Friday, October 18, 2013


I think that having all different kinds of friends is vital to personal growth and development.

Female Friends
As a female, having female friends is huge priority for me. They're a built in group of people who are automatically able to relate (at least a little) to whatever you've got going on. Girl friends are the people you go to when you need to just hash it out in a really raw and unfiltered kind of way. With men, their brains are programmed differently-- so if you approach them with a problem, even if you just need to vent, they automatically switch into "problem solving mode." The give you ways you can solve the problem, and then you get annoyed because you don't need a solution-- you need a sympathetic ear. Girl friends can offer that ear and a gentle opinion, and generally help you debrief.

(Straight) men make terrible wing-men for girls. You need someone who can be subtle and look on as you do a "walk-by" past Joe at the bar-- your girl is going to tell you if "Omg he totally checked out out! You should def go talk to him!!" or "He didn't look up. Probably gay... what about that guy over there?!"

Male Friends
I've recently realized just how valuable having male friends can be.

Since I was in Pre-Kindergarten, I've always been boy crazy. For me, boys never had cooties- had my first boyfriend at age 4. All the way through until maybe my Junior year of High School, I would get these wild crushes-- and every guy was diff erent from the one before. After HS, my "obsessiveness" slowed to a mere "hearty liking-for" when I would come across a good looking guy. In addition to all those crushes, I've always surrounded myself with good guy friends.

In our community here, there are only about 65 or so teachers who regularly socialize, many of whom are couples. I don't think I've ever been exposed to so many solid couples as I have been in Korea. I think that they're all so solid because to move to a foreign country together, you need to be at a certain place in your relationship. Therefore, a lot of the couples here are great, loving, devoted couples. It means that the "available man pool" is very small, and until about a week ago, I was really disappointed by the lack of available men.

What changed my mind?

Having so many men around me who I can't have (and just to clarify, I'm not actually pining after any of them) has given me an opportunity to see my girl friends in action with their boyfriends/husbands/fiances. This experience has been invaluable to me. There are a lot of good, even great, men here and seeing my friends being treated so well has started me thinking....

What makes a good man?
What makes a good man for me?

I have a new perspective on what I want in a man, and more importantly, what I don't want.

I know I want someone who is a little offbeat and weird, but who also takes care of themselves-- a quirky personality who likes health and fitness, basically. That's a bit of a rare combo, but I've met one, so I would have to assume that means there are more out there. I also want someone who can be playfully mean.... and by that I mean someone who can recognize and dish a little sarcasm. I don't care for guys who are overly goal-driven or overly-available, I've put myself in situations with men who are just too busy- with work or other priorities- to make time for me. I am, however, really relaxed when it comes to needing "me-time"-- if he needs to be with his friends, I can enjoy some solo tv time. Someone who is either well-traveled, or who wants to travel. I don't want someone who is overly critical... I like being able to have someone who can critique when necessary, but people who are too critical just come off as mean.

That's what I've learned.+

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