But I Won’t Do That

5 Jun

Over the years I have received a lot of solicited and unsolicited dating advice from friends (both male and female), family, and occasionally co-workers.  Needless to say, none of it worked, since I am still very much single, but that might be because I refuse to follow the majority of it.  Sometimes I think that if I had, I might have a ring on my finger and be well on my way to my first white-picket fence, and then I remember why I don’t follow other people’s dating advice: because for me, it is not going to attract the type of person with whom I would want to spend the majority of my life.  Also, I’m going to issue a disclosure: this is, as are all my entries, an opinion piece and a fairly personal one at that,  so if it differs with anyone’s own personal views on love or romance, well then … tough.

The majority of dating advice falls into the realm of some variation of “The Rules”, i.e. don’t call/text him first, make him wait for sex, don’t be too intimidating with your opinions/views, don’t beat him at board games (video games in my case), etc.  My mother’s particular spin includes: don’t laugh too loudly, don’t be persistent in your opinions, don’t have radical opinions to begin with, and be skinny (because men hate fat women).  Now, I know the majority of people who read this blog also know me in person, and I’m sure they are laughing right now at how preposterous this advice is when it’s applied to me.  For those of you who have never met me, I’m opinionated, competitive, pretty loud, and very straight forward, also, I like to think I’m pretty sexually liberated.

Now, there is nothing wrong with more demure or more reserved women.  Everyone is entitled to their personality, and I understand that there are a lot of men out there that prefer those qualities in a mate, and everyone is entitled to their preferences.  A lot of people don’t prefer me as a friend either, and that’s ok, I don’t expect everyone to like me, because science knows I don’t like a lot of people.  However, I also understand that these people in general would not be good romantic nor friend matches for me.

It’s the same with the weight issue.  My mom likes to reiterate to me, that if I don’t lose the excess weight, then I will never find a husband (because that should be my end goal, right?), but why would I want to be with a man who won’t give me a second glance as I am now?  Just as with personality, everyone is entitled to their physical preferences, and I don’t condemn men who are not attracted to women with fuller figures.  However, I am also well aware that my weight is rarely constant, and even if I manage to shed a large amount of it, there is no guarantee that I will be able to maintain the loss indefinitely, so I would not want to be with a partner who would cease being attracted to me if my body changes.

I know I’m not a perfect catch, and I’m not saying I’m entitled to a relationship without putting in any sort of effort on my part.  I know I’m not the easiest person to date.  I’m stubborn and I hold people to very high standards of behavior (sometimes), but I also tend to hold myself to similar standards, i.e. respecting people’s time and feelings.  I’m a bit of homebody, and tend to drag my feet when it comes to participating in large outings.  I also realize that there might not be someone out there for me at all, which is okay (I’ll get dogs), my uterus does not ache to be filled with my genetic spawn.    With this realization comes the fact that I am unwilling to follow other people’s dating advice, because I’m not willing to compromise my personality, and in effect, my preferences.

As I’ve stated before, everyone is entitled to their preferences when it comes to finding a partner, and I feel that I should be included in this particular entitlement.   And even though, I do have preferences when it comes to general physical and personality traits that I look for in a potential mate, the most important quality that I look for is their preference for me.  I’ve been in relationships with men who have displayed tolerance or acceptance, but that’s not enough for me.  I don’t want to be loved in spite of my personality, I want to be loved for it, because I do believe that it’s worth being loved.   

To me, it’s always seemed that dating advice aims to change women to a more male-friendly version for themselves, but following “The Rules” or any other such book, is like following the Atkins diet.  Yes, you will reach your goal quickly, but just as with Atkins, who can keep it up for the rest of their lives? And if you do slip, and you will slip if such advice is not how you operate naturally, (because just because you’re not eating cookies, doesn’t mean you don’t still love them), it will cause issues in your relationship, or even if you don’t slip, could you really be happy for the rest of your life with a person who does not even know who you really are.  I know I wouldn’t be.

18 Responses to “But I Won’t Do That”

  1. Broke Bartender June 5, 2012 at 4:28 pm #

    Great post. I agree with most (if not all) your points. It is funny how advice is given like not being too loud. Are you f-cking kidding me? I could try and pretend for like, a day, but it eventually is all going to come out in the end. There is no better feeling then being completely and wholly yourself in the presence of someone and knowing they find you irresistible. Even the bitter pessimist in me knows that it’s possible.

  2. Mary Kathy June 6, 2012 at 7:47 pm #

    Powerful! :)

  3. AWACS March 2, 2013 at 6:57 am #

    If you don’t want kids there are other ways to find sex and companionship outside of a LTR. But then you clearly have that figured out.

    If for some reason you do still want one, your mother is right about losing the weight.

    • blogsfeme March 2, 2013 at 8:49 am #

      I’m probably jumping down a rabbit hole here, but sure I’ll bite.

      Why do I need to lose weight to find a LTR?

      • AWACS March 2, 2013 at 11:26 am #

        You don’t need to. It just makes life a lot easier. Higher sexual market value = more options, more options = greater possibility that one of them will be commitment-minded.

        Being in shape isn’t just sexy, it also says good things to me about a potential partner. Someone who keeps themselves fit through regular exercise and practices good self-care (not insane dieting) is more likely to appreciate their body and its importance, have higher self-esteem, etc, etc. This stuff all matters, particularly when considering having kids with someone. It has countless small knock-on effects, from daily mood to medical bills to lifespan.

