Should Women Settle for Mr. Good Enough?

Back by popular demand! You loved this article about making your Mr. Right Now your Mr. Right.
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Should Women Settle for Mr. Good Enough?

Back by popular demand! You loved this article about making your Mr. Right Now your Mr. Right.

-Jenna McCarthy

Mr. Good Enough


For fun and escapism, most hot-blooded female bookworms turn to the latest titillating Twilight-type saga. But when we want to delve deep into our psyches – say, to discover why we continually date jerks or can’t seem to drop a dress size no matter how many bread baskets we pass up – there’s always a sparkling new self-help tome within arm’s reach. And the most popular of the bunch, frankly, aren’t all that kind or gentle.

Seems we gals love us some tough-love. We ate it up when the painfully spot-on He’s Just Not That Into You essentially called us a bunch of fools who refuse to read the neon signs being flashed by the misogynistic chumps we choose to shower with our unrequited love. Then we cheered when those infamously Skinny Bitches informed us that the real reason we’re fat and unhappy is because we repeatedly ignore common sense and “shovel the wrong crap into our mouths.” Now, the just-released Marry Him: The Case For Settling For Mr. Good Enough aims to tell us – for our own collective good, of course – that if we’re unmarried and of a certain age, it’s pretty much all our fault. You know, for having the audacity to still believe we might meet a kind, handsome, intelligent man to whom we are sexually attracted and with whom we could conceivably consider breeding and sharing adjacent cemetery plots. What’s that? You’re alone with your 16 cats and your fertility has dwindled to paltry 3 to 12 percent of what was once a bounteous cornucopia of eggs? Well, says Marry Him, don’t come crying to me.

Read No Rings Attached: Being Single Is So Hot Right Now!

Marry Him reflects the collected wisdom a 40-something woman, author Lori Gottlieb, who listened to her mom’s “don’t settle” advice – and then lived (alone) to regret it. It sounds obvious, but I’ll go ahead and say it anyway: Nobody’s perfect. Therefore, I agree with Gottlieb that saving oneself for the singular guy who fits into the arbitrary husband-mold you designed those many years ago would be utterly asinine. But how many women do you know who went into marriage thinking “Oh, he’s good enough,” only to find themselves dividing the assets and sharing custody a few short years later? Marriage is a marathon — not a sprint — and half of all couples who sign up don’t make it to the finish line as it is. If you don’t at least go into it feeling like Charlie Bucket when he found the golden ticket in his Wonka Bar, you’re in for more than just a few blisters.

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0 thoughts on “Should Women Settle for Mr. Good Enough?

  1. With all due respect, I think that “settling” isn’t always bad. Before I met my husband, I didn’t date guys shorter than I am. I thought my dream man was 6’5″ or taller. I “settled” for marrying a shorter guy, I “settled” for marrying a guy who smokes. I wouldn’t trade him for anything. I understand that some people might have only reasonable standards, but I think a lot of people start to have these standards that they’re sure they can’t live without that really don’t matter in the long run. I definitely like the term “Mr. Great” – and someone can be that Mr. Great without meeting all the standards you’ve set.

  2. I somewhat agree with this but not in the way they mean it in the book. You should never settle for someone who disgusts you or you dread looking at or spending time with just because you’re a little older than the average bride. I always tell my single girlfriends to know what they’re looking for but keep their eyes open to any possibility. I think too many women stick only to a certain physical type instead of seeing who’s personality fits them best. If you sync with someone’s spirit flawlessly, it won’t matter if he’s balding, shorter than you want, or doesn’t have a muscular physique. You will love what you once considered a flaw. Never settle for someone, every Lady looking for love has her perfect (unmarried at the time of finding) man. We poor women need to stop being so hard on each other!

  3. I have been happlily married for 16 years and I don’t call it “settling” but I call it “realizing your no picnic to live with either”. I think too many women were sold a load of crap about some white knight who was going to fulfill her every need. Over the 16 years since I first said “I do” a lot of shit has happened. I am very glad I have a partner who is in life with me for the long haul. My husband is a fantastic father and a generous human being. I could not have possibly “known” that about him 16 years ago since our oldest is only 7 so younger women need to realize your vision of the “perfect” guy changes radically over time. Perfect to me is exactly what my husband is up today. He picked the kids up from an early release day from school and is occupying them so I can make progress on a writing deadline. He is an equal partner in every aspect of parenting and housekeeping. That is complete perfection in your 40’s for most women!

  4. I was with the love of my life for 4 years 30 years ago and was miserable most of the time due to his cheating and not wanting to get married. I left town to start fresh and started dating a “nice” guy that was not really my type. 26 years later and two wonderful children, he is the best thing that ever happened to me. Sometimes girls, you can win when you settle.

  5. I love how women with some of the worst qualities at the same time have some of the most impossible and ridiculous standards for guys to meet. She’s picky, spoiled, rude, jealous, insecure, immature, selfish and financially irresponsible yet she wants ‘the perfect guy’ to come chase her down. Yeah right.

  6. I’m a guy. And I see so many women go out with guys that they should not go out with. And when they stay with too long, they are the ones who are all out miserable. Mr. Good Enough may be the one you really need, and in some cases, the one who may put up with you ( A lot of Miss Wrongs out there too).

  7. I am also a guy. I am 29, well balanced, work for Google, have traveled the world, cute, about 5’9″, well rounded, great friend, almost athletic:), funny, and SINGLE. I have tried so hard to meet a nice girl; They either don’t call me back or they just want to be friends. I have found out that most girls go for the same guy. I live in San Francisco and there are about 10-20 guys who get all the women in town. The rest are single and tired. The same single women take dancing classes, cooking classes, rock climbing… They are trying to fill their time because they are lonely but they never settle for the average guy.

    I love the comments above and I almost cried when I read some of the stories. Stories from the heart. Stories of hope.

    Flowers to all of you.

  8. Love does not happen over night, that’s a Hollywood created myth. The only thing that happens when you look at someone the first time is lust and that can wear off pretty quick. Real love takes time and if your running out the door the first time someone doesn’t meet one of your criteria, well no wonder your alone.
    I have been married for 10 years and I can honestly say my husband doesn’t meet any of the criteria I thought my dream guy would have…..and I couldn’t be happier about it.

  9. As a (married) nice guy, I see lots of young guys who are great guys, but are seemingly passed over for the “tall dark mysterious stranger”-type. I think if more girls would “settle” for nice guys who are fun to be around they’d all be happier.
    [P.S. 1/2 marriages fail only because people with one divorce tend to have multiple divorces. First marriages succeeds about 2/3 the time.]

  10. Don’t settle. The man of your dreams will come along. You just have to wait for him. It may be a longer wait but in the end you’ll be much happier and it will be one that will last.

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