Are you a smart, independent, single woman who is dating after 40 and having a hell of a time finding good men to date? Are you starting to think there are just no good men out there who can handle your strength and brains? I hope you don’t mind my saying this: you are w-r-o-n-g.
As a dating and relationship coach – and a woman who was a first time bride at 47 – I’m quite aware of what we tell ourselves:
Men can’t handle smart, powerful women.
The only men left at this age are man-boys, jerks and players.
I’m not giving up my freedom for some man who’s going to tell me how to live my life.
If he doesn’t come along, that’s fine. I’m okay alone.
Well, I have. These were my mantras for years.
I hung on to them nice and tight until I realized that they were myths. The truth was out there plain as day but, as we do with so many beliefs, I simply refused to see the contrary evidence. (I believed this to be true and I hate being wrong!)
One of those myths is that your fierce independence and being set in your ways keeps you from finding love.
Allow me to share some of what I learned that cleared the way for my grownup love story.
Before I got married in 2006…
No one told me how to think or feel.
Compromise was something I rarely had to do.
I didn’t owe anyone anything, so no one was the boss of me.
I made all my own decisions.
I was successful and charted my own path.
I created the lifestyle I wanted including hanging and traveling with my girlfriends, buying what I wanted and going where (and when) I wanted.
Okay…fast forward to the present…
No one tells me how to think or feel. (Okay, almost never but I don’t have to listen to him.)
Compromise of any consequence is something I rarely have to do.
I don’t owe anyone anything, and no one is the boss of me.
I make most of my own decisions (but have help when I need it).
I am still successful and chart my own path (with the support of my smart husband).
I have a lifestyle of my choosing, see my girlfriends when I want (and travel with them), buy what I want and maintain my own priorities and routine.
My life is essentially the same as when I was single.
I admit that I do have to occasionally compromise. I constantly have to put food away that he doesn’t put back in the fridge. I’m trying to learn to love boating even though I could have happily lived my entire life without it.
And, yes, I do check with my husband before I plan a trip with my girlfriends or make a big life decision that affects us as partners.
Here is what I get in return: a lifetime companion I can count on. A partner who puts me first, supports me in everything I do, makes my life easier and more joyful, and makes me feel special, safe and loved every single day.
Your beliefs about limitations of dating after 40 are based on myths, sister. And once you let it go you open yourself to endless new opportunities to bring love into your life. I know because I’m living the truth.
Want to know how to turn things around for yourself? Here are a couple points for you to consider.
1) Your happiness is all in the picking.
Why would you choose a man who wants you to act in ways you don’t want to act, or give up things that you love?
Why would you pick a man who doesn’t admire your independence and honor your ability to get what you want in life?
There are things you love about yourself and your life, and you shouldn’t give those up. If you’re finding yourself having to do that with potential partners, the answer isn’t to blame men and stop dating…the answer is to attract and pick the right man.
2) Men want the real you and don’t want you to change.
Albert Einstein once said, “Women marry men hoping they will change. Men marry women hoping they will not. So, each is inevitably disappointed.”
Men consistently lament the loss of the woman they thought they married. Why does this happen? Because we bend like a pretzel to snag a man and then become our real selves once we feel secure…much to his surprise!
If you are independent and have things you feel you must do in your life…be that and do that. When you meet men, show them who you are. It’s the only way to find a good man whowill accept and appreciate your strength..
The real surprise is this: an amazing thing happens when you find the good man you love: some of your priorities change. You want to please him, and it’s easy to make adjustments. That’s when you know you have the right man.
Some of the things you thought you’d never let anyone influence in your life become things you can’t wait to talk to your man about. And having his strong, steady hand is a gift you’ll feel grateful for every day.
You have earned the right to be super-proud about doing it all yourself so far. How about opening up to the idea of turning that into a pride of being a good partner and in learning how to find this ultimate joy in life?
Remember, you’re with a man whom you respect and admire. And you know he cares for you. Why wouldn’t you want his opinion? You don’t have to do what he says, just honor his partnership and advice.
Here’s the bottom line, girlfriend. I understand all about the fear of losing your independence, the fear of choosing a man who’ll make you miserable…all that. But you are likely basing your fear on a False Assumption.
Single men want a woman just like you, smart, strong and independent. It all starts with you finding good men to date. And once you do, any change or compromise you CHOOSE to make will pale in comparison with all you get in return.
Trust me. It’s really that simple.