Hot Topic: Is she a bunny boiler or the future mother of your babies?
Last week, I blogged about finding Mr Right rather than Mr Time-Waster. This week it’s his turn. This is far from an exhaustive list but these are pertinent points to focus on when you’re looking for a women to share the rest of your life with. Keep your eyes open, particularly in the first month or so, and see what’s there rather than what you want to see.
Here's a checklist to help you decide:
What’s her relationship history? Has she had a few good long-term relationships under her belt? Find out if there’s a pattern of who leaves who. If she’s always the one doing the dumping, she may have commitment issues or wants the perfect man (who doesn’t exist - not even you will fit the bill. Sorry!).
How old is she? If she’s in her mid to late 30s or older, bear in mind her biological clock isn’t just ticking, if she wants to have kids, it’s drowning out pretty much everything else. This means her selection process for men is altered. She may be more picky or less, depending on whether she’s keen to keep you around after sucking you dry of sperm. Huge difference between a girl who’s simply eager to find someone to share her life with quickly because she’s aware her reproductive days are limited versus the girl who’s willing to settle for anything with a pulse and a penis. The clue is that one falls in love with you - an individual, unique person - the other falls in love with any guy who’s remotely decent and has the cash and commitment to be a decent Dad. Other women are good at sniffing Ms I Want A Baby and I’ll Do Anything to Get It. If you’re nervous, introduce her to some trusted girlfriends and see what they think.
Is she fast-forwarding everything? We all know couples who met one week, moved in the next and never looked back. But we also know couples who did the same and it all ended in tears. Generally, wanting to fast-forward the relationship to commitment and intimacy before you even know each other properly is a sign someone’s desperate for love. Ideally, she’d want a partner, rather than need someone to complete her and solve all her problems.
What’s her father like? How she feels about her father affects the way she feels about all men. He’s the first man you meet, the first you get close to, so we tend to judge all men by him. If he was nice and straightforward, she thinks all men will do the right thing by her. If he wasn’t so nice, she’ll think quite the opposite. If Dad wasn’t there for her, cheated or bailed on Mummy, you can bet she’s got trust issues. If she seems aware of the effect this may have had on her relationships and done something about it (therapy maybe?), fine. But if she seems needy and insecure and over-vulnerable, could be there are issues there that need sorting.
Does she have lots of male friends? Ideally, her friends would be a nice balance between couples, girlfriends and guy friends. The more mixed and variable her friendships, the less rigid she’ll be in her criteria of what makes a great partner. If we can appreciate different qualities in friends, it usually means we’re good at looking for the best in people in general.
What reason does she give for being single? Listen carefully to what she says because we all give ourselves away with the answer. ‘I just haven’t met the right guy yet - probably because I don’t meet that many new people through work and all my friends are coupled up,” is a reasonable answer. “Men are all nutters and assholes,” isn’t. All men aren’t bastards, same way all women aren’t bitches. Only some are.
How does she cope when she’s drunk? This is when the ‘real’ her tends to spill out, rather messily in most cases. Is she a happy drunk or a tearful one? Does she get nasty or clingy? Alcohol removes inhibitions but also judgement so underlying issues are exposed. I’m not saying write her off after one tearful night when you’ve downed four bottles of red and she’s feeling a bit vulnerable. But I am saying look at what happens generally when she’s had a few and emerges as a pattern.