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The Road Less Traveled

Can someone please tell me why it is that men who have nothing substantial to offer continually approach me? Do you have anything of benefit to bring to MY table? Do I wear a sign on my forehead that reads: WANTED. UNEMPLOYED MAN WITH NO MOTIVATION, NO GOALS OR ASPIRATIONS. GROUNDED EMPLOYED, SUCCESSFUL R-E-S-P-O-N-S-I-B-L-E MEN NEED NOT APPLY?

I have often asked myself this question. And to be quite honest, I had no intentions of writing a story with the type of content that you are about to read. My intentions were TOTALLY divergent.

Before I write about anything, I carefully ponder the subject matter to determine how I can best project my opinions to my readers to get them to view a subject the same way that I do. In doing so with this particular story, let me remind you that C.V. writes about topics that others would rather forget.

Let's take a look at your average guy. The everyday Joe who usually has a 9 to 5 but let's say he was on personal leave of absence for sometime due to the twist of his fate of having to care for his dying mother for a year or so. Maybe the company he dedicated himself to for the past 10-years was not doing so well and they were forced to terminate everyone's job and close down. However this guy, this average Joe, is out everyday pounding the pavement interviewing, surfing the net, scheduling appointments with head hunters, making those phone calls, making power moves and networking in order to re-position himself in a positive rank within society. This is the responsible man that I yearn for.

These are the exact same men that are passed over by working class women who say that they WANT a good man but unfairly judge the "temporarily unemployed" guy and possibly view him as being not worthy. Maybe women look at him as not being a good catch because he is not currently bringing in an income or because he is "temporarily" out of work.

How would we women feel if WE were judged because we were forced to give up a solid income due to the fact that we, say, couldn't get adequate sitters to watch our children while we worked during the day? When my son was 3-months old, and in the dead of winter, I unexpectedly walked into his nursery school to pick him up one evening and it was freezing inside. All of the windows were opened and the babies were sleeping in their cribs, uncovered and forced to endure this evening ritual. Staff informed me that they routinely opened all of the windows each evening to air out the place. (Funny how they'd so casually open all of the windows three hours BEFORE the parents came to pick up their children). This explained why my son suffered with bronchitis. I immediately, gave my resignation at work and stayed home with him for the next TWO years. Now I'm sure everyone could accept that excuse for being unemployed as a sound decision. It was a logical enough decision in my mind. At least I thought it was when I made it. How is it that I was out of employment for two years yet I still had work to do? "Unemployment doesn't necessarily mean that one is out of work".

But what if a man making a six-figure income said that YOU weren't good enough because YOU were unemployed at the moment? I am not an expert on relationships, and anyone who has read ANY of my stories on my Blog can attest to that fact. However, men court, date, and marry women every day that are in the aforementioned situation all the time. The only way that these men know the extent of a woman's employment situation is by talking to her and getting to know her. Why aren't we successful women giving men who are "temporarily" unemployed the opportunity to get to know us? He could very well be our diamond in the rough you know. Now ladies you know that we could use a diamond in the rough here and there.

I believe the saying "behind every good man there is a strong woman" holds true. You may meet a man today who APPEARS to be going no where fast, and once you engage him in conversation you might find him to be as articulate and motivated as you are. Maybe he is trying to form his own business or something. (Being unemployed doesn't necessarily mean that one is out of work?trying to form a company is work). But you won't know unless you give this man a chance.

Conversely, there are men in this wonderful world of ours, who lack drive, motivation or ambition, some don't even know how to spell responsibility, yet they try everyday to charm the woman holding down two jobs into going out with him. These are the men that I am referring to that befuddle me each day. These are the men that approach me on the regular. What makes these men think that the women who are holding it down daily would want to be burdened with the likes of a man who has nothing substantial to offer to enhance their lives? Have the decency if you endeavor to approach me, to at minimal, have a PLAN or some emergence of ambition. SOMETHING to at least make me think twice before I walk, no RUN, in another direction.

C'mon guys, give us women a break! You're not playing fair game here.

I know that there is a shortage of men ladies, but the last time that I checked we were shortchanged big time when it came to "GOOD" men.

These same men that have tried to encourage women to lower their standards and "date" them are the same men that are always trying to CONVINCE women "what a good man" he is or "how loyal" he is. Well?.prove it! Since when have actions stopped speaking louder than words? Stop talking the talk if you aren't walking the walk fellas!!


Correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't being a good man and being a loyal man somehow hitched to being a RESPONSIBLE MAN?????? Have you guys forgotten about THAT?

