A Strong Woman's Roar

Being single is tough. Being a single mom is harder. Having to be both the man and the woman at home for the kids, but then having to balance that in the outside world as to not be controlling or allowing for a man to help in different areas of life is possibly the hardest balance I've had as a woman. I can't be too tough, but I have to be tough enough. Something I have been told several times in the dating vortex is that I am intimidating. This is my open response, my roar of frustration if you will.

Intimidating? Really? That's the adjective chosen to describe ME in the "dating world?"

At least the clarity is starting; and admitting the fear is the first step to realize you aren't nearly as ready as you swore you were.

I asked, "What are you looking for in a woman?"

You responded, "Someone smart and funny, beautiful, sexy, determined, self-sufficient, yet ready to be in a relationship".

Hmmm, internally I said OK, so that's me, buckle up because here we go again....

As the days turn to weeks and months, you start to realize who I really am. Not the cleaned up version you thought I was showing you on that first date when I was really just being me. How un-trusting are you to think that I would put on a show just to make a good first impression? If I ever had any intentions of "this" going anywhere, why would I start it with something other than the real me?

Yes, I love my jeans and flip flops, but I also love getting dressed up and looking beautiful standing next to you. Yes, I have a lot of tattoos, a dirty mind and a sailor's mouth most of the time. That doesn't automatically mean that I can't speak with eloquence standing in an evening gown at any given event -- with only you in the room knowing that my back is covered, from the back of my neck to the top of my ass with a beautiful floral design that will forever be there, that only you get to see when we get home.

So, how am I intimidating?

Is it because I actually do work out nearly every day and take my health very seriously as I said I do when we first met? Is it because I am not afraid to intelligently debate you without personal attacks, on a topic instead of blindly agreeing with you? Is it because I know how to change my own tire but choose to call you for help? Or is it because I can tell you the '67 Camaro might be the most beautiful vehicle ever produced, but I can give you 10 schematic points on how the '67 GTO is just better? Is it because I'll go to a baseball game when I want to, even when you aren't available to go with me, because I don't need a date to a baseball game, or concert or dinner or movie? I would love to have a date at all of those things, but I certainly don't NEED you there.

Is it because I don't just have a job but a career I am passionate about? Is it because I have already raised one child who is away in college; or the fact that I have a 14 year old who will match your wit when appropriate, with a smartass comment every time, followed with, "Yes Sir" because respect has always been the first rule in my home? Or is it because I regularly buy myself flowers?

What exactly is it? Because everything I just listed, is exactly what you told me you were looking for.

So, to the men out there reading this.... If a smart and funny, beautiful, sexy, determined, self-sufficient woman crosses your path, and that's what you truly want in a woman, don't run away like a coward. Man the hell up. If you are truly scared by your emotions, say so. Don't blame it on the woman having a strong character.

I refuse to take your coward-like behavior and let it make me jaded, regardless of how many times I have been called "intimidating" or told, "I don't know how to love a strong woman". Man the hell up. Whatever you do, don't "try" to convince yourself that you want something you really don't, and don't mess with someone's feelings regardless of how "strong" and "intimidating' you may think they are.

Because truly what you are intimidated by is a woman who stands 5'2, 130 lbs., who sleeps alone with her teddy bear every night. A woman who can't watch a scary movie by herself, reach the top shelf without standing on top of the stove, and who has a hard time opening salsa jars.

You are intimidated by the woman who refuses to sit at the head of the table and the woman who won't sleep on the side of the bed closest to the door. You are intimidated by the woman who prefers pearls to diamonds, and the woman who is a total crying hot mess when chick flicks come on.

If you are intimidated by that - you might as well go ahead and turn in your man card and find yourself some pretty little cardigan-wearing Stepford wife. Please don't start things you have no intention on finishing. Regardless of "intimidating factors", skinned knees and bruises do actually hurt.