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Ask The Good Enough Guy: Dude! Where’s My Wife?

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Hi Will:

You talk a lot about your marriage and your wife, and I want what you have. I want that one woman in my life who just makes me and everything around me,  better. I’m a young guy (25), but all women see is a number then think I’m not ready to be a husband. I’m a good man and I treat women very well, but I can’t find a woman who treats me any better than the gum on the bottom of her shoe. I like taking my dates to nice places, like museums, poetry readings, and carnivals; places where we can talk and really get to know each other, but they don’t see it that way. They think I’m just being cheap and I’m so tired of it!  Why do women say they want a good man, but then treat him like garbage?

Fed Up In Chicago


Hey, Fed Up,

Finally! A question from a GUY! I knew we were out there! Oh, my brother! Since you’re the first, you get preferential treatment. I’ve got you on this one!

This is an age-old question, and one that my friends, both female and male, have been pondering for years. I have actually SEEN women in tears after being dogged by some “almost man”,  whining, “Why can’t I find a good man who’ll love me and respect me? Why can’t I find a gentleman who treats me like my dad treats my mom? Oh why, God, WHY?!!” Then a few months down the road, they meet a man who’s respectful, kindhearted, soft-spoken and together. And this brother is lucky if he gets a second date. Well grasshopper, if you are truly looking for a soul mate, then grab a pen and a sheet of paper whilst I break it down for you…

THE PROBLEM: The good news is that there are MILLIONS of women out there who are adult enough to know that passing over a good man and dating the “bad boy” almost always ends in a restraining order and an episode of “Cops”. The bad news is, you’re dating all of the other ones. There’s a good possibility that you may be getting hung up on the physical and, while a well-wrapped package looks great, it doesn’t count for much if the box is empty. Sounds like you are dating a lot of empty boxes.

You see, some women can’t think any deeper than the bottom of a man’s pockets. These women want their time, their meals, their very existence, paid for. In short, they don’t need a good man; they need a good job. Now you could try to change who you are or act like the bad boy with the heart of gold but why should you have to? Doing that is a sure fire way to end up married to someone you wish you’d never met, which is within walking distance of divorce court. And if you’re wondering what that feels like, just hand some woman your house keys and half of your paycheck and then ask her to kick you in the balls. Sounds like fun, right?

THE SOLUTION: Remember that pen and paper I told you to get? I wasn’t joking. Get it now; I’ll wait…Got it? Good.

Sit down and DESIGN your perfect woman. Yes, seriously. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, what are the chances you’ll find it? Decide what traits you need in a woman. Really think about her. Where did she grow up? What books does she like to read? What’s her favorite restaurant, and why? What does she like to talk about? What movie makes her cry every time she sees it? Where would you find her on a cold, rainy, Saturday afternoon? I know to you these questions might seem irrelevant, but trust me, any man who’s been married more than a couple of years could answer these in his sleep. Ask as many questions as you can come up with. Then sit back and study you answers:

  1. Do any of the women you’ve been dating fit the profile?
  2. If not, then why in the hell have you been dating those women?

Now you’re thinking “Is it really this easy?” Of course not, but it’s a damn good start. Now you have a “shopping list”, so to speak. You won’t find Mrs. Right on your first swing, but it will only take a two-minute conversation to know if you’re talking to Mrs. Wrong; then you can move on and keep shopping. Yes, it may take a while. Yes, you may get frustrated. Yes, it may seem like you’ll never find her, but that’s usually about the time that you do.

So what now?  Dude, do I have to spell it out for you? Do you want me to come out and be your wingman tonight too?  Good grief. I’m surrounded by amateurs.

Well, since you are the first man who’s written in, I’ll give you a little more help. That list you wrote is also a pretty good road map. If the woman you wrote about likes to go to museums, pick your favorite one and go see if you can find her there. If she likes carnivals, see if you can track down your Mrs. Right at the next state fair. If she likes poetry readings, hit up a slam or two. The perfect woman for you is out there, but I’d hurry if I was you. You aren’t the only guy reading this.

Happy hunting!

More From GEM:

Ask The Good Enough Guy: My Husband Lost His Job; What Can I Do?

Quick Question: What’s It All About Guys?

Single Mom Slice Of Life: Forced Family Fun, BLACKOUT!

William Jones is originally from the tiny town of Alton, Illinois, and now lives in the tinier town of Reisterstown, Maryland. He is a happy husband and a proud father of three, and writes as a hobby, in those few moments he finds between husbanding and daddy-ing. Follow him on Twitter at  @goodenoughguy1.


