So in my last post I said I settled for less than the marriage I wanted, because my husband and I weren't mature enough to be married when we did. So I'm trying to put together a proactive list of things I do want in a marriage, so that I'll know if and when I get it.
A nerd. Someone who will respect, appreciate, understand, and share my deep love of Harry Potter, Star Wars, sci-fi and fantasy in general. Someone with whom I can have lengthy conversations with about what Hogwarts house Hermione truly belongs in or what would have happened if Anakin Skywalker just stayed put like Mace told him to. Someone who will introduce me to new nerd passions and will allow me to introduce them to new nerd passions.
Someone who will respect my guilty pleasures. Yes, I like children's fiction, the Disney channel, and banal pop music more than any self respecting 25 year old probably should. I love gymnastics and cheerleading and ice skating and dancing, especially Dancing With The Stars. I watch way too much Food Network and HGTV. I'm probably more aware of celebrity culture than I should be. I don't want to be shamed or laughed at for liking these things, and if once in awhile my dream guy could suffer through them with me (without making it seem like a terrible ordeal or a huge favor) that would be even better.
Someone who knows me and really gets the real me. Someone that understands the experiences I've had in my life that brought me to this point. Someone that I can trust to share my hopes, my dreams, my fears, my flaws with.
Someone who likes, not just tolerates, but likes, my family. Yeah, they're crazy. Yeah, they drive me up the wall sometimes. Too bad. They're my family, and I want you to at least not want to hide in the corner every time we go see them. It's okay if you need to corner hide afterwards.
Someone who respects and supports my passions. Someone who will listen to me go on a half hour rant after the latest abortion restrictions are passed, without saying "but that's not even the state of Michigan, why do you care?" or "Ugh, not this again! Can we talk about something else?" They also have to support my feminism.
In fact they need to be a feminist. Nuff said.
Someone who supports my religious journey. I'm NOT the Good Little Christian Girl anymore. But I can still geek out with an hour long theological discussion. I still love God. And I'm still trying to figure out what loving God looks like in the absence of all the rules I grew up with. I've decided more what my values aren't than what my values ARE. Walk with me on the journey, and don't get upset if I go places you don't care to follow. We can walk hand in hand on separate paths.
Speaking of values, one thing I DO value is positive parenting. I want someone who is as committed to positive parenting as I am. That means the end goal has to be cooperation, not obedience. That means no shaming me for being "too permissive" as a parent. Sometimes I am. I'm making this up as I go along, and I'd way rather err on the side of being too permissive than too strict. Be committed to trying to find new ways to handle discipline and child rearing, rather than leaving it all to me.
Someone who will do dishes. Or laundry. Or cook. Or clean bathrooms. Or change diapers without whining or puking. Without being asked. Without making it seem like a huge favor. Someone who will split the chores of life equally.
Speaking of equal, I want a partner. I want someone who makes decisions with me. Together. Someone who values my input as much as his own.
I want a hard worker. Someone who doesn't quit. Someone who doesn't let the little things in life slow them down. Someone who can have a bad day but still get things done when they need to. But someone who knows how to give themselves and others grace when life DOES just get in the way.
Someone who is handy around the house with little repairs and handy with at least basic car maintenance. And / or I would like to learn to be handy with that stuff myself. Hard to learn as an adult though. I want someone who can teach our children to be handy so they're not in the position of learning as an adult.
Someone I can argue with without it turning into a five hour ordeal. Someone who can play fair when arguing. No name calling. No personal attacks. No blame-shifting. No gaslighting.
Someone who won't take it personally when I freak out because I'm having some anxiety. I tend to really lash out when I'm anxious. Usually I don't even know it's happening until after it's already happened. Usually I'm as shocked as you are. Just let it roll off your back and let me apologize and try again.
Someone who will interrupt me being angry at them with a kiss. And then have angry sex with me. I've always wanted to try angry sex. And then, if we're still angry, see the point above about playing fair in an argument.
Someone who will hold me when I feel like I'm falling apart. Sometimes I freak out so much I literally feel like my skin is going to fall apart. So hold me. Even when I twist and writhe in their arms, hold me until I feel safe again.
Someone who will have sex with me. A lot. Someone who WANTS to have sex with me. A lot. Someone who is generous and skillful in bed, and LIKES giving me pleasure as much as they like receiving. Someone who finds me insanely attractive and both tells and shows me very often. Someone who I can trust with all my most secret fantasies. Someone who will make sex silly and fun and experimentive sometimes and sometimes make it smoldering and passionate.
Someone romantic. Preferably verbally romantic. Someone who will buy me flowers without being told to and who will occasionally out of the blue tell me five reasons why they love me and who will plan a date or a weekend away without my input. Someone who will build me up and encourage me.
Someone who can sacrifice things when necessary for the health and well-being of their family. Someone who will make sure that I'm not always the one sacrificing. Someone who can live within a budget without whining that life is unfair. Someone who will sacrifice something so that I can be the one to have a treat sometimes.
Someone who doesn't keep score.
Someone who takes good care of themselves. Takes medications, makes sure to get enough sleep, eats healthily and when they should. Someone who doesn't need to be nagged to do these things.
Someone who values experiences over things. Someone who will want to go out and DO things with me, even if they're silly or might seem boring at first. Museums, pumpkin patches, art shows, water parks, the county fair, whatever. Even if it turns out to be a bust, we can have fun wandering around holding hands. And someone who will make sure our kids get the family experiences they deserve... preschool playgroups, children's museums, camping, family vacations, etc... again, even if its boring its worth it to make sure THEY have a good time.
Someone who inspires me to be the very best version of me that I can be... and someone who I inspire to do the same, but someone who accepts me at my absolute worse, and someone who I can do the same.
Someone who looks at me with love in their eyes like I'm the greatest thing since sliced bread... and someone that I can look at that way.
I'm sure there's more. This is all I can think of right now. The thing is, for so long I've lived with less than that I don't even know if what I want is reasonable or if I'm asking for a fantasy guy who's never going to exist in real life.