When approaching a problem, it’s good to do a little critical thinking and a lot of research. At least, that’s my approach to problem-solving. The first step in solving the not-dying-alone problem was to decide who I would rather spend my golden year evenings in the porch rocking chair with. My first step also should have been prayer, but my natural brain always wants to figure things out on its own. That’s what friends are for. (More on that later when I talk about The Panel.) They remind you to pray and join you as well.
Strangely, this was easier said than done! I don’t really have an ideal notion of the man I want to share my life with, but I do know that I want it to be someone worth giving up allllll this freedom for. I also really, really know what I don’t want.
(There’s always an exchange…right? Freedom for cold pillow, etc.)
Side note—in dating and love, expectation is a danger word! You cannot have expectation without communication! Write it down, remember it. Ignoring this rule is disaster.
So, make your list. Decide who you want to eat brunch with every Sunday and pray that dude into existence! Not like a Weird Science man-making machine or anything, just let God know where your thoughts are. Don’t put things on your list like height requirements or hair color. You can’t limit your pool like that! Any lasting relationship is not going to be based on looks anyway, so be real. That stuff is for youngsters still ready to procreate. There’s a reason why most of us are prettier in our youth. It’s science.
While I am completely in love with men like Mark Ruffalo (he’s an activist, he’s intelligent, he’s a family man and a hottie) and John Mayer (I don’t care if you like him, when he plays guitar you melt, admit it!) I’m more interested in men with a sense of humor who can write a complete sentence and have an intellectual conversation, so these are at the top of my list. I also appreciate honesty (most of us do) and kindness, so there’s that and so on. My list is long, and some parts of it are not deal breakers, but the fundamentals are.
Once you have your list, don’t be married to it. You want a person, not a Disney character, right? Be open-minded. I take this approach, maybe to a fault. I might meet someone I have nothing in common with and go into a date thinking, yeah, I could make this work. This may not be the best plan, but it’s how I roll. Caution to the wind, I will lead with my mind open!
Next, decide what won’t work for you. There are no-brainers, but there are also things you might not think of, so really consider what you want out of life so you can make sure you wind up with someone on the same page. If you really want to spend your golden years volunteering at soup kitchens and knitting little caps for newborns, you probably wouldn’t jive with a jet-setting guy with mansions in his eyes. So, be realistic but also, don’t sell yourself short! (For more on this see my post Hanging on the Clearance Rack.)
Then research where to search for this magical gem of a human. This is the golden question! Is it in the grocery store over polished fruit? Or in the pew four rows from the pulpit at church? How about the carpool lane at the kid’s school? Not anymore folks….all your friends (and dates) live (and love) online now. The first place I tried was a very well-known matching making site. I’m going to call it Snatch.com, to avoid any legal ramifications for what I am about to say next.
That’s it. Just whack. On Snatch.com (and most dating sites) you have to pay a little to use all the features. To me that meant people were serious about finding a real connection. This was not the actual case. While I did meet some nice fellows on Snatch.com, none of those interactions went anywhere. (More about those when I get to the stories.) If you want to know which sites all of the unemployed dudes who sit at public computers in the library all day use, private message me and I will tell you so you can avoid them.
Next week: the profile, selfies and torso shots, and talking nerdy…
Maybe Frankenfurter had the right idea!