I used to think that you could tell everything you needed to know about a man by how he treats his mother. I still think that’s a great theory in many cases. The problem is it only works when the man in question has a decent mother. If his mother is a total shrew or is bat sh** crazy, then her son can’t really be blamed if he’s less than stellar. And when you’re still in the market for a life partner at an advanced age, there’s more and more chance that the much-needed mother is no longer with us, so she has limited use as a yardstick at that point. Darned inconvenient, mortality is.
You can also learn a great deal by how someone treats waitresses and clerks. Is he respectful or condescending? And how does he behave when driving? Road rage is often an indicator of a deeper anger.
Why is it that so many of us don’t take our search for a mate as seriously as we would the search for an employee? After all, it’s even more important, isn’t it? If this is to be someone you share your life with, you need to be able to ask the hard questions. You need to know about both the past and the future. Goals. Debts. Ambitions. Spiritual beliefs. And if you think you’re going to change him, trust me: you aren’t.
I know all of this sounds cold and clinical. I’m not saying that chemistry and emotion shouldn’t play a big part here. But when marriages fail, it’s often because the awkward information wasn’t obtained in advance. So ask questions, and take the answers seriously. This is your life we’re talking about.
(Okay, so this has nothing to do with my current post, but it made me smile.)