1. We need alone time. A little each day and more than a little on other days. It doesn’t mean we’ve lost interest in you.
2. We don’t mind if you don’t call or text us every second. We like it. We won’t be contacting you either. That said, if you’re late, don’t keep us guessing as to when you’ll show up as we’ll make other plans.
3. We can clean up our own messes. We’re not waiting around for you to fix our problems.
4. We are perfectly fine doing chores, running errands, and exercising by ourselves. If you want to join us, we’re glad to have you along, but don’t talk to us while we’re in the zone.
5. We sign up and attend charity events, races, and cultural exhibits on our own. We don’t need a date to feel comfortable at these things. Set us loose in a room with a bunch of people and we’ll have 10 best friends before the night is through.
6. If we have a sleep over, don’t expect me to cuddle you all night and cook you a hot breakfast. I will actually want to sleep and we can go out to the diner for brunch.
7. If we go to a party where it’s mostly your friends, I don’t need you hovering. I’m perfectly capable of chatting it up with endless amounts of strangers. I’ll even enjoy it. But don’t completely forget about me either as you’re probably my favorite person in the room.
8. We are comfortable paying our own way and will feel funny if you constantly insist on treating us. We don’t mind splitting restaurant bills with you. In fact, it makes us feel like we don’t owe you anything. We never expect you to pay for us or buy us gifts. If it’s not on a birthday or an anniversary, it feels like a bribe.
9. We will never ask you to lend us money. If we do, we feel odd and uncomfortable until we pay you pack.
10. We are capable of going to the bathroom by ourselves. But sometimes we just prefer the company of a friend.
11. We work because we want our own career. We’re not depending on you to be our sugar daddies. Don’t expect us to take a day off on a moment’s notice just because you bought tickets to a baseball game at 1 PM on a Tuesday. We have ambition and take pride in our work.
12. If you want to go watch football or to happy hour with friends, we’re cool with that. Actually, we prefer it, on occasion, because it gives us the chance to catch up with our own friends or spend the night catching up on our independent interests.
13. We know how to save money and are actively interested in planning for our own retirement. We know what a 401K plan is.
14. The idea of getting married sounds great with the right person. But we’re perfectly capable of taking care of ourselves if need be. We choose to be in relationship because we like you, not because we can’t live without you.
15. Sometimes, instead of a romantic partner, we secretly want to marry a cook / cleaning person / personal trainer / masseuse / stylist versus anybody else. If you happen to be one or more of these things, we will love you even more.
16. We like to fix things ourselves and will usually bring a step stool over to get things off of high shelves, even if you’re way taller.
17. We can be stubborn and adamant about handling things a certain way even if you’ve been through something before and want to give us advice. Forgive us. Let us try it our own way first, even if your intentions are good.
18. We get very frustrated with extremely needy, co-dependent people. This frustration may make us seem callous or icy, but it’s more about wanting to see people help themselves.
19. At times, we may seem so self-reliant, content and in control that you may wonder whether you’re needed in our lives. You are. We are confident and directed but cherish someone who appreciates, rather than fears, these qualities.
20. We still love a big hug, lots of affection, and to be told how much we’re loved. Tell us we look pretty every now and then and don’t let us shrug it off. Independence will never trump the desire to feel adored.