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The good wife

Choosing a wife - the decision of any straight man's life.

Choosing a wife - the decision of any straight man's life.

What makes a good wife? Who do we choose? Do we even choose or are we chosen?

For the straight man, it's the decision of our lives. The kind of woman we swing down the aisle with will determine not only our physical and financial health, but the genetic and emotional makeup of whatever kids we breed.

You can bin the narrative delivered by Hollywood rom-coms. The chemical fairytale we call love isn't the most important ingredient. It's there, of course it is, it's what got you both through the door in the first place. But, even the most expertly applied varnish wears off with time, however carefully maintained.

Therefore, after much observation, I've developed the seven conditions that must be met before a woman can safely be taken as a bride.

1. An obvious career trajectory.

This is important over a number of strategic fronts. As a couple, you can build the wealth that'll get you through those financially bleak harvest years if you both work. Try buying a house as a single, try even getting a loan if you're pulling in under a 100 large. As a single, you might drop, say, 400 on an apartment. Married, you could have double. And, as far as capital gains go, 800 multiplying over 10 years will deliver a compounded growth vastly superior to the 400. And, if your wife-to-be is one of those gals who soar in the corpo world, it'll give the family room to manoeuvre when the kids arrive. Emotionally, a super-charged career means your wife is engaged with the world and is stimulated intellectually and not desperate to down tools and fall into those holes of inertia and boredom.

2. The absence of a rear-view mirror

Can you imagine living in a world where music stopped when your gal was 21? Hearing "Ride on Time" every time you squashed into her car? Or stuck in the same fashion when you met ("Is that really a Choose Life tee, honey?")? A woman that continues to excite is a woman who constantly evolves, whose opinions move with changing circumstances and who continues to interact with the larger world. If you ever hear the phrase, "People are so stupid," I suggest you to run to the hills.

3. Jealousy

Ain't this just the darkest emotion? It's human to fear the loss of the most pivotal person in your life, but a woman (or man) who stays up at night, seething, with dreadful carnal scenarios whistling between her ears, just waiting for you to come home so they can rebuke you through the eyeballs, or who is constantly scanning workmates or gal pals for rivals, is never going to change. And, each explosion, takes a layer of that delicate varnish off.

4. A genuine love for children.

Watch how your girlfriend reacts a restaurant when kids are being kids. Does she physically stiffen? Does her mouth twist in pain? Or does her face light up like it was Christmas morning and a Hermes gift box addressed to her was under the tree? When those precious kids come into your life, you want to soak them in the love of good wife and a good husband, united.

5. A life away from you.

Can you imagine being solely responsible for every single need of another living human? When a gal has her circle of friends, her job, and her interests outside of the marriage, she rains her joy of living on you.

6. A pointed loyalty.

Any gal that takes down her boy/man/husband in front of her pals or your pals, however light-hearted the manner, can't be trusted with your love and your life. A good wife defends her husband when he's right and discreetly aids his escape in an argument when he is terribly wrong. And those vapid witches who feel compelled to voice their attraction to other men? The worst!

7. Some kind of natural beauty

It might be a smile that lights a room or hair you could bury your face in for days. But, there has to be something; something that you see every day that reminds you why you have forsaken all other women.

And, husbands? That's next week. But, do offer your suggestions in the boxes below.

43 comments so far

  • I would be aiming for someone better than myself.

    In the "good, better, best" category; if you aim for the best, then realistically settle for the 'better', you can then spend the rest of your life (if you are lucky!) with a soul-mate, like I have.

    Date and time
    November 08, 2012, 6:43AM
    • what makes one person better than another...i think you perhaps mean someone you admire..

      Date and time
      November 08, 2012, 7:48PM
  • "When those precious kids come into your life, you want to soak them in the love of good wife and a good husband, united."

    Huh. So - kids are a required element for a happy marriage, are they? What should the barren or those wo just don't want kids do? Are we supposed to just pack up our lives and settle for pets and the services of a professional (or something with batteries) instead of a partner?

    Limited, man, limited.

    How about a simpler list: respect for you and themselves, love, trust, a mind open to joy, and at least some shared interests. Oh and it doesn't hurt if your sex drives are similar.

    Date and time
    November 08, 2012, 8:14AM
    • TK: Can no one write an opinion piece anymore without being terrorised by comments from people whose particular situation is not encapsulated in the article? Should he not write about marrying a woman because it doesn't apply to those who wish to remain single, are gay or whom wish to live a life of isolation? Should the author not write about a wife not having a job so as not to offend mother's who care for their children full time?

      I suggest you search the web for blog articles championing childless marriages if that is your intended modus operandi - I'm sure there are plenty out there.

      As for the article I enjoyed reading. For the perfect husband, supporting your wife, especially when they shine brighter than you!

      Google Journalism
      Date and time
      November 08, 2012, 12:23PM
    • I don't believe that my comment can really be characterized as terrorizing the author. I am allowed to have an opinion. Even about an opinion piece!

      Date and time
      November 08, 2012, 2:11PM
    • I agree with you TK. If you're wife loves the little ankle biters and you loathe them, then its not going to be a happy marriage is it. I would rather say a similar understanding with regard to the want and/or time to have kids is important. I've seen so many relationships fail because one partner wanst and the other doesn't or they both do but because of age or careers want them at different times.

      As for a career trajectory... really! Derek you seem to be basing this on your financial well-being. A marriage is not a business arrangement. Whether she has a career, works in a shop, wants to be a stay-at-home mum or even works in a brothel, is shes happy doing what shes doing thats all that counts. Happy wife, happy life

      Date and time
      November 08, 2012, 3:16PM
    • "A genuine love for children" .. Even couples who do not want to have children in their relationship can still have a genuine love for children. If the would-be wife doesn't ... next !

      Date and time
      November 08, 2012, 3:34PM
    • You are allowed to have an opinion, TK, but you are not allowed to be an idiot. Your first claim completely mis-understood what the opinion writer was on about.

      He said, it's not a good idea to marry a woman who hates kids. And he's right.

      That doesn't mean having kids is compulsory. That doesn't mean not having children is a "fail". That's your idiotic mis-interpretation.

      If you both don't want kids, that's fine. But then you probably would not bother actually getting married.

      Date and time
      November 08, 2012, 5:18PM
    • @enno, the sixties called and they miss you. POT KETTLE BLACK... BIG TIME! Examples - Idiotic sentences like;
      (1) "He said, it's not a good idea to marry a woman who hates kids. And he's right." If your wife hates kids and you hate kids; theres a great reason to marry her.
      (2) "If you both don't want kids, that's fine. But then you probably would not bother actually getting married." What does wanting kids have to do with loving and wanting to spend the rest of your life in a committed relationship with someone. I think you'll find the two are mutually exclusive.

      Date and time
      November 08, 2012, 6:15PM
  • oh you live a lie is so blind , it should be illegal for my number one for husbands is ...
    1 ..always tell your missis that romance is only something in movies...its not real.... and cleaning is womens work
    3 if we want an oppion we will ask our mates...
    live by them rules and you will have a happy life

    Date and time
    November 08, 2012, 8:36AM

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