It seems that I have several friends who are trying to “land a spouse” or “find a mate” or, for the ones who are blunt, “get married”. Well, guess what. I am an expert on “finding someone”. I actually not only have someone, but I have had the same someone for seventeen years! This means that not only do I know how to find a mate, but I know how to find a good one. I have decided to dedicate this post to advising my single friends on how to navigate the whole crazy dating thing. You’re welcome.
The very first step in finding a spouse is to spend a lot of time alone.
Ummmm, Snarky? I’m not sure if you realize this, but the whole reason I’m reading this post is so that I won’t have to spend any more time alone.
Yes, I realize this, but spending time alone is the shortest road to happily ever after. Why? Because if you can’t stand spending time with just yourself, then why the heck would you subject someone else to it? Also, it is very important that you be able to answer three questions, and you will need time alone to answer them. The first question is “Who am I?” It sounds silly at first but before you start dating you need to know who you really are. If you can’t answer this question without relying on friends and family for the answer, you are doing a huge disservice to your future mate. They will accuse you of misleading them or changing and they will be right. You want to be right. Also you don’t want to end up in failed relationship after failed relationship, so really get to know who you are.
The second question is “What am I looking for or expecting?” Now, you don’t have to be super specific here, but at least have a general idea. This way you avoid dating the bad boy if what you really want is the nice guy. Also, if you want there to be fur coats and leather boots in your future, you won’t make the mistake of looking for dates at the PETA function. It will help you to stop wasting your time with the wrong people and get to the right one quickly. Tip: Don’t say that you want the exact opposite of your ex. You very likely dated your ex because there were things about them that you really liked. You may just want a slightly different version of your ex.
The third question is “What won’t I tolerate.” If you absolutely don’t want to be in a relationship with someone who smokes or has cats, you should keep this in mind when selecting a date. Changing another person is exhausting (trust me) and frequently a complete waste of time.
Now that you have spent oodles and oodles of time alone and decided that you are a fabulous person, how do you find and trap that special someone? Finding them is easier than you think. All you have to do is go out of your house and do things that you enjoy. If you enjoy art, then hang out in museums. If you enjoy music, then go to concerts. You are not going to meet your future mate in your living room. I’m sorry, but if he were there you would have found him already. The key here is to linger. If you are looking to meet someone at church but rush out as soon as the service is over, you will not meet anyone. If you leave the concert the second the music is over, you will not meet anyone. Remember that your next date may need a little time to work up the courage to introduce themselves. Also, keep in mind that if you are looking for a male to date, you might want to hang out in the weight room instead of the aerobics class. If you are looking for a female, you may want to opt for the cake decorating class instead of the motorcycle repair class. Sometimes stereotypes are stereotypes for a reason. Use them to your advantage. Tip: Don’t go looking for dates in places where you do not want your future mate hanging out. If you don’t want to marry someone who likes bars, then don’t look for dates there.
Woo hoo! You’ve met someone! Now, how do you turn them into a spouse? First of all, don’t be desperate. Sending twenty texts the day you meet someone will get you a restraining order, not a husband. If you are the kind of person who gets all panicky when people don’t return your phone calls 10 seconds after you leave a message, you are probably annoying a lot of people. Give them a day or two. If they don’t get back to you, they are probably not interested and it’s better to realize that now. Tip: If all you can think about is the person you just gave your phone number to, you are probably looking for a hobby, not a date.
Another thing, take your time and don’t feel bad about turning down someone who isn’t right for you. The sooner you let someone go who isn’t right for you, the sooner you can both move on to someone new. People who rush into things make bad decisions. You do not want to live the rest of your life with a bad decision. Like that Urkel tattoo on your lower back.
Finally, be honest. Your spouse will eventually see the real you. You do not want this to be a surprise. You want someone who loves your flaws. Someone who finds them endearing. You do not want your love for anchovy pizza or Jon Bon Jovi to come as a big shock. If you are pretending to love classical music just to get someone interested in you, you had better be prepared to listen to classical music for the rest of the relationship. The goal here is that when you are having a loud disagreement fifteen years in the future, you can say “Hey, you knew I was like this when you married me, if you want your house OCD clean, hire a maid.” …not that I’ve ever said that…
Now for my last piece of advise. If you have been trying and trying to find that special someone and have had zero success, stop trying. Go to the humane society, pick out a nice cat, and enjoy your table for one. You know those stories you sometimes hear about couples who desperately want a child? They try and try for years, have expensive treatments and still nothing. Finally, they decide to stop trying and make very child unfriendly plans to sail around the world or devote their lives to the breeding of pythons. Suddenly, BOOM, they’re pregnant. With twins. Sometimes relationships work like that too. Sometimes you have to give it up to God. I mean really give it up. None of this giving it up with expectations to get it back. You may discover that you were designed for something else, something wonderful that only you can do. You have to be okay with that. Or, just maybe, you might find what you were looking for the second you stop looking for it.
I’d be willing to bet that your friends are looking for this blog. They just don’t realize it yet. You probably, maybe, for sure had better share it with them.