Hi I’m Nina!
My goal in writing about choosing a mate is to reassure people that although it often seems daunting and discouraging, it is nearly infinitely complex and no one needs to take it personally.
Very few people have heard of Operations Research. It is a field of study or endeavor in Industrial Engineering. It creates mathematical or computer modeling of multivariant scenarios and runs iterations to determine optimal settings for the best outcome. I see life in this format. (Yes I am a geek-but I’m a smart, buff geek)
Dating in particular is a conundrum of variables complicated by timing, location, sequence of events and the order of information release. I might do a messy job, but I wanted to take a stab at delineating the overwhelming number of parameters and characteristics layered into matching one complex human with another.
I dated extensively for roughly 4 years between relationships in Los Angeles California. This is an especially difficult competitive fast paced and superficial dating scene. I learned a lot about myself and people. One of the crucial behavior patterns that I learned to flag early was communication style. People have dominant methods of expression. One of the critical components of communication is techniques of conflict resolution. “Go-To Tactics” are what I termed the first weapon of assault or defense that people resort to quickly either for minor squirmishes or major life threatening battles.
Its possible that like styles can co-exist or that opposite methods can blend with a kind of sharing space without colliding division of terrain. I deal with the world from my own personal platform of preference. Mine is either aggressive or assault. Hence, passive-aggressive I earmark as weak annoying and dysfunctional. This in society for a female nearly earns me universal pariah status despite all the compensation I may orchestrate with feminizing my appearance or “selfies.” Also, because the white lie or if you have nothing nice to say utter nothing guidelines create a culture where passive aggression is indoctrinated. I have frequently been admonished regarding “learn how to talk to people” and other colloquialisms attempting to smack me into line on social mores. I doggedly resist due to my belief that hiding information or warping it causes more harm than good. I see it in the news frequently and experienced deep wounds from well intention-ed masking of fact in my own life. Also I perceive life as so confusing and convoluted by nature that humans adding to the mire of chaos seems like a mistake. But that’s my view.
So to summarize. If when under stress you talk more and increase directness and repetition, you would be a terrible match for someone that retreats to silence or avoidance when stressed. This article is an extensive laundry list of details. This one alone narrows your potential mate selection pool to a tiny percentage of the proximal population. I need to chuckle. Jokes on me! Cant blame others when I am so difficult I create my own ostracization imbroglio.
Gender identity ratios:
I love this category.
Especially in Los Angeles, there is a wide parade of gender identity in view making statements and generating mixtures of blends that both baffle and amuse even the staunchly conservative bible thumping sector. LGBT. Just to frame a little bit of my reference points allow me to say that in 1988 I took a college course at UCLA as a high school scholar called Transgenders and Transsexuals in Culture or some liberal title to that meaning. And later in 2015 I worked 4 doors south of the first transsexual bar in Downtown Los Angeles.
Every single human is a custom conglomeration of varied gender behaviors and identities. So even straight men or women have modalities that mimic different sexualities and genders. We prefer for the sake of ease and familiarity to tag each entity as simply male or female. Life is hard and we want some things to be black or white or a one or a zero even if we must lie to ourselves to get this. Matching can pose a very arduous task.
Amongst your own friends one can observe patterns or preferences however. I will just site 2 examples for brevity. My best friend is a female with the mind of a male. She consistently was selecting feminine males to partner with until she finally met a more alpha male than herself. This most recent match may be her best since it allows her to be her strong self and female with the regards to her even stronger male mate. He was hard to locate. She is in her 40’s.
I also am female with a leaning towards masculine energies. This made it harder for me to match with a male that I didn’t cause to feel either inadequate or castrated in interactions and endeavors. The bedroom is an important place to have a functional balance of gender roles and identities. The less standard you are, the more challenging it is to match.
Sexual preferences genres and tempos:
What is it people quip regarding kink? Oh, kinky is anything YOU won’t do. I would guess that religion attempted to vanilla-ize sexual mores to simplify social interaction. I would also say that it has failed miserably. The internet has created pathways for cliques of preferences to discover one another and cluster gleefully! This is both great and horrifying. Pedophiles have codes and signals for targeting innocent school children and infants. This is in my horror category. For harmless adult idiosyncrasies I believe it is good. The number of “specialties” is endless and the further anyone strays from main stream vanilla, well, there pool of selection narrows.
Tempo alone can be a deal breaker.
