I stared at my niece, mind blank. She looked back at me expectantly, curious nut-brown eyes fringed by black lashes...just perfect to snare some unsuspecting male, I thought. Though she was a mite young. But I suppose better for such a question to be answered at a young age than at too late an age. Imagine wading through a river of testosterone, getting tumbled left and right and finally yelling out,"What am I looking for????"
I suppose she wasn't asking her mother because Mummy has an agenda.
So what should I say without upsetting the parents and yet giving her a safe guideline to follow?
After some fast thinking, this is what I ended up saying.
There is no one fool proof method but this is what you could look for.
a) He should be resourceful. He need not have all the answers but he should know how to find them.
b) He should be resilient. If everything is taken away from him, can he get up and start again?
c) He should be humble. Pride goeth before a fall.
d) He should have respect for his mother or for older women. That will tell you his attitude towards women and consequently, an idea of how he will treat you.
e) He should have a healthy respect for money and its friends (credit cards etc).
f) He should like children. Otherwise you will have problems when you have children of your own. However this can be overlooked if both of you do not plan to have children. Then he should like animals ;)
Niece began to look glassy-eyed at this point.
So I asked,"What do YOU want?"
She answered,"I just want Hugh Jackman."
Ooooo-kay. Well. All righty, you can have Hugh Jackman. He's on the XMen CDs.
Niece smiled and went off.