Is This The Right Guy?
Linda Wechter-Ashkin PhD NCSP BC-TMHC ADHD CCSP
I saw my husband for the first time in my friend’s backyard when I was 11. He was hanging out with her brother, and we became fast friends. I dated other guys and went to discos. He listened to rock music and became a roadie. We lived very different lives, but we always enjoyed each other’s company. At 19 we decided to go to the Planetarium with a group of friends and our story began. I told him I didn’t want children. I was working with such severely disabled children that I was afraid. He thought God was for weak people and not scientists. He liked to spend, and I was more hesitant. When he wasn’t working, he wanted to be out at comedy clubs or concerts, and I preferred going to dinner or quiet nights at home. We married 2 years later. The proposal was an agreement because he was about to start medical school and I knew that if we didn’t move in together, we wouldn’t make it. So, I gave him an ultimatum and he accepted it. As much as I look at this as a train wreck, it worked. We have bumped our way through it but 38 years later we are still happy with our choice and spent last night dancing to jazz music in Dave’s Speak Easy Bar, and then having a quiet dinner together. We have learned to compromise, and we’ve grown. We have 2 amazing children, Dave knows God, we both like to stay in now, and money issues have worked themselves out.
Our story worked out really well, but I encourage my clients to do a little more work upfront. What we had going for us upfront was that we had no red flags that we were ignoring. Before you pick make sure you don’t ignore things that you know are not going to work long-term. You won’t get over his flirting eye if that’s a deal breaker for you and he won’t stop doing it. Our values were similar at the core. We were both in health care, both felt like outliers, and both saw the world in a pretty similar way. We had differences, but they weren’t deal breakers for us at the time. He was okay without children he thought, and I was okay with him not knowing God, I thought. Know your deal breakers and deal makers and if the top 3 are missing on either side reconsider your choice. Another thing we had going for us is that we had the same friends and our families approved of the relationship. If the people you love question your choice, question it to. You don’t need to necessarily change your mind, just make sure it’s open. See the day you start falling in love is one day closer to the day you become a parent and your child deserves you to think about who their daddy is going to be. Your child deserves for you to think about the mommy you are picking for them. Pick wisely, make the choice slowly, and dedicate wholly. Your future children deserve it and so do you.