Lying in bed a couple of minutes ago I was suddenly hit with a memory from my childhood. Barely any recollection was possible, however I could clearly recall that in the midst of an elementary school weekend church retreat, surrounded by my classmates and leaders that I saw 2-3 times a week: I was terrified. Terrified of being alone, forgotten, rejected, and that no one understood me. As I tried to follow the memory deeper; remember more of what I experienced or what happened, I came up empty. My memories of my childhood are very slight and 80% of the time are sad/depressing. It’s challenging to remember the good things I experienced, the carefree times that all children should have. Instead when I search my childhood for memories – I’m greeted with an overwhelming amount of fear.
How our childhood, and what we are capable of retaining from our childhood, affect our “grown up” lives is a bit unnerving. Those fears we experienced when we were 4? Yeah, they still show up in our lives when we are 24, 34, 44,etc… In my own personal life, I tend to push people away – exert my independence as far as I possibly can, which sometimes causes me to injure myself. Teamwork? More like “how much can Danielle do without anyone else’s help-work”. At least I am able to recognize my lacking ability to rely on others. I’m afraid to ask too much of others only to be denied and rejected.
Even though I know that I will never be rejected by certain ones in my life… And even though I know that I will always have outstretched arms to run to for support… I still have these nights where all I can recount from my childhood is the fear of being rejected. My heart is and always has been very sensitive; that’s one thing that I don’t think will ever change, but maybe someday when I look back to my childhood I’ll remember the better times.
Here is the simple formula to follow if you wish to become engaged without ever once being on a date.
Invite the person of interest to an all-day-into-night movie marathon and cuddle.
Spend a month following movie marathon in separate countries messaging non-stop.
Learn he considers himself a student and barely has enough money to scrape by on his own and say “no problem”.
Once united allow yourself to believe you are a couple.
Hang out at either your house, or his place of living – never go anywhere.
Do most of the driving because he doesn’t have money for gas.
Meet up with friends and chill at different houses.
Take time to learn one another’s quirks and discuss the future within a month of getting together. (all done whilst ‘hanging out’ at someone’s home)
When he asks you to marry him with no ring and no possibility of getting one after a month of hanging out – say yes.
At the point which he tells you he has no secrets and will never lie to you – write it down in your journal and squeal every time you realize you didn’t ask him to say that.
Visit his family and spend a whole week with them – get them to love you just by being you and reciprocate the feeling.
After 5 weeks when he tells you who you are and goes on for 15 minutes – break down, cry and respond by telling him no one has ever understood you before.
If presented with the challenge of living on different coasts, make sure he knows how serious you are about staying together.
Ignore the fact you live somewhere you’ve always wanted and spend most of our time inside Skyping with him.
Don’t question him too much when he isn’t around or doesn’t call when he says he will.
Let him tell you everything he thinks you want to hear and act like that’s all you need.
When you fly halfway around the world make sure you get a long layover near him so you can see each other. Both ways.
Don’t tell your friends when he puts you down or makes you believe things you shouldn’t.
Plan out your two weeks back in town around his schedule and how much time he wants to spend with his family – because it’s ‘easier’ to be the couple you are with them than with your own family.
When you even think of questioning him or standing up to him, mentally slap yourself.
After you’ve told him multiple times about how you do not want to be proposed to on a cliché holiday such as; Christmas eve, Christmas, New Years eve, New Years, your birthday or Valentines day – respond on December 23 with, “it’s not that important, you can propose whenever you like.”
Allow him to think that it’s fine if he doesn’t ask your fathers’ permission to marry you and it’s not that big of a deal.
When you look at him and wonder “is this really it?!” push yourself to believe of don’t deserve any better.
And lastly, even though you’ve had your dream ring picked out since you were 14 and he is well aware of the fact, make an exception and accept the ring he “bought” off of his brother from a previous failed engagement because he doesn’t have any money.
Never say a word because you are in a relationship with a 28 year-old full-time student who will stay up all night playing a new expansion to a video game but won’t do the same to talk to you, who hasn’t held a steady full-time job in years, who won’t have a Christmas gift for you until his parents give him money, who has the ability to make you think whatever he wants, who has no issue with putting expenses on your credit card relying on the fact you will get a job to pay it off in due time, who is okay with you giving up your dreams just so he can chase his, who has self-worth issues and looks for confirmation in any women around him, who only pushes his spiritual relationship deeper because you push him to, who says he will do anything for you but rarely does a single thing aside from what you set up, who will continue to make you feel used even after you have a break down explaining it to him, who when opportunity presents itself will allow another girl to kiss him while the two of you are engaged, who will disagree with thoughts and beliefs which are strong in your life and will turn arguments around so it always ends with an issue in your life, who doesn’t like your family and refuses to spend any extended period of time with them because he believes they don’t like him, and most — who was entirely correct when he said you were too good for him.
The difference between age and maturity has been on my mind recently. Every day we see children being mature in their actions, words, and thoughts – mostly because they have to be as a result of their situation. What we also see every day are adults who repeatedly do/say things you’d expect from a child. Those adults prove that just because you’re a certain age, doesn’t mean you are mature. By definition “mature” means “fully developed in body or mind”. So, in all defense of those numerous adults in the world who don’t act what we consider “mature”, I suppose one could say they reached the state of which they were fully developed in mind at a young age – and that was that.
What is especially terrible is when you have one from both parties attempt to join together – the ‘mature child’ originally loves the carefree, spontaneity the ‘immature adult’ portrays and the ‘adult’ draws on the confidence, responsibility and care the ‘mature child’ carries. The combination results (more than likely) in a bust. Eventually they drive each other crazy because the other won’t take care of themselves/can’t have enough fun.
There are so many things to consider when dating someone – really getting to know their level of maturity is critical. You don’t want the scales to be too uneven. Being aware of your own maturity is a good place to start – critically assessing those you choose to surround yourself with, your hobbies, how you handle your free time, where you are financially – all of these things are clear indicators of your maturity. There are so many others, I’m just giving a base…
A person can always change – as long as they want to for the right reasons.