Prince Charming Syndrome

12/06/2011 The Charmer 11 Comments

Okay, so I know that some of you were wondering "how the can-I-spend-14-hours-in-a-car-with-you test went?" (to quote Featherstone) And, seeing as that was the only question that was actually asked of me, I suppose I'd better tell you.

It went well. Apparently yes, I can spend 14 hours in a car with Mr. Director. (It actually ended up being about 15 1/2 hours going up and 13 hours coming back. So I really spent almost 29 hours in a car with him. That's more than an entire day!)

But even more importantly, the How-do-you-interact-with-my-family test also went extremely well. He survived the Dad Interrogation. He got a Mom Thumbs-Up. The siblings all thought he was very cool, including the angsty 12-year-old sister who doesn't seem to think anything is very cool these days.
Even my 25-pound cat liked him.

In other words, we can add my family to the increasingly extensive List of People Who Approve of Mr. Director or Have Told The Charmer How Great Mr. Director Is.
So if he's so great, here's a question: why am I having such a hard time throwing my whole self into this?

It seems like every time things start going really well, I start to freak out a little bit. I'm surprised that poor Mr. Dir hasn't begun to doubt my sanity at this point.

There are probably a myriad of reasons for these freakouts, but one of the problems can definitely by attributed to the "Prince Charming Syndrome."

I think that sometimes we ladies get so caught up in the idea of finding our "perfect" Prince Charming that we often give up the chance to be with guys with whom we have real chemistry. We grow up making lists of everything that we want in a man, and I think that we tend to forget that these lists aren't actually based on real people but that they're based on our ideas of what real people should be like.

Let's take a step back into the life of the Charmer, shall we?

Remember Masimo? He is perfectly charming, dresses well, is always a gentleman, can DANCE, and does cute things like any true gentleman would. I think one of the primary reasons I decided I wanted to date him was because he exemplified the "prince charming" ideal that us ladies grow up dreaming about.
Anyways, it didn't work out. I did try to make it work. After all, he would have been a FANTASTIC boyfriend! We would have been so charming together! So I tried to make it work, he'd already been trying to make it work for a year...and it just didn't. Yes, he was fantastic, but we were missing that real-life chemistry. And maybe the reason we didn't have real-life chemistry was because I had this fairytale idea of the sort of man I wanted. And, after all, fairytales are definitely not real life.

Luckily for me, I ended up falling for someone else--Mr. Director. He's sweet and considerate, but I don't know if I would ever use the word "Prince Charming" or even "gentleman" to describe him. He's goofy and unpredictable and sometimes I just shake my head and give him that look that says "Did you really just say that?" But we fit so well together. We really just click. I love his unpredictableness and I don't mind that he'd rather wear t-shirts and faded jeans than cardigans and fitted pants. I feel like I can really be myself around him, whereas with Masimo I often felt like I was trying to impress him.
Prince Charmings are great. It's what we all grow up wanting. But very few of us are Cinderellas or Snow Whites or even Sleeping Beauties. Most of us are a lot more like Lizzie McGuire. And, regrettably, Lizzie McGuire never ended up with a Prince Charming.
But if you saw The Lizzie McGuire Movie, you know that she ended up with her best friend. And isn't that what we REALLY want?

(And that brings my total Lizzie McGuire references made on this blog to: 2)

I'm not saying that we should tear up the lists, throw romanticism to the wind, and settle for the first bum who comes along. But maybe we should stop looking for a "perfect" person and start looking for someone who shares the same standards, brings out the best in us, and with whom we can truly be ourselves . After all, as Elder Scott so eloquently put it,
"I suggest that you not ignore many possible candidates who are still developing these attributes, seeking the one who is perfected in them. You will likely not find that perfect person, and if you did, there would certainly be no interest in you."

I'm definitely not perfect. So it's not fair of me to expect Mr. Dir (or anyone else, for that matter) to be perfect, either.

Still. It's hard to let go of the hope that my Prince Charming might ride in at any moment.

