Here is a brave, wonderful essay that just appeared in the Washington Post Solo-ish column about the challenges of being quirkyalone . . . looking for quirkytogether.
Melissa Banigan writes about the challenges of being an independent woman looking for a relationship with a man who welcomes this independence and would also state his own needs so they can craft quirkytogether together. Love seeing this dialogue in the press as it’s so often happening in our modern hearts.
“Again, I got accused of being scared of commitment despite having been very committed to trying to make things work. We both put a lot of time and energy into our relationship. The problem was that he had a more traditional idea of how to be in a partnership, while I’m an independent quirkyalone.
Interestingly enough, 85 percent of people who come out of failed marriages cite “lack of commitment” as the reason for their divorce. Perhaps those who’ve been through a divorce could take a lesson or two from quirkyalones and learn how to better balance the independent self with the togetherness of being in a couple. In my view, real commitment is about stating and respecting each other’s needs.
Next time I get into a relationship, I’ll need a partner who embraces my strength. “Some men might feel threatened by quirkyalone women because they are not as interested in orienting their lives entirely around a man,” Cagen says, “and other men are turned on by it because they want to be with a strong woman who brings her full self to the relationship.”
While I haven’t yet found “The One,” at least I’m not trapped with Mr. Wrong. I’d prefer to meet another independent soul, so that we can explore what it means to be quirkytogether.”
Click HERE to read Melissa’s full (great) essay “I’m not afraid of commitment–I just love my independence.”
If this resonates, I want you to know this is one of the things I focus on with one-on-one coaching clients. I love working with my women clients–and a few cool men–to create your vision of what you really want, dismantle limiting beliefs and build skills for speaking your truth and negotiation so you can create the intimacy and closeness you want while also honoring needs for independence and autonomy. This is the quirkyalone/quirkytogether path and it is possible. I just got an amazing email from a former client who just married a man two years after we completed our work together, and they are maintaining their own homes. Anything is possible.
If that resonates with you be in touch to learn more and to talk.
It’s Paula White. How are you? As usual, you have perfect timing with your posts!
This week I had a VERY STRANGE ENCOUNTER with a man that I have known for a while, but I thought of him as just a nice guy.
He asked why I was divorced. I explained healthcare workers have a high divorce rate. Depending on what school you apply to, they will even tell you this during orientation.
He went into a TIRADE about how women are not letting men be “the man” in a relationship, etc. The usual stuff I have heard FOR YEARS.
I was astonished to say the least. I then said, “I did better divorced than I did married. I finished graduate school. I am doing writing and textile arts I enjoy. I am working with patients and families I enjoy as a registered nurse. I studied methods of meditation I enjoy. I am even training for the Chicago Marathon for my favorite local charity. I have not dated in years and I am happy about it because I discovered a lot about myself in the process. If I meet a compatible mate, then that is great and if not, I am still happy irregardless. I am a child of God and I have no desire to be dominated. If a man cannot come to me as an equal partner, I am better off by myself.”
Again, great post.
Good for you Paula! Love reading your list.
I’m sending this woman so much support! She deserves to bring her full self to the world at all times; that’s not asking too much! I’m glad she found your book.
Thank you both so much! I am not sure if you have heard, but the book Eat, Pray, Love is 10 years old. I saw Elizabeth Gilbert on Good Morning America last week. She was sitting next to Robin Roberts. They were surrounded by women in the audience who had gone out and had their own transformational experiences.
Looking at everyone, I thought to myself, “This is beautiful!”
Well as it turns out, there is now a new anthology of personal essays called Eat, Pray, Love Made Me Do It, which is about the personal growth journeys people went through after reading the book, Eat, Pray, Love.
Well, I am still reading the anthology of essays and I read the new foreword of Eat, Pray, Love written by Elizabeth Gilbert 10 years later.
Unfortunately, it seems she has been met with many of the same situations that I recounted above.
I’d like to believe we are all doing something right!
Eat, Pray, tango and love your Quirkyalone self first!
This is fantastic Paula, I wasn’t aware of the anthology, thanks for alerting me. Certainly supporting women to have their own transformational journeys is something I am keen to do too! This is great: “Eat, Pray, tango and love your Quirkyalone self first!”