Wednesday, March 22, 2006

What is "dating"?

I may not have mentioned this before, but I am getting married this summer. I am stunned! Really. I mean I have had a late start in the dating world and so I'm sure there is lots of things I don't know about relating to the opposite sex. Luckily, I have not had many misfortunes or wierd experiences in this area of my life. But I'm still stunned that I am getting married.

Why? well... I haven't really dated enough people to think I know what a "real" relationship is supposed to look like, (but then who knows really eh?) and groom-to-be (GTB) is the longest I have EVER dated anyone. That and when men find out what I do for a living, it either freaks them out or they don't really get what it is hat I do. Either way, that can be a bit of a barrier to a continued romance.

The ironic thing about "dating" is that it has changed so much over the years that I don't think either party knows what "it" really is. Sometimes, the man and woman have a very different idea about what they expect to get out of the relationship/dating experience. You know, longterm/marriage material, hang out once in a while, sex without commitment, that kind of thing.

I usually could tell after 2 or 3 dates whether I thought it was going to go anywhere. It is hard to date/commit to someone that you know isn't "clicking" with you in some of the important areas. In my case, it was my faith. Considering I am an ordained minister, it was a key part of my worldview and a dealbreaker. There were a 2 guys that I dated that I knew I had no future with due to "mother" issues, or faith. And that is hard. You learn to love them and then you have to break up with them. Argh! With GTB, it was just right. And the fun thing is that he fit my 5 criteria for men. Oh come on ladies, we all have them. We come up with this list when we first start dating....

1. Must be Christian.
2. Taller than me (I am 5'9)
3. Preferably blond.
4. Must have a brain.
(This means a few things: has some level of education and knows how to articulate his thoughts. Can communicate with me on a level worthy of my extensive (11) years of post-secondary education and not make me feel that I have to dumb myself down to his level, or not make me feel like I am inferior.) Must have ambition. (Employed, financially secure, no significant debt as I have none, and plans to move ahead in the world versus settle for whatever.)
5. Not too much baggage.
(Preferably no ex-wife, no children, not a Mama's boy, no significant issues that override his personality such as blaming, whining, or the like.)

Over the years, this list got weaned to 3 items. I was happy to take them if they met three, the first one still being a priority but I did date men who didn't even have any of the criteria.

I got lucky with GTB, as he is 6'6.5, and all of the above. AND he is okay with what I do for a living. I tease him that he will be the "minister's wife/spouse" and ask if he's okay with that, because usually when there is a minister in a family, it is assumed that it is the man. *roll eyes here*

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