Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Dating the player

You know who I'm talking about.

A guy who:

(1) doesn't understand the meaning of relationship
(2) is in full reproductive mode (just in it for the physical)
(3) is very good at making girls think he is into them (also very proficient at breaking said girl's hearts)
(4) often "dates" several girls at once (girls are often unaware of each other)

Now, there are guys who date several women, but are actually really into the girls they are taking out. This post is not about them.

These are the guys who date just to date. Or to "get some". They are rarely single for long, and seem to have a different girl on their arm every month. Or even every week. Occasionally, they might get involved in something serious, but their week is a total loss if they don't have at least one date. They seem to ask everyone out around you.

Except you.

So you think "Why? What's wrong with me? If we're friends and he's asking everyone else out, why not me?"

It's probably because you're too good for him. And he knows it. While he feigns wanting to be serious and settle down, when it comes to someone who is actually worth settling down for, he avoids it at all costs.

Really, you're better off for it. Do you really want to date someone who has kissed 5 other girls in your ward just this month? No, of course not.

So, even if he's cute, charming, and everything you want in eye candy, he's just that. Eye candy. You want someone with staying power.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Thing About Advice

We've all been given advice. "You'll find a husband if . . ." "Shouldn't you be . . .?" "Why don't you try . . .?"

That's all well and good, but honestly? Most of it is a load of crap.

No one really knows what you need to do about finding a mate except for you. And since we here believe in Him, the Lord. Those close to you, like family or real friends, may have some ideas, but only you really know you. Others who have direct stewardship for you, like your father or your bishop, can give you council on the matter, as directed by Heavenly Father, but no one else can give you any 100% useful advice.

Now, there are things that should apply to everyone - Take care of yourself, be the best you that you can be (physically, mentally, spiritually), be worthy of your goals (i.e. If you want to have a temple marriage, be worthy of the temple.), and maybe a handful of other things.

Otherwise, no one really knows. You can change something that one ex-boyfriend didn't like about you, say, your affinity for all things purple, but that may be the thing that seals with the deal with the man you're supposed to marry. Would it help if you went to more ward activities? Maybe, but if your ward activity is, for instance, ice skating, and you hate ice skating, wouldn't you rather meet someone when you're having a great time?

So, all advice really should be taken with a grain of salt. Even what you read here. We all have things about us that we need to improve, so if you hear something that sounds like it could apply to your life, go ahead. But, never, ever, do something just because someone who doesn't (or even does) know you said you should.

Monday, January 26, 2009


There is part of me that thinks I shouldn't be comparing guys to each other so much. That's the part of me that feels sorry for the guys that just really weren't that great. The other part of me thinks that if we don't compare them to each other, how will we know which one is better for us? So compare away I say! And I have been. And the balance is definitely falling in favor of one of them over any combination of the rest of them, almost to the point where I have to fight being mad at those guys for wasting my time, and at myself for letting them waste my time. It's kind of interesting how you can think something is real good until you have something that isn't even in the same league to compare it to.

I still talk with an old boyfriend I had many years ago. He said that his wife this evening had pulled out her journals from before they were married and was reading him what she'd written about him on different occasions. I started wondering what I'd written about him at those same times. Turns out, not much. He was barely mentioned by name every six months or so, and then it was more of a passing reference.

Now compare that to my journal entries now. Not only am I writing much more regularly (weekly), but Kitt is mentioned each week, and it is more than just a passing reference. In fact, it almost seems strange if I'm writing and he hasn't been mentioned yet. Today's whole two page entry was all about him. Kitt wins hands down on that comparison.

Next. There have been many times where Kitt will email me something simple during the day while we're both at work and it will just make me smile. And so I'll tell people about it. I've lost track of how many times I've randomly thrown into an instant message with someone, "Kitt makes me smile." Like this week I was telling him about the drunk guy at the bus stop in the morning who thought I looked good. He said he'd tell me when he saw me that night what a sober guy with most of his faculties thought of how I looked. He frequently does little things like that and I can't help but smile. I don't recall any other guy I have known/dated who has done that for me, ever.

