How I got to know myself - in trying to find Mr. Right
Looking for the one to share our life with
Why is it so hard to find the right person to share life with? Does true love exist and if so, what is it like? Is there such thing as love at first sight? Where is the person I am dreaming of? When will Mr. or Mrs. Right show up? Those were my questions when I was young....yours too?
I think we all asked ourselves at one time or another some of these or similar questions. We wondered why we fell for that jerk or that idiot? How did we get fooled like this? I could go on with questions....I am sure you can give me a list as well.
Mr Perfect with the eyes of a teenager
Well, I will take you back to my teenage ideas of Mr. Right for me. We all have an idea of what we are looking for in our dream man for life (or the dream woman). Do we really meet that person in life? Maybe a few of us seems so, but most of us end up with someone slightly different. Yes, there are some features that will be there - we are not totally off with our ideals. But, yes, sometimes we are caught off guard and opt for more or less of the opposite.
And as we grow older our ideas change here and there, we eventually become a bit more flexible in our ideal "must have" features. As we get to know other people, we notice after all he/she should be slightly different. Or we notice that a certain ideal collides with our personality, even though we never expected that to happen. We learn each time we meet someone, we learn as we get older. Our view of life changes, what is important to us changes and we grow more mature and realistic as well. In addition we become more and more the person we will be more or less for the rest of our lives.
While we will learn and change our entire life and events, experiences will shape us, in general around the age of 30 our personality in general has to who taken shape into who we will be our entire life. Do you still like the same music, as you liked when you were a teen? Do you still value the same things the same way as you did 15 yrs ago? Do you still have the same plans for life?
I still remember my Mr. Right had to be tall, dark haired, love children and animals, gentle natured. While I knew about the outer appearance - I was not so much into detail about personality and characteristics. But did I meet anyone who matched my outer profile? To my surprise not a single guy except for one matched it - and this single one - while there was pure attraction somewhere underneath from both sides, we both were too well aware that it would never work. He was the cousin of my best friend and his parents would have loved to see us together. His life style was miles away from my ideal and in his 40th his life style cost him his life without fullfulling his true wish for a family.
But aside from that. Only two were dark haired, most were not that tall. It didn't bother me too much though, just accepted it and learned something. Yes, I still have the ideal and the fact that dark haired guys attract me much more - but there is a lot more to a person than just that!
So, I took a look...and my list got pretty short in what I was actually looking for. I didn't know myself that much and didn't really know what was a good match for me. Reason: I was still learning and changing myself.
Still learning through experiences....
I met someone and got married.It felt like love at first sight - we both were young, I was too young, but also other circumstances were not right. It was attraction through his smile! We had 4 children, but the marriage was not heaven at all. He was a nice guy back then and a great father, but we had nothing in common and love was deemed to fail. All what held us together were the children. I learned I needed a stronger person, gentle but yet a bit stronger and with self confidence to stand trial against my stubborn head, someone to keep me a little in check. I also learned, you need to have something in common.
I met a few other men. Got married once again. During the marriage I learned quickly he has Asperger Syndrome - it was like living with another child. In addition to his 3 sons, who were all affected either by Asperger Syndrome as well or bipolar! In addition, somewhat related to his disease, he had no relation to money and if I would not have left I would have been in more debt than ever!
Well, together with someone who I have known via email for many years, but we had met in person, he is not the ideal either. Living with someone who has OCPD doesn't make life brilliant at times. We walked through horrible times I don't even dare to tell you....Do I love him? I honestly don't know. Do I care? I care about each one I have been with....But I am getting tired of chasing for the wrong people.
Keep on learning
Have I given up? NO, I don't think so. So, what did I get out of this? I learned, I learned a whole lot! I learned what I need, what I don't need and how to look for things and traits. I learned that the person I can spend my life with is different from my dream picture of when I was a teenager. I can now give you details about the personality and what I would avoid, what to look for and I know I would not go for anything less or nothing at all. And it took me more than 20 years.....to learn. Some are luckier and find the right person right away, but I don't think I am alone with my experience of not really knowing what I am looking for and what I need.
With each relationship I learned something about me and the person I want and need in my life. It is more about what I need than what I want. Simply because it has to blend with my personality and I have to be relatistic about it - and I am. I know that I can be terrible stubborn and I need someone to keep me in check, giving me boundaries, yet freedom.
This doesn't sound like a romantic personality you would think of as a teenager, but it is a reality I learned about me and something nessassary for a good relationship between me and the perfect man for me. If you make me feel like a prisoner I will fight and scream. I also know what I am able to give the other person. And if he doesn't have an interest in what I can give....there is no way of being appreciated for who I am, so there is no way of happiness. What still remains of my teenage picture. I am more attracted to dark haired guys, tall, have to love children and animals, gentle....but I know more than that by now...but I don't want to make this a "personal ad"...so I pass on getting into detail.
Love at first sight?
Do I believe in love at first sight? I believe in attraction at first sight - but not in love at first sight, because what you see outside is not what is inside that person. Do I believe in true love? Yes, absolutely, but it develops. Once in a while two people meet and they are perfect for each other right away. Other times, two people learn to arrange around each other and have a happy life together.
So, while I was well aware about what I was attracted to outwardly and in a few basic personality traits, I became more aware of my personality and that it is not just about finding the perfect guy, but about what works for me. I also learned from experience what I can't stand, what annoys me and how well I can deal with this or that, because I know there is no Mr. Perfect....We all have to deal with this or that tick or habit in the other partner for life. If we choose the tick is too much to handle...it's time to walk away. But it's also about working on a relationship and making compromises.