It's something I really take for granted.
There are many times I find myself in conversations with women, many of them younger and around my own age, and hearing their complaints about their husbands and boyfriends. It's pretty typical stuff. Not really out of the ordinary. Everyone complains about their significant other and everyone has their issues. There is nothing wrong with that. Then there are moments that catch my attention more than others.
I try to raise up a few questions about it, and sometimes even comment that I know of men who are not like the ones they are describing. That there is a different kind of man out there. Ones who don't mind staying home and watching the kids, cooking, letting their wife have a career/hobbies, etc.
They usually look at me like I have two heads.
Too bad I'm dead serious.
Before I go on, please take note of a few things. I'm a single girl. I have been for longer than I care to share on the internet. I have never been married, engaged, and I don't plan on doing so anytime soon. Unless God has something completely insane up his sleeve that I don't know about yet. Therefore, these are simply my observations as a single girl and her limited experiences with men in her life.
Okay. Moving on.
In college, I had a ton of guy friends. One of my professors even called them my "harem" and one of my few close girlfriends told me I wasn't allowed to have self-esteem issues because I was surrounded by men 24/7.
They weren't perfect by any means. AT ALL. I can't tell you the amount of times I wanted to wring their necks... even now I want to do that at times. But generally, they were good guys. They still are. A few of them had life goals of being a dad. One even went as far to say he would love to be a stay at home dad. When I had broken legs, they carried my wheelchair up and down stairs to be sure I got to class. We literally climbed (and slid down) mountains together. They cried to me when their girlfriends broke their hearts. We prayed together. Read the Bible together. They were my brothers.
A couple of years ago I was in the middle of a crazy situation with a guy, and I called on my friends for help. In a situation where many girls would simply say "Emily, that's just how guys are and you have to deal with that. There is no perfect man out there."
The men in my life would say "He's a jerk. Why are you even wasting your time on him? Yeah, guys are idiots. But they don't have to be that way. Move on and find someone better. Want me to beat him up for you?"
Okay... maybe that's not an exact quote. But that's generally what they told me. I was even advised to not tell one friend the whole story so we didn't have a murder on our hands.
When I hear my girlfriends talking about their husbands and boyfriends, I try to imagine my male-friends with their wives (yes, they are all married now to AMAZING women) and I can't even imagine them saying and doing those things the girls are complaining about.
It's not just my friends though. I think about my dad, my grandpa, my uncles, co-workers, cast members in plays, etc. How they take care of our/their families, the way they treat the women around them, how they treat other people. They're genuinely good men.
Not perfect. Trust me. Far from it. They have plenty of flaws.
But I'm also seeing more and more of why I have such high standards for men I date.(Well... I have higher standards now than I used to. We all have to live and learn and make some major mistakes.)
It's because I know it's possible. I've seen it.
I do want you to know that I'm sure my girlfriends with the complaints have good husbands. I'm sure they have some great qualities that make up for their faults - just like everyone else.
But I hate it when people look at me like I'm some crazy person saying that men don't have to be the way they are being described.
A good man will step up.
Yes- we need to be good to them as well ladies, but that's another blog for another time.
Maybe I'm just spoiled. Maybe I'm naive. Maybe I've watched too many Disney movies, musicals, and Jane Austen movies, and see the world through pink colored glasses. That's entirely possible.
However, I'm not letting go of my standards and I'm not going to give the excuse of "boys will be boys."
Yes, I could be wrong. Yes, I might be single even longer or even stay that way. Oh well. But I ask you ladies, STOP SETTLING and stick to your standards. I feel like in the long run, it's so worth it.
Here's hoping I'm right.