And then I think about the conversations I've had with various guys over the years. There have been some guys who have been pretty good conversationalists, but the topics never went too deep or got too involved. I remember a date with one guy where every five minutes or so he'd said everything he wanted to on that topic and if I didn't come up with a new topic we would've sat there in silence - him, not so good with the conversation. There was one guy who always assumed he knew what my stance on an issue was even though my words and actions indicated otherwise. And there have been a few who, while nice people, bored me simply because they couldn't keep up with my head. With others it can get to the point where I just get frustrated with the conversation because I'm just not being heard.

But with Kitt, we talk for hours, for days, for years, and I have not once been frustrated with a conversation with him. I have not once felt like I was being belittled or not heard. My insights are appreciated. My questions are validated. My views are respectfully challenged. And my humor is understood.

There are even more aspects I could look at. But is there really any comparison? It just doesn't seem like it.

It might have taken me a while to get it right, but it looks like when I do get it right, I get it very right.

Friday, January 23, 2009

By any other name

I've always gone by nicknames. My family has one main one for me, and several derivatives thereof. I was so well known by one in high school that it's on my class ring, and I made sure it was on the ballot when I ran for student government (since name recognition and publicity are everything). Even now, years later, if I run into someone from high school and they don't recognize me right away, I reintroduce my self as "Jinxie. Or HighSchoolNickname." It's almost always immediately followed by "Oh yeah! That's right! Hi!" I have a handful of friends that probably don't even remember my real name, and instead call me by a nickname I've gone by since college.

To me, nicknames are usually a way of being friendly, a way of saying "I like you! Be my friend!", or a term of endearment.

One nickname I can't always wrap my head around is when someone calls me by my last name. It's weird sometimes because my brother always went by that in high school. Our sister was often called Lastname's Little Sister, and I always went by my own name or the aforementioned nickname. I'm getting used to it as my moniker, as I have a group of friends who have taken to calling me by it. Only one other person in our group is also called by her last name, but it's kind of out necessity as we have another person with her same first name.

Yesterday, a guy unaffiliated with this other group called my by a variation of my last name, and I quite liked it, even if just for its originality. However, it got me thinking that if a guy calls you by your last name, it is a friendly term of endearment, but is it also a way for saying that you're just one of the guys?

I like having guy friends, a lot, but I don't want to be "just one of the guys". I will always secretly hope they will realize that I'm also a girl, and quite a pretty one at that and that they should just ask me out already.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Last week I was talking to a friend I haven't seen in a long time. We were going to be working on a project together but I told her I couldn't for the next two days because I had plans that night and the next day. It was when I tried to explain those plans that I suddenly found myself hesitating. What do I call this guy? What is he to me? For those who I talk to regularly I just use his name and they know exactly who/what I am talking about, including just how weird the relationship is at times. But what do I say to everyone else? I found myself hesitating to refer to him as a boyfriend, because that really didn't explain it at all to my mind. I'm pretty sure I just used his name in that conversation and figured she was smart and could decide what she wanted about it.

But it got me thinking.

For all the different types and stages of relationships I myself have been in, not to mention the countless types and stages everyone else on the planet has experienced, we seem to have woefully few number of words to describe them. Basically you are either friends, boyfriend/girlfriend, engaged, or married. But it seems to me that there is just so much that happens between friend and boyfriend/girlfriend and then between boyfriend/girlfriend and engaged that we could use several more terms there in the middle.

So I asked him what he calls me when he's talking to other people. Just because I was curious, not because I was expecting anything deep, but because I was curious is all. Part of my curiosity is because of how we both just automatically change how we act depending on the location we are in. On dates we are always holding hands or he has his arm around me. At church he just barely put his arm around me this month. But none of that seemed strange or out of place, it's just how it was, and I was fine with it. But what do you call that?

Ask and ye shall receive.

It turned into a deeper conversation than my surface level curiosity. We talked about our goals and our concerns. And, in the end, he's going to call me his girlfriend and I'm going to call him my boyfriend and we are officially exclusively dating.

