So, I guess I haven’t really done any work in a while in terms of trying to find a suitable person to date. I left off somewhere in the Patti Stanger 12 Step Program at the “meet someone at a sushi bar” page. But I haven’t done much of the nitty-gritty self work that is required to find my mate. So today’s exercise involves the production of a Pro/Con list of the men of my past. For the sake of this blog I’ve gone with three men: The Boyfriend, The Friend, and The One Who I Wanted (But didn’t get..). I’ve listed things that I enjoyed about each relationship/person under the pro list and listed a few things that I ultimately didn’t like under the con list. So, without further ado…I present you with The List.
- Thoughtful and sentimental. Extremely thoughtful. More thoughtful than I really thought a male could be.
- Funny. Clever humor. So many inside jokes.
- History. Knew me from age 5. Knew my background, my accomplishments, my abilities. Knew my family.
- Intelligent and driven. He’s working on a PhD. Enough said. He wanted a future and was working for it. I was hesitant to even add this to the list because I didn’t value this at the time. Depressing.
- Loyal. No matter how bad I was, or what I did that was wrong, he was going to stay there and take it.
- Loyal. I’m including this twice because he was loyal to a fault and it was hard to respect that.
- Poor hygiene. Rarely got haircuts and didn’t shave his beard. I like a goatee but the full beard was too wooly for me.
- Selfish, but in weird ways. He was selfish in that he wanted the bigger piece of pie, literally. Sometimes I felt like I was on my own in terms of being taken care of.
- Poor planner. I remember specifically an anniversary that broke my heart. For being so thoughtful, sometimes he would just not even plan. That’s another story for another time, though.
The Friend (That Was More)
- Excellent sex that made me realize what sex could be. Do I need to elaborate? And it’s first on this list because it’s the only think I could come up with for a long, long time.
- Wanted me to be better. I think he saw that I was so co-dependent, but was capable of a lot more than what I was doing. His approach to get me there wasn’t great. But the concept deserves kudos.
- Had a strong desire to care for me in simple ways. He wanted to find a car for me, take care of the car, fix things around my house.
- Absolutely unequivocally a pathological liar. About things big and small. I will never live like that again.
- Irresponsible with money and wanted to use mine more often than not
- Literally unable to be faithful, to me, or to anyone else.
- Has no long-term plans,ever. I think he literally lives day-to-day and has a great job and is okay with that. I will be so jealous when he figures that out and settles down with someone.
The One I Wanted (But Didn’t Get)
- Extremely funny, and thought I was funny too. Our senses of humor clicked immediately. We bantered and he could make me struggle to hold my own. I loved that.
- Was honest with me about his fears and hopes, things that haunted him. Things that inspired him. I found it refreshing.
- Made me feel attractive and wanted very easily
- Was already in a relationship
- Interested in me but sort of ‘whatever’ about whether or not anything would happen
- Inconsistent. Would come and go and not really in a predictable manner.
So what does this teach me? I’m still working on that one. I mean, obviously it should show me what I do want and don’t want in a future mate. But it doesn’t get me any closer to finding one. I can’t walk outside my office with a clip board and start checking boxes. These things, for me at least, are things that I feel like I’ll only know about a person as I get to know them. I can’t look at a person on a first date and know they can banter with me, they are super thoughtful, and they aren’t a pathological liar. It all takes time. And if anything I’ve learned it takes a long time to get to know the real person inside everyone.
I’m worried that having this list encourages comparisons. And someone once begged me “Please don’t make them the measuring stick for everyone else”. I really took that to heart. These men have no bearing on my future. At least I don’t want them to. So I’m not so sold on this idea. But I’m posting this because I put effort into the exercise and maybe one day this will all make sense. Or maybe someone out there has an observation I haven’t arrived at yet.