Self Set Standards

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Everyone knows I had a checklist of what I was looking for in my husband. It was long and detailed, and eventually I transferred it to a spreadsheet and gave the items numerical values. Of course that’s a tad immature, and some have even been appalled at the concept, but really it served to remind me what was important so that I didn’t get swept up by lust. The scorecard determined which traits were non-negotiable and which were nice to have but not a necessity. “Jewish” was the most important with a value of 100 points but that was the only one worth that much – basically it was a given so if any man wasn’t Jewish, he would never “earn” enough points to be worthy (of me, at least).

The traits which followed in importance were worth 10 points and decreased in value down to 5. Anything that wasn’t 5 points didn’t need to be on my list. I made the list at 16 years old, and as my age changed so too did the numbers. Some moved up, some down, and some were eliminated altogether. The Tamar at 18, 21, 25, still wanted the majority of the traits, but as I got older I realized which ones were realistic, which were optimistic and which were fatalistic.

You should know what you want and how important certain items are, but you need to have more than the one non-negotiable. Jewish is a given, so what else is make-or-break? I had about 10 items which were worth 10 points each, but if a guy had at least the majority of those items then I would consider him, he didn’t have to have to be a Perfect 10. Such things don’t exist except in magazines with airbrushing. Just know which couple of items you’re not willing to budge on. For me, I never thought I would ever date a smoker and I ended up marrying one because he has enough of the other important things I do want that I could ignore an item here and there that I didn’t want (and since we got married, he’s quit smoking).


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