        Also, more pragmatically, slender ages better than overweight, and it’s nice to still find your partner sexy 20/30 years down the line, and want to keep merrily jumping them.

        Some of this is lizard brain stuff, some of it is rational brain. But being trim ticks a lot of boxes, all of them good.

        • blogsfeme March 2, 2013 at 11:59 am #

          Did you actually read the above post?

          Research tells us that long term weight loss is almost completely unsustainable. Why would I want a partner that would leave me as soon as I put some of my weight back on?

          Also, weight is not always an indicator of fitness or health. My blood sugar and blood pressure is phenomenal. My skin is smooth and unwrinkled.

          Also, if you read the above post, you would know that I am not looking for a man who thinks like you. So, your opinion into my love life is kinda irrelevant. There are plenty of men who find me irresistible. Why, just last night, I stepped away from my friend for 5 minutes, and 3 men started vying for my attention.

          So, please take your concern-trolling, and fat-shaming elsewhere. It is not welcome here.

        • Willow March 2, 2013 at 12:49 pm #

          Can I just say something? I’m fat and I’m engaged. ‘Nuff said love.

        • Amanda March 2, 2013 at 1:36 pm #

          What if you exercise and practice good self-care, and are still fat? Or if you’re naturally thin/athletic, and maintain that without exercise or “””self-care”””?

          It’s so ingrained that thinness = healthy, that people use that to rationalize the fact that a thin person simply just has higher social status. It doesn’t have a shred to do with health. It’s fine that you’re attracted to that, but I wouldn’t dismiss it as a health thing for why you’re more attracted to it.

          • Arjay September 2, 2014 at 10:18 am #

            It’s good to get a fresh way of loiokng at it.

        • dootsiebug March 2, 2013 at 1:43 pm #

          Been livin’ mah life in LTRs. Had no problem getting them. Was in a relationship for 10 years and got engaged, but I broke it off. Now, I’m in a relationship that’s about 2 years-old and doesn’t show any signs of stopping. Dated on-and-off between and had pretty good luck there, too.
          I, meanwhile, practice plenty of good self-care, have a ton of self-esteem and have (and probably will have) zero medical bills. My doctors have virtually no concerns about my weight in terms of my overall health because my blood pressure, blood sugar and overall wellness are A-OK. I exercise, eat well and smile all the time.
          And every last one of my partners were into me before they even knew that. Imagine.

    • Piglet March 2, 2013 at 5:32 pm #

      Pish! And tush. Ridonkulous. Hold out for someone who loves you EXACTLY THE WAY YOU ARE, because you are amazing exactly the way you are.

  4. Ado March 2, 2013 at 3:38 pm #

    Just FYI? I’m loud, opinionated, fat, have bad skin, mental health issues, and am happily married to a ridiculously sexy man who is smart, kind, and thinks I’m awesome.

    So there.

  5. Buffalita March 2, 2013 at 5:49 pm #

    Looks and body type are certainly not everything, and as annoying as it is that such emphasis is placed on it, I know plenty of healthy, happy, confident and sexy women who aren’t toothpick thin. Plus honestly, who the hell wants a LTR with someone that focused on measurements? That’s not a healthy foundation for something long term, plus it’s pretty shallow if you ask me. Go whine on a health blog somewhere, damn.

    • blogsfeme March 2, 2013 at 6:03 pm #

      <3

      • RaRaAYB March 3, 2013 at 1:24 pm #

        Whoever is giving you this “dating advice” you describe is either very young, or not a man.

        We are simply not that superficial. Sure, everyone has there physical likes and dislikes, but there are plenty of men who like larger woman.

        Not to mention, when you say someone told you, “don’t call/text him first, make him wait for sex,” that is high school stuff. I don’t know a single man who follows any of this in their professional, more adult lives.

        Perhaps your problem is not that you “refuse to follow advice”, but more so that you have surrounded yourself with people giving you advice that is so clearly stereotypical nonsense.

        I don’t know you, but after reading some of your blog, your only problem is very clearly the men and woman you are around are giving you some pretty horrible advice.

        This is advice that is very truly only valid in high school. I hate to say this, but it may be time to find some normal adult male influences in your life. The majority of us would tell you, “To be who you are, and someone will come along”.

        The only other thing I noticed after reading your posts, and perhaps it’s just reading too much into things, is you seem to have this thinly-veiled anti Male culture sentiment going on. But the problem is you list a bunch of incredibly stereotypical Male perceptions to back this up. You may not intend to be anti-Male but that is how it comes off. And if you are saying things like this to the Men IN your lives it’s going to be a deter-ant to a long term relationship. Especially since this Male culture you have portrayed is really not what our culture is like. (At least not past high school!)

        Just as how you don’t like when people are superficial and stereotypical with woman, men don’t like that either.

        I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors and dating in the future. Take care of yourself and don’t ever let anyone put you down!

        - AJ

        • blogsfeme March 3, 2013 at 2:11 pm #

          Thank you for your sentiments, and I do agree with you, on most counts, hence why I wrote this entry. Which basically says common dating advice is childish and useless, but in a nicer way.

          However, I’m really not anti-Male at all. I’m anti-Patriarchy. I’m not going to into all the ways the Patriarchy hurts men too, you can google it on your own time. But, if you’ve read my sex advice, I offer some very pro-male sentiments as well. Yes, I gear some of my articles from a feminist perspective, but feminism is not anti-male. In my personal life and in my blog, I regularly advise women (and I do it myself) to treat men with kindness and respect.

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