I've often wondered, in dating, if I've been too picky. At 27, I am still single and many times have complained that there are no good men in New York. "What about that guy from the book store?" My friend would ask. "Oh he was a terrible speller," I answered. "How about that one that took you to dinner a few weeks ago?" They ask. "He wore a shirt from Abercrombie," I replied. I complained about never having any dates but when I did I would pick these guys apart. Too short, too dense, too eager. Hate their style, their love of football, their lack of imagination. No one could ever live up to the ideal man I had pieced together as if I was playing with a Mr. Potato Head: this hat, those arms, these shoes. Insert intellect and humor.
What if this person only exists in my often unrealistic imagination? What if I've been dismissing perfectly good men because they didn't pass my initial cross check?
I recently came across this book by Lori Gottlieb called, Marry Him: The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough.
In the book, Gottlieb, 40 and single, regrets passing up the slew of suitors she had in her 20s. Had she not been so picky, applying her feminist ideals of self-sufficiency to her dating life, she reasons she would not still be single in her 40s where most eligible men are married or looking for someone much younger.
But what happens to the girl power mantra, "Never settle for less," we wonder. Gottlieb explains that you're not settling for less, you're getting rid of your too high standards (before it's too late!) and accepting that there's a middle ground between McDreamy and the guy that hits on you at McDonald's.
I once asked Bionic Woman, "What happens if the wonderful person that you're dating isn't who you pictured yourself marrying?" After a few seconds, she answered logically, "We rarely end up with who we thought we would." Nothing profound there. Just a realistic reply to go with my new, realistic expectations.