I've been compiling a list of desirable traits to look for in a wife. Hopefully, I won't use this list as a cut-and-dried litmus test (e.g. "Well, you met criteria #1-32 and #34-49, but you didn't quite cut #33... sorry."). Rather, my goal is to get into the habit of thinking seriously about girls' character traits and personality. I think too often guys are too shallow in deciding whether or not a girl would make a decent wife. For example, I think many guys have these criteria:
1) The girl is cute
2) The girl gives me attention
3) The girl can make me laugh
If these three are met, the girl is determined by the guy to be a "nice girl" and a "good person" and he gives himself permission to pursue her affection. Don't get me wrong - these three things aren't bad things to look for, but if left by themselves they leave too much room for disaster.
So, I went outside the other night and though long and hard about what virtues to look for in girls. I dare say I think I have nearly a complete list - about 4 pages in my flip notebook. But I, like anyone, am susceptible to shortsightedness. Therefore, I am asking for your contributions (particularly from happily married men). What are the 3 most charming, captivating, valuable traits in your spouse? Of course, if you would like to list more, feel free!
I suppose you could also list things that you wished you had looked for in your spouse but didn't. If you want to mention those ones, you can email them to me, rather than posting them for all the public (and your wife) to see :)
In related news, I just finished Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. It was brilliant, and by thinking about Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth, as well as Jane and Mr. Bingley, I've been able to think much about my own traits - how to be more amiable like Bingley and also how to be more noble like Darcy (and how to avoid pride and prejudice). Anyway, I keep thinking about what Charlotte says at the very beginning of the book: "Happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance." I won't lie - there have been times in my life when I look around me and think that to be a justifiable sentiment, but most times I believe happiness is to be found when it is sought after.
Pride and Prejudice: A