When it comes to dating or settling down I often get accused of being too picky; and if you’re over 30, have never been married and are still single this has probably happened to you as well. Too often I’ve had to explain as to why I have yet to be tied down or what happened to the last girl (and half the time it’s not me ending things…I get dumped too).  There seems to be a fairly consistant reaction that when I say I do not have a girlfriend, the person I am telling’s inner voice begins an assesment as if they are trying to figure out what is wrong with me.  Does he live some secret life? Maybe he is flat out loco or isn’t ready to settle down.  It is as if being single is some sort of death sentence or negative condition.  The irony of it all is that most of those so concerned about my bachelordom seem to be in less than happy relationships. 

Trust me, I have no qualms with being single…however, it isn’t my end goal by any means.  However, I’d much rather be single the rest of my life than concede a relationship that isn’t healthy, fitting, and fulfilling. Now this isn’t intended to be a self-defense editorial on my state-of-dating so I’ll keep it general and pepper it with plenty of analogies…so here I go again breaking down for you like Grisham does fiction.

catch

Exhibit A

With every ex that has come and gone the picture of who I am, and what I want and don’t want becomes ever clearer.  First off, I do fancy myself a catch and I have the T-shirt to prove it (see exhibit A)!!! It’s not being arrogant but it is true that we are all uniquely different so is it a far stretch to say that each individuals uniqueness makes it harder to find a compatible match? Being with “The One” should be easy and drama-free, if not at least drama-light, especially during the initial courting stages. Yet, finding that “One” isn’t necessarily so; many factors and variables play into it. It’s also not about wanting to find the perfect person or Ms. Flawless so she can be Mrs. Jessica Flawless-Alonso (damn…that sounds pretty good!!! For those that don’t know I have thing for Jessica Biel).  It is about finding that perfect person for each of us, that we can grow with and compliment us. I’ve actually had an ex or two who were able to see my idiosyncrasies and shortcomings as charming and entertaining, while I saw their imperfections much the same way. There were other reasons for it not working out but this important factor was present, therefore proving that it does exist. We should be with people who “fit” us as we do them. Someone made a great analogy the other day and said that finding a mate was like picking out a race horse, none are perfect but you have to find the one you can live with and that has the attributes that you want. A little oversimplified, but it works to an extent…add in that ineffable X-factor, chemistry, connection or wow, and BOOM we have ourselves a winner!!! Regardless of a person’s negatives, when things click they are hardly noticeable but when that chemistry/connection is missing it seems like the way they breath can drive one to drink.

One gripe I tend to have about certain relationships and couples are those individuals who morph into a strange being when they are with someone else. Now I understand that most of us can be fairly different in a relationship as opposed to when it’s single season but I adamantly disagree, or should I say, I strenuously object to those whose personalities seem compromised in certain relationships. I, for one, will never alter my personality for someone…it’s my greatest gift and most prized possession! We should all be ourselves, not put on a long running act because most can only keep this going for so long before the façade crumbles or resentment sets in. Much the same about my first point – it should be easy. There are those who enable you to be you and maybe even become a true catalyst for a greater you, while others can hinder you and keep you stagnant and apathetic. I’m choosing the first type.

In the whole mad dating/single life world there is one motive that irks me more than people who wear blue-tooth headsets at a restaurant…it’s people who say they can’t wait to find someone that makes them happy. I don’t mean to get too Freudian, Wayne Dyerish or Dr. Big Phil but this kind of talk should be stricken from our vocabulary. I know that it’s probably not meant in a true literal sense but there are plenty of people that are depressed alone and always need to be in a relationship to be happy. However, those who were miserable before will probably become miserable soon into the relationship and will be miserable after. If you are not happy with who you are then nothing is going to make you happy long-term. They are all band-aids on a larger problem…the new pet, car, watch, job or city might bring you a stint of happiness (maybe it’s just the excitement of something new…the shine always wears off) but there is one thing that you will be stuck with afterwards that you’ll never be able to get rid of…YOU! So learn to love yourself and be secure…your partner will love and respect you more for it. Remember that the worst scents on someone are insecurity and desperation.

Finally, for all those individuals that are in a relationship and can presently relate to one of the aforementioned circumstances, I quote Andy Dufresne “get busy living or get busy dying.” We spend too much time trying to make a circle fit into a square and wasting not just our time, but those that we are involved with – they also deserve to have their time spared. Time is our most precious commodity…we can’t get it back, make it up and it’s worth more than any precious metal or any stock. Once someone is in a less than favorable situation, most become apathetic.  We then tend to base our decisions on a basic pain versus fear balance. When our pain outweighs our fear we finally make the tough decisions. Unfortunately, it’s all relative because it depends on what one’s pain threshold is in relation to their level of fear. So be brave and end the pain…The One is out there! Me personally, I just haven’t gotten to know her yet but the search continues and I sure plan on enjoying the voyage.

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