Raise your hand if you’ve ever thought about settling? A lot of women swear they would never settle, while others claim they have. Some settlers are very happy with their choice, while others are less enthusiastic about their results.
Most of this is irrelevant if you ask me, because first we need to establish what it means to SETTLE.
MSN.com has a video from the Today Show entitled "Should Women Settle" It was there yesterday but today you’ll need to use their video search option. Anyway they interviewed 4 single women who refuse to settle and talk about friends who did who have heavy hearts. Then the interview shifts to Laurie Gottlieb, the author of the Atlantic Monthly’s article that featured this concept of settling. She talks about how she thinks 30 something women should settle earlier because you’ll have to make even more concessions later in life. Interesting…
Then they talked to Katelyn, matchmaker to the Stars who says it’s better to remain single than be lonely in your own marriage.
Here’s what I think. Both are correct.
How can I say that? It goes back to my point – we need to carefully define settling. According to the Dating Goddess (who is next month’s Decoding Dating interview by the way) she feels that women have let Brad Pitt completely ruin their chances for love.
The Hollywood ideal of what is romantic is so unrealistic and overboard, that you may in fact remain single if you seek than type of man. Brad Pitt or George Clooney perfection does not actually exist. Remember they are in the movies. Make believe stories.
That’s what I think Laurie Gottlieb means. As Dr, Phil would say, "Get real about your choices." That has nothing to do with settling for someone you don’t genuinely like, someone who offends your sense of morals or values, or someone who doesn’t treat you with respect and caring. That’s what comes to mind about Katelyn, the matchmaker’s idea of settling.
No, I doubt that is what the Atlantic monthly writer means at all. She herself bemoans the number of fine men she discounted because while they were great guys, cute, smart, well-employed, she just didn’t feel that immediate spark. No Brad Pitt, heart throbbing, intense sexual attraction.
And that is a very sad trap to which countless women succumb.
It’s easy to discount a man and cross him off your list. "I don’t like his hair, his clothes, his apartment’s decor, his laugh, his hobbies, his job." But, many of these men would be wonderful partners if you could get past your initial and often erroneous snap judgment and spend time getting to know the prince who lies beneath. You’d probably be pleasantly surprised.
In my 30’s, I did this very same thing. The few men I did meet did not interest me at all. But once I hit 40, I had to rethink what was truly important to me. Did I need my own mirror image of schooling, career success, income, and interests? No. I decided what I really needed what a man with a good heart, who listened to me, accepted and supported me emotionally, was easy to be with, honest, sweet and attractive to me.
I’m extremely happy that I settled. And I highly recommend that you identify for yourself what is crucial to your happiness vs. Hollywood window dressing that you can do without, but might be nice should it come your way.
Read more about how I settled for a heart of gold.