Mate Selection Process

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Why Do We Pick The People That We Do And Why Do We Make Them Our Mates?

By Paul J. Hannig, Ph.D.

   1.   What unconscious processes cause us to become attracted to a certain type of
        person at a given point in our lives? Have you ever wondered about this? Why
        would you become attracted to someone who later turned out to be insane or a drug
        addict, rat, bum, etc? Why would you, at another given point in your life, choose to
        relate to someone who you would treat well and would treat you well?

   2.   For a single person: how do you go about selecting a mate?

   3.   How do your parents still affect you by the kind of mates that you select?

   4.   How has your mother's communication affected you in terms of the physical type that
        is attractive to you?

   5.   How has your mother's communication and ideas affect the emotional types that
        have attracted you?

   6.   Are you attracted to him/her because he/she makes you feel special, while you didn't
        feel special to one or both of your parents?

   7.   Visually, what do you find attractive in your mate? What is the emotional attraction?

   8.   Why are you attracted to a particular type and why that type?

   9.   What circumstances do you think were important in patterning your mate selection?

   10. How important was the social milieu at that particular point when selecting a mate?

   11. What stereotype were you operating out of? What images?

   12. What was happening in your life when you chose that particular person?

   13. What precipitating factors/events were instrumental in getting you involved with

   14. What undesirable/desirable traits did you parents emphasize that may have effected
       your mate selection?

   15. Did either one or both of your parents ever discuss with you the type of person and
       the qualities to look for in a mate or was it left up to chance and unconscious
       process? Discuss.

Learning to Enhance Intimacy:

   1. Sit down with partner and talk as honestly as possible about your sex life.

   2. Sit down and discuss with your partner how you came to choose to be involved with
      one another. What are the underlying forces that draw you together?

   3. Communicate about sex every day.

   4. Opening to Sharing - ask for what you need for greater pleasure.

Do not complete this section until you have completed the above assignments:

   1. What have you learned about yourself, your needs and your preferences based on
      past experiences?

         (Examples: "I need a mate that sexually turns me on, is assertive and responsive to
me. I need a mate that I can trust, admire, love and respect, who will be my best friend. This
person has to be lively, bright, ambitious, industrious and willing to cooperate in building a
life. I don't want a stubborn, argumentative, defensive, negative, messed up person. I need
loyalty, affection, faithfulness, openness, honesty and a great
sense of humor and play.")

                                                     PsychotherapyHELP *

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