Like every other twenty-something, I grew up imagining the day that I would meet “the one.” The person that would change my life forever. The person that would fall madly in love with me and live happily ever after with me. We would see each other from across the bar, our eyes would lock, and that would be it. We would know we had met the one we’d been searching for all along.
If you’re waiting for this occurrence, stop. If you have a list of characteristics that your ideal significant other must have, burn it. That person doesn’t exist and it isn’t fair to compare your current partner to a fictional character.
Today’s young women are chasing an ideal partner that can never be attained. Popular culture has taught us that this ideal mate is out there. The one who will “make us whole” and fill the voids that we cannot fill on our own. The guy that is the rough epitome of masculinity while also being emotionally intelligent, caring, and sensitive at the same time. The bad boy with the heart of gold. There is a reason why these storylines do so well in movies. They don’t exist in real life.
I’m not saying women today should settle for any guy that comes along. I’m just saying women need to take a hard look at what they want in partner. A potential husband cannot be held to the unrealistic standard of best friend, confidant, protector, breadwinner, nurturing father, lover, therapist, alpha male, and businessman who makes over 100K a year.
And let’s not forget the physical requirements many women have. I can’t tell you how many times I have overheard a woman saying, “I don’t date guys under six feet.” Well that’s limiting yourself to about twenty percent of the current male population in the United States, so good luck with that.
We as women hold men to these unattainable standards and then when the fairytale doesn’t come true, we run away or get disappointed. Women need to take a long hard look at themselves and decide, “What do I truly want in a partner?” If you want someone that is the masculine type, he’s probably not going to be the most sensitive guy. Sorry. That’s just the name of the game. I’m not saying those men don’t exist, but they are exceptions and most likely you’re the rule.
The first thing young women need to do is spend some time alone. I mean really alone. Backpacking the Pacific Crest Trail, alone. How do you know who you are if you’re constantly in a relationship? Alone time helps women discover their own likes and dislikes, what they believe in. Take a trip by yourself. It doesn’t have to be to some exotic destination. Just go and discover who you are when you don’t have anyone else.
Stop looking for someone to complete you. Complete yourself and the right person will find you. Be the kind of person you would want to date and you will attract that kind of person. The energy you put out will always find its way back to you.