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I'm Baffled by My Inability to Find a Woman With the Characteristics and Personality That I Appreciate Over Time

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DREAMSTIME
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Dear Reverend,

I've been around the block a few times and was married once for many years. But I'm still baffled by my inability to find a woman with the characteristics and personality that I appreciate over time. I read a book that describes an analytical method of training yourself to identify traits that are wrong for you and quickly end those relationships. I've tried doing that but found that using logic and reason to determine compatibility zaps the magnetism that is so important. Conversely, relying on attraction hasn't worked well, either.

I'm a single dad, so I don't have time to meet the number of women it would take to combine the two theories. I would love to hear your thoughts.

Ready to Throw in the Towel (male, 52)

Dear Ready,

If I had a surefire solution to your problem, I'd be raking in the cash as a matchmaker with book deals and a TV show. Since that's not the case, I'm going to go with my gut here: I think you think too much. As the old saying goes, "Too much analysis leads to paralysis." You need to turn down your analytical mind and put more trust in your intuition.

When you meet any new person, do you perform mental gymnastics to figure out whether you'll be compatible as platonic friends? I doubt it. So why do it when you meet a potential romantic partner? That's setting yourself up for failure.

As we get older and have more responsibilities, it's harder to meet new people — especially during a pandemic. It's not impossible, but it takes more time and effort. Being a single parent, you might need a reminder of how important it is to focus on yourself once in a while. (And don't go thinking that's selfish, because if Dad isn't happy, the kids won't be happy, either.)

Online dating can be done anytime, anywhere. So if you haven't already, try out a couple of sites. Throw caution to the wind and say hello to a bunch of ladies who interest you. Don't think about it too hard. Remember that you're not looking for someone to marry next week; you're looking for someone to maybe have a fun chat with. If something clicks, keep following the clicks. You may wind up finding a really good friend whom you just happen to make out with.

Good luck and God bless,The Reverend

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