Now I'm curious how that is going to change things. Probably changes what I should do for Valentine's day huh?

Monday, January 19, 2009

You mean I have to do it again?

I got through Christmas and a birthday seemingly in good standing. The funny gifts were laughed at, the meaningful gifts seemed to be appreciated.

But there are still things to worry about. In less than a month there is the holiday known as Valentine's day. What am I supposed to do for that one? Especially if things seem to be changing a bit quicker now.

And while we are on the subject (we really aren't but I felt like mentioning it anyway), why do I have such a problem with the term "boyfriend"? I can tell people we are dating, but it makes me pause almost every time I have to define what he is to me in just one word like that. That term just really doesn't explain at all what I've got going on here.

Also, I still find it real funny when I find out people are discussing my love life. You'd think there would be more exciting things in this world to talk about then my love life. But apparently some people are just that dull. Oddly, this generally happens at church.

Friday, January 16, 2009

What to do (part 1 of many)

We mentioned some things that a man would be wise to not do, ever. But good behavior modification programs do more than just remove undesirable behaviors, they must replace those undesirable ones with more desirable ones. So here is an introductory list of things that would be viewed as desirable.

Dress appropriately! Jinxie already said some great things about this, so I'll just refer you there. I'd also be willing to bet that Trixie has a few things on that topic as well.

Hold doors. There are those I have heard who say that holding a door for a woman tells her that she can't do it herself. I have never, ever, in my life felt like that was what getting my door meant. If I am driving the car we are in, I will get myself in and out of the car. Otherwise, I'm going to sit in the car until the man get the door for me. I also expect the man to open the door when we are getting in the car. As well as doors to where we are going. The fewer doors I touch on a date, the better things will go.

Walk on the road side. This seems like something nobody ever talks about. This practice dates back a long time to when roads were mud and it was to prevent the lady from getting splashed with mud. (I'm totally making that up, but it sounds completely plausible, does it not?). For me, in this day and age, it means the man wants to be between me and danger. It is a very small thing, but for me it is huge! Especially since it is something so few people ever mention. If the man knows about that one, it means to me that he really does know how to be a gentleman.

There are many other desirable behaviors, but taking a few at a time and not getting overwhelmed is generally better.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Song Remembers When

Do you ever have those songs that just take you back to some memory? Even if the song wasn't a part of the memory at first? Or do you have those songs that just seem to capture your feelings at the time so perfectly it's like they took the song from your own heart?

I remember I was driving home from class almost two years ago and a song came on the radio ("Strawberry Wine" by Deana Carter) and I couldn't breathe. It was like the song had reached down inside me and pulled out, something. The bittersweet that it pulled up. And the lines: Is it really him or the loss of my innocence I've been missing so much. Well, they just shouldn't play songs like that when I'm driving on the freeway.

But maybe I needed that song. Maybe I needed it to reach down and pull out whatever it was it did so I could face it, and then cast it away. Because when I heard it on the radio the other day, I remember it having that effect on me once, but the feelings it pulled up then aren't there any more. And I definitely don't miss him any more (and that's a whole other story too).

The song right after "Strawberry Wine" the other day was another one of those ones that grabs things down deep inside me, or at least it was one of those. "Don't Make Me" by Blake Shelton. The chorus on that one used to really get me: Baby I love you, Don't wanna lose you, Don't make me let you go. Took such a long time, For me to find you, Don't make me let you go. Yet as I started to sing along with it this time, I was fine. I think in the past it was because it had seemed like it had taken such a long time to find someone I wanted and I was so afraid they wouldn't want me. But that doesn't worry me any more. There was a time when I felt I could definitely relate to this song, when it was singing the fears and worries of my heart. But it isn't any more.

So maybe "The Song Remembers When" (by Trisha Yearwood), but I don't have to carry those memories with me any more.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Forgiving others

In this life, provided we actually live it and not just float through it, we're bound to get hurt. The more we let someone into our lives, the more they can hurt us. As there is opposition in all things, and we must experience one thing to recognize its opposite, if we want to experience true bliss and happiness at some point, we also need to experience hell and sadness.

