Career Vs. Commitment

by Marnie Macauley August 29, 2016


advice septCan career and relationship commitments co-exist? You bet. But it’s often a rocky road and requires being truthful with ourselves. Let’s look.


Marnie: I’m a 25-year-old woman with serious ambitions. Ever since college I’ve put career over relationships because a.) my career requires me to move every year or so, b.) I’m not that interested at the moment. My parents, their friends, and other family tell me I’m making a mistake and should join Jewish dating sites and settle down. They claim that in 10 years I’ll regret not having a family of my own if I don’t start getting serious now. What do you think?

– Single and Satisfied

MARNIE SAYS: I think you should light a match to those odious books, sites, and mags featuring dating lists, rules and commandments.

Listen peanut, it’s hard enough to get a career leg up without ripping your pantyhose on the jagged glass ceiling. Heck mamala, I know of no nobler pursuit than following your passion!

Despite the family, the friends, the fear and the mad magazoid-mumblings, we can’t always “have it all” – all the time. If your present mission requires you to keep your options open to commune with Arctic wolves one year and swampy crocs the next, or spend your days and nights buried in books while blissfully contemplating the fantastic possibilities of your craft, your choice to solo for now is not only sane, it is the decent thing to do! 


Dear Marnie: I have always been the brightest person in school and now in my profession. (My I.Q. is 155.) But,when I date, I find either the girl isn’t smart enough, or, if she is, I become very competitive. I have high ambitions and want a partner who can keep up, but I do want to find that special someone. Any suggestions?

– High Minded

MARNIE SAYS: Pookie, rip up those test scores. They’ve messed around with the rest of you. The total you. In sum, your I.Q. is both a blessing and a curse. You want to up your blessing ratio.

Somewhere along the way you were accorded genius status on all fronts. The truth is, even little Einsteins who have excess grey matter may lack emotional maturity. And you, friend, sound like such a victim. Here’s what I’d do:

1. You can’t love if your brain and maturity are miles apart. More, you can’t keep someone special if your ego is invested in competing, rather than loving. Lovers need to be partners. If you’re still looking to be Alpha Dog, you’re not ready.

2. Work as hard at developing your emotional skills as you do “proving” your smarts. Honey, as you grow, you’ll learn there are lots of brilliant people out there. Your intelligence is a gift, but even the most valuable gifts have to be used with judgment and compassion.

Quit hanging onto some I.Q. test you took in fifth grade. Relationships require you be willing to fail. You will learn to try, fail and try again. And that is equally important as any test score.


Dear Marnie: I am 38, female, with a great career, my own home and a satisfying social life with friends, many of whom are, like me, Modern Orthodox. One issue remains. I find it really difficult to date. I’m often deemed too aggressive, too assertive, too independent to be a reasonably good life partner.  I don’t want to play kid games. But on the other hand, I’m sick of losing out to women who are nubile, needy, with baggage I got rid of ages ago.

– Peri-menopausal on the Periphery

MARNIE SAYS: Come listen to a story about one peri-menopauser who blew a 45-year-old Daddy Warbucks off his bar stool. Ms. Brenda Pinchik was at a trendy watering hole when she spotted a Silver Fox with a nymphet younger than the bubbles in his Crystal. The legal-aged Lolita was giggling at him in “text-speak.” The lovely Ms. Pinchik, (who enhances her “nice-but-no beauty” looks by  designer resale frocks, a luscious “do,” and magnificent ’tude), waited for “woman-child” to go potty, and, with a wink in her voice, said, “A sophisticate like you must find it a challenge talking to a young blossom who thinks the Chicago Seven is a heavy metal band.”  Then she flashed him enough smoke to fog up his Saint Laurent shades. Silver Fox returned during intermission — alone — to get Ms. Pinchik’s number. She refused.

Think Pinchik. You don’t want the cradle-robbers or gray-groupies. They’re both half-baked. You want the good ones.

Tell yourself, “Tis my season!” Could you be a more perfect age? (OK, we’re all a perfect age.) But the 30s are glorious!

You have a sharp wit, my PM-er. Marnie’s First Rule of Magnetism: Know thy customer. Enough men like “smart.” Most like sensual. All hate “scared.” Dating is all about personal marketing. 

Find balance. Don’t down your I.Q. Raise your other lively assets. Look fetching. Put your best heels forward while telling a man about a fascinating stock that didn’t crash. That’s a turn on. So is sublime humor, and a little mischief.  Be you. Package well.

Offer up an emotional challenge with warmth.   Show ’em your sweet soul beneath the grit. Let yourself be a little unguarded, vulnerable, quixotic, and yes, mysterious. 


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