The Charmer

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I'm so glad everything seems to be working out for you. And I totally agree with you looking for the "perfect" person. It's never going to happen. I fell in to the rut for such a long time after my mission, I was always looking for the "perfect" girl and really I've never found her.

It is still hard sometimes to make myself realize I'm not settling, I'm just being realistic, but hey, I seem to be getting better at it.

As for you, you are moving at a great pace. You logically see how everything fits, now all that is left is that last connection on a spiritual or emotional level, something like that. Just keep going through the paces and I'm sure soon you'll just feel like it is time to put it all in. You've only been dating for a few months, no worries, you'll jump in head first soon if it's totally right.

So just keep on trunkin'.

Bethany said...

"Aim high, but do not aim so high that you totally miss the target. What really matters is that he will love you, that he will respect you, that he will honor you, that he will be absolutely true to you, that he will give you the freedom of expression and let you fly in the development of your own talents. He is not going to be perfect, but if he is kind and thoughtful, if he knows how to work and earn a living, if he is honest and full of faith, the chances are you will not go wrong, that you will be immensely happy."
President Gordon B. Hinckley

Anonymous said...

Hunny, I didn't throw my whole self into the relationship for a good many months (probably around 4 or 5 actually) after I started dating my now, ahem, husband. But HE was fully committed after 2 weeks! Give it plenty of time - good things come to those that wait (and pray and stress and think and ponder and blog about it;)

Anonymous said...

But, really, let's all admit that the best and most interesting point in this post is that you have a 25 pound cat.

(I agree with everything you said. But...a 25 pound cat. That's trump.)

Girl, he sounds perfect! I didn't throw myself into my relationship for a couple months...and now I'm marrying him! It sounds like you guys have so much fun together and you can be yourself around him, which is what you want in a husband (side note: my fiancé took like 3 girls out on dates the same WEEKEND as me...and he said he picked me because he could be himself around me...and I realized after he said that...that he is ThE only guy I can just be goofy me around)

Fritzwilliam said...

A recently married friend told me that he really struggled with this before taking the plunge. He saw many things he loved about her, but some things where he said, "I don't want to live with this." Struggling, he asked his bishop if he had ever had those doubts about his wife. The bishop said, "No. Never." My friend still says that's total B.S., and kept him from committing for far too many months. He's now happy with her, and says that there's no way you won't have bumps, even some major ones, but that you can overcome them and be extremely happy.

Oh Charmer,

Your posts are always inspiring. I don't know if you realize that, but I thought I should tell you.

The difference in searching for someone perfect and someone who makes you feel whole is that those involved in the latter search actually find what they're looking for.

Featherstone McGee

P.S. The only way you'll find a 25 pound cat in my home is if it's a tiger cub.

Joel Herrey said...

I just saw this tweet from a girl. thought it was pretty funny ;)

"Dear Prince Charming, I'm sending you a map to my house. I assume you got lost? Sincerely, trying to be patient..."

Anonymous said...

Just a thought, but you could be having a hard time throwing yourself completely into it because you feel like it is going so well that it might end any plans you might have been waiting on your entire life pending graduation.

Either way, don't worry too much. Just relax and enjoy the ride. No one says you are required to throw yourself in until you feel like it.

The Charmer said...

You may have hit the nail on the head, dear last Anonymous commenter.

You all have fantastic advice, as usual.

And just for those of you who are curious, my cat actually used to be 28 pounds. He's lost some weight in recent years. He's an emotional eater, poor thing. (And I'm being completely serious.)

The Charmer

Shelly said...

I was given some really great advice by a stake president once. He said that when engaged couples come to him he asks them three questions (not that you're getting married but maybe this will let you know if you're having well grounded hesitations or not.)

1. Do you know without a doubt that you are doing the right thing?
2. Is he/she better than you are?
3. Do you honestly believe that he/she is the greatest man/woman on the face of the earth?

Successful marriages that he has seen (and me since hearing these a few years ago) have answered all three with a resounding yes.

Don't expect perfection, but don't do something if you believe deep down that you are settling.

Good luck!