Monday, 30 January 2012

Blog 5: Just because he's Mr Perfect, doesn't mean he's Mr Right

Have you ever met a guy who seems to tick all the boxes?
My friend Elle seems to meet one every 6 months.
Her latest is Daniel.
“What do you like about him?” I asked, as we sipped our tea, overlooking the Camden lock and feeling very city-chic.
“Well for a start he’s gorgeous” She excitedly explained. “He has the most amazing biceps”.
I couldn’t help but give the ‘looks-aren’t-everything’ frown, as she knowingly continued
“He's also incredibly funny and confident. He's amusing. He's always nice to me. I mean, he teases me, but that's how it's been from the get go. He just gives me butterflies. There’s a real spark. Tall, dark, handsome, wealthy, well educated, city banker.  He’s my idea of Mr Perfect.”
Elle continued to tell me the juicy details of how they had first met. It turned out Daniel had contacted her on Facebook for a bet.
“We had a mutual friend, who said he’d never be able to get me on a date.” Elle proudly chirped. “A few flirty emails later, after I’d had a good chance to study each of his profile pictures, we decided to hook up – you only live once – and it helped that he has a killer six pack”
They had, according to Elle, hit it off instantly. They both liked each other. They flirted unashamedly.
“I never knew a standard ‘drinks’ date could be so much fun.’ She exclaimed, whilst her voice got even more animated, rising with utter delight.
“Then came the first kiss” Elle blushed.  “It was like I hadn’t been kissed before”
I quickly erased all the previous men I had seen her lock lips with over the years, as Elle continued;
“He walked me to the tube station, and leaned in. I barely felt the drops of rain as the showers began to pour. There we were, kissing in torrential weather. It was so romantic. His arms were so strong and his chest pressed against mine. The intensity was electrifying”.
I nodded, knowing that this conversation was going somewhere interesting. Elle is the type of person who always has an exciting drama of some sorts, and I am always happy to listen with delight.
“Well, the thing is….”
From the too-good-to-be-true tone, I could tell where this was heading.
“We’ve had some amazing dates. We’ve been to a musical, been for various meals, cocktails, films. He even introduced me to all his friends. I wanted to hook you up with one of them.”
Elle is a sweetheart and always considers others. Especially, when it comes to my love life – she’s rooting for chief bridesmaid.
“Anyway, about a week ago, I text Dan, and he didn’t text back. I thought that’s odd. But, I’ve been reading your blog and I did exactly what you told me to. I didn’t chase”
There’s something genuinely quite flattering when a best friend takes your advice.
“Until the next morning, that is….. I just couldn't help myself. It was just one text. Look…”
She pulled out her blackberry sheepishly and showed me the message: are you ok? It read.
“It isn’t too damaging” I reassured her “I have definitely done much worse.”
Elle smiled with relief and proceeded to expose details of her latest romance.
“That night, I thought I’d take a quick glimpse to see if he’s been online. Well, you wouldn’t believe what happened next?” Elle gasped. “He had deleted me on facebook! Can you believe that? He actually deleted me!”
She gazed at me tentatively, as if to say what does that mean?
So, here goes, my attempt to make sense of another male riddle.
As per my previous blogs, (I assume) we have all been in this situation. I most certainly have.
Hot guy, date goes well, and then suddenly he’s not interested.
But Daniel is different from a Michael or a James. (See blog 1 and 3).
Daniel was keen, and Elle hadn’t thrown herself at him. She was always quite dignified in these situations.
Elle, reassured me that she had played it cool at all times and tried her very best to treat him like an Adam (see blog 2).
So why was this gorgeous incredible man suddenly turning into a player. What had gone wrong?
“The problem with Daniel is that he is Mr Perfect” I explained, whilst Elle looked understandably confused.
 “No one really wants Mr Perfect. Dan was a 10 out of 10, right?” I quizzed, whilst Elle nodded enthusiastically. “That’s your problem Elle. You don’t want a 10.”
“But surely a 10 out of 10 is a good thing?” she looked puzzled, as I began to try and resolve her latest heartbreak.
In all honesty, Elle’s relationship with Daniel was doomed from the start. From the moment she gushed about the ‘intensity’ of their first date. From the moment she felt the spark.
Listen carefully; I’m only going to say this once:
Men created ‘the spark’ to get girls to sleep with them,
And the guy’s that seem ‘Mr Perfect’ are usually the best at creating ‘the spark’.
Yes, Elle is gorgeous and great and hilarious, just like Dan. But two great ingredients don’t necessarily go together.