In my experience, the times I have felt the most hurt have been because of the actions of another person. I have a very short list of people, okay, guys, who have hurt me so deeply that they are no longer part of my life. Sometimes, I remember the good times I had with them and I miss them so much I feel a different kind of hurt, but it turns out I'm really missing the person they were when I first let them into my life, not the person they turned out to be.

Then, of course, I wonder what I'd do if I ran into them? Would we exchange pleasantries and pretend like nothing ever happened? (Incidentally, for one of these guys, the answer is yes.) Would I really like to just yell and scream and punch them? (Depends on the day, I suppose.)

Regardless of how deep the hurt, or when, or even what, we've been commanded to forgive others. And not just others. Everyone. All people. Even the rude person who cut us off on the freeway that we don't even know. As I mentioned in the beginning, I'm not always very good at it. Not only do I not always forgive very easily, sometimes I don't even want to. I think to myself that this person doesn't even deserve my charity or forgiveness so why should I give it to them? They aren't around anymore, so how would they even know?

They wouldn't, most likely. But I would. And Heavenly Father would.

One of these guys actually emailed me one day to ask me for my forgiveness, whenever I was willing to give it. At the time, it felt compulsory, like I was just a step on his road to repentance, and not a person who he once cared deeply for. He's tried to contact me a couple times since then, but I haven't been ready to let him back in.

Another of the guys has never admitted he did anything wrong.

I do, however, remember the day I forgave the first guy who really, really hurt me. Unlike the other two, we were actually officially dating when the hurt occurred. In fact, we were practically engaged. And then, one warm early summer evening, we weren't anymore.

More than two years later, I was sitting in a Relief Society class, drifting between listening to the lesson and getting lost in my own thoughts. The lesson might have been on repentance or forgiveness, but I don't remember. All I remember is that the thought came to me, clear as day - I forgive That Guy. And I did. I really did. I've never forgotten what happened (down to even the shoes I was wearing that night), but I have forgiven him.

Sometimes I check with myself, when I find myself thinking of him, could I really see him one day and say that I only the best of feelings exist for this person?

Yes, actually, I can.

There would be some nostalgia there. We'd both know that something had happened between us. We'd both know that we'd learned something from that relationship and that we'd both done some things caused it to fail, but that we were okay with that fact that it was over, and that we'd both made peace with the unfortunate way that it ended. Life goes on. I truly recognize certain blessings that have come because I didn't marry him.

The other guys? I'm not sure I'm ready. It's probably too much to ask that I try to forgive them both at the same time, but I should try. As for my attitude of not even wanting to, I can ask Heavenly Father for His help. Before I ask Him to help me forgive these guys, I can ask Him to help me want to.

Additionally, to forgive someone does not mean that I have to let them back into my life as fully as they were before. Because I'm human, I'll never entirely forget. The pain, however, does ease, which I already recognize and am so grateful for.

Finally, I also need to learn to forgive myself more readily. Sometimes that's the hardest one of all. I DO live with myself and see myself all the time. If I've done something stupid that I should forgive myself for, I can't take a break and have a cooling off period. Still, it's absolutely necessary that I forgive my own human failings and remember that I'm imperfect, but that it's totally okay.

Life really does go on. It's nice to know.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Dress to impress

My date on Saturday night wore a suit. It was the type of outing where a suit is preferred, and I wore a dress. Incidentally, it was the same dress I wore to this venue the last time, but he doesn't need to know that. All I know is that I look great in that dress, so there. The last time I went to this venue, my date (a completely different guy, I assure you) wore khakis, a white dress shirt with the sleeves rolled up, and a really ugly tie.

The suit on my most recent date was refreshing. He looked great. I'd said nothing about what I was wearing to hint that he might want to dress up. He just knew what was expected at that kind of event and dressed accordingly, and I figured he would. I figured right.

That is so impressive, dressing appropriately for an occasion. I don't care if his suit came from Armani or The Men's Wearhouse, but don't show up in jeans for a black-tie affair. Someone who takes care of their appearance and dresses according to an occasion will be remembered for it.

