A personal account from my article, "Having High Standards Isn't Just OK, It's #Goals"
Growing up I was told far and wide by my parent’s friends that I would someday be a “heartbreak hotel.” At the time, I didn’t really understand what they all meant by this and took it as they just thought I was very cute. So, I twinkled my chocolate eyes at them and dipped my body into a small curtsy giggling as I looked shyly at the floor.
As I made my way into high school, I, of course, had the typical 8th-grade fling that most preteens have. It was a great friendship between the two of us. I can’t deny it. But after that, and our official breakup at the beginning of freshman year, I set off into an adventure through the Sahara Desert of relationships.
This is also known as being forever single.
It wasn’t that I was just single. I had my fair share of flirting and talking to guys, and massive crushes. I just never found anyone who held similar standards as me and sadly, felt the same way about me. This didn’t bother me though. I knew who I was and what I wanted in a relationship. I didn’t want something that evolved around hooking up every weekend and mildly talking through the week. I wanted someone who cared for me as much as my heart did too.
What bothered me were the adults who would see me through the course of my high school career and ask if I had any boys in the picture. When I answered no, they gave me these incredibly shocked faces and gasped saying, “How could anyone not want to date you? Look at you, you’re absolutely gorgeous.”
Of course, as a self-conscious teenager my first thought to that was, if I am that pretty why haven’t guys wanted to date me? I obviously wasn’t that pretty then.
Another thing that bothered me was that they assumed boys would want to date me solely on my looks. I understand I’m averagely attractive, but I think that for the people I found myself interested in it was more my personality than my looks that drove them away. I’m very loud, outspoken, and hyper. For some people, this didn’t appeal to them, but I wasn’t going to change who I was for them.
Likewise, I had a tendency to build friendships first. I didn’t like the idea of just pushing into a relationship and learning about each other along the way, and sure, there are many things you learn when you start dating someone no matter how long you’ve known them, but I loved the idea of having a solid base or relationship to come from before starting to date. This left me inevitably in the friend zone.
I also was very picky because of my high standards. Like I said above, I had my fair share of guys “sliding into my DMs,” and “hitting me up” on Snapchat. None of them fit the person I wanted to be with though. I needed someone who didn’t need me at all hours of the day, but wanted me throughout the day. I didn’t want a gushy romance of breakups and “I-love-yous.”
I wanted something steady and dependable. Something I knew I could have even when everything else felt like it was falling apart.
That’s when I met him. I know, I know, sounds sappy and gushy, but I had gone through almost my entire high school career without a single “I like you” or first kiss. I was utterly shocked when he quietly crawled his way into my life.
I unsurprisingly did finish my high school career without a first kiss. It wasn’t until the summer going into my first year of college did I receive that kiss, and it was awkward as all get-out because of me and my lack of experience. But that’s beside the point.
Through him, I found a guy who cared me for me and all of me. There was nothing about me he had “learn” as our relationship started because I was me for the entire time we were friends. I was the extremely loud, obnoxious, opinionated person that I am still to him today. And for some reason, we were friends for almost an entire year before anything happened between us. Things just fit, but he fell into all of my standards and held almost identical ones to me as well.
The point is I wouldn’t do anything differently in my life to get a boyfriend or significant other.
People ask me how I can know what I want at such a young age in a guy, but the way I look at it is that at any age you should want a guy that treats you like a queen. Your standards shouldn’t change because of how attractive a guy is. They should stand firm and you shouldn’t take anyone who doesn’t meet them.
That’s way my first relationship has worked out so well. I’ve held these standards for so long, and I can only hope he does too and continues to hold them. Relationships work two ways, and I think this is why so many relationships fall apart. I’m not saying I’ve figured out relationships because I don’t know the future of my own or anyone’s, but I know right now, that what I have is something very special.
I know that I wouldn’t have it either if it wasn’t for my high standards.
That’s why I’m not bothered anymore when people ask how I can know if I actually love him since it’s my first relationship, or how I know this is what I want. I’m not bothered that I have held myself to my own standards and haven’t let myself accept anything less than.