How many times have you heard it – “I’m waiting for Mr. Right”? You would think that, in this age of aggressive, self-sufficient women, the idea of waiting for the perfect man to come and sweep a woman off her feet would be cliché, almost comical, but no, it’s still out there. While men are looking for Miss Right Now, women are still saving themselves for Mr. Right.
This idea is certainly carried over from earlier times; an old idea that we haven’t managed to let go of yet. The problem is that, in this day and age, the idea really isn’t necessary, and for the most part, doesn’t work.
Where does the idea of waiting for Mr. Right come from?
For centuries, most women depended on men for their homes, their income, their food, and their security. The type of lifestyle a woman had and her overall prospects for happiness were linked directly with her ability to choose (or luck out with) the right man as a partner.
Nowadays, choosing the wrong partner can be remedied with a Las Vegas divorce and five minutes on a dating site, but back as recently as the ’50s it was a mistake a woman was expected to live with her whole life, or at least until the kids were grown.
There is a biological cause for women to seek Mr. Right, too. Women are born with bearing and raising children as a really remarkable ability and usually a primary focus of their lives. In order to raise successful children, there is a biological drive to find the best possible mate: one with favorable characteristics and enough decency to actually stick around during some portion of the child’s formative years. There is also the female “biological clock”; a constant, subconscious reminder that you must find a suitable mate while you can still bear children.
Do women still actually need a man?
In this world of equal opportunity, artificial insemination, and lifelike battery-powered intimate massagers, do women even need men at all? Men do require a fair amount of care and feeding, kind of like dogs that aren’t quite as loyal, so it’s probably not surprising that some women do not rush right out to find a mate.
The stigma of the “old maid” or “cat lady” is fading and it is becoming more and more acceptable for a woman to be alone, or to be a single mom, if she’s not happy with the choices available to her. It’s also perfectly acceptable for a woman to seek partners just for fun like men often do, rather than for long-term potential.
Really impressive toys notwithstanding, most women would agree that there is some value to having a man around. Men and women, in general, tend to have interlocking skills and abilities, so they usually work better as a team. The right man can help a woman to achieve her personal goals and experience fulfillment in more ways than one, while she, in turn, helps him to be the best he can be.
Are there less quality men to choose from?
Now for the bad news—there probably aren’t as many eligible men as there used to be. A recent Gallup poll estimates male homosexuality at 3.4%, a number that has increased steadily over decades. The real number is probably even higher, since many gay men are still “in the closet.” This means that there is an increasing number of men basically removing themselves from the female dating pool.
For even worse news, the overall quality of men, at least in the traditional sense, appears to be declining. One theory on this is that, as women have become more competitive in the workplace, a large number of men have relaxed a bit, contenting themselves to find a hard-working woman to take care of them rather than try to accomplish anything for themselves.
There is an entire generation of men that seems content to play video games and watch football while their “baby mama” brings home the bacon; at least if daytime talk shows are any indication.
Should women settle?
If you’re looking for a man to be a true partner, just any man probably won’t do. Chances are that you have a laundry list of dozens or even hundreds of requirements for a man, starting with having a job and going all the way up to not having lost all of his hair. Is it realistic to expect to find this man, especially before your biological clock runs out and you lose the chance to have children with this mythical Adonis?
As dire as things may seem, there is no cause to abandon all hope and find the first man you can with a functioning penis. Some of your requirements for a man are certainly non-negotiable, but the key is determining which requirements you should be flexible on so that you can find a reasonable approximation of the man you want.
One secret about men though—what you see is what you get. When a woman hooks up with a guy with the goal of changing him and molding him into Mr. Right, it leads to nothing but frustration for both of them.
The idea of holding out for Mr. Right is well past its prime, and it is probably a bit unnecessary and unrealistic in this day and age. It is perfectly acceptable for a woman to be alone or to go out and have fun with Mr. Right Now, even if she has no intention of seeking Mr. Right. For the long term, maybe it’s more realistic to think about Mr. Alright instead.