the list, or brown hair

I was relaxing over a glass of wine with a girlfriend while her husband went outside to rake the lawn one last time, even as the snow began to fall. He didn’t want there to be any leaves in the children’s snowmen.

“You’ve got it pretty good,” I told her.

She agreed. “Yep, I got the brown hair.”

And then she went on to explain:  Years earlier, she had been set up with a guy. There was no attraction, but they became good friends. He asked her what qualities she wanted in a mate. And so she shared a long list of the things she had been looking for in a man:  brown hair, tall, gets along with his exes, a big kickstand, and more…all in all, it was a pretty thorough list.

After a couple more years of still being single and becoming more discouraged in her search for a mate, my girlfriend exclaimed to her friend, “Could I maybe just get the brown hair? I’d settle for that.” And then she met her husband, who does have brown hair, is good-looking, gets along with his exes, earns well, is kind and thoughtful, has a big kickstand…actually, I don’t know about that, but it sounded good. Ultimately, I’m willing to bet her husband has almost all of the qualities she was looking for.

Every woman has a list of qualities she’d like to find in a man — I had one before I met my husband. And, as I mentioned earlier, a failed relationship provides great clarity — an opportunity to reflect on how our values have changed, what we might do differently, and the choices we might make more wisely.

So here’s the new list of qualities and characteristics I’d like to find in a mate:

  • Single / available
  • Great sense of humor / quick to smile / playful
  • Presence / capacity / bandwidth
  • Kindness
  • Great manners
  • Income / provider / success mindset (optimism, determination, perseverance)
  • Responsible
  • Committed / honest / faithful
  • Loves children
  • Dark hair, kind eyes, nice smile, strong jaw line, relatively fit
  • Reads / intellectually curious – talks about ideas
  • 36 – 46 years old
  • Thoughtful – holds hands, gives gifts (willing to buy dresses, jewelry, handbags*…)
  • Likes to touch and unafraid of public displays of affection
  • Even tempered and steady / able to manage conflict
  • Active / adventuresome / likes to travel & explore new places, foods, cultures
  • Genuine / authentic
  • In to arts / music, an aesthete
  • Non-smoker / addiction free
  • Taller than me (by at least 3″)
  • Has strong family relationships (and ability to be friends with exes)
  • Healthy boundaries with friends and family
  • Emotional resilience – gets up quickly when down

Know anyone?

*I know this one’s a stretch, but I’d love a guy who has the courage to try!

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