There was an overwhelming response to last month’s column concerning the topic of professional women’s struggle to make time for dating so I thought we’d keep the conversation going.
“Am I too busy?” and “Should I find time” are constant questions women struggle with, as do I. I find myself constantly wondering, “Do I have too much going on to focus on dating? Do I want more than just dating right now?”
I completed some research to try and help our readers – and myself – tackle this conundrum more effectively. I came across this great blog post by Evan Marc Katz on Understand Men. Find Love, www.evanmarckatz.com, where a guy was asking for advice because he thought he’d find plenty of 30-something women looking to settle down but it wasn’t going his way. His question of “what gives” prompts the overall question on the blog “Are single, professional woman too independent to settle down?”
The answer to that is I don’t know. From my perspective, I may not be making six figures or own my own home currently but that is my plan. I want to own my own home, make a six figure salary, travel to other countries, enjoy time with friends and family (which I do now), and I don’t have to answer to anyone. I can come and go and it’s nice not to have to explain or get permission. Right now I am trying to build my life.
I have been around long enough to know I can and should only ever depend on me. Marriages don’t always work out and tragedies do happen so I have to be prepared to manage my life and my finances whether single or in a relationship. I need to be savvy in those areas and I desire to be a valuable marketing professional.
As I build my career and find myself working 12 or more hours each day, sometimes I realize I don’t always have time to focus on someone else. And then I wonder, “When did I change?” In my 20s I wanted to be like my friends – marry, have kids and settle down. I often dated guys and it was fun but getting serious wasn’t in their cards because they were focusing on their careers. So I continued my search. Now, the shoe is on the other foot: men want to settle down and I am career focused.
As I look at myself, speak to other women, and conduct research, the more similar responses I hear – “it would be nice, but I just don’t have time” – and, as I have written about in past issues, dating is a full-time job.
For whatever reason, we are not ready to make love a priority. We are happy going to yoga on Mondays and drinks with the girls on Thursdays; we like knowing where to service our car or how to change a tire (OK, not something I can do but I know where to get it done); these are all comforts for us.
The problem with this behavior and starting to date when we do make the time is that now we’ve become self-sufficient. But, men like to feel needed and want to feel like a man. So if we know how to do things or where to get it all done, what do we really need them for?
eHarmony’s Dating Advice section tells us we, as independent women, need to let men be men. They say, “So, even if it feels weird or awkward at first, just try letting them open your door or set up your TV. Men are also natural problem-solvers and can give good advice and a fresh perspective that the female brain can’t always see.”
I don’t disagree with this statement; men can set up my TV or open my door all they want but they can’t do my job so sometimes that requires me to work 12-hour days and they have to understand that, as I would understand if they need to as well. And, they need to understand we need our girl time just as we expect them to have their guy time.
So, at the end of the day, are we really too independent to settle down? I think the answer honestly is yes and no. As independent women we are cautious because our hearts have been broken before; we also have career ambitions, that whether we are attached or not, would still be the same; and we want to be in-charge of our lives. But, we want to be adored, pampered, supported, and taken care of. We want the best of both worlds and we can have it, the problem is we need to find time for putting ourselves out there because it’s almost impossible to find love sitting at our desks.
Until next time my friends, be safe and have fun!
~ xoxox KC