We often fantasize about what our ideal relationships and what we want, but how many of us discuss what we absolutely need from a partner? The things we want are negotiable, but the things we need are mandatory.

For me personally, I need:

Honesty – I’ve had my fill of information being left out, hidden, and a woman who lied so much I don’t truly know her real name.

Directness – I do not have time for guessing games or to assume. Say what you mean, mean what you say, because I will not just know. All women are not the same and every scenario is not the same. Give it to me straight, spell it out for me.

Understanding – I’m busy, I’m not perfect, I’m a work in progress and sometimes I’m hard to deal with. I’m less than ideal sometimes. I got a few flaws and some growing to do. I’m positive you are, too, so deal with it or break out.

Commitment – I don’t need anyone who’s always looking for the exits or an excuse to exit. My life is not and will not be a revolving door and you will not have one foot in and one foot out; you‘re either all the way in or all the way out.

Reciprocity  – I absolutely refuse to ever be in a relationship where I give more than I receive and where I don’t get as good as I give. We will both sacrifice, will cater to and spoil each other.  I will not be in a relationship without equality ever again. We will have an equal stake in this relationship, period.

Without all of those five things, it’s a non-starter for me.

I asked a few gentlemen what qualities were absolutely necessary for their next relationships. Here were the most popular answers, and there will definitely be some surprises.



Patience – This was the absolute most common answer. This one should be self-explanatory but apparently, it’s not. Men are tired of women who want it all at once or upfront; even when they are still under construction themselves. Patience is a two-way street, and men are openly expressing that they need it in relationships. We are dealing with a generation that wants everything quick and now without the process. If you feel like you’ve already been patient, then maybe it’s what you’re patient about that needs to be examined.

Adventurousness – The same way women despise being bored, men hate predictability and routine. There’s a saying in jail that you can do the time, it’s the routine that kills you. Men are looking for someone to explore and discover with. Be more uninhibited, more open-minded and a little less cautious sometimes. We need laughter, fun and stimulation.

Best Friend – Men don’t just want a lover– they want a friend. We want someone we can hang out with, but also someone we know has our back and best interest at heart and in mind. We want someone we can trust. This is what men mean when they talk about loyalty. But men also want someone they enjoy talking to and someone who enjoys talking to them.

Contrary to popular belief, we don’t just want someone to have sex with.

Consistency – We often hear women talk about men not being consistent but there has been a growing chorus of men speaking out about women’s inconsistencies in relationships. So, ladies, this might have to be a “practice what you preach” area or a “fairly assess the situation” area. Consistency is not something you practice in just one area of your life; it’s practiced across the board. Quite frankly, a lot of men are confused. We don’t know what women want, what they stand for or what they mean anymore because the bar keeps moving.

Vulnerability – Emotionally unavailable or defensive women are extremely hard to deal with. It is difficult to break through a wall only to be met with another wall because they have trust issues. At some point you have to take your armor off and just be human instead of a war machine on high alert.

Thick Skin – Men like women who are tough but not impenetrable. This means we want someone we can have open honest communication with, but not someone whose feelings are easily hurt and everything is taken to heart. We don’t want to have to proceed with extreme caution or walk on eggshells. On occasion, we want to joke or be sarcastic, and we need someone who can throw it right back. I know you’re thinking you just asked us to drop our defenses, but just like you ask from us it’s about balance. Not too strong and not too weak.

Sexual Liberation – To put it honestly, don’t be a prude. You don’t have to be a full-fledged porn star, but we like to have fun, interesting sex lives. Take being adventurous and apply it to the bedroom. Be creative and willing to explore. One of a man’s worse fears is that they will settle down and have to resign themselves to infrequent, sporadic and routine sex; essentially not having a sex life at all.

Complementary – We want women who make us whole, encourages and inspires us and hold us accountable, but we don’t want to be with someone who thinks they’re our mother, a drill sergeant, a dictator or someone who believes they are more important than us. We can both shine without dimming the other’s light.

Ladies, this is just a sampling of things men said, and it was like pulling teeth to get men to open up and say these things because men don’t usually open up and have these kinds of open honest conversations with each other. But hopefully it helps us understand each other just a little more, and by men saying it out loud, it helps us adjust our actions as we stroll through the flowers of life looking for a mate.



Written By: Johnny Brownlee II

Follow Johnny on Instagram: @slin_k_polymath


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