I’ve been told countless times that I should date older, and ironically, I generally really like older guys. Not much older, but someone 3-4 years older than me was always my type. My last two relationships, however, were with guys about a year or two younger than me. I didn’t think much of it, how much difference could a year make? But my head and heart seemed to be in a very different place than theirs. Yet time after time, I convince myself we are on the same page. I want to believe it, so I find the small reasons that justify my assumptions, but each time I do this I end up hurting myself.
I very much know what I want in and from a relationship, and I guess that is scary, especially for my early twenties. Personally, I don’t go into relationships thinking it could be my forever. I learned to stop setting up that expectation, but the second I start falling in love and a guy professes the same sentiment something in my mind clicks. I suddenly think that maybe this is the love I always wanted. Once in love, I can’t stop myself from expressing it. Maybe I would express it too much, but how can you slow down love when you’re falling? An object will stay in motion unless stopped by something, so I keep falling until I hit a wall. I always say I have perfected dating, but I don’t know what it’s like to grow in a relationship. I have this horrible habit of losing myself because I get so wrapped up in the person I fall in love with. They absorb me like quicksand, or as they say in How To Be Single, dicksand.
If I was moving too fast for someone I wish they would have the maturity to say to me that they feel unwarranted pressure to be something they are not ready for. I only had one guy do that, and I was too immature to listen. Shay didn’t give me any warning about his change of feelings, so if he was feeling pressured I wish he would have told me. I would have figured a way to slow down without crashing. At least I would have liked the opportunity to at least try. But maybe that was too much to expect from someone who was 22 and in their first relationship.
I don’t think it’s bad to know what I want in a relationship. I want someone who loves me without judgment, who cares for me, and is selfless. I have seen this kind of love with my parents, and their love has outlived my own life. They are the example I have come to know, and they are the type of love I want. I know it takes time to get there, but so far no one has been patient enough to reach that point with me. I’m starting to wonder if I’m crazy and don’t even realize it! I try to never apply this pressure, but my heart is so big and when it finds someone it loves it wants them to know. I don’t know how to stop it. Generally I won’t even let myself feel it unless the other person does, so I find it so unfair when they love and get upset when I love back. Do I have an ugly love?
I suppose what I struggle the most with is lowering my expectations, but where is the line between knowing what you deserve and settling? How do I expect less from people when I am ready to give in return what it is I want from them? Do I date someone in the hope that it becomes the relationship I know it could be, or do I just find someone who is as mature as I want them to be? These are serious questions that I wish I knew how to answer, but maybe that’s what love is. A series of questions that remain unanswered until you find someone that makes them all make sense.