I recently completed a book entitled What Women Don’t Know: The Unspoken Rules of Lasting Love by relationship expert and author Michelle McKinney Hammond. In the book, Michelle and Pastor Joel A. Brooks Jr. offer advice to single women on how they should handle their romantic relationships in order to increase their chances of having a lasting relationship that results in marriage. Among the advice offered, they suggest that every single woman create a two-sided list of character traits that she desires in her mate. One side should list negotiable traits and the other non-negotiable traits. The authors suggest that this will keep women from straying away and settling for any man who looks their way, while remaining focused on what they truly desire.
This of course got the wheels turning in my head. It especially made me and those around me wonder what specific characteristics we desired in a mate. Most of the single women that I know are on drastic ends of the spectrum. They either don’t have a list, or their lists are so specific that one would wonder if they’re being unrealistic and if the man that they’re imagining even exists. This isn’t to say that a woman should settle for less than they feel they deserve or have low expectations, but at the same time, some have a list of qualities they desire that are so fixed and specific it produces the danger of greatly limiting their options. And it also stops some from building the relationship they think they want because they can’t find the ideal mate since almost no one is going to meet every single qualification on such a rigid check list. I suppose this is why the authors of the aforementioned book suggest creating two lists, the negotiable and the non-negotiable with the non-negotiable list including things that most woman should or would refuse to settle for, such as an unfaithful, dishonest, unloving person and more, while the negotiable list may focus on things that may be less important such as certain physical characteristics and financial status.
I personally never really sat down to think of or wrote out a specific list of qualities that I would like my future husband to posses. There was always this abstract image that had no particular financial status or physical attributes, just a few quality character traits, which I suppose could be a good or bad thing depending on how you look at it. However, if I absolutely had to sit down and compile a list of characteristics I would like in a mate, an article written by Charli Penn entitled The 5 Types Of Men Who Make GREAT Husbands, which was featured on the Huffington Post a few months back would come to mind. Three out of the five types of men discussed in this article really jumped out at me as they are all characteristics that I would love to have in a husband. These traits included:
The Provider, who Charli depicted as a man who is selfless and “puts his family first.” She went on to discuss why this particular type of man would make a great husband: “Marriage is the start of a new family — your family. You will both want to provide for the family you create together, and it’s imperative that you are partners with the same goals in mind.”
The Rock, who is described as the man who “at your weakest moments, his strength keeps you stable and inspires you to push through.” Penn went on to illustrate the value of this particular type of man by stating, “He’s loyal, devoted, and a true pillar in the world of the woman he loves. This is the perfect recipe for a loving husband that you can count on through thick and thin; what woman doesn’t dream of marrying one of those?”
The Believer is depicted as a man who has “faith as his foundation.” Charli goes on to describe him further: “He believes in the things unseen and those that many give up on when the world turns cold: hope, morals, kindness, and good will. He has a church home, or a religious mainstay in his life and the fellowship refuels his engines… His moral compass is always turned in a positive direction… This man has the emotional tools needed in his toolbox to repair many of the cracks and dents that will inevitably appear in any marriage. He’s a fighter, and he will fight with you and for your marriage. He won’t give up, even when you do.”