But before I can let myself fall—or let you in—there are some things I need.
There are some things I would like too, but the needs are non-negotiable.
I need to be able to trust you. And while the trusting is something I have to master, I do need your help with that. I need you to be trustworthy. I have been betrayed before, so there can be no wobbles in your trustworthiness—I need it to be absolute.
I would like you to need me. When something is wrong, I would like to be the first person you turn to for support. The person you most turn to. I would like you to find comfort in my presence and solace in my perspective and words.
And I need you to be that person for me. The one I turn to without question.
I need you to show me who you really are, not a watered down version whom you think might be more liked and accepted by others. I would like to know that the person you are with me is completely unmasked and unafraid to be, simply, you.
And I need to feel safe to do the same with you. That means no judgement—just open curiosity.
I would like you to love my cat. But if that’s too much, I need you to be kind to her. She has been my constant companion for thirteen years and she has seen other men come and go—she may be miffed at your continuous presence in our lives, so be kind to her.
In fact, I would like kindness and compassion to be traits that shine out of you—reminding me to extend loving compassion to others on the days when I find this difficult.
I would like it if you cooked. I can cook, but it can be hit and miss. I’d like for us to share that, rather than depend on my efforts for our daily sustenance.
I need you to be patient and understanding with me as I work through my fears.
I would like you to be honest with me about your own fears, so that I can recognise them when they arise and support you in whatever way you need.
I would like you to be good with money. I am working on becoming a better manager of money and it would be helpful to have a partner who can support those efforts.
I need you to be fully present with me when we’re together—not here in body, but somewhere else in mind. I will be fully present with you.
I need you to be attentive and I would like you to be affectionate. Touchy-feely-affectionate. Lots-of-hugs-and-kisses-affectionate.
I need there to be chemistry—I need to connect physically as much as mentally and emotionally. Yes, I want companionship, but I need more than that too. And I want to know that you desire me.
I would like you to be fit—physically, mentally and emotionally. I could do with a fitness buddy to help keep me on track.
I would like you to be a lover of life, an adventurer at heart. To see beauty all around you. To help others (me, for example) to see it too on the days when we can only see sadness and darkness.
We need to laugh together. And cry together. But more laughter please.
I want us to revel in one another, every day. On the days when we spend “quality time” together that draws us close. And on the mundane days that are filled with chores—I want to appreciate you for the little things and I need you to appreciate me.
I want to feel special to you, without feeling I must be—in some extraordinary way—special to earn that place in your heart.
I want to feel that it’s okay to need these things from you. And I want to feel able to meet your needs.
I need to meet you, because I want to share the rest of my adventure with you.