I was tempted to author an article or book on my particular approach to tempo that caused a lot of social hiccups. I called it “Twice a week”. I am old enough and have been in long enough relationships to identify my personal happy place of sexual frequency. I have met or heard of every variation of tempo or frequency and consider it a standard marker and a source of amusement also. Many people as Victorian or small minded as this may read are very uncomfortable or confused by the simple discussion of this marker.
I used this phrase in on-line dating as well as in person face to face. The responses were frequently hilarious. Men can be like confused rabbits fleeing radically back and forth in a maze between wanting accessible sex and then HAVING to perform. So here again, I had a single parameter of mostly elimination in the dating scene.
One unforgettable single liner uttered was “This isn’t going to be any THREE HOUR session!” When I heard this I couldn’t believe it….I am cripplingly literal in my processing of human discourse and verbage. My mind was frantically attempting to translate this statement (while at one trying not to guffaw) does this mean we are limited to 25 minutes? Or three? Everything is math and numbers to extreme nerds as myself. Even sex.
Another guy was defensively pushing me away stating he knew perfectly well I was saying twice a week and that the actuality was going to be significantly more and the LAST thing he needed was something on his list of obligations that would perpetually be incomplete.
And then there was the romantic voice actor that objected to scheduling something that is at best spontaneous and organic. My argument here is no matter what the trappings it still comes down to a quantifiable frequency. As a female, we are known to get DIFFICULT when we don’t get our regular doses. And in the interest of avoiding unnecessary conflict I was simply stating my minimum requirements at the get go like pricing a massage before you begin.
Well we can see how well that was going for me.
I knew of guys who claimed to masturbate 8 times a day. I am familiar with the once a month crowd. And I am aware that auto satisfaction is less cumbersome than all the maneuvers entailed in managing a real live female. However something between once a month and 8 times a day [yes I bracket mathematicaly once again] seemed reasonable to me.
Financial status and emotional associations with money:
Money isn’t just power or survival. It is a tool and a symbol of love, freedom, opinion, and nearly every emotion humanly possible. Money can be how people act out resentments of childhood deprivations. It can be a compensation for feelings of inadequacy in other areas of personality. It can be a flagrant parade of desperate need for attention or validation or a cruel onslaught of seeking control of environment.
Working with this variety of self expressions and belief systems between two individuals can by itself be challenging. So throw this into the mix of all these other elements and it is very understandable that relationships get complicated or implode.
Fears and anxieties:
This is one of my favorite categories because it is fraught with pitfalls and quirks. Everyone is insecure I have repeatedly been told. The stupidest one and it may be fake was an overweight white girl afraid of pennies on a TV show where the beautiful black host interviewed fears as a show feature. If her friends put a penny between her and the exit door she would be cruelly trapped in a room.
I watched Hoarders and Obsessed.
I have my own accumulation of traumas and fears. Everyone has trigger words, phrases or scenarios that conjure unpleasant memories or physical discomfort as a response. These elements of a personality can complicate intimate relationships. They can be in various stages of development or sublimation at any given time in a persons lifespan. They can be dominate drivers in someones day to day life or hidden like bombs under the surface beneath your feet.
Needless to say, every chapter of this dissertation by itself can be an isolating deal breaker. These also any one of them can be used to weld like sodder a codependent bond like nobody’s business! My favorite was the couple that mutually agreed to induce morbid obesity to the point that the woman required bed service and would be confined to home. They agreed that this was the ultimate in love and an ideal relationship. Flabbergasting. But hey whatever floats your boat to select the worst analogy ever.
Trust, Kindness and Vulnerability:
Most people have something in their childhoods that causes them to be guarded in one way or another. So I am dismissing the works of decades of therapists in a single sentence. My point is here to just say its a given and work from that place. I don’t want to resort to cliches like baggage or trauma or buttons. I just want to include in this collection a brief mention of how people are like mine fields of varied densities, placements and severities of either explosive or speed bump like obstacles emotionally and interactively.
My grandmother once stated that couples are mates with matching neurosis. I liked her summation. It was comprehensive. Then she would exclaim a more base observation like “I will never understand what Chari sees in Frank.” I can say that now that everyone involved is dead.
Even engaging in a relationship requires exposure to risk and inconvenience. Many older males have concluded that the risk reward ratio is NOT in their favor. The down side of dealing with real breathing talking women with needs and a smart phone far out weigh the benefits of that margin between taking care of themselves in peace and access to flesh and reciprocation. Depending on their personality, coping skills and their status in life, this may be the right deduction.
