Thursday, January 28, 2010

meet mr. good enough

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.


Sarah said...

I agree with you, Nina. Sometimes I worry that I have set my standards too high, but then I see so many people in loveless or unhappy relationships, that I am glad I haven't settled into something that isn't right. At the same time, I always have to remind myself of a good friend who met her husband when he was wearing a red flannel shirt and cargo style jeans. They're very much in love and she's taught him a little bit about style over the years!! She always reminds me that "we can fix that"; some just need a little help.

Bionic Woman said...

I agree with Sarah, I always say "he does this or he does that or he's this..." and so on but always add in but "that's easy to fix". So maybe a lot of us women are just "fixers" and "adjusters" but I would say it still has to be a compromise above all else. I think a big problem is that people are too quick to judge before they get to know the real "you".

little one said...

Umm...hello welcome to everything going on with me right now!