So you’re dating an independent woman. Congratulations! It’s not that we’re rare or difficult to find, it’s just that much like any other woman, and we are amazing. We’re amazing for our own set of reasons and, similarly, we are also pretty difficult to understand. Society will have taught you, or maybe just convinced you every woman is standing at the top of her own metaphorical castle tower, screaming in horror at the thought of dying alone, waiting impatiently for you to rescue her. Not the case with us my friends. We are happy you’re here, and welcome you with open arms, just maybe don’t treat us like delicate, lace covered flowers that may blow away in a light breeze.
1. No offense, but we were doing just fine before you showed up.
Independent ladies do not take direction well all the time. It’s not that every single person does not, at one point or another, need help. We all find ourselves fumbling with some household task, cursing the heavens so loudly the neighbors wonder if they should report domestic violence. However, the difference between a woman who has been doing everything for herself the majority of her life, and one who has had everything done for her is we will eventually figure it out, no matter how many F-bombs we drop. While direction may be needed, in the beginning it is so unappreciated you will become the enemy. Just back off for a bit and let us run this shit-show we call learning how to fix a goddamn sink.
2. Often times, and no offense again, we don’t have time to caress your fragile ego.
I can only imagine how lovely it must feel to ride in on a white steed to save the day while the leading lady, me, looks at you adoringly as you slaughter dinner (ew, by the way), or smash a spider (okay, let’s be honest, actually needed. I hate spiders). However, if the only way you find a sense of importance in the relationship is through your independent lady desperately crying out for you, it is time to A) reevaluate your life or B) take a hike. There are many, many ways to feel validated and important in a relationship, but if a woman’s batting eyelashes and waving handkerchief is the only one, this is not going to work.
3. This will come as a shock to you, but we do need you, just not in the ways you may want.
Self-motivated, independent women don’t normally need a man to come in and provide for them financially. We aren’t looking to mantrap a dude into buying a house that is way too big (side note: why does anybody want a mansion when they can’t afford a maid?), or a diamond ring. We don’t want a man in the traditional sense. We want a fucking partner. You push me, I’ll push you. Not this, “let’s go hustle all day long, baby,” bullshit you see on the internet either. Two adults trying to be their best selves together, seeing each other for who they are, and motivating one another to go after what they want, while also keeping a realistic concept of survival in mind. Example: let’s try to get promoted and be better people instead of both quitting our jobs to start an ItWorks campaign!
4. Dudes, boys, men, let us pay. Let us treat you. Let us spoil you.
You love spoiling us and independent or not, we appreciate it. You show your love in many ways, one of which by spending hard earned cash to but us a little trinket, and expensive gift, or sending us to the spa, whatever. Even just picking up the check at dinner means a lot to women who work for everything themselves. Why? Because nothing gets handed to us. If the two of us go out for steak and expensive beer for dinner? Please do not think for a second every dollar spent does not go unnoticed, nor does your gesture. Depending on your job, you could have just spent half your paycheck on a pleasant evening with us and we appreciate you so much sometimes we can’t even put it into words. So, we try to use actions too. For some reason, guys are sometimes put off by this, and that should end now. You earn money, I earn money. You spend a little on me…I…don’t spend any on you? No. No no no. I do spend some on you because you are also, in fact awesome and this is no longer a romantic novel with Fabio on the cover. Accept the damn gift.
5. Sometimes we actually need you in a “traditional” sense and fucking hate telling you.
I, an independent woman, fixer of toilets, earner of my own money, and general all around badass am still afraid of the dark. Things still go bump in the night. I still have days that stress me out so badly I want to sit in the middle of my bedroom floor crying like a child as my limbs, much longer than they were at three, flail until all of my photos have come off my walls, and my possessions lay cracked and broken around me. Independence does not make anybody immune to adulthood. Arguably, it makes us more susceptible to it. This independence, these hard and stressful days may come off like bitchiness. We may bite back at you harder than we mean you. We don’t mean to. Hug us. Just hug us and tell us we can have our cake and eat it too, that intimacy does not detract from trying to maintain a fierce control on everything going on in our lives, and that you are there. Kiss our forehead, rub our back, get us a hot cup of tea. Whatever we prefer, and tell us for one moment just to shut the fuck up, and let you love us without the wall, much like you have done for us.