I know a lot of wonderful people with tiny encapsulated sheltered parts of themselves. These deeply submerged black boxes are painful to raise and open and strangers don’t belong meddling in where people protect soft tissues of raw pain and fear of doom. I am in this writing going to applaud functioning at the best level possible and acknowledge whole heartedly grown adults choosing not to shred bear terrible truths and just live kind of superficially in a compromise of happiness and disguise. I consider it a viable choice and respect peoples functioning at what they can deftly manage.
Tread on comrades.
Culture, Status and Prejudices:
Okay. I love this category also. Whats funny about it is it is the most talked about and I believe the least important. I think people like simple fast answers so this category is the favorite catch all for discussion. It is important but pheromones and internal agendas are far more powerful in their invisibility. Its refered to so often and rampantly in the news and society I wont even cover it. I can say if this is how you explain your day or life or people, your avoiding the truth or just hurting your brain dealing with the details.
Family relationships and boundaries
In the military there is a clear hierarchy and rules of engagement along with status and boundaries which are public. People go to work and perform designated tasks as part of a greater operation. Then they go home and disrespect all types of critical structures. They pine and cry about being miserable or dysfunctional. Its hilarious. Okay no, its sad and troubling. Whatever.
Here are the tenants that most will ignore when choosing a mate. Division of labor, final veto, realm of control and planned deviations as needed. First. Only have or raise children if you are willing to put them first. I am shouting intro a cavern here and well aware of it. Patching up poorly planned projects is called Jerry Rigging. Well shucks, i had to do what was needed at the time and it seemed like a good idea when I was doing it are poor foundation for raising competent, self sufficient humans that can lead the free world to greatness. Hence America today. I rest my case. The erosion of the nuclear family unit has left devastation in its path. And I think you can patchwork adopted kids with any race or gender as long as you have genuine love, role structure and respect. But then I am a utopianist. I fantasize about the possibilities of perfection by morphing what I see to just that little bit better which seems to evade everyone at each turn. I believe in structures in relationships and human movement as long as you have adept operators steering through the rough patches.
Staffing a family is the most crucial selections one makes. Be careful what you hire and train.
Pets are practice for the childless, weapons for the frustrated and mirrors of our dominant moods. If you don’t like someones pets leave them alone. And if your pet likes someone better than you -pay attention to what they are doing right.
I will keep it short.
House and Hygiene Habits:
The seat up, the toilet paper roll direction and shoes in the house are only 3 of the daily decisions or behavior patterns that comprise daily cohabitation. And often wars break out over such matters. I have my preferences. Squeezing moisture out of sponges left after use is even on my list. I also contradict my own standards at times and seem to believe I have perfectly good explanations for these deviations. Hypocrisy not being one of them of course.
Grooming, presentation and identity:
I remember potential mates saying a girl with chipped nail polish was a definite no. Then where was anyone with kids is out…. pregnancy is a grooming topic? Oh wait, I am muddying waters here. White socks with brown sandals. There we go! Now I am nailing it. There are signatures between tongue piercings and dirty underwear that cause people to rule each other out.
Wait! I have to insert a funny story. Some choices are self admonishing. I knew a guy that persisted in wearing underwear with holes. One day he became aroused so to speak and “Freddie” had surreptitiously snuck through said hole. The result was painful strangulation. Lets hope he figured this one out on his own.
Adventure, dreams and willingness to adapt:
Couples that grow apart. My theory of this event is failure to coordinate in advance. If two mates choose and agree to stay together they have to decide in advance to share a common theme or goal. If they see the ones they were using fading in usefulness it needs to be repaired or replaced. Or discarded. And I suspect its a daily vigil where you both need to use separate thermometers and check back and forth lot. I estimate 5 year increments are about all anyone can get out of themes and goals that initiate a relationship but are not maintained.
Religion, Sex, Politics and Anger:
We all are familiar with religion, politics and sex being hot topics or the fodder of deal breakers. The experience and expression of frustration and anger I think far out weight these stereotypical three in importance. Legitimate anger is accepted. But the length and amplitude or repetition of expression or angst is where the nitty gritty resides. People have patterns of emotions and modalities. This one is a gauntlet. Everyone deals in this arena. I want to just say know yours and know theirs prior to making any moves or decisions.
I wanted to thank Jay and Monica for affording me the opportunity to position my thoughts to all of you.
Be the BEST YOU EVER!