I have talked a lot about what I don’t want when it comes to the opposite sex. I have gone over a lot of the bad or negative things about dating and a plethora of pitfalls as it relates to the men I have dated or gone out with. I honestly don’t believe that all the good men are gone or married. Or gay for that matter. I mean, seriously, there has to be at least a few of them left and maybe, just maybe, I will be fortunate enough to find just one of them. So, instead of listing all the bad things about the men I have come across, perhaps it would be nice to address what I do want, because I have been thinking about that a lot lately.
- A gentleman. A true gentleman, not just one that likes to say he is and then forget his manners as soon as he gets comfortable with me. I want a man to open my doors, go out of his way to treat me like I matter to him, speak with kindness, not just to me, but everyone he comes across, even when he doesn’t necessarily like them. He should have at least some basic understanding of manners and etiquette and be good to my kids and my family.
- A man who is proud to be with me. I am not a super model. In fact, I am about the farthest thing from that, but I want whoever I am with to be okay with that and to be proud of who he is with, because in spite of my physical shortcomings, he thinks I am still an awesome person and a great catch.
- A man that isn’t afraid of feelings. Oh my gosh, it would be nice to be with someone who is not only okay with my feelings but doesn’t mock or belittle others who have them. It would be nice if he shows and shares his with me because he cares about and trusts me that much.
- Someone who realizes and is okay with the fact that I fuck up. Because I do. Monumentally sometimes. I want someone to push back when I push and fight when it’s necessary. I want him to not puss out when I mess up and talk to me about why he is angry with me when he is angry with me. He should be able to engage in conversation when things go wrong and not just walk away. A good man sticks around when things get difficult. A good man will get that I am worth it even when my insecurities and baggage get the best of me.
- Someone with a good work ethic. Maybe that sounds a bit trite, but I want him to work hard. I also want him to play hard. Lazy is good at the right time, but I really want to be with someone who not just says he likes to hike and swim and go to the gym. I want someone who actually does and encourages it in me when I am too damn tired to move. I want someone who says “let’s go!” and grabs me by the hand and drags me to the car to go do something active when everything in me says “no. Let’s just watch Netflix”.
- Lazy at the right time. Yes, I realize that I just said I wanted someone active, but there are times when I really need to relax and just chill. I need to recharge my batteries and I want someone who can honestly tell when I need that and help make that happen. Sometimes I really just need a day when I can sit on the porch, wrapped up in a blanket or a hoodie, drinking hot cocoa, either enjoying a good book or watching the rain fall. Some days I really need to just breathe and little else. The right man will know this and enjoy the quiet with me.
- A good sense of humor. I love to laugh. If a man can make me laugh so hard I snort, he just might be a keeper. I love all kinds of humor–jokes, sarcasm, off color humor, dry humor, nerdy humor, geeky humor and (gasp!) dirty humor. If he can make me laugh, he is ahead in the game already.
- Someone with a past. This might sound strange, but I want someone with a past. I am not so sure that someone will accept mine if they don’t have their own. All those flaws I sport, the baggage I carry and all my scars are a part of who I am. They have built my character, made me strong, given me compassion and taught me things a clean and trial-free life could’ve never done. Someone with a past will understand this. They will see mine and not be afraid to share theirs.
- Someone who encourages me. I have always been able to take care of my self, but it would be nice to have someone who is willing to be my cheerleader. In relationships, I do my best to encourage and cheer my partner on, but rarely is my effort reciprocated
- Someone willing to be gluten free. This may be the hardest one to find. If one doesn’t have to be gluten free, why do it? I mean, who knows if this is something I could do if I didn’t absolutely have to. I would like to think I would, but it was hard enough doing it out of medical necessity, but when it’s not? Good luck. A man willing to give up his beer, bread and anything else gluten filled may be a unicorn indeed.
- Someone who wants to live. I am tired of men that want to be comfortable staying at home all the frickin time. I want to go camping and fishing and out to movies and for walks. I want to travel and see the world. I want to hang out with other people and go dancing and play. I want to have fun and I want to be with someone who wants to do those same things. I don’t want to spend my life working and then coming home to cook and clean for someone else and then watch Netflix until bedtime. I want to be with someone that isn’t happy in a bubble of comfort. I want to do things that scare me or challenge me or change me.
- Someone intelligent. I have always been kind of a nerd so I value intelligence in a partner. Maybe I need to ease up on that though because often when I find a super intelligent one, they kind of turn out to be, how shall I say this? Less than fun. Lacking anything resembling exciting.
- Someone that is good to my family and kids. If a man can’t get along with my family, there is really no point in pursuing a relationship because, while I don’t see them as often as I would like or I should, they are very important to me. The last man I dated and the only one I have introduced to my children or family since I dated my ex-husband, did a bang up job of completely pissing off my entire family, save my dad. “J” was absolutely rude as shit to my sister and you just can’t be rude to her. “M” (my sis) is a genuinely nice person and does her best to make people feel at ease and engage them in conversation. You can’t treat my family like crap on the bottom of your shoe and be in my life.
- Someone creative–I don’t care how he is creative (unless he is out creating new STD pools and offspring with a bevy of other women), I just dig creative–woodworking, drawing, painting, putting things together, building things. A man that works with his hands is a huge turn on. Watching a man work with his hands, however/whatever he does, can be mesmerizing. And actually kind of therapeutic.
- Someone adventurous and young at heart–If a man can turn even the most mundane of activities, such as grocery shopping or errand running, into an adventure, that is someone I want to spend my time with. I want him to see the world through the eyes of a child and be just as giddy as I am over things others take for granted. I want to watch the clouds float by, count the stars, wonder at the beauty found in seemingly ugly and dirty things.
This list probably sounds like a lot of demands and high expectations. It is. I am no longer willing to settle for “meh” any longer. I mean, there is a little wiggle room in there somewhere, but this really is my ultimate “wish list” for a partner. As high as my expectation is for the next, and hopefully final, man in my life, I hope his expectation is just as high for me. We should challenge each other, fight for each other, take care of each other, cheer each other on, and, God willing, go on a million adventures with each other. If that isn’t possible, and just “meh” exists, then really, what is the point?