The first month of a relationship is critical. It determines the expectations and outcome of the relationship. Before I met my husband, here is my personal list of things that were important for me to have in a partner: 1) Do what you say. If you say you will call on Sunday, call me on Sunday. If you can’t call me, let me know. It's really that simple. If you memorized all those formulas in math class, you can definitely handle this concept.
2) Be open to newness. If you aren’t willing to at least try sushi one time, you may not be willing to keep up with my desire to grow. The world is filled with things I have never seen or done before. I’d like to try out the new stuff together. Experiencing something new on your own is no fun.
3) Apologize. If you find it difficult to apologize when you are wrong, you are probably not going to be accountable for your actions or comments in the future. I admit when I am wrong so I need you to practice that talent as well. An apology goes a long way to mend hurt feelings.
4) Family. I come from a huge network of aunts, uncles, and cousins. I’m into family. If you never talk to your family, don’t see your kids, or talk horribly about them, I’m not the person for you. I value family and I need you to as well. If you don't, that's totally cool too...for someone else who may want you.
5) Bashing your ex. With the ability to grow comes the ability to forgive. If you are still saying awful things about a past relationship, I know that I am next in line to be talked about if we break up. It also tells me that you don’t take responsibility for your part in a relationship.
6) Handle your childhood issues. We all have them. But if by this age you haven’t done some work to grow through them or to heal, you probably won’t ever do it. Life is too short to let our childhood issues affect us as adults. And there are too many therapists out there with sliding scales.
7) Have priorities. If you buy $200 jeans but can’t pay your car note, we aren’t going to work out. If you spend $2,000 on a spur of the moment vacation but don’t have health insurance, I can’t expect you to have me as a priority when you can’t get the basics down.
8) Fix it before bed. It’s simple. I like my sleep. Arguments affect my sleep. I need a person who solves problems in the same way that I do: before bed.
9) Make lemonade out of lemons. Problems happen and issues come up. It’s why they call it life instead of something else. A change of course sometimes leads you to a better path. When something is thrown my way, I make the best of it. If you like to complain and ask God why me, you won’t last a day with me.
10) Appreciate all people. If you scream at the waitress just before you short her on her tip for not bringing you a glass of water that was exactly 72%, you are not for me. I was raised to respect everyone from the people who clean the streets to the CEO. And I am a stickler for tipping. Plus, your words have to match your actions. You can’t work at a non-profit and disrespect other people in one breath.