I promise.

What not to do (part 1 of many, I'm sure)

It seems like an unfortunate number of males could use a little help in knowing what they should not be doing if they ever have any intention of being in a relationship.

First with the "stalking." It's not cool. I once had the experience of a guy listening in class as the professor called role to figure out my name, and then used the school directory to figure out my number and address and call me for a date. My information is no longer listed in school directories. And if you want a date with a girl, you need to also be able to ask for her number directly, not through covert means.

Second, there are many terms that are just not acceptable. Playing games with a group of people recently, one of the guys, while handing a card to the person at my left said "hey, woman!" She has a name. And you know her name. And hopefully the dirty looks that all of the women in the room, and some of the men as well, gave him, will help him see that what he said was just not right. Although I'm doubtful.

Third. If the girl you like happens to fancy another guy at the time, speaking ill of him will not get you anywhere, at least in the forward direction. It will, though, move you back and destroy your chances. As an example, I was speaking with Sam about Kitt several weeks ago. It seems that Sam might have had crush type feelings on me at one point. I like Kitt, a lot. We were talking about Kitt's views on a certain subject and Sam asked me if I knew what those views really were, indicating that if I did know, I would definitely not like them, and thus not like Kitt either. As it so happens, I do know what those views are and I happen to like and agree with them. So not only did Sam reveal that he and I don't agree on some very important issues, but he also implied mean things about someone I care about. Ooo, bad move there Sam, go back five spaces.

Unfortunately this is not an exhaustive list. And I am sure I will have more list worthy experiences as time moves on.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Someone I never expected to see again

Speaking of Facebook, my high school Spanish teacher added me as a Facebook friend the other day. I liked him well enough, so I added him. Adding him led to me looking at one of his other friend's profile pictures and wondering just how in the world SHE ended up with THAT GUY. They were a strange looking couple. It was then I realized that the guy was probably the younger brother of a guy I dated once.

So, of course, I looked him up.

It was then I decided it's probably not the best idea to look up people who may not have turned out well when I was already a little nauseated to begin with (I didn't feel well yesterday).

There he was.

To start from the beginning, we met at the local skating rink when I was 16, a popular hangout for high school students and deadbeat adults. He was kind of cute, and I eventually discovered that he was 20. If I remember correctly, we held hands during a "snowball skate", and then kept catching each other's eye for the rest of the night. As I was leaving, he wrote his phone number on my arm.

We went out all of maybe once or twice. We did talk a lot on the phone and IMed on occasion, per the standard for a 16 year old girl.

He was a high school drop-out. He worked at Burger King. He was an ex-smoker. He wasn't active in the Church, and obviously didn't go on a mission yet, as he was 20 (LDS men typically go on 2-year missions when they are 19). He had been in the army, but had to be discharged for medical reasons. I later found out that he actually was an army washout. These were all things I discovered during our very short courtship. Had I known them from the beginning, I probably wouldn't have ever called him back in the first place.

Our first date was this weird double date where my best friend's date only made an appearance. I had to pay, because he forgot his wallet. I also drove.

He kissed me on that first date. Only the second guy to ever kiss me at all. My best friend had already gotten in my truck and my door was wide open, so she actually heard the whole thing. Just a peck, but I remember not really caring as I drove away.

On Valentine's Day, a delivery came to me in my choir class. Some white carnations, a teddy bear, and a handwritten note, on notebook paper, that read "Will you go steady with me?"

I knew I had to break it off.

That night, I took my best friend (who awkwardly sat across from us in his living room the whole time) and explained to him why he and I couldn't date. I was blunt, as is my habit. He then, desperately, tried to contradict everything I was saying with things he said he could do better. (But I want to be a computer programmer! I'm planning on going on a mission!)

I might have talked to him once or twice after that, but we eventually went our seperate ways.

The picture on Facebook reminded me that I truly had made the right decision. It was just a headshot of him sitting on a couch, but he doesn't look good. I doubt much has improved for him since I saw him last.

I really can do better than that.

