Longing for a man but don't want to lose your independence? I know the feeling, girlfriend.
Are you a single woman over 40 who is smart, independent and thinking there are no good men out there? 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…I’m not going to change just to snag a man…I’m going to wait for the man who accepts me just the way I am. He’ll come along.
Sound familiar at all?
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 contrary evidence.
Allow me to share some of my story.
Until I became a bride at 47, I planned everything in my life, supported myself, made all my decisions, and created the lifestyle I wanted.
No one told me how to think or feel.
Compromise wasn’t something I had to do.
I didn’t owe anyone anything, so no one was the boss of me.
I was successful and charted my own path.
Fast forward to the present…
I’ve been married 4+ years.
I have a lifestyle of my choosing, see my girlfriends when I want, and maintain my own priorities and routine.
No one tells me how to think or feel.
I don’t owe anyone anything, and no one is the boss of me.
I am still successful, and I chart my own path.
I’m the same woman I was 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 sailing even though I could have happily lived my entire life without it.
And, yes, I do check with my husband before I made a big life decision.
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 fear is a myth. I know because I’m living the truth. Here are a couple points for you to consider.
1) It’s 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 guy.
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 women 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. And find a man who accepts it and appreciates it.
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 these things you thought you’d never let anyone influence in your life become things you can’t wait to talk to your man about.
Your super-pride in doing it all yourself turns 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.
The bottom line is that you are basing your fear of losing your independence and having to change on a False Assumption.
Bobbi Palmer is The Dating and Relationship Coach for Women over 40. At 47 she became a first-time bride and now shares her successes - and mistakes - to help other women over 40 find love. Read her blog and get her free e-Course "The 7 Major Dating Mistakes Women over 40 Make in Their Search for Love."