I have a list of qualities I am looking for in a partner. I first published it here, as well as on the List App, but I have added to it since then given various experiences. These are fairly reasonable and some of them are more flexible than others, depending on circumstance.
He is a feminist
He doesn’t necessarily have to embrace the label, but he needs to at least talk the talk and walk the walk.
He has a college degree
From a legit, four-year college. Grad school degree a plus. I do not want to date someone who is currently an undergrad.
He likes to be in touch with me daily. It doesn’t have to be throughout the day. Not a bunch of selfies (that is weird). He would be okay with receiving text messages, even if he doesn’t get a chance to reply to them right away. He initiates conversation roughly half of the time.
He is a liberal
I cannot do conservative, especially Tea Party conservative. No Trump voters.
How many books does he own? A person without books is not to be trusted. Bonus points if he has women authors listed among his favorites.
He listens to good music
We don’t have to agree on it all, but the less country music, the better. If I recommend music, he gives it a shot and does not turn it off within 10 seconds, only to tell me how awful it is.
He likes to sing
Not necessarily in public, but at least be comfortable in the car or around me.
He has read Harry Potter (if not, is willing to read or listen to the series)
I have the books and audiobooks I’m willing to lend.
He keeps up with current events
Does not have to know all of the on-goings, but at least browses the headlines on a regular basis.
He is sex positive
Not negative about sex. No shaming. Open to communicate/talk about sex and not just rely on facial expressions. He knows about the importance of consent. As Amy Poehler says, “If he don’t eat pussy, keep stepping.”
He is thoughtful
He wouldn’t get me a gift card for Christmas or my birthday. He would surprise me with something awesome/weird/geeky from time to time. If necessary, he would consult my family, friends, or colleagues for information or assistance.
He doesn’t do guns
I’m not comfortable with guns. I don’t want them around, even if they are locked up.
He loves animals
My pets are my babies and I treat them like family. I need someone who understands that.
He doesn’t hunt
I don’t do hunting. I don’t like hunting. Shoot animals with cameras, not with guns.
He appreciates the outdoors, but is not outdoorsy
I’m not a huge fan of camping. I might be able to do a night or two in a blue moon.
He is secure in his masculinity
He doesn’t freak out at discussion of menstruation or avoid the aisle with tampons and maxi pads. He doesn’t feel a need to be violent in order to prove something.
He is handy
He knows how to do some house repairs and some car stuff. I can do things as well (I’m not helpless by any means), but it would be nice if he brought his own skills to the table.
He knows how to clean and keep a house
I want someone willing to do their share of chores without being asked (a fantasy, I know). But at least someone who might trade off every other load of dishes and laundry and stuff. Not someone who expects to only do the once-a-month type chores. AND he knows how to clean without my having to teach him.
He goes to the doctor when sick
And he doesn’t turn into a big baby when sick. I shouldn’t have to make his appointment for him and force him to go.
He thinks I’m sexy
I could look my absolute worst and he’d still want some of that. He doesn’t really consider other women because I am more than enough for him. I mean, I’m realistic. People watch porn (myself included), but I want him to want me.
He is secure about his body
This is sort of hard to put into words. It means he doesn’t think he has to wear a shirt in the pool regardless of the state of his body. It means that he realizes his pelvis is a distinct entity from his torso. He is somewhat active – doesn’t mean he is a gym rat, but doesn’t mean he is becoming one with the couch either.
He watched or is willing to watch Parks and Recreation
The brilliance of this show must be seen.
He likes to play card games and board games
But is not a super-competitive dick about it.
He is cool with my family
Spending the holidays (at least part of them) with my family is important to me, especially since I don’t get to see them very often.
He has a similar temperament to mine
I don’t want to go out all the time. Introverts unite!
He doesn’t mind staying in
My idea of a great time would be lying in bed together and watching bad movies (occasionally commenting MST3K style).
His answer to “Is being overweight a deal breaker” isn’t “Yes” or “No, unless they were obese.”
I’m fat. I won’t be very fat for much longer, but it makes me question how into looks he is. Looks change.
He understands my constraints
Whether it is related to my career or physical constraints (i.e., my feet issues), he gets it and he doesn’t think less of me.
He not only accepts my flaws, but he likes them
I’m independent, but I’m also very needy sometimes. I’m extremely sensitive, but I’m also tough. I’m not remotely perfect and I’m not for everyone. I am honesty and flaws and vulnerability and toughness all mixed together.
He is not a dick about money
Frugality is good to a certain extent, but there is a difference between being wise with your money and being a miser. If he’s wanting me to line my purse with napkins so that I can take the chips from a Mexican restaurant home — that is not cool.
He doesn’t threaten me
I once had a guy threaten to hurt my feelings, saying that he really knew how to hurt people because he took note of their vulnerabilities and used those against them. His threat was because I joked that he was, at two years my senior, an “old man.”
He has a similar sense of humor to mine
Dark, dry, witty… Some stand-up comedy is better than others. He likes my jokes.
He has a working car
I do not care so much about the type of car it is. Preferably he does not use the car as a symbol of or substitute for his penis. Minivans will be given a strong side-eye.
He has a career
Preferably a position that he enjoys and is constantly stressed out or complaining about.
He is not a smoker
I have never smoked in my life. I cannot kiss up on someone who smokes cigarettes or, worse, chews. I might be able to be with someone who uses e-cigarettes as that doesn’t lead them to stink and kissing is not bad.
He’s not a racist, sexist, or homophobe
Even subtle hints will not be tolerated. That means not saying “that’s gay.” He knows what “Black Lives Matter” and athletes kneeling means.
He doesn’t want kids
I don’t want kids. It would be a problem if he does or thinks he might.
He has his shit together
He has an idea about the direction of his life and goals and stuff.
He isn’t religious
I don’t want to be judged as going to hell.
He isn’t pretentious
We all have our opinions about things. I, for example, do not care for country music. There’s no need to be a dick about it, though.
He is not addicted to anything
He will not select a substance over hanging out with me or dating me. It really sucks to be told that someone would rather get drunk than spend time with me.
His living space is that of an adult
Is his bed on a bed frame or on the floor? Does he own and use hand towels in his bathroom? How messy is his living space or has he at least made a semblance of an effort if I am coming over?
He is into pop culture, including comedy.
It is a problem if he is not into pop culture, especially if he does not like sitcoms or other comedies.
He is not a dick about technology.
I am a huge fan of Apple products. I do not care to be mansplained to about why PCs are superior or why the only reason I am into Apple is due to marketing. I am a grown woman. I made up my mind. I chose Apple.
He is not bat-shit crazy
We all have our little quirks. I don’t need someone who I have to walk on eggshells around.
He respects me