Phone numbers

I am much more comfortable with someone having my phone number when I gave it to them myself, or gave someone else permission to give it them. Now, if someone didn't get my phone number from me, but then calls me, I would like it if, preferably during the salutation, the person calling me says "I got your number from ________ ." I can live with that.

If someone straight up asks for my phone number, I will, most likely, give it to them. Unknown numbers are disconcerting, but less so than listening to the voicemail that is from someone I never intended to have my phone number.

Friday, January 9, 2009

There's desperate, and then there's...

Facebook is an interesting entity. There are some people who like to update their status at least a half dozen times a day to let everyone know what they are doing.

I've noticed a theme in the status updates of one of the people on my friends list. Occasionally she talks about work, but generally she's telling everyone her latest heartache about a particular male.

Her status updates from the last several days read as follows:
XXXXX misses him. He's her best friend. She can't wait for things to work out.... 1:05am
XXXXX thinks he is very worth waiting for - the most amazing man she's met. However waiting is hard! 12:59pm
XXXXX finally feels okay with waiting for him. He likes her. Wants to date her. It will happen when the time is right. All will be ok! 10:36pm

XXXXX is glad she finally feels at peace with waiting until he - her best friend - is ready to date her. It will be soon. He wants to. Just needs more time. She has faith. 1:06pm
XXXXX just bought herself a ticket to him dating her sooner - a NICE gift certificate to Sportsmans Warehouse, candy, 6 snowmobile mags, 1 hunting magazine, fishing calendar - he'll love her! 10:35pm

XXXXX can't wait till he get's his "congrats on your promotion" package! 1:53am
XXXXX can't wait till he professes his undying love to her which he has & will once he gets the package - especially the gift card from sportsman warehouse!! 10:04am
XXXXX had the best fun conversations with him throughout the day!! 5:00pm
XXXXX & him had the best conversations today & every day! They go so good together - like pb & jelly! Well they have been best friends for forever... 5:35pm

XXXXX is on cloud 9 - man she loves talking to him! 9:38am
XXXXX is soooo happy! All she can think is wow! 2:51pm
XXXXX just had the most amazing conversation with him. They really like each other. I think he will start dating her very soon. Fingers crossed everyone! 9:12pm

XXXXX really hates waiting for him but he is worth it.... 5:56am
XXXXX thinks today will be tough after talking to him all day & night yesterday....she misses him tons but will survive.. 10:20am

Now, there are several thoughts I have about all this. One, I don't think you can buy a relationship with a care package. But maybe I'm wrong. Two, this girl is obsessed! If I were the boy and I could see all of this (I'm assuming he can't because of how she writes), I'd be scared and would run so fast in the other direction all she'd see would be a large dust cloud.

I've been twitterpatted before, definitely. I've had moments when there was a far off glint in my eye for a few days and I'd randomly giggle because of a boy. Heck, I still randomly giggle about the boy, which after this long I think is a good sign. But I hope I NEVER drowned everyone in so much sugar. Diabetic coma anyone?

I honestly hope something works for her soon. Sometimes waiting is exactly what you need to do. But I'm afraid what the status updates might start saying if they do. eek!

Thursday, January 8, 2009


One of the biggest problems that plagues any relationship from succeeding, or even beginning, is selfishness.

Merriam-Webster defines it thusly:

Main Entry:
1: concerned excessively or exclusively with oneself: seeking or concentrating on one's own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without regard for others
2: arising from concern with one's own welfare or advantage in disregard of others

— self·ish·ly adverb— self·ish·ness noun

It is rather impossible for us mere mortals to be 100% self-less 100% of the time, but we can sure try. In a relationship, any relationship, the other person, or, more importantly, the couple, should be put before the individual as much as possible.

This concept requires compromise. You will not always get your way, nor should it be about getting your way. You don't have to have the same level of enthusiasm for something as your partner might, but supporting them and their choices/activities/ideas will likely lead to them doing the same for you in return, and both will mutually benefit. In other words, a relationship should not be based on give and take. It should really just be give. You will receive in return, but that should not be your goal.

