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But he is a good looking guy with brains and succssful occupation... how many guys are like that and single???

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Good-looking with brains and a successful career?
Darlin' they're a dime a dozen.

Good-looking with brains, a decent job, solid morals, and a synergy with you? Those are harder to find, and impossible to find when you are settling for the dime-a-dozen.

Kick Mr. Wrong out of your mind, and start looking around. Fix yourself up a little. I personally always change my hair with any major life upheaval. If nothing else, treat yourself to a new lip stick.

Put on self-confidence the way you would pantyhose. Do it intentionally, and wear it with swagger (not arrogance, but panache). You'll have a lot of men beating down your door, and you can choose.


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Originally Posted By: milkshake
But he is a good looking guy with brains and succssful occupation... how many guys are like that and single???


Oh milkshake, there are so many things wrong with this statement that I don't even know where to start. First, GG's answer is right - a dime a dozen. Shoot, half the guys on this forum probably qualify. Second, I don't care how good looking, brainy, or successful your XBF was - he is, forgive me, a loser. A guy who views the ideal marriage as one where he plays golf, has his wife caddy for him, and have her keep him warm at night, is not a man, but a boy. Sorry to be blunt on this, but it's true. Being a man means dealing with your responsibilities, and your X sounds like a college kid, and I am being generous here. You seem like a smart, attractive, and "together" woman - don't settle for a boy.

AGG


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GG and AGG (hey, it rhymes!), thanks! You have NO IDEA how encouraging these words are. So you really think there are many of them, eh? And AGG's post totally made me laugh - thanks for being so blunt, I LOVED it!!

I like GG's idea of making changes to my hair. I can't even remember when was the last time I ever had different hair style than what I have now. Changes sound GOOD. I am getting excited about the idea...

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Originally Posted By: milkshake
And AGG's post totally made me laugh - thanks for being so blunt, I LOVED it!!


I'm glad, but I also hope that you take what I wrote to heart - I meant it!


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MS, we wanna see pics when you change your hair! Before and after!!! Sounds fun!


Me (BS): 41
Ex (lying cheating piece of dirt): 43
Kids: 12 DD, 6 DS
Married 17 years
I filed: 9/25/10
Divorce final: 10/4/11
He remarried: 10/15/11

My current status: Healing a little more every day!
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I'd like to restate AGG's idea. Milkshake, you are NOT looking for "guys." You are looking for a MAN! Personally, I look for MAN first and Gentleman second. "Guys" can be gentlemen, but never are Men. (AGG is the exception, but he's not a guy in spite of his tag name.)

Here are some things that I use to weed out guys or boys from men.

1. If they are in a band that plays together more than once a month.
2. If they belong to more than one men's sporting club. IE they play in a softball and a volleyball league.
3. Sailors (not in the Navy sense, but sailboat sense) This is a prejudice from my youth spent on a sailboat.
4. If they emphasize "sponteneity"
5. If they are daredevils, or adrenelin junkies.
6. If they treat their girlfriends as if they were sport cars.
7. If when you ask them about the weekend, and they never mention the words "chores" or "errands."


For men reading, the females can be divided similarly. There are Women and there are Princesses. Princesses often look good on the outside, but scratch the surface, and you have demanding, spoiled girls. And yes, there is such a thing as a Tom-boy princess. Instead of diamonds, she expects regular heli-skiing trips to Chile in July, and sucba diving in the Seychelles in February.


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GG, what an awesome post! They should make a sticky out of it on this board for all the newcomers.

So many people are conditioned through movies etc to value the very things that do not lead to good relationships ("fun" instead of "commitment", "play" instead of "home life", etc).

It is a sign of maturity (emotional, not physical) when we are able to weed away the snazz factor, and look for stability and dependability. I personally find that way sexy.

Milkshake, I hope you are paying attention to GG's words, because I think I am sensing that you are very attached to your XBF's external qualities (good looks, fun, good job) and are ignoring that he is completely lacking in the truly important qualities (communication, commitment, partnership). Think about it.

AGG, er, AGM wink


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GG, do you know many single guys who do not fit in 1 and 2? Almost everyone I got to know have things they enjoy doing over the weekend and they claim they are 'happy' with themselves. I honestly believe once you have a family, you will have to spend the majority of time with your family, other than your work, of course, and the remainder can be spent alone or with your friends. But it seems men I have met so far all said they need lots of 'alone' time. Where do I need to go to find men who are okay spending time with their family on weekends?

Every book and article I have read, they say men do need some free time to spend alone or with their buddies. I agree with that, and I need some time for myself too, but it seems the definition of 'some' is VERY different from what I think appropriate, and that is why I had revised my expectation to reflect the reality.

