12 Qualities My Future Husband MUST Have — No Ifs, Ands, Or Buts

When you’re searching for someone you could possibly spend forever with, it’s a good thing to be picky. After all, the consequences of making the wrong choice include two options: a lifetime of unhappiness or a bitter, expensive divorce. That’s why, no matter how many people tell me I should be willing to settle for anyone who’s halfway decent and willing to commit, I absolutely refuse to do so, and so should you. There are certain traits my future husband must have in order to be compatible with me.

He has to have career goals and be actively working to achieve them. Strong, independent women value our careers because the opportunity to succeed is a privilege for us. We can’t comprehend people who are indifferent about their own success or lack of it. Yet, we meet guys all the time who just don’t give a crap as long as they earn enough to pay their rent and buy a case of beer every weekend. I’m sorry, guys, but you’re going to have to step up your hustle if you want to earn the love of a strong career woman.

He has to know how to drive a stick shift (or be willing to learn). I know it sounds weird, but actually driving a car is a lost art form in modern America, and it’s something I really enjoy. If I marry someone who’s unwilling to support my love of driving, he’ll undoubtedly bug me to buy an automatic down the road when I trade in. For me, my love of a real clutch is part of my love of life, so I can’t let anyone take that away for the sake of their convenience.

He has to drink. It sounds crazy to non-drinkers, but alcohol is part of our culture. Imagine a dinner conversation over a great bottle of Cabernet and couple entrees that pair nicely; lots of great notes of flavor to talk about and compare to both dishes. If the person you’re dining with doesn’t drink, you’re left with “This Cab is a great pairing with my steak. How’s the Diet Coke complementing your spaghetti and meatballs?” Lame.

He has to be adventurous, especially about food. Speaking of the above dinner date, another requirement is that anyone who dares to call himself a man be equipped with fully adult taste buds. If I want to go to my favorite sushi restaurant and everything on the menu is too “weird,” that’s a bigtime adult fail. I’ll be willing to make a box of mac n’ cheese on sushi night when I have an actual toddler in my home (while also encouraging my child to try new foods), not an overgrown man-child.

He has to want at least one child with me. It’s okay if he already has kids, as long as I still get one of my own. As the years pass, it becomes less likely to find someone who doesn’t already have kids and that’s okay as long as I don’t miss out on my opportunity to create life.

He has to be intelligent and pay attention to current events. There’s nothing worse for a smart person than attempting to maintain enjoyable conversation with a clueless on. If I ask what he thinks about next year’s election and his reply is ‘What election?” followed by a quick change of subject, my interest will cease quickly. It’s not an overreaction; if something irritates you as soon as you meet someone, it will grate your last nerve to deal with that behavior every day.

He has his own social life and encourages me to do the same. Strong, independent women don’t want to be with their man 24/7, or with anyone 24/7 for that matter. We intend to maintain our own lives, friendships and alone time, even after we get married. That should be good news for my future hubby because it means I’ll encourage him to go hang out with his buddies too.

He has to have a high enough sex drive to match mine. It’s a common myth/fallacy that all men want sex 24/7. Allow me to be the first to confirm for you that it isn’t true; some are lazy about it or not always interested. It’s unacceptable for a sexy woman to have to convince her man to throw her down and go to town on a regular basis.

He has to enjoy initiating romantic gestures. Romance is a must, from the first date until the day one of us dies. He doesn’t have to spend a lot of money, sending flowers or chocolates every day. A simple “You’re beautiful and I miss you” text while I’m stressed out at work is enough to make any reasonable woman smile.

He has to be supportive of my career, and not just verbally. Any guy can listen to me talk about my writing and nod along, waiting patiently for clothes to come off. That’s not support. True support is shown by actions. In the case of a writer, for example, he has to bother to actually read my work and comment on it.

He has to be at least somewhat tidy and help with chores. Like many women, I can’t stand to live in a messy or cluttered home. Since marriage typically requires living together, anyone who wants a chance at forever with me has to be willing to clean up after himself at a minimum and preferably help with general housework as well. This is 2015 and we’re equals: we both clean and we both hustle.

He has to believe in a 100% equal relationship. I saved this one for last because it’s the most important. It’s the #1 reason I don’t want to marry a religious guy (sorry Mom and Dad). A healthy modern relationship is 50/50: two equal heads of household who are both decision makers. Strong independent women refuse to be controlled by anyone, and we don’t want to control anyone else either.

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