William Wordsworth put it this way:

The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers.
A poor man can be selfish and a rich man generous, but a person obsessed only with getting will have a hard time finding peace in his life.

Elder William R. Bradford said "Where there is selfishness, the Spirit of the Lord is absent."

Certainly, we want the Spirit with us as we make and maintain one of the biggest decisions of our life, right?

President James E. Faust said
We torture our souls when we focus on getting rather than giving . . . One of life's paradoxes is that a person who approaches everything with a what's-in-it-for-me . . . will lose the fulfillment and the happiness that a person enjoys who shares his talents and gifts generously with others.

Elder Neal A. Maxwell: A narcissist society, in which each person is busy looking out for number on, can build neither brotherhood nor community.

Also from Elder Maxwell, "The severely selfish use others but do not love them."

There are few things worse in a relationship than feeling used. Whether it be like you feel like you're being courted because of your car, your money, your status, or, worse of all, your body, to not be valued for your whole soul makes you feel unimportant and worthless. Completely.

"No one has the right to make you feel inferior without your consent." (Eleanor Roosevelt)

Selfishness has devastating consequences. As I look back, most of my romantic relationships have ended due to some degree of selfishness, either on my part, or my partner's, or both. I've even lost friends because of selfishness. Worse still, "[s]elfishness is actually the detonator of all the cardinal sins." (Elder Maxwell) This severely damages the relationship one has with our Heavenly Father. Those who bend to their own apetites and desires rather than those of others burn bridges and make it difficult for real love and trust to develop.

I'm not saying that both partners have to be so selfless that they, metaphorically, stand at a door together and say "No, you first, I insist" for eternity. Someone has to go through that door, but with their partner following close behind.

Again, mutual respect, love, compromise, decisions, and, especially, communication should be become key components of any succesful relationship. I'm certainly not perfect, and this is just as much for myself as it is for anyone else, but I'm constantly trying to better, and so should you be.

As Joseph Smith said, "Let every selfish feeling be not only buried, but annihilated."

All quotes can be found here and here.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Not getting married in Africa

I saw this news story this morning on the BBC - Child elopers' Africa plan foiled.

What a cute story.

Maybe I could just settle for a tour of the police station instead of getting married in Africa too.

Good news for lovers everywhere!

True love CAN last a lifetime!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Tis a Gift to be Simple

I must say that I love a relationship where the guy putting his arm around me at church is journal worthy material. It's so much better than the journal entries from other relationships I've had. It's sweet, tender, and really makes me smile.

Don't misunderstand though. This wasn't the first time he's ever put his arm around me. In fact, every place else in the world his arm is almost constantly around me or he's holding my hand. But church seemed like the last hold out. And I was perfectly fine with that, keeps the young'uns from gossiping so much about us. So while we've been sitting next to each other at church for months and months now, there has been no physical contact at church other than him gently touching my back when he leaves Sunday School to go to Elder's Quorum.

So it was actually with no little surprise that he stretched his arm behind me and pulled me in during Sacrament meeting today. I didn't want to move in case he'd take his arm away. Instead I just sat there and soaked in the moment.

And I oddly thought that he'd finally claimed me, and it kind of made me smile. But it was a real weird thought. So we'll move on.

Then, to top that, he did it again towards the end of Sunday School.

I love the simple things in a relationship. I wonder if he knows I wrote about that in my journal tonight. I wonder what he'd say if he knew.

Putting his arm around me at church makes up for the fact that he told me I looked like a grandma tonight. I have to admit though that I was wearing a wool jumper, had my hair in a bun, my glasses on, and was looking at knitting patterns.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Being set up

There's a tendency to set people up for three reasons: They're both older, single, and LDS. Surely you'll be perfect for each other!


I don't actually mind a set up being orchestrated if I already know the person, at least peripherally, or if the person doing the setting up can think of a few things we both have common aside from the norm.

Luckily, my friends and family haven't done a lot of setting up for me, yet.

In November, one of my friends asked if he could set me up with someone. I badgered him with questions about the guy and why he thought we'd get along.

