One of the mostly submitted questions here at Glee Dating is — Is He the One? How do I Know He´s the One?
… As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle…~ Steve Jobs
It is true that once you find the love of your life, you´ll know it. But it´s not out of the box. It`s not what we usually hear which is “love at first sight”. In order to know if he´s the one, you will need time. You will have to carefully examine both yourself and your man, and both your ability to forge a relationship.
When I first saw my husband, it was through his profile photo online. I immediately felt intense attraction towards him, but it was purely physical. In reality, love at first sight is nothing but lust.
Because in order for love to form, you will need a certain amount of time to spend together and get to know each other so that your attraction for each other will grow into love.
Six months after I first saw my husband´s photo online, we met in person. And thanks to technology — our six months worth of daily conversations over the phone and weekend video chats over Skype, as well as the well-thought and meaningful gifts we sent to each other — our attraction for each other grew into love. Meeting up in person only confirmed our feelings for each other.
However, despite our initial physical attraction, I didn´t know right away that he´s “the one”. In fact, I never thought that he´s “the one” because even if I found him to be very attractive, in many ways he wasn´t my type. He´s not my type but I`m attracted to him.
I tried to stop our communication twice. But because of his persistence, he was able to convince me to give our relationship a chance. Thankfully I did. He turned out to be the wonderful husband that I need. The kind of person that suits me.
And that´s why I now believe that it´s a good thing to date men who aren´t your type.
So how do you know if he is the one? Here are my five tips:
1. Examine Your Requirements.
What are all your requirements? Write each one down and be specific as possible. Example, instead of writing “the same age or older”, write in the full acceptable age range.
Having compiled your list, go back and study it. Are there items which, on reflection, seem too restrictive? If so, strike them off your list.
Next, challenge your list. What items on your list could you move from prerequisites to preferences?
Your aim here is to have a list that is more about your prospective partner´s character — intrinsic qualities, than habits, looks and circumstances — extrinsic matters.
2. What kind of person is your partner?
Look beneath the surface, understand what´s really going on.
Back to my husband as an example, he was not my type because I was judging him based from my extrinsic preferences such as him not being fluent in English. It was only by spending more time to get to know him did I discover that his intrinsic qualities were the things that I was actually looking for in man.
Although by his looks he could easily be mistaken as a Latino lover, he was actually an introverted man who, in spite of him being a subject to many women´s attractions, never took advantage of women and is a one-woman-man.
Learn to spot if your new lover is “too good to be true”. At around three-month point people usually start to show the real him, cracks begin to appear. Don´t ignore the warning signs because some potential partners are dangerous.
Example is Christopher Watts, the newly sentenced high-profile criminal who killed his pregnant wife and two young daughters and then discarded them like garbage.
His wife, ShanÀnn, publicly declared for many, many times how her husband was the most wonderful man, her “rock”, who pursued her like crazy at the time when she was at the darkest and lowest moment in her life. But could there be cracks during the courtship period that ShanÀnn just ignored?
Remember, it´s important to spot the red flags early. These flags can make you uncomfortable, even worry. But around three months you are often still over the moon with intense feelings that your tendency is to ignore the cracks. Don´t. Spotting and paying attention to cracks can be life saving.
3. Is there chemistry?
Are you truly in love with your partner or are you in love only with his potential?
How available is he for a relationship?
Is there romance in your relationship? Sometimes your partner may tick all the requirements but you´re just not into him. It´s important that once you move into a committed relationship there is passion that will bind you together.
There´s just no denying, sex is important in marriage.
4. How is the timing?
Is the timing for your relationship right?
A man once fell for me and pursued me after he realized that I`m the perfect partner for him. But he´s already engaged!
Although he broke up his engagement so he could be with me, in the end there was too much at stake for both of us. I let him go and he went ahead with the wedding with his ex-fiancee. I sincerely wished them happiness.
Will Smith and Jada had a similar story. When they discovered that they were each other´s soulmate, Will was already married. Although they didn´t have an affair, Will Smith eventually had a divorce and then proceeded to pursue his true love. So for Jada, Will really is “the one”.
As it turned out for me, my ex marrying his ex-fiancee was the biggest favor he could have done for me. Right after I let him go, I met my true love. And I´ve been with him ever since.
Sometimes, you can be the perfect woman for him but the timing is not right. And it´s not because he´s already engaged or married to someone else, although that certainly could happen, but it´s because he still have important dreams to pursue.
So how do you know if the timing is not right? Answer these questions:
- How old is your man? The averange age for marriage in the United Kingdom is thirty for men.
- How many of his ambitions has he achieved? Most men still expect to be the principal bread winner and will not settle until they become established in their career.
5. Make a relationship inventory.
If you´ve only recently started dating your boyfriend, focus on getting to know him beneath the surface and spotting red flags. But if you´ve been with him for eighteen months or more, ask yourself these questions:
- Do you want the same things in life? Example, you both want children or you both want loyalty in your relationship (no open marriage).
- Can you relax in each other´s presence?
- Do you like yourself when you are with him?
- Do you both exert the same amount of energy in developing this relationship?
- Do you have similar values?
- Do you generally put each other´s interest first?
- Can you confide your inner secrets, dreams and fears to him?
- Would he protect you against a personal attack from his family?
- Would you describe him as a good person?
- Are you too similar, too opposite, or somewhere in between? Being too similar will bore you due to a lack of challenge. Being too opposite will lead to chaos due to your extreme incompatibility. But having just enough similarities will make you bond and enjoy each other´s company, while just enough differences will add spice to your relationship. It´s kindá like an oyster in a shell. The grit in the shell may be annoying to the oyster but its what create something precious — a pearl.
- How long have you been dating? How long have you been in this relationship? Although different couples have different commitment timeframe, the rule of thumb is you should get a marriage proposal at around eighteen months. A study has found that once you hit 2.5 years in relationship, chances of getting a marriage proposal from your man plummets. In my case, my then boyfriend proposed within 12 months (The timing was perfect for both of us).
Although you may wished that identifying Mr. Right is as simple as black and white, or yes or no, the reality is there are many gray areas to consider. Identifying if he´s “the one” will take time, but through my tips above you can be sure that you won´t be forever confused and you won´t need to stay in a relationship that´s not going anywhere longer than necessary or a relationship that´s unhealthy for you.
Remember that you will have to do inventories for your relationship three times:
- During your first three to five dates – does he tick your prerequisites and non-negotiable requirements?
- At three months – are there cracks appearing? What are the important red flags? Am I comfortable in this relationship? Is it good for me?
- At eighteen months – does this relationship have a future? Is he going to give me the commitment that I want?
If you´ve already been in this relationship with him for two years and you´re still not getting the commitment that you want, there are two things that you can do:
Read: What to Do If You´re Not Getting the Commitment That You Want From Him (Article coming soon.)