Story: I started a new relationship about 2 months ago, and we are currently hitting our first rough spot. While that’s not fun, it got me thinking. This particular problem has cropped up with a lot of the girls I’ve dated, and I doubt those girls have much of an idea how much of a problem this is. The problem Im talking about is girls’ devotion to their careers. Yes, this applies to guys just as much, but since I dont try to date guys, I know nothing about how it that goes and so I wont talk about this from that angle.
The fact that you are on this site, a dating blog, and not on some professionals networking or how-to-get-ahead-in-business web site indicates dating is at least as important as, and probably more important than, your job to you. And why shouldnt it be? If you work 40 hours a week, the time you spend over the course of your life working is only HALF of the time you spend with your significant other, assuming you spend evenings, weekends, vacations and retirement together. Most girls say they want to meet a guy, fall in love, get married (and possibly have kids, though thats not really relevant to this discussion). Yet in their prime dating years, large numbers of young women choose to put career ahead of dating. They work long hours, work on weekends, and take home work from the office, all of which detract from time they could spend dating or building relationships. In doing so, they turn off, blow off or repel desirable guys, the same kinds of guys these girls claim to want to date. Most guys are taken by girls who devote more time and effort to their relationships, and the older the girl gets, the quality of the average guy remaining on the market decreases. By the time girls make sufficient progress in their careers that they feel they can put more time/effort into relationships (generally between 28-34, based on what Ive seen among career oriented women), the most desirable guys are taken, and the girls are left with two choices: settle, which means lowering their standards, or push forward, insisting they will find their knight in shining armor, which is unlikely to happen. Unfortunately for them, the men their age would rather – and often do – date the younger, prettier girls, and as such, arent as interested in their same-age counterparts. Even if girls are able to find a decent guy their own age, he may be beaten down from years of dating and living the single life, and hence, emotionally exhausted. From here, it just gets tougher. Women and men both age, but womens’ value to men drops considerably more than vice versa after a certain age, especially for men looking to have kids.
The point is, for women looking for a long term relationship, your 20s are your golden years. You are young, vibrant, energetic, and most likely, as attractive as you will ever be. To waste that on something like a job that will never bring you the kind of true happiness that only a good, solid, meaningful relationship can is a mistake you may regret for the rest of your life, and one you wont get a chance to do over. I can understand why one might want to devote themselves to their work. But its critical to realize that the amount of effort you put into it is far from the only factor that will determine whether you reach your career goals. Even if you do a great job, bad bosses, backstabbing coworkers, office politics, budget cuts, lack of opportunities or plain old competition (and a whole array of other factors) may prevent you from reaching your goals. You may very well work really hard into your early or mid 30s only to find that you havent progressed much farther than those who you started your career with but who didnt put in quite so many hours. At that point, what was all your extra work for and was it really worth it? For most, I suspect the answer is no. So as I think about my relationship history and all the times when girls’ jobs put unreasonable demands on them and, due to their devotion to their careers, they automatically kowtow to those jobs without thinking, I cant help but wonder what might have been if they had had a more sensible work-life balance. Just so we’re clear, I dont expect a girl to completely blow off work to date me. However, I do expect to be somewhere on my girlfriend’s list of priorities, and I do expect to move up that list the longer we are together, and at some point, I expect to move above the girl’s job on her list of priorities. I know if I had such a special girl in my life, at some point, she would become more important to me than my job. Considering a job is easier to replace than such a special person (boyfriend/girlfriend/fiance/spouse), and considering how much time is [potentially] ultimately spent with each, doesnt it make sense, even in this economy?