By Teri M Bethel
With all the chaos in many marriages today, you must wonder if men are giving any thought at all to the essential characteristics of a good wife.
Granted, men are stimulated by visuals, but is that the sum total of a great life partner? Of course you would like to look at a pretty face with an equally attractive hourglass shaped body, but what if that beautiful form is void of substance? How many men have been sucked into marriages with women who bring nothing to the table other than what is clipped on or pushed up?
Although a number of sharp-witted men say that beauty is what attracts them to women (and that is important), they are quick to acknowledge that it’s a woman’s intellect that keeps them. Of course, having all the social graces and character to go with it makes for a pretty little package. The problem is, they say, it’s not as common as they would like to find a woman who can be considered a full package. Ladies, unfortunately, are saying the same about many of the men, as described in my previous article, ‘How to Choose the Right Husband’.
Getting more than a pretty face
A young man was told by his mother not to focus on a woman’s looks alone, but to look for character and talent. That way, she would be a useful mate that he can trust. Well, Larry was torn between Sylvia and Sarah. He could look at Sylvia all day. She was gorgeous—having enough wigs to change her style at least twice daily and a wardrobe to match. Larry loved the idea that he was the envy of every man in the nightclubs. And when it came to talent, she was the undisputed karaoke queen, but that was all she was good, for as his mother pointed out.
Sylvia nor Larry could cook or clean, and neither had a job that could support their lavish lifestyle of dining out every day. His mom cautioned that his girl, who lived from pay cheque to pay cheque without any savings, would be a drain on his finances and was a possible heartbreak in the making. Sarah, his more casual interest, on the other hand, was not a looker but was intelligent and talented with a great career ahead of her; she lived a modest life. At 28 years of age, she was already building her duplex and drove a small car that was paid for. Though she wasn’t as attractive as Sarah, she was a lovely person to talk to and fun to be around.
Larry was more like his father and brothers; they had pretty women, and he wanted one too. He chose Sylvia. Much to Larry’s disappointment, Sylvia continued the club life after they were married. She had no ambition, and having an intelligent conversation with her was an ordeal. His new wife felt restless around his friends and family, which became a bone of contention between them. As a couple, they were both miserable, and Sylvia took to sweethearting with the guys she met at the clubs when she went out with her friends from work.
Are you ready to commit?
Before making a commitment to your girl, you may want to ponder a few questions. It’s OK to have a checklist of the must-haves of a dream mate, but you must go deeper than surface elements, which will be altered by gravity and time.
In several online surveys, men had a tendency to list the following must-haves in a life mate:
• A good cook
• Good looking
• Not a nag
• Someone who boosts his ego
• Get along well with the in-laws
• A good home-maker
While there is nothing wrong with the list, you may wish to expand it and go a little deeper. Consider these points below if you are thinking about tying the knot:
• Do you share the same spiritual beliefs?
• Does she have ambition?
• Is she selfless and not selfish?
• Were you the pursuer or is she the aggressor, and how do you feel about that?
• Does she conduct herself like a lady, or is she a good time girl?
• Does she treat you with respect, or does she dishonour you in front of friends and family?
• Does she love you or your bank account?
• Is she more comfortable in church or at the local nightclub?
• Does she have a job or several male sponsors?
• Does her birth certificate reflect that she was born a female?
• Does she have integrity, or is she a liar?
• Does she invest more time and money on developing her character or her exterior?
• What are her thoughts on having children?
• Would she be a good role model for your children?
• Can she submit to her husband’s authority, or is she contentious and unruly?
• Can she hold a conversation, or is she just pretty?
• Can she support your career, or will she pull you down?
• Is she a good listener or just a great talker?
• Can you trust her with your heart?
• Is she confidential, or will your business be an ongoing topic on her job?
• Does she maintain a clean home?
• Are you equally committed to the long term success of your marriage?
While some of these points may seem a bit awkward in this day and age, one must be attentive and ask questions. If you find that a good number of your answers are ‘no’ or negative, consider to what extent this would affect your relationship if you were to get married.
So you see, gentlemen, you can have an attractive lady, and it is vital for a woman to maintain a certain standard, but there is much more at stake in having a successful marriage.
• Teri M Bethel is a publisher and an author of relationship enrichment books which include: “Before We Say, I Do…” and “My Marriage Matters”. She has also published romance and adventure novels, purse-making and fabric painting DVDs. Additionally, Teri provides a free online directory for local authors to showcase their family-friendly books. She and her husband have two adult sons. Visit her website, www.BooksByBethel.com, or e-mail her at email@example.com.