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12.01.2009

Things We Don't Apologize For: High Standards

Yesterday: Never apologize for keeping the ring even if you did not get married
Today: Never apologize for setting high standards in a relationship. You know what you can tolerate and what simply gets on your nerves

A while back, I did a post titled Deal Breakers and I said,
Deal Breakers are the things that either with or without, you have to leave a relationship. Be that a romantic one or friendship or even business relationship. When you know what your deal breakers are and can effectively communicate them, it helps people know what you want but most importantly, they help you know what you want. I'm not sure my personal deal breaker list is exhaustive, but it's a far cry from where I was. My deal breakers apply (except where obvious) to any kind of relationship.
I also did a post titled Flows Like Water where I recalled words J said to me during one of our classic "are we breaking up for real this time?" arguments.
Good luck finding a guy who meets all of your requirements. You want too much
I went on to say
I know he said that out of anger, but it's always stuck with me. I might want too much -- but that's why I'm ok being single forever...
Deal breakers and standards are something I believe heavily in. When J first made that comment to me (and he would repeat it later) I remember spending a lot of time thinking about what he said. Are my standards too high? Do I want too much? I tried to imagine a relationship without the things I wanted and I kept coming up with a relationship that didn't look too good. I decided then I wouldn't settle for less than I deserved. It took me a while to put that decision into practice and it started with being ok with singleness and understanding the difference between compromise and settling.

I'd love to be in a long-term relationship with a man who has no kids, but I won't kick an otherwise eligible man to the curb because he has a child. That's a compromise. It's important to me that anyone I date be goal-oriented. If you are not goal-oriented, we don't need to go past the friend zone, because otherwise I'll grate on your nerves and you'll grate on mine. To decide to be in a relationship with someone who has no goals and no drive would not be a compromise, it would be settling. It goes against something I value highly.

When we start apologizing for knowing what we want and refusing to accept anything other than that, we set ourselves up for failure. It's like researching the perfect car. You find out that the ideal car for your lifestyle is a small 2-door coupe with great gas mileage, but for some reason, when you go to the dealership, you let the car dealer talk you into purchasing a large SUV with horrendous gas mileage. It makes no sense and that's not a compromise, that's absurd! Now you're giving away your hard-earned money every month for a beast of a vehicle that you didn't even want. We wouldn't do that with buying a car, so I have no idea why we would do that with people we're in relationships with.

For all the ish we go through in our lives, dealing with other people and the mess they bring into our lives, the least we could do is set some standards and expect people to live up to them; compromising where necessary and not budging one inch when it's important. High standards? You'll be getting no apology for that.

Tomorrow: Never apologize for saying NO.

1 comment:

B. Cooley said...

I agree with you 100%. Compromising is all about sacrificing your WANTS. Settling is all about ignoring your NEEDS. You have to be in tune with yourself to know the difference and too many people are NOT.

I love the car analogy and would take it even further to say that some people would buy the bigger, fancier, shinier, less practical SUV in an effort to impress others and make THEMSELVES feel as if they had accomplished something, when really all they have done is signed themselves up for more headaches and people smiling in their faces while talking about them behind their backs.

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