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Avoiding the Fall

February 8, 2014

I have held out on love for a very long time.  As I am only 27, that may come as a surprise for many, especially those who did not grow up in an LDS community.

But I’m not talking about holding out on sex, or marriage.

I’m talking about avoiding falling in love.

It’s not that I don’t want to fall in love.  I would like nothing more than to dedicate myself to another person’s well-being, to enjoy the rush of having someone care about me in the same way.  Like every other American girl, I’ve grown up imbibing chick flicks and romance stories.  I’ve wanted to meet someone to build a life with for as long as I can remember.

And yet, I never let myself fall in love.

.

It’s not about not wanting or not caring about people.  It’s straight up fear of making the wrong choice.  I grew up in a culture where the only person it matters if you date, is your true love.  The one you’ll spend the rest of your life with.  I enter every relationship assuming that it’s going to last forever – unless I stop it.

Dating is about choices, right?  You choose to love someone, to tie your life to theirs.  But how do you know which choice is right?  Should I marry the guy with the silly sense of humor and excessive smarts, or the handsome guy who really knows how to make me feel special?  Do I want to marry someone with a career track like mine or one doing something completely different?  The one who understands my moral qualms with my own church, or the one who will hold me fast to standards that I am scared to follow alone?

What qualities are right?  How do I decide who will make me happiest out of all the options?  I can tell the ones who are wrong; that’s easy.  But for every wrong guy, there is one who could be right.

So I’ve never fallen, because I know once I fall, it’s permanent.  I don’t date guys who I don’t see a future with.  I just don’t know which future is the right one.

.

I haven’t had many serious relationships.  Depending on how you look at it, I haven’t had any.  I don’t know how I can sniff out guys who are going to dump me 3 dates or 3 months along, I just do it.  They’re the only ones I’ve ever tried to date; because I am afraid to date someone without an end in sight.  I’m mormon, no matter how much I fight it, I want to date for marriage.  I just don’t want to commit to that.  So I look for the fail in the relationship, before it even gets started.

Recently, the guy that I would like to try conquering that fear with, told me that I should give a different friend a chance and seriously date him instead.  I just don’t know how.  I don’t know how to stop investing in an already doomed relationship (he is being deployed in March, and neither of us wants to start dating just as he leaves), and invest in one without an obvious exit strategy.

And I don’t know if I’m making that choice for the right reasons, and how can I choose wisely if I’m not even doing it for the right reasons?  I don’t want to date him just so I won’t be lonely, or as a trial run for something real later.  I don’t want to feel like I am settling, because my friend deserves better than to be settled for.

I don’t want to be scared anymore.  I’ve spent a decade pushing every potential relationship away, while feeling terribly, horribly lonely. I guess I just always thought that when the right guy came along, I would know and just magically be able to commit.

I always overestimate the amount of direct influence God is going to take in my life.  Oh well.  Here’s to muddling through the most complicated Valentine’s Day of my life. Cheers.

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From → Serious Musings

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