Love, Lust, and Green M&Ms

I am going to start with the last thing first, green M&Ms.  There was a time that I heard that green M&Ms were an aphrodisiac.  I cannot say I ever truly believed that, but I have never turned down a green M&M either, or any other color for that matter.

But what do they have to do with anything?  Everyone seems to have some sort of belief system which goes something like, “If I wear this, then I will get the guy.”  Or, if I act like this, then I will get the girl.  What I say is, eat some green M&Ms first, they are equally as effective as anything could can wear or act like.  The thing is, you do not want to be with someone who is mostly attracted by what you wear, or how you behave.  The latter is the better of the two, of course, but I point out the word “act.”

All right, so what is this all about?   I have a pretty broad spectrum of friends these days and some are in their 30s, and single.  It is not unusual for me to hear one of them bemoan the fact that they are still single.   They get fixated on what they should or should not be doing or what they look like.  It cannot be about either of those things!

Here is the deal.  Your life partner necessarily has to be your best friend.  I frequently hear people saying they never date their friends.  Are you kidding me?  There is no one better to date!  You should always start dating someone with the sole idea of becoming a friend to them.  Anything else makes you either a player or desperate.  And this is where the lust factor comes in too.  I hear a lot of men and women say they have to date someone who is hot.  That is lust!  If you do it right, the person you settle down with will always be hot.  They better seem that way to you or you need to ask yourself why you are with that person.

And that is the crux of things.  I once dated a woman who broke off the relationship because I did not have enough money.  She actually cried doing it, admitted that she was being shallow and selfish, but said she could not seem to help herself.  She said she really wanted to be with me but could not get past the money aspect.  I respected that honesty.  She was rather wealthy, just to be clear.

I was talking with this guy about a year ago or so about a woman we both knew.  She is quite sweet and pretty.  He made it known he would really like to go out with her and said it in a way that I knew he had an agenda.  He wanted my thoughts on how he should approach her.  I told him to be her friend first and foremost.  He did not understand so I told him that women are pretty good about sniffing out ulterior motives, if not right away then not long afterward.  I told him just to ask her out for coffee and small talk.  Small talk will morph into much longer talks if there is chemistry.  It is one of the most natural things that happens to people.  I think that is good advice for both men and women.  First dates should be necessarily time constrained and totally platonic.  Get to know the person first.  After you get past the “hot” you might now like what you see afterwards.

I think people should love lots of other people, of both genders.  But, you can commit to being in love with only one person.  That keeps things simple and honest.  I have any number of friends who I truly love but I am in love with only my wife.  As Robert Frost said, “Good fences make good neighbors.”



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