When I was in Hong Kong, most guys never really bent on bended knee to ask a girl to marry him. It happened, sure, but not like here in the Philippines where a guy dates a girl a few months and then decides he wants to be with her for the rest of their lives.
Instead, guys would be surrounded by perceived choices. Perceived being the operative word. They would look around at all the lovely ladies around them and tell themselves, “Why should I settle down when there’s a gazillion beautiful women out there?”
I know a guy who struggles with this decision indecision.
He’s a good friend of mine. American, lived in Taiwan for a few years, then moved to Hong Kong. Very cool guy. I remember we used to have house parties at his flat near Carnegie’s Taipei. I think his house was one of the most logistically desirable in Taipei.
If you’re hungry, go to Carnegie’s. Want a good time? Go to Carnegie’s.
He’s already in his mid-40s, an eternal bachelor, always dating yet never really finding someone to settle down. Though he’s a great guy, I think he struggles with always finding out what is wrong with somebody he’s dating. And he thinks maybe, he can get someone better.
Look, everyone has issues. My fiance has issues, I have issues, everyone has issues. Nobody is perfect.
As my relatives keep on asking me, “Are you sure Bonita that he’s already the right guy for you?”
In my mind, I wonder if I’m the right girl FOR HIM.
Case in point, unlike other demure girls, I snore.
Yes ladies and gentlemen, it’s embarrassing to admit but it’s true. I snore. And according to my evil brother, I snore quite loudly too. Not as bad as exhausted men, but it sure is louder to a woman who DIDN’T snore.
And it’s not something I can change. I’m unconscious, so what can I do?
Secondly, I talk. A LOT.
I used to tell my ex just how lucky he was to have an interesting woman like me. Someone who had witty insights and can hold you in conversation for hours.
“Your friends aren’t with you all the time. I am. Sometimes, I just want you to keep quiet.”
Of course he said it nicer than that, but that’s the gist of it.
Even with fiance, I find myself never really shutting up. Yakkity-yak-yak. I ask hypothetical questions that are awarded with punches if the answer my fiance gives is wrong. I ask him questions like, “Would you ever cheat on me?” or “Will you get tired of me if I get fat?”
Thinking about it now, I think my incessantly hypothetical questions stem from the unwritten, undeclared fact (till now) that like many women, I am also insecure. I wonder if men would really find me that interesting to stick with me for the rest of our lives. And if I was found to have breast cancer or in an accident that ends me up in a wheelchair, will he really be there for me?
Fortunately, fiance still humors me by answering my questions over and over. Even if they’re the same questions, only asked on different days and moments.
And lastly, I can be quite stubborn.
Yes, I know the Bible tells us that women should be submissive, bowing to the needs of their husbands. That for a relationship to work, the woman must give way too.
Having been raised by a domineering father who taught me to be obstinate and stubborn, I fight hard not to be seen as a pushover. If I think I am right, then I fight for it. I won’t really back down. This is a problem when I don’t agree with my mate.
The list goes on and on.
As other people choose to see the positives, I choose the see the negatives. Like the shortlist of personal faults I’ve highlighted above, I snore, I talk non-stop, and I’m stubborn and obstinate.
Nobody is perfect.
I’m not perfect.
So instead of focusing on how much I deserve a 10 because I’m a 10, I’d like to pop my own bubble and say, I’m human. I try my best to be good, but I make mistakes too.
And it’s in realizing just how flawed we are can we open ourselves to a real relationship by someone who is equally flawed… but someone whose flaws you can still accept, even if it’s for the rest of your lives.
Focus on the Negatives, Not the Positives.
Instead of deluding ourselves with happily ever after — and no, it doesn’t exist — I’d rather face the reality that shit WILL hit the fan. And hopefully, you are with someone who sticks with you in the long-haul and won’t leave you no matter how bad it gets.
Because like you, he would also look at himself and say, “I’m great, but I’m not THAT great. And this girl is the best I can ever get.”
And we are…
A month ago, I had lunch with a girl friend who told me that she and her boyfriend were retailing fireworks in time for Christmas. They bought fireworks from wholesale suppliers, rented a small space at Timog, and is selling fireworks in retail. She is tall, pretty, smart, hardworking and dependable.
On the flipside, she is also someone with is a bit bossy, has strong opinions, challenges her boyfriend once in a while, and gives him the ugly truth when he’s in the ground.
But her boyfriend proposed to her after only half a year of dating.
Because despite all her so-called negatives, the boyfriend smartly realized that finding a girl like her who’s willing to sell fireworks in retail on the street is HARD, and if you can find someone who can do that with you, you’d have a girl you don’t want to lose forever.
There are always two sides to the coin.
You can have confidence and yet be seen as arrogant.
Clever and yet be seen as too smart-ass.
Efficient and yet be seen as cold-blooded and heartless.
Sweet and yet be seen as a pushover.
Opinionated and yet be seen as stubborn.
It’s a hard balance.
And most of the time, we fail at balancing it.
So focus on both the negatives and the positives. And stop putting oneself on the pedestal. You ain’t all that. I ain’t all that. And admitting it is the first step to finding a real relationship that would also accept your negatives AND your positives.
Have a great week ahead!