introduced ourselves. And that’s a super-romantic thing for a partner, which is great because people are generally excited about dating me.
” We saw each other sporadically over the next three months or so, always in Seattle, and the evening usually ended with him slipping some organic vegetables from his farmers market stock of the week in my purse.
But when the shit hits the fan and I’m working 70-80 hours a week, all the time, and I’m not around, it gets hard.” In the agricultural world, the standard challenges of finding one’s soulmate are only compounded by the fact that the number of farmers in the United States has greatly diminished.
And as young people tend to be discouraged from the long, hard, and not exactly lucrative work of farming, the average age of the American farmer is only rising.
As farms have disappeared and consolidated across the country, small towns are clearing out in favor of big cities — shrinking the rural dating pool considerably.
I set out to get a real idea of whether farmers encounter more or different hardships in the dating game than your average single-and-searching, and talked with six farmers of different ages, sexual orientations, and farming backgrounds and approaches across the country.
I’ve collected excerpts from those very candid conversations and shared them below, and hope that together they form an honest picture of what it’s really like to look for love as a farmer.
Marshall, 26, Mississippi: Fifth-generation pig farmer Can you tell me a little bit about your experiences trying to meet women in the area around your farm?
I guess it’s ironic because I’m a local producer and always stressing local, but as far as females go I usually, uh, have to import from other places or meet girls at other places.
I just haven’t really interacted with a girl my age in this community, well, really at all — but especially that I felt really compatible with.