By Kari Travis | Echo
I live by something I like to call the "curb list."
The premise is simple. If a guy I am dating fails to meet any criterion on the list, he gets kicked to the curb. These criteria aren't forgiving, either. If he fails to open doors for me, he gets kicked to the curb. If he fails to listen as much as he talks, he gets kicked to the curb. If he doesn't pay for the occasional meal out, he gets kicked to the curb.
It's intense, I know. Some might even say it's unreasonable. But with all this "kicking to the curb" you may see happening, there is one, major catch.
Every criterion on my list is something I require, not only of a significant other, but also of myself.
Yes, you read that correctly. I expect to open doors, listen as much as I talk, (if not more so), and pay for meals just as much as any gentleman I date.
Before you go raising your eyebrows or bristling against a feminist lecture-please read on. There is no hidden agenda to this article. In fact, that's kind of the point.
As you can see by the extremely traditional expectations on my curb list, I am very welcoming toward gentlemanly behavior. But that doesn't mean I don't want to reciprocate. And that's why I ask one thing of the men and women who are reading this article.
Could we please stop treating well-mannered social behavior as something that is expected only of males? Quite frankly, it's getting old.
Here's an example. Whenever I'm out and about, I run into the ever-present game "is the guy going to open the door?" And believe me, it turns into quite the dance. I've seen doors slammed in my face. I've seen guys hold a door open when I am still 60 seconds from the entrance-I've even experienced the classic double-door entrance a time or two.
But why do these things matter so much to me?
I've pondered this question a lot, and if I'm honest with myself, there is hardly a rational reason for me to dislike a guy specifically because he fails to open a door for me. Actually, I feel the same dislike when a girl lets a door slam in my face. This can mean only one thing.
Such behavior does make me feel devalued, not necessarily as a female, but rather as a human being.
And that's the bottom line. It's not about being a gentleman, or a lady. It's about being a considerate human being who thinks through every action and questions the impact his or her behavior may have on others.
That's why I hold myself to my own curb list. Because holding open doors, listening carefully, and paying for the occasional meal are simple ways to say, "Hey, you might be having a bad day, but someone still cares that you exist."
Granted, it's hard to monitor my own track record. Let's see, how am I doing with my criteria? Oh dear, I've been talking too much, haven't I? Okay, I'll be quiet now and listen.