  1. Lashell

    March 10, 2012 at 8:59 am

    Ok, this has got to be my favorite Ask Guy piece…this is refreshing because guys like Fed Up really exist. I would add that is he busy in his own life? Guys that great I would think would be busy preparing for a wife…like travelling, having drive and ambition, esta blishing himself in preparation to be that fantastic husband. Hope the list is an honest one…which includes not only what he wants in his bride, but his expectations of what a husband ought to be…his role. What kind of work is he ready to put in family? What is his idea of family?
    See, I say that because I, too, have a list..I created one in 2009 to help to divulge the good, the bad, and the ugly to the man you take serious interest in me. Too much?? I don’t think it is…of course this is “first date” talk, but i have that ever-growing list because it keeps me honest and in check.

    Your advice to Fed Up is the same advice I’ve been given a while ago…but to have a guy write in about such a serious issue in a positive way is very encouraging to the many women who are serious about living a filled life…so it’s really cool. Hope he finds his soulmate. Hope he listens…his good thing is out there. Fantastic read!!

  2. Lynda

    March 10, 2012 at 11:48 am

    So wait, when that woman is getting dumped and cheated on your advice to her is to stop being so independent, change what she is doing and the problem is her. When a guy has the same problem you give him gentle encouragement and tell him to be himself. Hmmmmmmm.

  3. m.e. johnson

    March 10, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Will, your advice works for men and women. One thing bothers me: He doesn’t mention or maybe doesn’t realize his faults. Is he controlling? Elitist? Stingy? Messy/smelly? I watch the judge shows and the very one who says, “I don’t lie” is almost always caught in a lie. So I’d say when he’s making that list of who he wants, make a truthful list of who he is (or isn’t).

  4. Ella (the assistant)

    March 10, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    Lynda, sorry to speak for Will, but what I got from the posts is that they BOTH need to evaluate themselves. If she is sending “I don’t need you” signals then who is going to feel they are a compliment to her life? This guy is blindly looking for love, but what is that definition? What do you want from love?

    I’m sure Will will have his say, but that’s what I got from them both. I have made some lists, but they were incomplete, thus the nature of my relationships. :/

  5. Will Jones

    March 10, 2012 at 1:43 pm


    Nice catch! LOL.

    For those who didn’t read the other story, the link is here:

    Seriously though, the reason the advice is different is because the situation is different; SHE wanted RELATIONSHIP advice. HE wanted dating advice. HE said he couldn’t get a past one or two dates and, SHE said the problems came six or eight months into her relationship.

    It’s very importatn to understand that, when we start dating, we have to find someone who we are compatable with or we won’t get very far. Trying to change for someone you’ve just met hardly ever works out. BUT it’s equally important to understand that, when we’re nearly a year down the road, we (both people in the relationship) more than likely WILL have to change some of our behaviors for the relationship to grow. If you notice, the advice I gave them about finding the right person is very similar. Had he told me that his relationships were lasting a year or so, he would have gotten pretty much the same conversation.

    Of course, he was my FIRST male reader to write in, so I may have been just a little nicer than usual; I can’t take a chance on scaring off my male readers just yet! LOL. Thank you for reading… and watching me like a hawk! LOL

  6. Will Jones

    March 10, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    M.E.- That is GREAT advice. When I talk about these lists, I usually say, “Make sure it is a list of the person you NEED in your life… not just the person you WANT.”

    If a man feels weak, he may WANT a motherly type woman who can come in and take care of him, but he may NEED a woman who’ll push him to be more than he thinks he can be… which will make him a better man.

    And being honest is about the most important part of the list. Lying about who you are and what you bring to the table will accomplish nothing. How can you find a perfect match for yourself if you honestly have no idea who you really are?

    Know your strengths and look for someone who works well with them. Know your weaknesses and look for someone who helps shore up your weak side. And be willing and able to do the same thing for the person you find. It doesn’t guarantee a happily ever after, but it’s a hell of a good place to start.

    Thanks, M.E. I’m always so glad when you chime in! 🙂

  7. Dave M

    March 10, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    Will – love the great advice. The list is an excellent idea. I was that guy up there. Young, nice, quiet, always getting a couple dates with someone I liked but who didn’t want what I brought to the table – then. I found out years later some of those same women ended up with someone not dissimilar from me. They had wild oats to sow just like many men.
    But I also realized that when I stopped looking so damn hard she found me. I had a “type” that I thought was perfect for me. Then my wife and I started dating. The woman I thought was out of my league and more than beautiful dated and married me. Had I not taken stock of what I had – much like your list advice – I might have let her slip through my fingers. We get so hung up on “type” we often ignore what might be right there in front of us.

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