One night right before my bedtime of 8:30 in 4th grade my dad answered the home phone to receive a prank call, a boy was heavily breathing and laughing on the other end. After much detective work (checking caller ID) the mystery was solved, it was Tim, the cute boy in my class who also happened to live down the street.
The next day Tim and I decided we liked each other. That was that. Our love didn't last and eventually we ended things over some heated AIM chats but it was my first semi-boyfriend. I mean we touched knees when we sat in reading circle.
Now I'm 23 and I'm your pretty typical 20-something girl. I have played a lot of mind games, waited until he texted first, pretended not to care and for the most part I have felt like I have played by all the "rules of dating."
The harsh reality of this dating game we're all playing these days sucks, plain and simple. Here are the truths I have stumbled upon while dating in my 20s.
You don't just have to meet people on Tinder. Sometime in the two-year period, when I was in a relationship, people stopped approaching each other and started swiping at them on their phones. I guess not being single during Tinder’s heyday led me to never really take it seriously. Would I ever bring home a guy and be like, “Yeah, Mom and Dad, I met him on Tinder.” They’d be like, “Oh honey, what’s Tinder?” and I’d say, “Oh, it’s an app people use to hook up.” LOL. I’m not trying to say there aren’t any decent people on Tinder. Truthfully, I just don’t want to meet a guy who uses Tinder. I want someone who is a tried and true romantic, like me. I want someone who believes in love at first sight, who believes that fate does have your back.
Don't drop everything you're doing for someone who wouldn't drop everything for you. You're busy, do you remember all the things you said you were going to do? Go do it. Don't halt your life for someone who is in and out of your life. If someone steps in and compliments your life great, but make sure you have your own life first.
Actions speak louder than words. My mom used to say this all the time, that people prove themselves in their actions not in their words. It is proven to be true time and time again. Don't be fooled by someone's talk, make them walk the walk.
You do deserve better. This isn't something that people just say to make you feel better and step away from the ice cream carton, it's true. The right person or shoot just a nice person shouldn't make you feel low or insignificant. If someone is sucking the life from you, RUN.
Not only am I fortunate to have parents who are still married but I am fortunate that they have a beautiful and healthy relationship for my sister and I to look up to. They still do the little things and yes, there have been rocky times but more often than not there have been so many amazing times. I want that. I don't want the guy who makes me feel crazy. No, I want the guy who relentlessly pursues me.
Dating isn't like getting fast food. I think the problem is really the society that we live in. We live in a society that is all about instant gratification. If we want to watch a movie, we have it on with the click of a few buttons (Remember Blockbuster y'all?). If we want directions or an answer to a question, it takes only seconds. It is a modern day perk. It is a bad habit that has a tendency to seep into our love lives. But love isn't meant to be experienced in an instance, but for a lifetime.
Every time you date someone who isn't right for you, you're giving up your chance to meet someone who might be. So don't waste your time with the guys who don't treat you right or make you feel foolish.
You really don't have the power to change anyone. We all have this picture in our head of how every scenario should go, mostly with our relationships. Things hardly ever go the way we imagine them to go. The way to deal with this is to just think about what you can control and let go of what you can't. You can't control people, so don't let yourself get lost in the picture of what you wish they were.
We really don't have to settle. Scratch that, we absolutely shouldn't settle. All I'm saying is that love doesn't have to be compromised the way that everyone is making it out to be these days. You can find the one. You won't have to play the games and you won't question anything. I whole heartedly believe that God will place your person in your life when you're ready and you won't have to play the lame games.
- Tay xoxo