Sunday, June 10, 2007

Wants versus needs

After the comments about my internet dating piece, I thought some additional information might be helpful.

First, I really don’t see a correlation between choosing a car and choosing a potential life partner. Generally, we don’t expect – or even want – to own our cars for that long. I’d venture to guess that 3 to 7 years is the average ownership for cars. No matter how much we love them when we buy them, there’s always something newer, shinier, faster and with more features and better gas mileage rolling off the assembly lines. And if we buy one and hate it, we can trade it in. I was an office manager at a car dealership for 2 years long ago, so I know how it works.

Second, I don’t want a man who NEEDS me. I want a man who WANTS me and vice versa.

Needs are things necessary to sustaining our lives. We NEED primary things like water, air, shelter, food and chocolate. In our society, we also need secondary things like money to pay the bills for utilities, gas, insurance and other things we deem necessities.

Wants are things we desire because we believe they will enhance our lives. We WANT cell phones, cable TV, computers, new cars, designer clothes, big houses, money in the bank and love and friendship.

NEED implies incompleteness and that’s where I have a problem. I am a complete person as I am. I’m happy, have great friends, a wonderful job, my own house, the 2 cutest dogs in the world and money in the bank. I don’t need a man to complete me and I certainly don’t want a man who is incomplete.

I don’t think any other person can complete you. No outside source can fill the voids in a person’s life. We have to fill our own voids.

We can’t make someone else happy – we can only extend our love and our own happiness and joy to that other person and hope they’re receptive to it. Everyone has choices. We can choose to be happy and fulfilled, or we can choose to be miserable.

Third, as far as the “musts” on my list, I’m in my 50’s. I know myself very well. The things I’ve specified are important to me. Financially secure, emotionally and spiritually well adjusted, liberal to middle of the road, intelligent, great sense of humor, good looking and in good shape – all of these things imply a person who has successfully navigated the road of life and is enjoying the journey. Someone like me! I’m not defining exact height, weight, IQ or $ amount – just qualities I consider important.

I want someone to complement me – not complete me.


Merry Jelinek said...

Nicely put, Anti-wife!

"I want someone to complement me - not complete me."

I may stick that nifty thought up on my refridgerator.

John Elder Robison said...

That's a good summary, and as a profile, I like it better than the original one.