A Gentleman's Guide

JANUARY | 2019




The beginning of a new year puts almost all of us in the mood for almost new everything. Seconds before that mirror ball hits its base we anticipate the opportunity to initiate whatever plans we’ve made for our lives. We set our clocks, our reminders, our alarms and our minds to ensure that every intention we’ve set for ourselves is carried out as effectively as possible. However seconds after that mirror ball has hit its base, and we realize that we didn’t have anyone to share that commemorative kiss with for the third year in a row...and we’re thirty-five.

It's been so long that we’ve gone accustomed to being alone, not lonely, but alone. However we’re reaching a point in our lives where we want to share something more than a physical connection with someone, we want to be as loved as we are in love, we want a Beaux. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to have someone to suffer through those excruciating family gatherings with, someone with whom we can buy gifts for and receive them from, someone who can be the reason we’re not going out and someone that we can borrow clothes from in a pinch. We want to fall in love, to have a new best friend and to experience having someone other than our dog be committed to us. We thirst for the newness and the nearness as well, and to have someone who is as in to us as we are in to them. But the question is, are we ready and if so, how do we know?

Someone somewhere was once quoted as stating that those who fail to plan, plan to fail and since planning and preparing are synonymous, we figured we’d make it the first stop on our road to romance. Preparing for a relationship isn’t always as easy as it sounds, especially when we consider that the first thing we might have to do is to shorten our short list of things that we desire in a potential Beaux. This will potentially call for us to abandon our strict no fats no fems policy and make some amendments to our complexion clause as well. Maybe we’ll open up our options by ending our race based exclusions and by coming down on our height requirements. While we’d love for our next relationship to be with a Beaux who meets all of our superficial requirements, we’ll increase our chances if we forego our six pack ab requirement and accept someone with a bit of a keg.


Now before you start throwing tomatoes at your phone or wherever you’re reading this on, hear us out...because we’re not suggesting that standards should be lowered, just reevaluated. The same can be said for our non physical expectations as well, because outside of our future Beaux possessing the home-car-job trifecta (because we simply cannot budge on this), some alterations can be made. Maybe we’ll consider dating someone with a roommate (who isn’t his mother, aunt, sister, uncle or grandparent), or maybe someone who doesn’t make as much as we do but is still within a respectable range.There are plenty of adjustments we can consider making to our relationship requirements that don’t obligate us to settle for less. We’ve just got to be prepare a willingness to do it.

If our desires to be involved in romantic relationships were a solar system, the feelings we’d want to feel while in them would be the sun. Relationships revolve around feelings, so as we prepare to put ourselves back out there, we should really consider the was in which we want to feel. Are we looking for safety and security or do we want to feel needed? The feeling of being loved should go without saying, but what about feeling intellectually stimulated, admired or special? Are we aiming for a healthy balance of these things, or are some of them more important to us than others? These considerations go a long way when it comes to determining what we hope for in a relationship because the last thing we want to do is to pair ourselves with someone whose emotional output doesn’t counter or at least match our own.  

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If the thought of being alone in 2019 concerns or even terrifies you then that’s a pretty good indicator that you’re nowhere close to ready for a relationship. Too many of us have jumped head over feet into relationships because we felt lonely, and while it may seem like a good idea at the time, we’ll more likely than not discover that said relationship isn’t built on a foundation of shared interests and quirks but on a platform of dependency. We owe ourselves more in 2019. This is why its important for us to be our own boyfriend first. Alone time is good, and its something we’ve got to be comfortable with before pursuing a potential Beaux. We can achieve this by taking ourselves on dates, buying small gifts for ourselves and by (major key, here) learning to listen to ourselves. We don’t need a big strong man to protect us or someone to snuggle with, because we can, or at least should be able to, protect ourselves. Also, there are tons of pillows available for purchase on Amazon that we can cuddle with, so there’s that.  Finding love in a lonely place can lead to us lowering standards that would otherwise not be lowered, and will have us dating people we’d otherwise never consider dating.

While these are just a few considerations we can give in preparing ourselves for a new relationship, the next question we should ask ourselves is how do we know that we’re ready? There are a number of signs to indicate whether or not we’re ready to make this step, and the first of them is having a strong sense of not needing a nigga for anything. Yeah, that’s a pretty good starting point and the proof isn’t in the pudding as much as its in the paragraphs that preceded the one you’re currently reading. Relax your standards (don’t lower them, but relax them), consider the ways in which you want your potential Beaux to make you feel and treat yourself while you’re by yourself as often as you feel is necessary.


There are other tell-tale signs that’ll let us know when we’re ready, such as a willingness to give the best of ourselves to someone else. Be careful with this though, because it doesn’t mean that we’re pouring all of our energy into someone else as much as it means we’re sharing it. Remember, our goal shouldn’t be to give our love but to experience it with someone who is worthy of it. Another indicator is not having a problem in putting someone else’s interests above our own. Again, we’ll have to be careful with this as well because it doesn’t mean that we’re muting our own wants and needs, but that we’ll sit through an hour or two of My Hero Academia because he’s super excited about the show, and while we’re not into anime, we appreciate being included in something that's important to him.

Reciprocity is still gonna be a thing though, but we’re sure that won’t be a problem. We’ll know we’re ready after we’ve known which hills are worth dying on and which aren’t and once we become comfortable in accepting people for who they are. We’ll know once we abandon our quest in finding someone to complete us to embark on a journey to discover someone who we can share our time and heart with. You don’t know what you don’t know until you know that you don’t know it, but when it comes to knowing whether or not we’re ready for a relationship, we’ll know. We’ll know, know.

So as we embark on the whatever journey 2019 has in store for us, remember it’s not how we’ll start, but the ways in which we’ll finish. Being single isn’t the worst thing that any of us can be, but being desperate is an entirely different story. While we might be walking into 2019 alone, we’re not lonely, and our desire to consciously couple with a Beaux with whom we can make memories with and love to might be less of an apparition and more of a forecast.

Jeremy Carter