In last week's Gentlemen Speak piece, Isaac Huss revealed the “11 Things a Commitment-Ready Guy Wants to Know Right Away.” Isaac asked for some brave woman to return the favor and offer men the same kind of insight. So in a service to all the guys out there, and all those women who are told they are too picky, I’ve put together my own list to give you some insight into what a woman looking for something serious wants to know right away.
Isaac's list and my own are pretty similar—neither of us want to mess around in a dead-end relationship. But, as things generally go between men and women, while our end goal is the same, our approaches are quite different.
So gentleman, be heartened by the fact that you are not speaking a completely foreign language, and ladies, if you’re looking for a good guy and a real commitment, consider these 11 questions below.
01. DOES HE MAKE HIS INTENTIONS CLEAR?
I’m a very take-charge person, but when it comes to relationships, I like to be more low-key. I don’t believe a man needs to pay for every date, but I do think it’s important for him to make his intentions clear: to be up-front about how he feels and to make an effort to get to know me.
Things like being ambiguous about whether or not we are on a date, texting me or calling me with seemingly no purpose, and spotty communication after and before dates are incredibly frustrating. Constantly questioning whether a guy wants to date me or if he has any interest in me is just not worth it to me. Byeeee. [Insert emoji hand wave.]
02. IS HE MATURE?
The last thing I want is to invite drama into my life. Immaturity may have been fun in college, but that was three years ago. Is he behaving like a total bro, drinking Natty Light, requesting the DJ play Skrillex, and checking out other women when we go out? Yeah, I’ll pass.
03. CAN HE TAKE CARE OF HIMSELF?
It sounds simple, but sometimes it’s not. Does this man know how to do his laundry, clean his apartment, and prepare a dinner that doesn’t come from Seamless? Does he take care of his body—shower every day, exercise every so often, go to the dentist once in a while? These are things I expect of myself, so it’s only natural I’d like a partner to do the same. (And bonus points if he grills us steaks for dinner.)
04. IS HE ATTRACTED TO ME?
Physical attraction is not everything, but it’s definitely important. I want to be with someone who’s attracted to me, both physically and emotionally. It’s hard to build a relationship without chemistry, even if the person has everything you’re looking for on paper. (Trust me, I’ve been there!) When it comes to letting a woman know you are attracted to her, a little flirtation goes a long way. Smiles and laughing at my jokes are all winners when we've just met.
05. DOES HE GET ALONG WITH MY FRIENDS?
Since I live in New York and my family is back in the Midwest, my friends are my family here. And I like to think they’re pretty great. If he never gets along with them or has major issues with them, then he and I will have issues, too. It’s important for me to know his friends as well. Who he surrounds himself with can say a lot about who he is.
06. WILL HE INDULGE MY SPOTIFY PREFERENCES AND LOVE FOR POP CULTURE?
I’d say they’re guilty pleasures, except I really don’t feel guilty about them. I like listening to Katy Perry, and I enjoy watching The Bachelor. Sorry, dudes, but it comes with the package. You don't have to like this stuff, but you must like that I like it.
07. HAS HE BEEN IN LOVE BEFORE? HAS HE HAD HIS HEART BROKEN BEFORE?
Heartbreak has been the catalyst for a lot of personal growth in my life. The man I am with doesn’t need to have healed from a broken heart, but if that has happened to him, there’s a good chance he’s experienced significant growth, too. This is obviously something that is rarely, and not advisably, shared on a first date—but this is something I will be eager to hear about as soon as it's appropriate. It lets me know that he is able to be vulnerable with me and learn from past mistakes.
08. WHAT DOES HE THINK ABOUT MARRIAGE IN GENERAL?
I want to eventually get married and have children. If he doesn’t want that, then I don’t see us working out. To me, marriage is by definition a sacrifice. Any of my friends who are married have told me that it requires hard work and commitment. I want to know that a man thinks about marriage the same way and if it’s something he sees for himself one day.
09. IS HE OPEN TO NEW EXPERIENCES?
To put it simply, is he curious? Does he want to know about me, experience the things I enjoy, and also share the things he enjoys with me? I’m not the most spontaneous person, so I appreciate when someone can surprise me or encourage me to try something new.
10. HOW DOES HE APPROACH OUR DIFFERENCES?
This is a big one. We’re going to argue at some point; that’s a given in even the healthiest relationships. That doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing. If he shuts down or isolates himself when we’re dating, then that’s a red flag for me. I don’t want a partner who runs away from his or our problems.
Furthermore, I hope he understands I am not perfect. I have a past (don’t we all?), and I will still make mistakes sometimes. If he can approach these things with kindness and patience, then our relationship will be much stronger. I would treat him with the same respect. I want to be in a relationship with a man who brings out the best in me. As Isaac said in last week’s Gentlemen Speak,
“Ultimately, I’m looking for more than just a companion in life, and even more than a passionate lover (although those are both on the list). What I’m looking for is someone who makes me feel the need to step up my game. And not just for my own sake, I want to be my best for someone else.”
11. WHAT IS MOST IMPORTANT IN HIS LIFE?
What are his values? And do they correspond with mine? My faith is number one in my life. Everything else, including my relationship with my partner, comes second to that. For me, the man I’m with will also put his faith above all else. If the most important thing in his life is his career or his apartment or himself, then I’m not going to be able to commit to him. So, ladies, identify what’s most important to you—whether that’s family, or independence, or generosity, or whatever!—and be able to communicate that clearly when asking guys what it is that they value. This one will likely become clear throughout the course of your first few conversations and if not, don't be afraid to ask him! Guys, please don't be embarrassed to share what's most important to you—tell me about your beliefs and your family!
Do you agree with my list? Would you add anything to it? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!