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Originally Posted By: milkshake
But it seems men I have met so far all said they need lots of 'alone' time.


You need to start meeting different men, milkshake.

I did most of my dating online, and I learned fairly quickly to weed out profiles that were not suitable for me. Words like "spontaneous", "fun", "willing to try anything once", "passionate about scuba/skydiving/boating/skiing", "my dog is my best friend", etc etc, all became red flags to me. In contrast, women who mentioned gardening, reading, movies, art, hiking, were much more of my type.

I never looked at guys' profiles, but I suspect in your case you should be avoiding GG's list of words ("play in band", "enjoy playing in all sports") and look for more family oriented tell tale signs ("home improvement", "cooking", etc).

There are TONS of single men who would make good husbands, you just need to make sure that your picker is tuned to those men, and not to overgrown fun boys. Based on your XBF and your movie date, I have my concerns wink.

BTW, there is nothing wrong with needing alone time. I like to spend time on some weekends tinkering with cars or working on the house, while my wife enjoys reading or going on hikes alone. It works well for us. But notice that neither of us is into extremes , like ski every weekend, or disappear for the whole day every weekend, etc. It's keeping your hobbies in check that is the key. And most importantly, we set aside lots of quality together time, which makes up for the alone time.

AGG


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My husband Mike was 44when we first met. He had never married and had no kids. A red flag for me. He also owned FOUR cars. Another red flag. But he liked routine. He had a house and he gardened. He worked a lot but was cutting back because he wanted to find someone. He liked going out to dinner, travel andmovies.

I am not sure how old you are MS but if you are out of your20s you should not assume they will give up their way of life when they have a family or girlfriend. Me that are. Good candidates are hard to find. Online dating can make it easier once you recognize buzz words.


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Just cross posted with AGG, a.k.a AGM wink

AGG, you are right. I am/was attracted to some of XBF's internal qualities, such as responsibility, dependability, and hard-working nature. These are qualities, unfortunately, my XH lacked completely. So I thought I was doing better in screening men.

However, quickly - soon as we started dating, I often felt XBF was selfish in a different way from XH, and cold (no sympathy or empathy towards others), very negative about everything in life, and always shifting blames to others. If he loves golfing so much that he spends most of the weekends away from me, at least I wanted to see him being 'happy' when he comes back from the games to come see me. I wanted to hear him say "oh it was a great day! I had so much fun". Then at least I could feel that golfing was really doing him good.

But he was always cranky, and whenever I asked how the game was, he never ever said "great". He always responded "disappointing", "frustrating", "bad", worse than ever, etc. Then if I tried to cheer him up by saying how I think great his play is, how his score is better than previous times, how at least he enjoys being outside playing his favorite sport, how the weather was beautiful, etc. something positive. But it somehow almost always annoyed him. He always told me that I 'do not understand'. "Golf is the hardest sport", that is what he always told me. The fact I was trying to say positive things made him feel that I did not understand his frustration or the golfing sport itself. Or maybe he was just throwing a tantrum because he did not play as well as he wanted to.
Since I never ever hear anything positive, for a few times I did not ask how his game was, then he complained big time! He said I was not being supportive. When I told him that it was because no positive words came out of his mouth and I wanted to hear that he had a good time playing, he told me I was the one being negative to feel that way about him. He said if I was really in love with him, I should never feel he was being negative and support him all the way.

So AGG, yes, I probably always knew that I was not in love with XBFs inner qualities. That is why I was never excited about him as a person, which obviously he sensed. But over time there are certain things he improved and also I came to realization that no one is perfect and I should not view him that way, and when I started accepting his behaviors/way of thinking/selfishness and wanted to get married (because he is good looking and has a good job and because we have invested so much time already), he pulled away.

When I discovered a lot of secrets about XH (addictions, affairs, lies, etc.), I did the same thing. I came up with a lot of excuses for him and told myself everyone has flaws

Same thing about the men I have met they all said it is painful to spend weekends as a family all the time well not all of them, but A LOT OF THEM. I must say these words came mostly from either guys who have never been married before and/or those who have never had kids. Guys who have been married before and/or have had kids, they at least seem to understand the reality of family life and demands and responsibility, whether they choose to honor such responsibility or not.

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Alone time or getting together with friends is not the same as reliving your glory days in sports, or having several time consuming hobbies like cyclingandgolf and hunting.

