Somewhere out there, Filipinos are taught to have conversations like this:

Person: “How is a girl like you still single?”
Me: “I don’t know. I just haven’t found the right guy.”
Person: “Maybe your standards are too high.”

I think there’s a dozen other things that Person can say such as “it’s okay, I’m sure he’s around here somewhere” or “being single is fun” or that’s okay, you’re young” instead of blaming me and my standards for being single. Filipinos need to seriously undo this bad habit.

Here’s how I see it: my standards ARE high and rightfully so. Of course they have to be high. I don’t intend on carrying on a relationship with just anyone. Modesty aside, finding a guy is easy. There are guys everywhere. Lowering standards to the barest minimum will mean that my boyfriend options will expand to: Mr. Weirdo I Met at the Bar, Mr. Creepy Customer, Mr. Dirty Old Man, Mr. Old Enough to be My Dad, Mr. 30 and unemployed, Mr. Engaged, Mr. Jejemon, and Mr. Might-be-Gay. I’m not very encouraged. HOWEVER, please don’t misunderstand me. These men might be perfectly nice for other girls however I know right away they’re not for me.

You see, I can afford to be picky. And, not just me. Most girls can. Lowering your standards is a fancy way of saying “settling” or in Tagalog, “sige na nga” “pwede na.”  Only the desperate settle, and I’m not desperate. I’m having the time of my life– I have a family whom I adore, amazing friends and a job that pushes me to be someone great. I’m blessed with a home, a full tummy and environment of love. A boyfriend would not complete my life, he would complement it.  His presence would and should bring me joy and inspiration. He would be a companion who I could share new experiences with.  While I can’t speak for all women, I want a boyfriend to enrich my life, not to fill a void.

A different perspective…

Last night, I went to a talk with Pastor Jonathan Felix and he spoke of the difference between Infatuation, Love and Lust. It was a great talk, one which I can’t recount here (as I won’t do it justice) however, he talked about lowering standards which I found interesting. He said that many people set unreasonably high standards and non-negotiables(deal breakers). Pastor Felix shared how he’s met so many women who set their non-negotiables at something really specific, like height. If the guy doesn’t meet their required height, no matter how great he is, they won’t say yes to him. Or.. guys who want to date women only rated a “10” so if the girl is only a “6 or 7” then, sorry, they won’t ask you to be their girlfriend. Pastor Felix said that God should be the one to double-check your non-negotiables.

I would like to think I’m not that shallow. But all the same, it got me thinking and second-guessing myself. Are my standards indeed too high? Well then, for the benefit of no one, except myself, I will list some of my standards below. Perhaps someone out there can tell me if they are indeed too high.

A partial list… (in no particular order)

  1. Height – taller than me (5’5) .. I like to wear heels so +3 inches is a bonus. Although I know Filipino men are genetically engineered to be short so.. if he’s taller than me I’m happy.
  2. Skin tone – no preference. Although, ideally, I don’t want a guy who is too fair. In a country that prides white, glutathione-infused skin, I don’t want to look like the negrita next to male-snow white (er..snowman?)
  3. Works hard and has a good job. (non-negotiable)
  4. Must own a car. (non-negotiable, because I sell cars for a living. How ironic would it be if I dated a car-less guy)
  5. Intelligent, street smart, witty, sharp and articulate (non-negotiable)
  6. Fun and funny.
  7. We have to be friends first. We must genuinely get along. Not just because we like each other. (non-negotiable)
  8. Must be great at conversation and sociable. (non negotiable)
  9. Honesty is a must. Must be open and willing to communicate.
  10. Must not cave in the face of adversity.
  11. Mature.
  12. Close to God and his family.
  13. Likes to travel and appreciate the finer things in life. Exposed, a plus.
  14. Must get along fabulously with my family (non negotiable)
  15. Must love dogs
  16. Immaculate hygiene. Dresses nice (can’t look like a slob or dressed by his mother, no white socks black shoes please)
  17. Someone who doesn’t do drugs, hasn’t committed a crime, doesn’t beat women
  18. Will. Not. Cheat. On. Me. (on that note, Will not cheat on someone to be with me)
  19. There has to be chemistry. I have to be attracted to him physically. (non-negotiable)
  20. Knows how to treat a girl right. The usual stuff – respectful, sweet, caring, protective (but not smothering), compliments (not criticizes), etc.

There. That’s a partial list. Share your thoughts. Personally, I think it’s a logical and reasonable list however, obviously others beg to differ. Clearly the “Standards Debate” rages on.

Tomorrow will be my 4th Valentine’s Day as a single lady. I almost forgot that it was Hearts Day tomorrow.  It doesn’t bug me that I’m not celebrating it. Dear Single Friends, please don’t lower your standards/settle just so you can have a date on Valentine’s Day. If you do, mark my words, you’ll end up with Mr. Worst Valentines Day Date Ever. It makes a great story but not a great Valentine.

I told my parents the other day that they are obligated to take their single children out on a date. I made it up on the spot and they both laughed. As a result, I get two dates, one with my mom and one with my dad. I might get a bonus date with my brother. Family-dates are the best — I choose the restaurant, order whatever I want, all-expenses paid, eat as much as I can without fear of judgment and chismis to my heart’s content. Best of all, I am with people who I love and the feeling is mutual. There’s not much more a girl can ask for.

Happy Valentine’s day Everyone! May you be surrounded with true love on this day and every day of the year. <3

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6 Responses to To Settle or Not to Settle: That is the Question

  1. Eugene P. Durusan says:

    I did enjoy reading your blog. It’s very true and correct motto lower your standards just to have a valentines day. I guessed your parents are very proud of you coz you still enjoy their company on this very special occasion. Anyway happy valentines day Ms beautiful. In Gods time and will HE will give you the best partner ever. God Bless

  2. Marian says:

    I reached your blog after stumbling upon your mom’s blog, while looking for information about Vask. I haven’t commented on a blog for a long time, because I stopped reading blogs ever since they became a mere vehicle for product endorsement, etc. Good to know there are people who still write on blogs like how they write on a journal. It used to be like that, and I kind of missed that “golden age” of blogging. To answer your question, though: I don’t think your standards are high. I think it’s brave of you to demand what you think you deserved. I pity women who settle for less, for fear of being alone, perhaps. More so, those who settle on being number two! Gah, that’s the worse. Your standards just show that you like yourself and you value yourself. It pretty much reflects how much love your parents have shown you–so much, that you just won’t settle for anything less. Will be reading your mom’s blog and yours, as well, in the coming days. Keep writing 🙂

  3. Mystic says:

    No mention of age 😛

  4. Nicole says:

    hi julienne,
    I enjoyed reading your blog. I can relate with what you are saying. 😉 I also had heard the same comments about me having standards too high. I used to be part of nbsb (no boyfriend since birth club) before. I belonged to that club for 24 years. I have a boyfriend now (at age 25).
    I just want to share with you what I read about love by dr phil mcgraw. He mentioned that each lady should make a list of deal breakers. If for example, a guy has a dealbreaker (ex.does drugs) then we don’t ever consider having a relationship with him.
    You mentioned that you wanted to be friends first with a guy first before having a relationship with him. I also had the same standard before until I met my boyfriend. Within 3 days after my friend introduced him to me, he told me that he liked me. He called and texted me everyday until eventually I said yes.
    I am so much happier now then ever before. He treats me so well and is so understanding and sweet.
    I guess what I’m trying to say is when the right guy comes along, you will be very encouraged to say yes and there are standards that can be negotiable (ex. has to be friends first)
    It’s just an opinion. It might not be applicable for you. 🙂

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