The Perfect Man – an exercise

Taking a cue from Goose over at SWF, I decided to do as her mother recommended and, without thinking of The Pilot, list of all the qualities I wanted in a partner.  I made a point of making my list before reading the rest of her post.

  • Dependable.  I want to know he will be there when I need him, whether it’s to change a lightbulb, kiss away the hurt of a scratch, or hold me in times of despair.
  • Intelligent.  Able to discuss current events and think logically and creatively.
  • Generous, with his time, emotion, and feelings. 
  • Chivalrous.  Opens doors for women, buys lemonade from a kids roadside stand, gives up his seat on the train for someone who needs it more, among other things.
  • Funny, in a witty, irreverent way, not in a “class clown” kind of way.  Smart funny.
  • Casual.  Most comfortable in jeans and a t-shirt, but also comfortable in a suit, although that’s not his outfit of choice.
  • Caring.  He cares about people, and wants the best for others.
  • A good friend to his friends.  There for them in a jam.  Backs them up in a fight.
  • Athletic, keeps in shape, without being a gym-rat.
  • Tall.  I don’t know if that counts for a quality, but I like tall men.  At least 5’10”, preferably over 6′.
  • Supportive.  Of me, my life, my stupid ideas that I sometimes come up with.  My choices. 
  • The ability to disagree agreeably.  Even if our opinions on something differ, he should understand and see my point of view, as I will understand and see his.  And he should know that a disagreement doesn’t mean the end.
  • Communicative.  Able to talk to me about life and intimate issues and inner feelings and desires.  I’m okay with him keeping to himself for a time, but there comes a time to talk, too, and he should know when that time comes that he can talk to me.
  • Adventurous, and willing to try new things.
  • Duality.  I want him to be opposite ends of several spectrums, depending on the moment.  Patient and impatient.  Cautious, but occasionally rash.
  • Honest, sincere, trustworthy, respectful.

Not thinking about The Pilot was hard.  I had to keep redirecting my mind and concentrate on what I ideally want, because as I came up with each I instantly thought of The Pilot and whether or not the quality was one he had.  Instead, I concentrated on Ben, the main character in the book I wrote.  I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was writing my perfect man when I created him. 

The second part of the exercise wasn’t that big of a surprise, since I was comparing the quality to The Pilot even as I was writing it.  The second part of the exercise is to think about The Pilot and see how many qualities he met.

  • He was intelligent, and we had some great conversations about current events and all the things you’re not supposed to discuss in “polite company.”
  • He was funny.  Most of the time in a non-class-clown way.
  • He was casual in dress, but comfortable in a suit.
  • He was a good friend, at least from what I saw.  Even at the time, I thought he was a better friend than boyfriend.
  • He was tall.
  • He was supportive.
  • He was adventurous.
  • He had duality.

Of course, he didn’t have a couple of the big ones.  Dependable.  Caring.  Communicative.  Honest, trustworthy, respectful.  Those are qualities that are far more important than the fact that he was intelligent and funny and tall.

I’m writing as I’m reading Goose’s post, so I’m not influenced by anything she writes.  But she also found that her ex met about half the things on the list.  But whereas she says of her ex, “not that he’s a bad guy or a terrible person…,” I can’t say the same about The Pilot.  He is a bad person.  I’m not going to get into it all again, but our “break up” went far beyond one of us just not being that into the other.

But here’s my favorite part of her post:  “I think of it as this: Break ups so often have nothing to do with the people being unlovable. Rather, it’s a matter of the right person, wrong time or maybe a fit that isn’t perfect. Perhaps a bit tight under the arms, a tendancy to cling in all the wrong places or a pattern that’s too loud.”  I think that’s incredibly true, most of the time.  Again, not in the case of The Pilot, but it’s a wonderful way to think of break ups, in general.  It’s certainly true about pretty much every other break up I’ve had.  They were not bad people.  We just weren’t right for each other.  Time helps you realize that.

So, now, thanks to Goose, I have my Perfect Man List.  Something I’ve always shied away from before, because there is no such thing as perfect. 

But I hope to find someone perfect for me.

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2 responses to “The Perfect Man – an exercise

  1. Oh, you will. 🙂

  2. DE, I’m so glad my mum’s exercise was as useful to you as it was to me!

    I went to the wedding and faced him and his new girlfriend – not only did I see him for what he was, I realised I had also had let go of “what might have been”.

    And now we’re free to meet the ones who tick all the boxes – even the big ones! Can’t wait to hear all about them!

    Goose xx