Also people have different needs for time alone. This speaks to compatibility. You need to find someone with the same level. If you need 5 hours a week tobeby yourself, but your man needs 20,you'll have a problem. Also people have different levels of comfort when it come to emotional intimacy. Openness&honesty.OH is a low need for me, and if a man wants to hear all my deepest thoughts all the time, I feel smoothered and invaded. He would feel shut out and like I didn't care.

Get some books on compatibility. When you understand where you fall on a variety of scales, you can choose better. Based on AGGs posts over the years, Ibet that he is a planner and probably has a similar risk tolerance to me. When I date I look at things that way. Some times I haves dated men I liked who were fun, butI quickly realized that they were not candidates for a serious relationship, and I guarded my heart.

Ah, and isn't that an old-fashioned idea? Guard your heart. Be ready to walk away. Realize that all relationships in this world end, it's just a matter of when and how. This makes it a little easier for me to deal with rejection or hurting someone else's feelings.


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I do not think I am looking for a 'fun' guy, AGG... I thought I have always been looking for a stable family man. Out of curiosity, why 'my dog is my best friend' was a red flag for you? I am an animal lover, so just curious...

As for my friend, yes, he is totally NOT a serious relationship material. Now I know for sure. He is still trying to convince his GF to agree to marry him, yet in the meantime he told me he is jealous that I am going out with other guys and had a nerve to ask me to NOT go see them! I told him that I do not belong to him and I could not believe he is telling me this while he is trying to marry his GF. So I am very glad that I never ever considered him as a candidate wink

GG, my XBF also owns a house and two fancy cars. He does take a very good care of the house and gardens though. But your husband was willing to make changes to be a family man? It must be YOU then who made him want to make such changes and to make the commitment. What is it that I am doing that makes guys feel it is okay for them to continue doing what they want while keeping me around? What is it that they feel I do not love them enough?

I am not sure now of my ability to weed out bad candidates. I do not know much about this COO friend, other than the fact he is a great father to his 3 kids (they were raised by their mother but the youngest one who is 18 chose to stay with him several years back, so he has been the residential parent), he has a very mild temper, and works very hard. He is busy, given that he is the partner of this firm, and he works out a lot. He goes to a gym during the lunch time and he does a lot of biking and running with his cousin on weekends. He is now challenging for a 100-mile biking as well as marathon I believe. So even though he seems like a nice family man, again, he has something that may take up a lot of his weekend time. I wonder if this is another red flag..., more importantly, at this point I am not that attracted to him yet, which might be a bigger red flag wink He has told me he 'loves' me a couple of times, we do exchange a lot of long emails with our inner thoughts, but I don't understand how he can say he loves me when he does not really know me.

I am scared now I will see red flag everywhere on every guy I see. Besides, I love dogs... wink

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Originally Posted By: milkshake
Out of curiosity, why 'my dog is my best friend' was a red flag for you? I am an animal lover, so just curious...


I was afraid of ruffling feathers, didn't mean to smile. I love animals too, though I'm more of a cat person. What I was talking about is that I found that some women, and of course I don't mean all, expected their partners to look at them with the same unconditionally loving, adoring eyes that their dogs do. Guess what, won't happen. Men are usually (hopefully) more complex than "give me food and I will love you forever".



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What is it that I am doing that makes guys feel it is okay for them to continue doing what they want while keeping me around?


I'm not GG, but I am perceiving that you are trying too hard to get men to love you, sort of "if I love them enough and change myself enough, they will love me". I don't think that works. I want a woman who knows herself and does not compromise her integrity. When you start being overly flexible to get the man to love you, they won't respect you, because you are teaching them that you will accept whatever they give you. Remember the most important adage - people treat you the way you allow yourself to be treated.

Quote:
He has told me he 'loves' me a couple of times, we do exchange a lot of long emails with our inner thoughts, but I don't understand how he can say he loves me when he does not really know me.


He can't love you, at most he can love the idea of you, but not you as a person. I'd view it as a red flag - love requires cultivation and time together, not the feelings of "wow, she's hot, I'm in love" smile.

AGG


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Originally Posted By: milkshake

But he was always cranky, and whenever I asked how the game was, he never ever said "great". He always responded "disappointing", "frustrating", "bad", worse than ever, etc. Then if I tried to cheer him up by saying how I think great his play is, how his score is better than previous times, how at least he enjoys being outside playing his favorite sport, how the weather was beautiful, etc. something positive. But it somehow almost always annoyed him. He always told me that I 'do not understand'. "Golf is the hardest sport", that is what he always told me. The fact I was trying to say positive things made him feel that I did not understand his frustration or the golfing sport itself. Or maybe he was just throwing a tantrum because he did not play as well as he wanted to.
Since I never ever hear anything positive, for a few times I did not ask how his game was, then he complained big time! He said I was not being supportive. When I told him that it was because no positive words came out of his mouth and I wanted to hear that he had a good time playing, he told me I was the one being negative to feel that way about him. He said if I was really in love with him, I should never feel he was being negative and support him all the way.


