Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Four - Seven (what?)

Welcome back! I took a day off to really think about these next few rules. To me, they go hand in hand. Especially #4 & #6. I'm going to go a little out of order since I believe those 2 should be together when it comes to my story.

4. Stay vertical/no buttons and zippers (or Velcro). In other words, set your boundaries and stick to them.

6. Be so so so so so so so SO SO SO SO careful who you date.

Now don't get me wrong, I think all of these rules go hand in hand. Some more than others. Yet instead of telling the same story twice (I don't want to sound like a broken record) I wanted to combine the 2. This way you can see just how important both of these rules are.

Early in my teen years, I made the decision to wait until marriage. Yep - I was to remain a virgin until my wedding night. That was a boundary I had decided up front and made sure that I let any guy who was interested in me. As much as I wanted a guy to 'love' me, I also knew that I did not want to waste my time with someone who didn't have the same values.

My first serious boyfriend was when I was 16. I had dated here & there, but not with anyone I thought I had a future with. Enter D.

D was older than me. Now that I think about it, I think he may have been a little older than he initially told me. D was the first guy to pursue me. Normally, I would pursue a guy I liked. D asked me out. I was on cloud 9.

Of course, I told him what my boundaries were. He wasn't too happy, but agreed. I now realize that I was a challenge for him. The perfect opportunity to lure a good girl.

Our relationship was rocky to say the least. He was very jealous. I wasn't allowed to talk to other guys. Eventually I stopped hanging out with friends because they were a 'bad influence'. He cheated. I took him back. I mean, he loved me. I must have done something wrong to make him stray. He made sure I knew that if only I would have $ex with him, he wouldn't need to cheat. This was the man I was going to marry.

After a particular useless fight, we broke up & stayed broken up. But the damage to my already fragile self-esteem was done. If someone who claimed to love me could treat me like that, then I must not be worth much. I mean, it was my fault he cheated. It was my fault he was always angry with me.

Enter D2 (different guy, same 1st initial).

D2 was slightly younger than me. He befriended me because he was attracted to one of my sisters and was hoping to use me to get a date. Yet, once again, I pursued a relationship with him. He told me time & time again that he didn't like me in that way, but I continued to stick it out. I could fix him. I could make him fall in love with me. I wouldn't repeat the same mistakes as I did with D. I decided that I would lose my virginity to D2.

For 3 years, I allowed D2 to treat me like a piece of meat. It wasn't romantic. Each time, my heart broke a little more. My self-esteem tanked. He wouldn't commit to me yet he didn't want me to be with anyone else. He never told me he loved me.... no, instead he would just say "DITTO" like from the movie "Ghost" with Patrick Swazy.

Ladies - NEVER EVER EVER accept "ditto" as a form of "I love you". Ditto is a cop-out! You are worth more than just that stupid phrase. You are worth loving!

As you can see, not sticking to my boundaries and choosing the wrong guy lead me down a path of self-destruction. Right now, think of what your relationship boundaries are going to be and write them down. When a guy starts showing interest in you, be upfront about your boundaries and stick with them. Do NOT compromise. If the guy really wants to be with you, he will respect those boundaries. Hopefully he will have the same or similar boundaries. But if he doesn't - RUN! You cannot change him sweetheart. Chances are he will be the one to change you.

This is one area of my life where I have the biggest regret. Something I will never get back. Something I wasn't able to give to my husband on our wedding day.

5. Have an accountability partner and be willing to tell HER everything.

Oh how I wish I had an accountability partner back then. I may have been able to avoid a lot of the mistakes I made.

Why HER? If you are a female, then your accountability partner should also be a female. If you are a guy, then they should be a guy. No gray lines. Besides, women understand women. This could be a friend, older sibling, leader from church, even your mom. But it is SO important to have one. Darkness hides in darkness but the light exposes it. Meaning, by telling someone you trust your 'secrets', the secrets won't be able to grab a hold of you.

7. If you're wondering if you should break up with him, break up with him.

So very true. Listen to your heart. I mean REALLY listen to your heart. In the beginning of my relationships with D & D2, I had that small voice telling me it wasn't a good idea. We date not to see how many guys we can collect, but in hopes that we will find a mate for life. Don't waste time with someone that isn't right for you.

So that's it... that's what I have to add to the rules today. Again, I share my story in hopes that you do not repeat my mistakes. Also, so that you can see how God has worked in my life. He took a broken young woman and healed her heart. He can do the same for you. He longs to heal your heart. All you need to do is ask Him.

Tune in for the next few rules

Many blessings,

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