Basically, we were the same age, LDS, single, and he's a nice guy.

Super! Cue the eye rolling.

Then I weaseled some more information out of him. Apparently, they'd already tried to set him up with another of our mutual friends, but she took him on two rather uncomfortable dates and then avoided him completely. Somehow, word even got back to him that she hated him.

Basically, when this friend and our other friends were discussing who they could set him up with that wouldn't be so deceptive, my name came up.

That's it. The reason they picked me. No pressure or anything.

I did a little research, mostly on Facebook. He works a retail job, hasn't finished college yet, and I didn't find him particularly attractive physically.

Still, I said yes, my friend could give his guy my number.

Within an hour he texted me.

And so far, seven weeks later, that's still all we've done. He hasn't called me at all, nor has he asked me out for anything specific. I think I've gotten at least one "Can we do something sometime?", which is way too vague for the busy life I lead.

I actually didn't realize all this until Mutual Friend asked if we'd gone out yet last night. I didn't even realize that it had started way back in mid-November until I looked up the conversation in preparation for this post.

When I admitted to Mutual Friend that we'd only texted and that he hadn't actually even asked me out yet, though that it could be due, in part, to me being away for a week, Mutual Friend was appalled. Then, when he asked if I enjoyed the text conversations, I apparently automatically grimaced, which I was called on.

I explained that it was just small talk, and added to the fact that it had been so long, he was losing points. Luckily, when he asked if I'd seen his recent pictures on Facebook from a Christmas party I'd missed, the subject changed to what was happening in the picture, and I didn't have to go any further.

The longer this drags on, the more I don't really want to go, but because of the reason I was chosen, I'm afraid of what everyone will think if I end up not liking him.

Then again, I might actually like him. Guess I'll find out. Eventually.

Watching siblings date

Somehow, I have never seen my siblings (I have two, one of each, and we're all adults) with any of their boyfriends or girlfriends. I may have met the person, but as soon as they actually started dating, I never saw them again. I'd hear stories of their SOs, dates, when they first kissed them, etc., but I never ever saw any of it.

That is, until I went home for Christmas this year.

I knew my brother had been dating his current girlfriend. There were certain things I knew before our mom even did, and he lives at home. He and his girlfriend have been friends for months now, and my sister knew her in high school. Everyone, siblings and parents, raved about her, but we'd never met each other.

I met her for the first time on Christmas Day, and saw her several times over the course of my vacation. She is indeed wonderful, and I quite like her.

But to see my brother with his arms around a girl, and being flirty, and having whispered conversations, was really strange for me.

He is most certainly old enough to have a girlfriend and she's great for him. It could be a little jealousy, and probably is. But as Roxie pointed out, it could be that it's weird to think that someone could love my brother in a way I never could.

It also could be that I didn't see it grow. It's not like they met and were immediately holding hands and cuddling in direct view of our parents. They eased into the relationship, which gave those watching it time to ease into it as well. Hearing about it was not the same thing apparently.

I'm sure it will get easier and become more normal to me. At least it better.

And now I wonder what my family thought when I've had guys around.

Friday, January 2, 2009


My parents got me Kristen M. Oaks' new book, A Single Voice, for Christmas. I had previously thought that Christmas was lame this year, and then I read the first chapter. After getting teary through most of it, I decided that my attitude had to change...and then I realized that Christmas had been great. Once I adjusted my brain and expectations, I had a merry Christmas and I plan to have an even merrier one this year. I will not let my single state "ruin" the holidays again! In fact, I went to a New Year's Eve party with a positive attitude and the determination that I'd have fun no matter what, and I DID have fun. I rediscovered my assertive side and introduced myself to an attractive man, and then I asked him to dance. Regardless of the outcome of this meeting, I put myself out there, I flirted with someone new, and I've made a new friend. I even got a hug out of it, and I really should have stood next to him at midnight and kissed him like I thought about doing!

The holidays were exactly as they should be, and it wasn't too late for me to enjoy them. Thank you, Sister Oaks, for your wonderful advice, sympathy, and empathy. You've changed my life.