Maybe he is smart enough to know he is isn't all that lovable and that is why you don't really love him the way he wants to be loved even though he knows he isn't all that lovable. !!!

The interaction you described with your XB is a BIG deal MS. Hard to feel at ease in a relationship like that huh? No conversation with my XH ever seemed to 'flow' happily. I was always 'practicing' my comments ahead of time and anticipating what he would say and my response. Crazy way to live.

I will give you a simple example of a WONDERFUL (to me) conversation with my current dh. We were talking on the phone when a friend texted me to tell me she was having to drop out of our weight loss competition. I texted back (while on phone still with dh) and said, 'why?!' She says, "I'm pregnant." I screamed into the phone and told dh. He was so happy too. I could hear the joy in his voice. They got married last July (2nd marriage for both, this child will be their 6th and she will be 40 this year). And yet....both dh and I felt joy for them. We chattered on about it for a bit then I hung up to call my friend...later that night he texted me asking me all about it. Interested. Joyful about a baby.

My XH? He would have turned his nose up as if he was smelling something bad and go on to list all the negatives of this situation--in his opinion of course. His mood would put a real damper on my joy....and he would never ask another word about it except perhaps in a year or so say, 'did friend ever had that kid?'

Do you see the difference? Am I explaining myself propertly.

And it wouldn't just be that he thinks it is a bad idea to have a baby in their situation...I was thinking about this and last night dh and I were at McD with a group of friends talking about our pregnant friend. (she wasn't there) There was lots of good natured kidding about it....wide eyes, shocked looks from the ones who were just being informed....but it felt like they were at least INTERESTED even if they were like 'better them than me!'

XH was/is so disconnected and selfish.

I sooooo appreciate my dh and our easy conversations.

They are out there. I promise.

You need to find a different circle of men.

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Originally Posted By: AGoodGuy
He can't love you, at most he can love the idea of you, but not you as a person. I'd view it as a red flag - love requires cultivation and time together, not the feelings of "wow, she's hot, I'm in love" smile.

AGG


I mostly agree, but she did say they have been exchanging long heartfelt emails.

And also, the word 'love' is handled differently by different people. I don't think that every man who says it to me wants to spend the rest of his life with me.

Still and yet I agree it is probably a red flag.

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The feeling of romantic love can arise pretty quickly in some people, particularly those with a high need for an attractive spouse. Those people can experience massive Love Bank deposits just by looking at their date or even at a complete stranger.

Whether or not they will commit to doing the things that sustain that feeling is a different matter.

Harley says to survive long term a relationship needs passion and logic. And it is easier to create passion if it does not exist than it is to make a relationship logical if it is not. If the logic is not there, the passion will likely eventually fizzle.

And he says to go to your friends and your family to find out if you are being logical, because when the passion is on, you won't be able to tell! smile


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Originally Posted By: markos

And he says to go to your friends and your family to find out if you are being logical, because when the passion is on, you won't be able to tell! smile


Yes. Very true. Dh and I both did this when we were dating. It was very helpful and reassuring especially since we had both one very stupid rebound relationship after our divorces. We certainly didn't ask for feedback from family/friends on those rebound relationships.

Do you do that MS? Do you have people in your life whose opinion you trust and who know you well enough to be able to offer opinions about the kind of man you need in your life?

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Milkshake, my husband Mike had a lot of habits that made him ideal for a family man. First, he was a homebody. He didn't do a whole lot of partying or getting together with people. Second he liked routine. Third, he didn't want his own children at that point in life, but he wanted a family. He wanted dinner on the table by 6:30. He wanted Sunday mornings, and grocery shopping. He wanted homework.

For me, the cars were a red flag, not a bonus.

I did not change what he wanted. I was just the right mate for him.

MS, rather than ask why the guys think they can keep doing what they want and have you around, why not ask why you want to be around them when they are doing stuff you don't like?

See, when you're dating, the idea is to find someone you don't have to change for and who doesn't have to change for you. If they have behaviors you need changed, you should walk away. Changing behavior, especially when it deals with who we are, is very difficult. There's simply not enough at stake in a dating relationship to make that worth while.

Not all behavior rises to the level where we want to walk away. Mike never once said ILY first. Never. He never told me I was pretty. I noticed it, but honestly, after I brought it up once, I decided it was no big deal. His actions were clear, and for me, that was enough. For many if not most women that would be a dealbreaker.


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