I went out with a guy friend once who said to me, “This is why you are single. You claim you want a guy to take care of you, yet you are way too independent and don’t want to take care of the guy.”
Ok, back it on up herrrre.
Yes, I am strong-willed. Yes, I am independent. Yes, I tend to do things for myself most of the time. But let’s be clear here. When it comes to romance, I’m still the girl.
I want to explore this a bit further, for the sake of my friend because I don’t think he quite understands. Or maybe I don’t quite understand.
Look, there are people on this planet meant to be Moms and Wives. The second they were a functioning human they wanted to be a mom or wife. They pretended to bake, and dress their baby dolls for a stroll. They never wanted to be independent. They’ve always wanted this life goal for themselves.
Me? I was a little all over the board in my playtime… I liked GI Joes and Barbies. Not because Barbie had a baby, but because Barbie was smokin’ hot and I wanted her to look super cute for the party. And GI Joes were fun to explore with. I created forts out of branches and ran them through puddles (a.k.a. lakes). The exploration was the draw. I loved games. Scrabble, Connect Four, Battleship and Chess. All for the brain waves.
In the 8th grade, I thought, “A filmmaker, a female filmmaker, yes, that is what I shall be.” After all, I received many accolades for my original screenplay, directing and producing skills in Who Killed Sergeant Chilipepper. I was kind of on a roll.
By the time I was in 9th grade, I had read the autobiography, Gifted Hands, The Story of Ben Carson (a prominent African-American Neurosurgeon in the US), and had decided that was the career for me- brain surgery. Yes. That lasted until I took Chemistry class in high school and realized NEVER AGAIN.
Then reality hit. And I applied for undergrad business school in college and got accepted (I was able to get my file later and saw that I did not get in due to my grades or test scores, it was my varied and interesting work history). I had interned at Merrill Lynch, a couple of radio stations in their marketing and promotions departments, and was marketing intern for a software company. I was gonna go into the big bad (and booming, at the time) business world.
I wanted to be a Director of Marketing… the culmination of all my learnings in business school and my creative proclivities melding into one superpower. I would rule the world- in marketing. Er, sales. I moved into sales because that’s where the jobs and the money were. I’ve been there ever since.
The point in me giving a story-version of my résumé is that never once did I think I would rule the world as a Mom or as a wife. Not one time. It was never a ‘goal’ to be achieved. It was never a ‘job’ I wanted to obtain. I wanted to work, engage my mind daily, and see the world– that is what I wanted.
So therefore, I became independent. Paved my own financial way. I never became a stay-at-home momma. I never had that goal for myself. But I think sometimes, that hurt me. Because I therefore became ‘too strong’ for guys. I didn’t need them for my non-existent goal of being a wife and mom.
However, just so we’re clear here, I do want to get married- mainly because it feels good to be in love with someone, and I’d like to have that someone in my life. And even though I’m a tough business chick, I take action, I take charge, I do what I want… I still like being in love and being a girl. Although my life goal is not to be a mom or a wife, I would like to have it in my life. But it’s gonna take a strong guy… a guy who can still be, unquestionably, the man in our twosome.
The most recent menfolk in my dating world have been impressing me with their gentlemanly touch. Even with my hardened shell, I’m still allowed to experience chivalry, I think. I like that a handsome guy can be still the man in charge, but gentle in soul. That he can help me put on my coat, and truly make me feel like the girl. Like I am taken care of, cherished, treasured. Someone who makes me feel like a gem. Someone I know will be there for me if I needed them.
You know what happens when that happens? I soften up. I want to do so much for that guy. Cook for him. Think of fun things to do with him. Listen to him. Be more open to him. Welcome him. Crazy for an ‘independent’ girl, huh?
Listen guys, no matter how ‘tough’ or ‘independent’ a girl is (assuming she is heterosexual), she wants to be the girl. So treat her like the girl. Pay for dinner. Pull out her chair, open the car door. All the grandpa stuff. If she’s a superstar independent woman, she’s gonna try to pay for her part of dinner, or not let you open the door- because she’s taken care of herself for so long. Get to that door and open it before she has a chance to. Take care of her. Be stronger than she is. She’ll adore it and she’ll adore you for doing it.
Thank you, gentlemen- you are appreciated, even from the most independent of ladies!!!