I have been thinking a lot about dating lately. I have been reading books and articles online about what I want to do in this new phase of my life. It is scary to me to be back in the dating world. I never thought I would be here again. And after 38 years of marriage, its been a long, long time since I “dated.” I am really not looking forward to it at all to tell the truth. But as long as I am here in this place I might as well dream BIG! I can afford to be very picky. One of the luxuries I have afforded myself is that I don’t NEED to get married again. And I am not interested in getting married again unless I can find the right person. But who is the “right person?” How would I define him and how do I find him?
I was talking about this recently with a friend and she shared with me some advice she was given. I thought it was pretty good advice, so good, that I wanted to share it with you now. The advice is pretty simple, but profound:
Make a list of 10 or so qualities that you want in a partner…and then go date. 30 dates in 6 months to be exact. The idea is that you are dating with a purpose. You want to find the guy who has all of your “10 things.” You can do that by dating a lot of different people and taking inventory. Remembering as you date, that you are looking for something specific. The list also allows you to let go of certain people before you get too attached to them if they don’t measure up. I love this idea so much that I have come up with my own list of “10 Things I Love About You.”
I have given this list a lot of thought and prayer. It’s a good idea to tweek the list as you go when you figure out some things are less or more important than others. But the underlying idea is stop you from compromising what you need or want too much. This is a critical point, espeically for an empath. Being an empathetic person means that you are predisposed to acquiescing your needs for someone else’s. I know I have had this problem. My ex-husband spent a lot of time an energy turning me into what he needed me to be, and very little time become the man I needed him to be.
10 Things I Love About You
- Righteousness – He needs to be a righteous priesthood holder who honors his priesthood and respects and honors the role of women. Holding a current temple recommend is require. He will take to heart D&C 121:34-40 and seek to put it into practice. He will pray with me, study the scriptures with me, and attend the temple often with me. I crave deep, meaningful discussions on gospel related topics. A spiritual connection is a must!
- Put’s Me First – “Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the Church and gave himself for it.” This says it all for me. I don’t want to be second, third or fourth behind work, church callings or anything else. The only person who is more impotant than me should be God. I deserve to be first.
- Has Never Cheated on His Wife or Girlfriends – This one is a deal breaker for me. I need to be able to trust him and cheaters are just not trustworthy. (see #4) Being faithful is a big deal for me because I NEVER want to go through this again. I can’t. I won’t survive it. I need this high level of integrity.
- Does NOT Have a Porn or Sex Addiction – Along with number 3 this can also be a deal breaker. The only exception to this is if he is practicing recovery and has sustained that for 5 years. If he is a former addict he will need to demonstrate that he has had a complete lifestyle change, and has sustained that over time, and is committed to never returning to a life of addiction.
- Humility – He can admit when he is wrong, and is quick to apologize. He is humble enough to provide me with the safety and trust I need, which means he will let me check his computer, cell phone, and social media to ease any of my worries.
- Communication – His communication style fosters connection. He is easy to talk to and is straight forward in his intentions. He doesn’t use tactics like manipulation, sarcasm, putting me down in front of others, or making jokes at my expense. His communication with me reflects his real feelings for me and his words are spoken from a place of love.
- Speaks My Love Language – My love languages are Words of Affirmation and Quality Time. It’s important to me that any man who is interested in me knows how to speak these two love languages, frequently. Also, I am a hopeless romantic so that is very important to me. I want to be romanced. I want to be surprised and get flowers for no reason.
- Compatible with an INFP -INFP personalities are true idealists, always looking for the hint of good in even the worst of people and events, searching for ways to make things better. While they may be perceived as calm, reserved, or even shy, INFPs have an inner flame and passion that can truly shine. Comprising just 4% of the population, the risk of feeling misunderstood is unfortunately high for the INFP personality type – but when they find like-minded people to spend their time with, the harmony they feel will be a fountain of joy and inspiration. INFPs do everything they can to be the ideal partner, staying true to themselves and encouraging their partners to do the same. INFPs take their time in becoming physically intimate so that they can get to know their partners, using their creativity to understand their wants and needs, and adapt to them. People with this personality type are generous in their affection, with a clear preference for putting the pleasure of their partners first – it is in knowing that their partners are satisfied that INFPs truly feel the most pleasure. I need to be understood! He needs to “get me.”
- Sense of Fun and Spontaneous – I have learned I really love doing new things, having fun, and being a little bit spontaneous. One thing I really love is dancing. I’ve missed it. I want that back in my life. Spontaneous dancing in the kitchen is a must! If you can sing to me, even better! I also want someone who will go to places like Disneyland with me and not sit on the bench. Being engaged and present during family activities is a must!
- Loves My Family – I was not the only one betrayed. My children and grandchildren were betrayed as well. The infidelity of my husband left a big hole in all of our hearts. “New guy”needs to understand that when he marries me he gets a whole family who needs the healing that his love can provide.
It goes without saying that I am committed to do these things too. I cannot expect something of anyone that I won’t also expect of myself. I want these things to be reciprocal. Many of them were not in my marriage or lost somewhere along the way. It’s time for me to be picky and to have what I want and need. And what if he isn’t out there? I will be content to wait…into the next life if I have to…no more compromising for me. I’ve given up too much already.
Be Strong, Stay Sweet