Love Flaws

More gorgeousity in the form of wonderfully wise words from the darling Anna K…I actually love her.

Back in the days when I was single, and courting various gentlemen (usually Indonesian beach-dwellers or tortured artists), I used to make lists.  Lists of the Ten Qualities Essential in a Mate.  The Ten Qualities I could not Possibly Live Without (and if you did, you were settling).  The Ten Qualities that, unless any aspiring man displayed in abundance, he’s have no hope in hell of getting within five feet of me, much less have any success whilst in the vicinity.
I thought this would make it easier, you see.  I thought that if partners, especially husbands, had to adhere to a strict list of criteria penned by yours truly, then half the work was done.      
Ah ha!  He reads the Guardian, thereby displaying Open-Mindedness.  Therefore, he is Open-Minded.  Tick.
Ah ha!  He did not agree with me like a Doormat in front of my friends.  Therefore, he is Independent of Spirit.  Tick.
Ah ha!  He has been to an unpronounceable country, and taught a village of blind children to see again.  Therefore, he is Open to New Experiences.  Tick.
You get the picture.  (Can I just point out, I don’t say Ah ha! that often.  It was there for emphasis)
This was quite a nifty way of dealing with undesirables.  Any waft of anything not on my list, and it was sorry, it’s not you it’s me, onwards and upwards in my quest for the Perfect Man. 
What I didn’t realise, however, until I met Mr K, was the need to love flaws. 
Now, I happen to think Mr K is pretty marvellous.  I know, I’m biased.  Not only is he huge fun to be around, I also happen to admire his core values (I once heard Michelle Obama say the latter about Barack and have adopted the phrase as if it’s my own).  However, be under no illusions.  Mr K is not perfect.  In fact, I’d go so far as to say that Mr K has habits and qualities that are so irritating they make me want to set him alight (not literally.  Promise).  Now this isn’t just about Mr K…believe me, I have irritating qualities too, including but not restricted to: slamming my head in car doors and never learning from the mistake, inability to look at a list of numbers without falling into a coma, not cleaning the bathroom unless at gun point, always having to have the last word, twisting arguments until I’m right, exaggerating shamelessly to tell a story well, disrespecting logic.  All of these things drive Mr K up the wall.     
The point is this.  You can have a whole list of things you love about someone.  Those are the things that sustain you, that give you your kicks, throughout the early stages of a relationship.  The things that make you go mushy, and make you talk about him or her to your friends with a huge, village-idiot grin on your face.  They’re so good looking, with such integrity, they’re charming, funny, they like the same things as you.  They’re a drummer.  They have a car.  Perfect, right? 
It doesn’t last.  The longer you spend with someone, the more the gilt gets rubbed off and you see what’s underneath.  (NB: I’m not talking about cruelty and jealously and anger…because, ladies, if you are will someone cruel…Get Out.  Now.  That is NOT a quality that’s ever justifiable).  What I’m talking about are those qualities, those habits, those convictions that raise your hackles.  Those things your partner does, or says, that make you want to poke coathangers in your eyes, they’re so annoying.
Always being right.  Always winning arguments.  Cleaning too much.  (Yes, it can happen).  Not being sensitive enough.  Not understanding that a laundry basket is there for a reason.  Glazing over when discussing plans further ahead than next week.  Because these are things at the surface, the things that, quite frankly, you’re going to have to just swallow.  Because it’s those core values that you admire, not what’s around the edges.  Because what you love is the whole, the entire package, the good and the bad and the charming and the could-be-improved-if-only-he’d-LISTEN. 
You’re not going to change someone’s flaws.  That’s what makes them them.  That’s what sometimes makes them SO IRKSOME you want to scream.  Nobody wants someone who doesn’t awaken that part of them.  No-one wants to spend their life with someone who lulls them into some suffocating existence of apathy.  I’d rather wake up next to someone kind with a weird pillow-cover washing habit than someone who made me feel bad about myself but was otherwise perfect.
Thanks, Michelle.  If you ever need any relationship advice, feel free to give me a call.   
Categories: Family, Friends and Relationships, Life Experience, Marriage, Written By Anna
7 interesting thoughts on this

7 Comments

  1. Posted November 19, 2010 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    This had me chuckling in to my tea cup. Give me my xbox playing/star wars loving/related to Victor Meldrew OH over perfection any day

  2. Posted November 19, 2010 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    Hitting the nail on the head as always Mrs K!

    Phil goes through PHASES. Oh yes, in capital letters. One month it'll be buying and restoring old cars, then we'll be knee deep in antique pocketwatches 'because there's a market for them' and then the garden will fall back into favour. Too often, I'm not even in the loop as to what the phase is-I bought him a beautiful old pocketwatch as a wedding gift only to be reliably informed as we got in the car after the wedding that 'I'm not really into that anymore…' Banana. He also enjoys washing up, is more in love with his car than with me and is rubbish at arguing. He just refuses to shout. Pfft.

    But he's infinitely thoughtful, VERY passionate (about whatever passion he currently has) and he cares about me more than anyone else in the world. So I forgive the idiocy.

    x

  3. Posted November 19, 2010 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

    I am always so excited when I know that we are going to have a post from the darling Anna K, because you just know, whatever she talks about, she'll get it spot on. And she didn't disappoint.

    My husband (!) has an abundance of flaws, that can make me very nearly literally froth at the mouth. Innability to separate colours from whites leading to all clothes being a sort of grey brown colour? Check. Insistence on washing up rather than using our perfectly good dishwasher? Check. (don't ask me WHY this irritates me so much, but it does. It really does). Having absolutely no willpower when it comes to food whatsoever, and therefore persisting in the belief that if he hasn't eaten in the last 40 minutes, he is STARVING and must eat immediately to stave off the likelihood of dying from hunger. Check.

    But those things are just what make him, him. And despite what I say when I find yet another pair of his red trunks in the White Section of the washing basket, I wouldn't have him any other way.

    PLUS. If I asked him to change, he'd probably make me clean up my pile of cotton wool pads from next to the sink. It's a compromise I'm not willing to make.

  4. Posted November 20, 2010 at 3:03 am | Permalink

    my husband does everything sooooo slooowwwwwlyyyy.

    it drives me nuts.

    but the fact that i can make fun of this and watch him laugh along with me is the greatest thing ever. and as annoying as it can be, it's still the cutest thing ever. to me. :)

  5. Posted November 20, 2010 at 3:21 am | Permalink

    I so needed this post today sometimes I forget that other people go through the same things I feel like the boyfriend does these things to wind me up on purpose but it appears everyone does it. (me included)

    This month for instance I have my sisters wedding coming up I had her hen party and then all the clothes and presents needed to go to these events then getting there and back… any way me and the boyfriend talked about how tight it was going to be this month there was to be no spending money on silly things none at all we discussed it together all very grown-up. When I get home from the hen party he had spent £110 on rock band 3 for xbox complete with keyboard!!!!

    It kills me some times it really does but I do love him so much
    Thank you
    Simone
    xxxx

  6. Anna K
    Posted November 20, 2010 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    Thanks ladies! It's time to break the fairytale lie that your husband or wife should be perfect, and settling for anything less is wrong.

    Yaaaay…Fliss is back! Dying to ask how it all went…but eagerly anticipating some Fliss-style posts to tell me exactly that!x

  7. Posted November 20, 2010 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    I sometimes think that when you love someone their 'flaws' become 'quirks' and is something you love them for.

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Hello! We're Clare, Aisling and Anna and welcome to a corner of the world where smart, flawed, real women talk about the bigger picture; about their experiences, stories and opinions on all aspects of being a woman today, from marriage to feminism to pretty, too.

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