Sunday, November 23, 2008

Marriage: When Less Than Ideal is Good Enough

In an article titled The 'Good Enough' Marriage, Suzanne Wright discusses whether "settling for 'Mr. Good Enough' is better than waiting for the perfect soul mate."

Pretty much from birth, our heads have been filled with thoughts the ideal mate. The Prince Charming on his white steed. The beautiful woman who puts her own needs second to yours. We've all been told to hold out for the Happily Ever After.

But is the fairytale a realistic goal or just another tool designed to frustrate and belittle ourselves? Why do we feel like we have to strive for 100%? Let's be honest, I think most of us fall short most of the time. Our jobs are not perfect, you breath a sigh of relief when your family leaves even though you love them, there's always 5 more pounds to lose no matter how hard you work out. And yet we accept that. But when it comes to choosing a mate, we can never bring ourselves to settle for the 70% person.

Now I can come up with a million reasons why you should strive for perfection, or as close you can get. I recently wrote a list for my friend, detailing all the things I want to know about a person before we start dating. The list was three pages. The longer the relationship, the more it grows.

But am I shortchanging myself? Will I possibly miss out on a great catch because he or she's missing a few items on my list?

And if I demand perfection, that means they have the right to demand it from me. So I've got to find someone who thinks that a woman with a wierd sense of humor, a low tolerance for people, and an aversion to procreation is perfect. Someone who's willing to maintain seperate houses because I like my space. And while they're at it, hire someone to clean because I'm domestically challenged.

Come to think of it, I'm starting to see her point.

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