Photography by Kylie WhitingSo. Huffington Post Live.
The topic they wanted our thoughts on was intriguing to me...
"Marry Him. The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough."
The author, a single mom by sperm donor, thinks that women should throw out their list of unreasonable deal breakers and SETTLE for DECENT guys instead of holding out for your PERFECT, fantasy guy. She thinks that settling will probably make you happier in the long run since many of those who marry with great expectations often become more disillusioned with each passing year when the earlier "fantasy" doesn't maintain itself and the conversation morphs from romance and vacations into discussions about who's changing the diapers or balancing the checkbook. She also recommends making this jump to "settle" at a younger age so there's time to construct a family together and also so you don't end up having to settle for guys everyone else has passed on.
Loaded conversation. So much could be discussed.
But here are some of my own thoughts today on the subject of LISTS:
I think it's a no brainer to ditch superficial requirements that won't matter in the long run and to go for qualities that DO matter. I love that the author is trying to promote that. And for the record, I think that going for the qualities that DO matter is not actually settling one bit!!! :) That's more like going for the gold, instead of going for some superficial bull crap. I think the sooner people shift their priorities towards what matters most, the closer they'll be to a healthy and good relationship. The key is figuring out what matters most! :) Oye. It's not so easy - I know.
Here's a tip that might be helpful...(this is for married people, too!)
Take a look at your "list" of requirements or needs, whether it's a physical or mental list, and ask yourself - what is the root of the attraction to these qualities?
-Are you after a certain type of guy who makes you feel comfortable, beautiful, whole, complete- because maybe you don't feel that way currently?
-Are you after a guy who will accept you in areas where you feel insecure?
-Are you after a guy who looks good on paper or in person (success, ivy league, tall, handsome, fancy lifestyle) and therefore will be someone who will boost or maintain your confidence or status in life in addition to impressing others? And maybe he'll provide a lifestyle that will also be a boost to your ego (or maybe it will just help to maintain it)?
-Are you after a guy because he just gets your taste, music, preferences - and people who don't are inferior/less popular/less desirable, etc.?
-Are you after a guy because he needs you? And that feels great to be needed?
-Are you after a guy who will ease some shame you feel about your current state or your past or your background/family?
-Are you after a guy who makes you just feel awesome and sexy and wanted because he desires you physically?
-Basically, are you after a certain kind of guy to soothe your ego or make you feel whole or boost your self-worth?
Too often, the ego has "needs" while dating and if those "needs" are met by another person...people can mistake that for chemistry - for love - for connection!!!!! Yes! I think this happens non-stop! We humans loooove having our ego boosted and our insecurities soothed because it feels so dang good.
But I can tell you with my life that starting a relationship because of this "false chemistry" will lead to a very rocky road. You may learn a better way as you go...and that is GREAT...especially if the marriage survives...but I think you'll have a much better experience and happier relationship if you can recognize from the beginning that the best partnerships are not based on "soothing each other's egos" and "fulfilling each other's needs" but instead they are based on two people who are trying to live as their best selves...and have done and are doing the healing work in their own lives to bring their OWN worth and wholeness to the table. And when that happens, one can more easily ditch the "must haves" on their list that were simply there to ease their insecurities. The neediness/desperation factor can lessen. And one can have more focus to pay attention to the qualities in someone that DO matter...the qualities that would make for a great life partner. When you care about these qualities more and you find someone who also feels the same, THAT can be what you bond over...and THAT can be the best chemistry ever!!! :) :) [And in case you want to see what qualities I recommend...I wrote them all out here in an earlier post.]
And finding a good life partner (and being a good life partner) is way, way, WAY beyond Mr. & Mrs. Good Enough. I'd say if you could build up your worth enough to remove the ego-based needs from your list and find someone who is working on the same - - you could possibly have one of the best relationships on earth. :) :) :)
And now, I'd love to hear what you think of this idea. Do you think "attraction" and "chemistry" often happen simply because it feels so good to have a void filled - or to have our ego/worth soothed? Also, if you are married now, would you say that the qualities you once cared about are a lot different than the qualities you now think are important in a marriage?
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