"There are as many loves as there are hearts." - Leo Tolstoy

Everyone has an opinion about relationships. Period.

The infinite complexities of love and relationships cannot be understood with simplistic, singular advice. As a woman, I am constantly bombarded with tips and tricks for changing my appearance for a man, how to be more attractive for a man, what I can do to get him to like me--no one really markets tips for genuine self-love and wellbeing while you're in the dating world. And if they do, it's because you're supposed to be completely in love with your own life to be more attractive to men. What kind of bullsh*t is that? Don't try to sell me on that idea.

Believe me, I've tried to read up on relationships and I found myself trapped by all the wrong questions.

We aren't asked to love ourselves for the sake of loving ourselves, but for bettering ourselves for men.

We aren't asked to search for enjoyment in all the people we come across, but rather how we can 'get him.'

We are pushed into traps to settle for men who aren't good for us.

We are pushed to accept less than we deserve.

All because we tend to ask ourselves the wrong questions--or rather, sources of relationship advice, whether that be friends or magazines, often frame advice in terms of "If you do A, then B will happen." Doesn't work like that. Everything becomes a mess when you lose your bearings in relationships and lose sight of what you really want or need. That tends to happen when relationship advice tends to be singular and goal-oriented. Good advice helps you gain some perspective and the ability to look inwards, into your heart and mind, and figure out on your own what you need to do.

There are thousands of articles about how to get him to chase you or how to get him to text you back, but not as many entitled texting is stupid and not as important as you think it is so stop worrying about everything and go on a damn date already. And why are women supposed to be so passive and wait for him to text first? Apparently, we're supposed to succumb to the predator-prey dynamic and follow all these ridiculous rules--it's become so ridiculous it's hard to know what people mean when they do things. For example, when someone doesn't text you for a couple of days: are they not interested anymore? are they going to ghost you? are they trying not to seem too eager? Well, that's a headache.

Do what you must do in a relationship, whatever that means to you. You don't necessarily have to do the thing that keeps you in a relationship with someone because following your own compass can lead you in the direction of someone who's more compatible with you. There isn't a book with all the right things to do that extend to a universal limit, for all women or all men or for everyone else. No one knows what's right for your love life--there is no one right. Make sure when you look for relationship advice, you're asking the right questions to the right people, but that really you're the one to come up with the answer for yourself.