Lobster and cinnamon come to mind.         
If you really want to find Mr Right, don’t go for the guy that’s a 10.
Forgive me if you consider yourself a ‘10’ but experience tells me that a disproportionate number of ‘Mr Perfects’ are always guaranteed to be: Shallow, narcissistic, selfish, demanding, difficult, more likely to flirt, less likely to commit and somewhat disconnected from the ‘average’ person’s reality.
There is no value in chasing a 10 out of 10 guy who you have ‘the spark’ with expecting it to go somewhere.
TOWIE’s Mark Wright is a classic example of a 10. Good looking, charming, but he knows it, and that’s his biggest flaw.
A 10 is just trouble.
And Elle does not need trouble, she needs Mr Right.
Of course you may say, ‘I know this one guy who’s really hot and really nice’. And yes you are probably right. It still doesn’t change the fact that most 10’s are problematic partners.
‘But surely finding Mr Right is about holding out for a 10?’ Elle gloomily stated when I explained the above to her.
‘No, no, no’ I shook my head. “The most important reason that chasing Mr Perfect is a bad idea is that, when you actually get him, you probably wouldn’t want to keep him.”
Chasing looks and chemistry is like a sport. There’s the rush of the chase, the thrill of the victory, and the smugness of showing off your hot catch to all your friends. – for a moment.
But what happens when you actually fall for the 10/10 guy? When, just like Elle, you find a Daniel? A tall, dark, handsome, wealthy, well educated, city banker.
Guess what? Daniel’s probably not that into you.
In fact, Daniel’s probably more into himself.
Daniel’s probably going to be a workaholic – that’s what made him a successful career.
Daniel’s probably going to be arrogant and stubborn – that’s what happens when you’re a success at everything you do.
Daniel’s probably going to be vain – that’s what happens when you’re told how gorgeous you are.
Daniel’s probably going to be a player – that’s what happens when you have the ability to pick and choose at will.
Daniel’s probably never going to commit – why would he when he has a variety of women to date at his leisure.
Daniel’s probably going to be whole lot of hassle – that’s why he was so good at flirting on their first date. He has done this a million times before. Creating ‘the spark’ is second nature to him.
And so, Elle, you are never really going to get Jude Law, or Michael Fassbender, or Dan.
You were just renting him, and you’re merely overlooking his considerable flaws because of how hot he is.
The key is to break the cycle. Stop chasing the charmers and falling for ‘the spark’. Yes, attraction matters, but it should be secondary to more important things. As Jessie J says nobody’s perfect, so actually finding ‘Mr Perfect’ is only ever going to be a short term high.
Yes, meeting a guy who is a 10/10, and flirting with him unashamedly is always going to be an ego boost.
But, if you really want to find something healthy and enduring – and STILL have great sex – try going for a 7 in ‘the spark’ / charm column and a 10 in every other area. Kindness, warmth, intelligence, wit, consistency, effort, generosity. These are the things that matter when you are 50 – not whether he can still charm the knickers off you.
Of course, we all like to dream that we’ll be the one who finds the perfect 10.
But don’t be too surprised if everyone else finds their way into a successful relationship whilst you keep chasing a fairytale prince charming without a hope of a happy ending.
So Elle, I know it’s left you feeling like you’re back at square one. But, I’m glad Daniel isn’t in your life any more. In my books he’s a zero out of 10.
He may have been your Mr Perfect, but that doesn’t mean he’s your Mr Right. 


  1. hmmm. i WANT to go with the ''settling'' concept. The going for a 7 not a 10. all that. but here's the thing:
    I tried it. Several times. Complete disaster.
    Maybe it depends on which bits you're settling on, but in my experience, better to hold out for a ten than get 3/4 of the way and strike out.

  2. Look attractive and successful people are human beings too so its not fair to assume that they will all be bad news. People tell me that I am very attractive like a model, I am also very educated however I have the worst of luck dating because everyone wants to label me as trouble, high maintenance or a beautiful bimbo with nothing to talk about or simply a cold hearted heartbreaker. I am none of those things yet men barely approach me or take me seriously for these reason. Everyone wants to be loved. I know for a fact that a 6 or 7 is just as likely to break your heart as a 10. Let's try not to get in the habit of judging books by the cover.

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