Dear Young, Single Women,
I know dating in this day and age is really difficult. There's so much to learn about yourself and about the people you encounter that it seems like it'll never end. It's a roller coaster ride of emotions and heartache. But what troubles me most is what I see so many women giving up in themselves, or putting up with from the guys they choose just to have a relationship.
I know it doesn't seem like it, but so many other women around you have gone through the same thing. Perhaps your own mother has given you advice on the matter. I know, who believes their mom? They're ancient and there's no way they know what you're going through, right? In reality they do, and you will come to learn that in time if you haven't already. But maybe you'll listen to me? It wasn't very long ago that I was in the whirlwind of the dating scene. I've had my fair share of relationships and I've seen ALL kinds of guys and their games. There were many lessons I learned that I would like the share with you now.
If you are in high school still, I urge you to not worry about finding a relationship now. There's so much more you can focus on and it's a lot more fun than breaking up and getting back together a hundred times. Sure, everyone around you may have a boyfriend. But what does it gain them? They hang out with the same person every weekend and generally ignore their friends. When they break up, what do they have to show for it? Not a whole lot. Now is the time to make friends, be stupid, join sports teams, choir, debate, whatever! Now is the time to make memories and impressions, not try and fall in "love." Which brings me to my next point, true love in high school is very rare. Please don't throw around the term "I love you." It should really mean something and if you say it to every person you go out with, it loses it's purpose. I promise you, there will come a day when you'll know what true love is. It's not what the movies show, it's certainly not what Stephenie Meyer writes, and it's not predictable. It'll happen when it happens. Don't waste your time with immature high school boys right now. There will be countless opportunities for dating after you graduate. Focus on the good things and stay close to your friends. You'll need them later on.
After high school life gets really complicated. Now you're no longer looking for someone to cuddle with during a movie or kiss at prom, you're looking for your soul mate - the person you'll spend the rest of your life with. This is where the heartache starts. This is where you really start to love people and learn what it is you want in a man. Be warned, it's tough. There are countless guys out there looking for the wrong things. There are many who know how to manipulate a girl who isn't strong in her standards. DON'T FALL FOR THESE ONES! If you find yourself making compromises that jeopardize your standards or your virtue, GET OUT! They're not worth it, no matter how well they know how to apologize. Let me tell you what I learned from my past relationships compared to Cory.
A guy who really loves and cares about you, will show it always. Will he be perfect? Nope. But he should seem pretty darn close. A guy who loves you will never put you down or try and make you change for him. He will never string you along and make you wait to decide he wants you while he looks for something better. He will show you respect and won't be afraid to introduce you to his friends and family. He will want to be around you and make you smile and laugh. When he does make mistakes, he'll apologize and should make a noticeable effort to do better. If a man really loves you, he won't have to convince you of that so you'll stick around. You should never want to leave. Also, he shouldn't have to be convinced to stay either. He should want to. If you have to force the relationship, it's wrong. The right guy won't be outrageously sweet one day and totally horrible the next. It will upset him to see you in pain. He won't want to cause that pain himself. Will he? On rare occasions but you'll know it was a mistake, not a habit. The right one will love you just the way you are.
Now, love isn't perfect. You won't be carried off into the sunset by your husband and never fight and always be tangled in the sheets "making love." That's a myth. You won't be able to throw fits and cry and they'll just hold you and do everything to make it better. That may happen sometimes, but not all the time. You won't cuddle every single night or always hold hands wherever you go. Ok, maybe some of you will, but odds are you won't. But that won't matter because when you find the right person, you'll always know that they love you regardless of your imperfections. You'll love them when they fart and burp or spend their whole time talking about cars. You'll know it's right because no matter what you go through, you'll come out together with a stronger relationship and a deeper understanding of one another. You'll fight one minute and the next be laughing about something totally stupid. You won't spend nights crying yourself to sleep in pain because they hurt you.
If you haven't found that person yet, don't worry. There's still plenty of time. Remember to never give up who you are for anyone else. Stay strong and date the guys who make you feel good in every aspect of life, not the ones who make you feel good in a couple of them. Hang in there. It'll get better. Always show respect for yourself and those you choose to date will too.