thinking about long-term relationships

Don’t Anticipate The End Of A Relationship Before It Even Starts

The fear of getting hurt is valid, but the amount of growth can outweigh the fear in the long term.

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If you're not going to marry him, you're probably going to break up with him. And if you don't see yourself marrying the person you are with, then what's the point of even being with them, right? Whenever you throw yourself into a relationship with someone, you risk the chance of heartbreak, and who the hell wants to go through that?

So, should we only date to marry?

Many people fear the end of a relationship before it even starts. As soon as they start to get attached to someone, they force themselves to pull away because they think this is a better option than risking a bad outcome. It's really scary to jump into something without knowing how it's going to turn out. Feeling vulnerable is intimidating, but a lot of times, it's necessary. I don't want to discount the fear of getting hurt because it's definitely valid, but I think the experience and benefits that could come from a relationship may outweigh the heartbreak in the end.

I don't think the sole purpose of going out with someone is to marry them. Different people can be important to you at different points in your life. They can help you grow as a person and realize things about yourself that you may not have learned had you never gone out with them. Not only that, but you can learn what kind of partner you are. You can learn what kind of person compliments you, what you need to get from a relationship, and what you're not willing to have in one.

Personally, as a 19-year-old college student, the very last thing on my mind is marriage. Call me crazy, but right now, I'm trying to make friends, have fun, and get good grades in school. I think a lot of fellow students would relate to this. That does not mean, however, that we cannot or should not be having relationships with significant others. Just to be clear, the single life is great. It's a ton of fun, and this article is not just meant to advocate dating someone. It's great to focus on yourself, and you should. All I'm saying is that it's important to trust yourself at the moment and see where something leads you. Try not to worry too much about what the future holds. If you are happy with someone else, allow yourself to be.

Isn't it okay to just have fun with someone without thinking so long term? You can create memories, have inside jokes, share laughs, have interesting conversations. If you enjoy someone's company, then I encourage you to see where it takes you. Why do we need to plan our whole lives out right now? Some good company may be all you need at this point in your life, and that's okay.

Yes, you learn from success, but I'd argue you learn more from pain, struggle, and heartbreak. Being in a relationship can be hard occasionally, and it can take work. Having both positive and negative experiences helps you grow as a person.

No doubt, the end of a relationship sucks. It can feel like the end of the world, but it's important to remember it's not. It's different for everyone, and it could take a long time to get over a breakup, but that doesn't mean you won't. In the end, I guarantee you'll be a better you because of it.

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An Open Letter To The Guy I'm Finally Getting Over

I think I'm ready to listen to the happy Taylor Swift songs again.
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I remember when all of this started. I couldn't have predicted you if I'd tried. I was so focused on myself that it took me a while to even admit I was interested in you. You were the one I didn't see coming, and then before long, you were the one I couldn't imagine leaving.

I'll be honest. I lied to myself and to everyone else for a long time. “We aren't anything serious," I'd say. “I'm just having fun." How stupid was I to think that I could resist getting caught up in you? Those months that we spent together were some of the best of my life. I didn't think it was possible for someone to make me laugh like you did, to make me feel the way you did. You brought out a side of me I had never seen before, and even though that scared me, I didn't want it to stop.

You had me so fooled.

One day, just like that, you were gone, and before I knew it I couldn't even recognize myself anymore. I couldn't imagine how someone I had given so much to could just leave like that and not even look back. The months after that was a string of waking up and losing you all over again, telling my friends I was fine one second and crying to them the next. And the second I started thinking I was OK, I saw you again. We talked, I cried, I yelled, you cried, you yelled, and for a couple of weeks I pretended that everything would be OK, and you really meant it this time and we would make it. But just like before, it wasn't real.

Realizing that took me longer than I'd like to admit, but this is what I need you to know: I'm moving on. Finally, after months of dialing your number just to talk myself out of it, I can say that I'm moving on. I won't listen to sad songs anymore. I won't look at our pictures and re-live the days we spent together. I'm erasing every trace of you. I'm smiling brighter, I'm laughing louder, and if it's the last thing I do, I swear I'll find something that's better than what we had.

