Every woman who has been out in the dating world has expectations about the kind of man she will end up with. I know when I was dating, I had a rough plan. I wanted a man who valued education, who did a job he was passionate about (not a "living for the weekends" kind of man) and who was relatively active. But one of the fastest things I learned was that my vague expectations that were not especially specific, were actually GOOD.
There are many (too many) women who have specific, high-minded expectations that are often the reason they end up alone. They have a "dream man" who went to a specific school, makes a specific salary, has a specific gourmet touch, and does so many specific things, that there is no room for any REAL man to compete.
I would never argue for lowering one's expectations. By all means, he must be kind, funny, smart, and a good dad. But beyond that? Ladies, we need to live in reality. Here are some recent things I have heard women say about their dream man versus the ones they find:
1.) Dream Man: Brings you roses at least once a month that you can then post on Facebook to brag or show off in the office.
Actual man: Brings you flowers once a year for no reason, but you don't care because the ACTUAL relationship is so strong and stable.
2.) Dream man: Went to Harvard for undergraduate and Princeton for medical school.
Actual man: Struggled through state school, but managed to get through and go to grad school in something he cares about. You respect the way he got himself through school and the way he chose to go to a less expensive school for undergrad in order to go to a better school for grad.
3.) Dream man: Makes high six figures.
Actual man: Makes whatever he makes and you make it work. If he is happy in his job, you don't need him to be a commander of the universe. You can be that, too.
4.) Dream man: Reads only important news, knows everything that is going on in the world, and never watches reality TV
Actual man: Reads Cracked and ESPN and cares about the news/politics, but doesn't make it his life. You tell him about the news so he is in the know and laugh with him at his weird stories from Cracked.
5.) Dream man: Cooks gourmet meals every night at home while wearing the baby in the Ergo and telling you how beautiful you look.
Actual man: Once burned pasta and uses the Bjorn instead of the Ergo. You love him anyway and mostly cook, but that's OK because he bakes.
6.) Dream man: Never fights with you and lets you ALWAYS pick the movie.
Actual man: Has opinions and thoughts and yells sometimes. It makes your relationship healthier.
7.) Dream man: Has traveled the globe extensively and considered the Peace Corps before going to medical school.
Actual man: Traveled when he could. Loves it, but also would rather be home with his family and you know what? That's OK.
8.) Dream man: Runs marathons both for time AND for charity, has muscles for days, and goes to boot camp every morning at 6 a.m.
Actual man: Works out when he can, but would rather spend time with you. Oh wait, THAT'S a dream man!
Do you think woman often expect too much?
Image via Monica Arellano-Ongpin /Flickr