I still get a shock when I realise that I am in my 30's, it seems like only yesterday I was taking my P Plates down and going through the Drive Thru at The Vale to buy Under age Booze (I am sorry Parents, I promise I wont do it again). Where has the time gone? Anyway, with the marching on of years and the changing of tastes the way that we view dating (or the way that I view dating, I probably shouldn't make such sweeping comments) has changed dramatically. Gone are the days of being footloose and fancy free and instead I am left trying to make solid choices for my future - choices that would hopefully make my nan proud. No longer am I led by "Gosh he is dreamy" and instead I think about the prospects that the future could hold. This is dating in your 30's and the questions that cross your mind
Do his world views align with my own - I like to think that I am a very opened minded person and I am pretty good at seeing the world from every bodies point of view but there are some things that I just cant understand and refuse to tolerate. If he is extremely racist or homophobic we just wont see eye to eye so nothing else that is amazing about him is going to matter.
Does He Want Kids - I am not 100% sure if I do and it swings daily but its a big consideration now. My Ovaries are screaming and are slowly turning to dust. I need to go into something knowing where the person stands on the issue just in case its something that I do decide that I want to do. A driving factor in this decision is kids shoes.... have you seen how cute the little baby Jordans are.... Gosh.
Does he have Direction - I don't know if it was just me but in my early 20s I didn't really have much direction in life, sure I had good jobs and I worked hard but I wasn't really driven for anything more than that. This has changed as I have gotten older and I want to achieve more and keep achieving because I am worth it. The man I date needs to be the same. He needs to wants to better himself and keep his stone rolling.
Does he take control of the situation - in this digital age, dating can be really difficult. Making contact with someone has never been easier but there are different degrees of how beneficial that contact is. Is he someone that fluffs around or is he someone that is happy to make plans and organise things for you to do together? In your 30s you are generally busier and you have more commitments so you need someone that can commit and control so that you both know where you stand.
Does he have 1 million house mates or live with his parents - Living arrangements have the ability to tell you a lot about the man you are considering. If he is 30 and "living at home" for the moment then I am going to be forced to question his independence. Sure living at home is great for financial reasons and I am poor all the time because I live by myself BUT sometimes you have to take the good with the bad. I want someone that is my equal, knows how to run a house and look after himself because then he can look after me as well (and I can look after him).
Does he care about his appearance - I know this may sound like a vanity thing and it may well be but its something that I put importance on. I dress well, I take pride, I want to look nice. Going out with someone that wears tracksuits every day and hasn't been shopping for new underwear in 4 years isn't going to give me confidence in his ability to be an adult.
Do his surroundings reflect his personality - I am a big believer that you can tell a lot about a person by looking at the way that they live. Is their house tidy, do they change their sheets? I have told this story before but the Hippy House Mate wasn't one to look after his surroundings and slept on ripped sheets, while I loved him I could never be with someone like him because to me it just showed a lack of respect for himself. What you present to the world speaks volumes.
Does he have his baggage in check - I would be more worried if someone had made it into their 30s and didn't have any baggage, so it really comes down to how they handle it. Is he letting it ruin him or is he acknowledging it and working with it to move forward? The older I get the more I realise that you can not tar everyone with the same brush because if you do, you are setting yourself up for a lifetime of loneliness and sadness. Everyone comes with a past and I am willing to help you carry some of your baggage if you are worth it.
Does he Challenge me - Life shouldn't be an easy ride, I am a handful and I will walk over people if they aren't willing to stand up to me. I want someone to constantly question me and make me think about things differently from what I have previously. I want someone that makes me want to be better for him. Yeah it may be exhausting sometimes but its how you grow as a person. I would hope that I can challenge him as well and that he is someone that wants to be challenged.
Does he fit with the future - The older I have gotten the more that I have started to think "what's the point" if this person isn't going to be someone that you can see a future with, why bother? its brutal and sometimes cruel but if this person doesn't fit, you have to stop trying to Jam a round peg into a square hole.
Does he Build Me Up - I expect the best because I am worth the best, simple. Does he see the best in me and does he support that. If he isn't going to give me the best and make me a priority then I will find someone that does.
I think dating in your 30s goes back to the basic human urges, you want to pick the strongest in the herd. You want an Alpha, someone that you know can take care of you, give you strong stock and be the hunter. God, sometimes our human wiring makes life difficult for us doesn't it? If only it was still as simple as "Gosh he is so dreamy". Reading back over this list it could seem like these may be a hard combination to find and probably you are right (I am long time single as we know) but it all comes down to the fact that you cant settle because if you do, you could in fact be missing out on everything that you have ever desired... just a thought anyway.
Love and Life Choices
P.S While writing this I realised that I am pretty much looking for a man that is modelled on my dad, there is a line in Dirty Dancing where Baby goes "and I thought I would never find a guy as great as my dad" and most days I kind of feel like that as well, but I believe that if there is one of him, there has to be more.