DO you have one of those “dating lists”? One of the ones that talks explicitly about the type of relationship you want and what you’re looking for in your significant other? Tall, fit, 7 feet 20 inches? Oh yeah? Even if you don’t have it on paper, or on your phone or wherever, I’m sure in your head there are some things you’re thinking the person should have.
I sat with a friend and had a talk about this. Three of her close friends recently got married and they’re all about the same age, so she’s beginning to pressurise herself and is frantically looking for someone. Dating apps, going out, telling everybody to hook her up. She doesn’t need all that pressure, marriage isn’t a race, but that’s beside the point.
During our conversation she mentioned someone she liked and met and how they were talking and everything seemed well and dandy but he didn’t like a specific food, so she wasn’t sure. AH! That would be like saying you cannot date someone because they don’t like fufu. Eh mome, if they don’t like banku they shouldn’t even be in your life, but I digress.
She mentioned she had a list, she conveniently pulled out on her phone. It was a novel, an actual novel. It was so long, I didn’t want to read or hear everything, so I asked her what the non-negotiables on that list was. Come and see bewilderment. She perused her handy dandy list and with almost every characteristic retorted, “no this is important, I can’t let that go. No, no this is key”
We finally narrowed it down. It highlighted such an important point. Regardless of whether you have a physical list or a mental one of preferences, if you cannot think of a top 3 or five things on that list that you absolutely cannot do without, then your list is too comprehensive. Who came up with 3 or 5? I can’t tell you that, but it’s a good number. The idea is to have something quick and easy that you can share with someone. If someone was your friend and said “chale I met some finneee girl or guy, what are you not looking for” and you’re now about to have an hour-long conversation. Honey, you’re doing too much.
It takes a while to truly understand what your non-negotiables are. I can’t be the only one who at some point in my life was thinking , “oh no, I can’t date a man who is shorter than me” or “he has to have a full head of hair” Now I’m over here advocating for the short men and the ones sporting their sakoras with pride. Holding on to those thing is how you end up at 52 without a man or woman.
Point is, when it comes down to it, the important things, the ones that help you build a lasting relationship, those should not be negotiable. I wouldn’t even dream of dating somebody who is not Christian. Because when we have children and I have to war and fight for them, I don’t want to be doing it on my own. We are going to be binding and rebuking the enemy together. Those abilities are not contained or even correlated to his height, the colour of his eyes or the size of his arms.
I’m not saying looks are negligible, you see a person’s physicality before you know their personality, so there are things you are more or less attracted to, but if they are not non-negotiables, be willing to broaden your horizons.
If it seems a little too hard, ask the G for help. I had to do that with my mental list, a sincere “God, these all seem quite non-negotiable to me, but I’m going to need help really seeing what truly matters” Then be prepared to have many a “x” on the checklist of things.
When you get to that top 3,5,7 (stop, you’re pushing it, 3 or 5), come back and share it with me.
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