How dare a man approach me ever again knowing that he has the Child Support Enforcement Unit breathing down his back!! I give you my permission to neglect me if you haven't held down a full-time job with benefits in the last year. REAL BENEFITS coupled with 401k, sick days, vacation days and the like. And if you abuse your woman you'd better not even LOOK in my direction.

I am so tired of hearing men telling me that they are intimidated by me. What kind of a thing is that to say? Is it safe for me to assume that you are less than a secure man and you can't handle having a woman in your life that can take care of herself and her responsibilities? How should I perceive a remark like that? It surely has never been complimentary to me. In fact I've been quite taken aback each time I hear a comment like that, which lately has been rather often.

If you are a man that has not seen or spoken to your children for more than two weeks then humor me and keep it moving. Male children are so in need of strong, positive, upstanding male figures that the lack thereof is shuddering to say the least. SHUDDERING!!!!

Men today do not need ANY more EXCUSES to NOT be successful. You can be successful just by STAYING EMPLOYED and being responsible to YOURSELF!

I was recently told that everyone must plant seeds in life conducive to his/her success. You get out of life what you put in it. There is no time to allow yourself to remain in a vegetative state wallowing in misery just because a relationship crashed or a job ended. You pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and keep moving forward. No one deserves that much power in your life. Life goes on and so must you. Sometimes we cannot change a person's way of thinking nor can we change the hand that life deals us. But we can change a person's perception of us and how we view and respond to the hand that we've been dealt.

Being a responsible individual crosses all barriers in life. That is one of the most important characteristics that I look for when I consider if I should even allow a guy in my AIR SPACE. Do you pay your bills? (You can't help me if you can't help you). Do you have goals and reach toward your aspirations in your life? (I'm an extremely goal oriented person and if you can't at least meet me half way, then you are DEFINITELY not the man for me). In my opinion goal oriented men are the sexiest men alive!! Don't mention intellect and common sense. Those are two basic attributes that bestow any man huge points in my book!

Being charming and conquering the art of complimentary chatter impresses me not. The world is full of intelligent fools, educated bank robbers and articulate pedophiles. Want to impress me? GET A JOB AND KEEP IT. Please have some attainable goals and aspirations and live your life in the direction to make them your reality. Become as responsible a man as is humanly possible, nurture your children interpersonally, mentally AND emotionally as well as materialistically when needed. It does little Johnny no good to receive a pair of $150 sneakers when you haven't spent any quality time with him since his last birthday. When you live your life in that manner, to me. That is, if you're still interested.

Sure I will give a guy an opportunity to get to know me, but after a few months if you are not exhibiting STRONG signs of being energized and showing some true strides then you are O-U-T! I have no time for absurdity and irresponsibility. My children are grown and even my YOUNGEST is 19 and SHE has a job and is making strides to pay at least SOME of her bills!! My time and my life are too valuable to me. Yours should be to you.

In the intro to this story I started by asking why men who have nothing substantial to offer continually approach me? The operative word in that question is SUBSTANTIAL. (Frequently when I am involved in a relationship, being the driven person that I naturally am, I in some way unbeknownst to me, tend to motivate or light a fire under my new guy by the way that I live my life. However, from past experiences the fire usually burns itself out sooner rather than later). With that said, I concluded that maybe I am destined to give my new guy a jolt here or a boost there. However, the end result is entirely up to him. I recently met an outwardly very ambitious man. He is intelligent, articulate and filled with wit. But the meat and potatoes of the issue is this: if he is not going to compliment what I already have in MY life by embellishing HIS OWN LIFE in some way, then he is clearly NOT the man for me. AT THIS WRITING, he'll be happy to know that the ball remains in his court.

God knows that I do not need ANYMORE heartache in my (sought after) drama free life. I am a very accountable woman and I take care of my business RELIABLY 24-7. I think I do myself a great injustice if I accept qualities in my mate that are less than the standards and capabilities that I have imposed upon myself. AND PEOPLE ARE ALWAYS ASKING ME WHY I AM NOT DATING. PLAHEEZE!!! Will the real men FINALLY stand up????

If you haven't walked the Road Less Traveled by living your life responsibly, please, please do me a favor? Pass ME by.

(c) 2005 by C. V. Harris. All rights reserved.

C.V. Harris' narratives are perpetually thought provoking. She lives in New Jersey with her two young-adult children Michael and Ashlei, and her favorite family member of all, her dog Mitzi. She is currently working on her Memoir and a book of short stories.


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