I’m a woman, 39, attractive, never married, working steadily in a job that I like. Though I’m interested in meeting someone to love and marry, I decided long ago that I’m not interested in online dating. I find it too likely to be frustrating, false and to fail.
I’ve met some terrific men in person when I’ve travelled, and had a few relationships. But they always ended up as long-distance connections that eventually faded because neither of us was interested enough or able to move to the other at that time.
I’m outgoing and love meeting people in person so that any feelings we develop are real, not forced. I’m good-humoured, laugh easily, and have a special place in my heart for romantic countries and people who live passionately.
But I also have some strong needs when there’s a chance for marriage: I must be formally married, not move together as common-law partners. And I must have children, however we can.
Outside of those matters, I’m totally open to the future.
How can someone who doesn’t talk to strangers on dating apps, meet in person someone who also seeks love and shared interests for the future?
Your personal goal for romance and eventual marriage is refreshingly open, idealistic, and boldly counter to the style of millions of people dating online.
Many online daters have ended up in relationships and many - not most - have married. It’s not widely known how many of those marriages stayed intact.
Since you’re hoping for the latter, boost your chances by recognizing that for every “must-have” such as a formal wedding, a would-be partner is likely to also have some non-negotiable desires.
So, learn the language and tactics of accommodation even before you meet Mr. Maybe-Perfect. Instead of listing your needs, ask about his. Be creative in your ability to negotiate - e.g., mention two scenarios - one formal wedding service, followed by another casual party (when allowed), and in a garden if that’s his style.
Even when you do meet someone who feels right for you, take time to learn what’s equally “right” for him. He plays golf and you don’t? Take lessons, give it a try. He likes video games? Try joining him to share the time, or do something you like when he’s preoccupied... without complaint.
It’s called finding common ground while also letting each other be yourselves. With those possibilities in mind, even your early conversations with someone new and interesting will flourish more quickly, as you both recognize the potential in each other for give-and-take and mutual respect.
I hope to hear a positive report from you when it happens!
FEEDBACK Regarding the divorcing mother whose daughter won’t help her financially from a trust fund her parents had set up for her (May 13):
“I have a background in financial matters, and personal experience. Trust funds in Canada are irrevocable. Once anything goes into them, it belongs to the beneficiary.
“Once you put money into a trust account for children, it’s theirs. Provincial jurisdictions may vary as to the age of payout etc. but those assets are gone as far as the donator is concerned.
“Dividends are essentially tax-free up to about $50,000 in total income, so setting up a trust for your kids is a way to hide that income from taxes.
“Once someone is 24, the trust should’ve been paid out to them already. It’s theirs.”
FEEDBACK Regarding your request for parenting books to hopefully help parents learn best practices for raising well-adjusted youngsters (May 13):
Reader – “A good 54-page booklet is by a friend/former colleague, Gioconda Marroquin Suarez - a family counsellor and mother of the most well-adjusted and happiest children I have ever met.
“Terrific Kids, published by Word Alive Press in 2019, covers practical approaches to dealing with children's behaviour in contexts such as eating, sleeping, travelling, eating out, shopping, chores, money, pets, homework and hygiene.
“Her methods are grounded in principles such as fairness and consistency, understanding your child's uniqueness, effective communication and keeping the end product in mind, i.e., children who grow up to be good people. Her tips on raising children stand alone on the strength of their results.”
Ellie - More on recommended parenting books, tomorrow: “Hunt, Gather, Parent” by Michealeen Doucleff. And Supernanny by Jo Frost. https://g.co/kgs/DsFYL4
Tip of the day:
Looking for lasting love through in-person meeting without online dating? For every goal for marriage that’s essential for you, listen to one of his/hers, too.