That's not to say that your memory won't knock the breath out of me on a Tuesday afternoon when our song comes through my headphones. That's not to say that I won't remember the promises you made me and want to scream at myself for ever believing you. But the difference is that I'll recognize the pain in those memories, and then I'll set them down and walk away. Because I'm done carrying them with me and I'm done giving you that power over me.

So don't call me up someday when I've finally forgotten your laugh, don't think about me at all if you can help it. You lost that right when you made the choices you did. This isn't some stupid love story we'll tell later down the road about how we beat the odds and came through stronger on the other side. This is done, do you understand? I'm finally done.

Years from now I'll look back on the adventures we had and laugh at how crazy we were. I'll remember the fierce happiness I felt while we were running wild together and I'll be grateful for this because it has molded me in ways I can't begin to explain. Someday I'll tell my daughter about you and pray that she learns from my mistakes, and when that day comes I'll wonder where you are and genuinely wish you the kind of happiness that I will have found.

I know you'll never read this. But I'll read this, on those nights when it feels like everything is starting to fall apart. Again and again and again, I'll read this and remind myself of the promise I'm making at this very moment, to look forward and stop letting your memory dictate my happiness. Someone wise once said, “Suddenly you'll just know, that it's time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings." Well, I'm trusting that this was just one short chapter of my book, and this is me turning the page.

On to the next.

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I'm Scared To Ask Boys To Hang Out Because Society Has Led Me To Believe That I'll Seem Desperate

Ladies, would you ask a man out?

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Let's get this all out, I'm an anxious person. I suffer from "slight" anxiety, I wouldn't say it's horrible, but I deal with it. Nerves, it's something I'm quite familiar with in life, nerves and I are friends, actually. I've dealt with "slight" anxiety for years and it has stopped me from doing many things, which I regret. My "slight" anxiety has reappeared once again in the situation involving the male gender.

I'm not going to act as I've never talked to boys before because I have and it's not the scariness things for me, but when it involves boys I like, it's a whole new situation. Once I start developing any sort of feelings for boys I like, I turn into an anxious mess. That over-thinking, can't say the right words, too scared to embarrass myself anxious mess.

Well recently, that anxious feeling mess of myself has undoubtedly come back to life in some shape or form with this one particular boy. I think it's time to dive into Aby's semi-complicated by not really complicated sort of, just being dramatic love life. So, there's this boy that I've found attractive for quite a while, it's great to admire from afar. I always knew he was there, we were friendly, and nothing really came from that until recently.

In the past month or so this boy has been giving me the most mixed signals I've ever had in my lifetime. Do you like me? Do you not? Are you flirting with me? Ae you just being friendly? I've liked many boys in my time, but I've never thought so much about what this one particular boy and what his deal is? It's been over a month and I still can't figure him or it out, so I've been thinking of doing something every girl is somewhat afraid of, asking a boy to hang out.

I know, it sounds so small and sort of dumb, but doing something like this petrifies and turns me into a nervous, anxious mess. I'll be one hundred percent honest that I want a summer fling, someone to do all those fun things together without the commitment of a boyfriend. It's the beginning of summer, which means I need to start sorting my options out right now.

Here's the issue, I want to ask him to hang out, but I'm scared to ask because I don't want to seem desperate at all. Society has led us to believe that men should be asking girls out instead of vice-versa. In all honesty, it's a bit messed up, but I've been led to believe that "guys ask girls out". So, I've always waited to be asked out because that's what society has taught me and that's what I've allowed.

Now, I'm preparing myself to ask this boy to hang out and I'm getting quite anxious, all the possibilities. What if he doesn't like me? Thinks I'm ugly? Figures out that I can't drive? Hates me? Thinks I'm annoying, oh gosh, the endless possibilities. One thing I know is that I have to try, so I'm going to be bold and ask him to hang out.

It's scary, I'm scared, but I'll never know if I don't try, which is true. Life is filled with mysteries and you won't know if you don't look, right? So, I'm going to get over my anxiety and just try, wish me luck in attempting to ask this boy to hang out.

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