Recently a client, Susan, sat in my office, bewildered. She’d been divorced for five years, and built an incredibly successful business, and loves the family she built with her two tween daughters. She’s upbeat, fun to be around, can talk about world affairs and sports — and happens to be stunningly beautiful.
“I’d love to start dating, but I’m convinced there are no good guys out there at this stage — at least none that are interested in me,” Susan said, tears welling up. “If I meet a man who is what I am looking for: successful, kind, smart, interesting, I worry I will intimidate him.
I wasn’t surprised this gorgeous, accomplished and charming woman was so negative about dating.
Many affluent women are — and often with good reason.
There are so many horror stories (possibly the one you lived through yourself!) about high-net-worth women striking out in romance. Common challenges include:
I only attract men that are interested in my money — not me as a woman. Or worse, any many interested in me might be a con artist who will take advantage of me.
My success and financial independence scares men, especially successful ones.
Money has always been a source of stress and arguments in my relationships.
I feel like I have a lot to offer a man, but worry there are too few men who are my age/financial/professional/educational peers.
Underneath each of these fears I also hear: I deeply crave a romantic partner, but I’m so afraid of being hurt — and alone.
These stories resonate deeply with me. Not only are these all universal fears and desires — but they are my fears and desires. I’m not-so-far outside of a long marriage that began when I was in college. Like many of my clients, I was the primary breadwinner in my marriage, and have felt exploited and used for my success. As much as I thrill in dating in this new stage of life, I have worked through (and who am I kidding — working through!) my own hang-ups around romance and money.
But through my own research, and working with scores of successful single women, here is what I know to be true:
When it comes to love and romance, there are few guarantees. But here are several:
There is infinite love in the universe, on this continent, and in your town! A large investment portfolio is no match for the power of infinite love.
What you believe becomes your truth. If you believe there are no good men available to you, that becomes your reality — one you have the power to change.
In my opinion, on a purely practical level, successful, interesting and kind men who are ready for a romantic partnership want a woman who is their peer in every way. Keep in mind: some successful men may have dealt with significant others that were interested in their money first. A woman who is financially free, one without a financial agenda in dating, is so alluring to a successful man. If you are interested in him, he knows it is for far more than his wallet. You are interested in him as a man, in connecting on an emotional and intellectual level. There is nothing more intoxicating to him — or, to you for that matter.
It may take some time and, practice to be truly ready to welcome a loving partnership with the right person. In the meantime, dating at this stage of life can be an amazing adventure, one filled with fun experiences meeting new and fascinating people. Most importantly, it is also a time to continue to build whatever kind of life you dream of — whether building your career or business, growing your family in a way that makes you a proud and happy mom, developing friendships and other relationships, travel, creative pursuits and philanthropy.