Opinion: To mirror our beloved

Sarahbeth Caplin

Sarabeth Caplin

Sarahbeth Caplin is a senior English major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].

Gandhi had it right when he instructed mankind to “be the change you wish to see in the world.” That philosophy can also be used to help women who are having trouble finding the right man to marry. Too often, we compromise our values for the sake of finding love. We act like the exact opposite of the kind of man we wish to attract because we are willing to settle for less than what we deserve.

I recently had to say goodbye to a person I loved in order to fully understand the damage of compromising who you are for the gratification of someone else. The underlying cause for this can be loneliness or falsely believing that having a boyfriend is what produces confidence. Many women have been guilty of settling for “Mr. Right Now” in hopes that eventually the right one will come along. Unfortunately, the destructive habits we engage in now won’t immediately disappear the moment we meet someone new.

The unpopular truth is that relationship habits can evolve into life habits. If we are willing to compromise ourselves for love, we will inevitably compromise ourselves in all aspects of our lives. This is not a quality that will attract a man of true moral integrity.

I am making a commitment to myself to become the kind of woman who is worthy of the kind of man I’d like to marry someday. That kind of man will possess compassion, strong commitment to God and respect for physical boundaries. Ultimately, he will desire what is best for me, even if it means sacrificing his own opportunities for pleasure. I hope to be able to do the same for him. The mistakes we might have made in previous relationships don’t have to define the future, but repeating them won’t bring about the kind of changes we are looking for.

A genuine relationship that eventually leads to marriage doesn’t begin with a seductive stare in a crowded bar. It doesn’t begin with a one-night stand. It doesn’t begin engaging in a “friends with benefits” situation where that “friend” is dropped the moment someone with more potential comes along. I don’t doubt that some genuine relationships might begin this way, but I would consider those to be the exception, not the rule. If we desire successful relationships, we must first conduct ourselves in ways that are loving. Real love is not self-seeking.

By developing the kind of character I desire in my future husband, I hope that any man who gets to know me won’t consider my behavior to be indicative of someone who would make a good casual hook up. I hope that my character will cause a man to think, “What a great potential wife.”

Ladies, I encourage you to become the kind of person you deserve to end up with. Never settle for someone who values your body over your heart. A real man – and they are out there – will never demand such a sacrifice.