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Mr Right, or Mr Right-Now?

So you’ve been in a relationship for a couple of years and you’re starting to wonder whether he is the The One or whether you should get out now before it’s too late. Unfortunately we can’t glimpse into the future and see if you’re still holding hands at your 50th wedding anniversary, so we need to think of some ways you can assess your relationship, right here, right now. So let’s put your Mr to the test:

If he’s reluctant to say he loves you, it’s probably because he doesn’t
Trudi, 25, says, “someone once told me that in the first three months of your relationship, it’s too soon to say ‘I Love You’. If it goes past three months, it’s too late”. Perhaps that’s a little extreme, but the concept has good intentions. At the start of a relationship, you are oblivious to many of your partners’ faults. Remember how you used to think it was cute he threw his dirty socks at the laundry basket instead of putting them tidily in it? Or how it never used to bother you when he left the toilet seat up? When relationships begin, it’s difficult to know whether you actually love a person, or whether you are simply in love with the idea of being in love. But after spending a lot of time together, especially when we’re talking about years rather than months, it’s a problem if he’s still reluctant to say he loves you. We girls need to feel loved and wanted, and if the real, authentic “I Love Yous” are lacking, so is our confidence. “Mike used to write me beautiful poems telling me how much he loved me,” says Amy, 21. “At the time I thought it was cute. In hindsight I realise it was because it was easier for him to lie on paper than it was to lie to my face.”

If things annoy you now, imagine how bad they’ll be in 50 years
Let’s just imagine you’re at your 50th wedding anniversary. Your elderly beau stands to make a speech, takes a gulp of beer, and belches at the audience. Cute? I don’t think so.

Vivian, 31, knows all about the annoying habits a lover can harbour. “I knew Lincoln wasn’t going to be around forever when he made inappropriate jokes at my parent’s dinner table, even though I’d warned him beforehand that they’re quite religious. His lack of discretion annoyed me then, and I knew it would only annoy me more as time went on”.

Have a think about your partner’s annoying habits. Are they manageable (come on, nobody is perfect!) or are they too much too handle?

If you are too different, it’s going to cause difference
We all know the old saying “Opposites Attract”. Rachael, 26, understands the concept all too well. “Will and I got on like a house on fire. We were complete opposites, but in the early days of our relationship that didn’t matter at all. As time wore on though, I realised our priorities in life were very different. I believe in a little old school romance – love letters, opening the door for me and surprising me with dinner. All Brett wanted to do was go drinking with the boys every weekend and have his De Facto waiting at home for him. How would that have worked out a few years down the line when we had children?”

Children can cause another problem all together. Just think of Gabrielle and Carlos Solis in Desperate Housewives. Gabby didn’t ever want to have kids, while Carlos did. What happened? He ended up tampering with her birth control pills in order to ‘solve’ their argument. Of course not all real-life guys are that extreme, but unfortunately the Big Issues like marriage, kids, and career need to be fairly aligned for a relationship to work. If you and your Mr are getting to the serious stage, make sure you’ve sorted out those big issues before it causes problems further down the line.

If he doesn’t talk about the future with you, it’s because you are HIS Ms Right-Now
Yasmine, 23, describes this situation perfectly. “Brett and I met at university and had a great, solid relationship for a few years. We got along fantastically, and everyone thought we’d be together forever. The problem was that Brett wouldn’t consider the future at all, let alone forever! He couldn’t see past next week, let alone next year, or the lifetime after that. When I pushed for more commitment, he took it as his cue to exit. While it hurt at the time, I can see now that it was probably the best thing for me. I’d wasted enough time being his girlfriend when it suited him, when he didn’t see a future for us.” Truth be told, if Brett loved Yasmine as much as he said he did, he wouldn’t have been able to consider life without her. Instead she was just a ‘filler-in’ while he worked out what he wanted to do with his life.

No-one ever said relationships were easy. Your Mr Right is probably never going to be Mr Perfect. There will always be things that bother you, differences in opinion that beg to be argued, and problems that will arise as you experience life together. The main thing is to try to imagine your life together in the distant future. Do you think it’s strong enough to survive the rocky road? If not, maybe Mr Right is actually Mr Right Now, and he’s just a dress rehearsal rather than the perfect Opening Night.

By pink 10-Apr-2006
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