Puppy love. Aww…
We have all been through that stage where you cannot stop thinking about a particular person and you cannot stop singing “can you feel the love tonight…”
However, for teenagers who are still schooling, here are some reasons why it may not be a good idea to act on your impulse and ask that pretty girl/ talented guy out.
1. Discover who you are first.
Teenage years is one of the most turbulent periods of one’s life. Puberty brings both physical and emotional changes. Your body develops sexually and this can be a period of insecurity for many young people. Research has shown that teenage girls on average see themselves as 5.5 kilograms above their ideal weight.
Socially, you are more emotionally aware than you were in childhood and you now have a stronger sense of identity. You want independence from your parents while desiring acceptance from your peers. From your clothes to your beliefs, you are slowly emerging into the kind of adult you would like to be.
There is a saying that goes “you need to first love yourself before you can love someone.” So before you begin a relationship, first understand and accept yourself from the inside out. I can guarantee that the time you take to understand who you are, what you want and where you see yourself going will benefit you greatly in your future relationships.
2. Have a support network first
If your world only revolves around your boyfriend/girlfriend, then your world is going to come crashing down the moment you break up. Without your friends to support you, a break-up might feel like hell. To think that you were the one who sacrificed your friendships in the first place!
A relationship is generally quite exclusive. You go on a date with your significant other and live in your own little bubble. Your friends might understand why you are always missing in action, but that doesn’t mean they like being lower on the priority list than your boyfriend/girlfriend. More likely than not, you will drift apart from your clique.
Lasting friendships take years to build. Now is the time to start building them. Relationships can wait.
3. Have some standards first
You hate having your parents breathe down your necks. Then why exchange it for an insecure girlfriend or a possessive boyfriend breathing down your neck? Right now you may think that looks or talent is all that matters. But the truth is, if you want a relationship to last, character is the critical factor. It is okay to have crushes, just do not act on them. Observe what you admire in the opposite sex and make a list of the characteristics that are admirable. Wait for the guy or girl who possesses most, if not all, of these characteristics to appear. Remember, you do not deserve a jerk. So, have some standards.
The list can look like this:
- Receptive to feedback, willing to improve
- Cheerful, makes me laugh a lot
- Nice to people, does not look down on people
- Not bad looking
4. Don’t expose yourself to unnecessary pain
Less than 2% of people marry their secondary school and JC sweethearts. Right now, your only concern may be to live in the moment. But 5 years from now, you might regret your decision; when your life goals, values and even interests are no longer aligned, you will have no choice but to break up. At that point in time, the break-up will be a heart-wrenching pain, because after all, that person has been in your life for 5 years. He/she has been your first love and your constant companion in times of joy and suffering. Yet, now, the two of you are worse than strangers. Such pain leaves a dull ache in your soul and will never fade with time (ok, maybe I am exaggerating). But truthfully, my friend went through this so please, do not repeat her mistake.
5. Do what you are supposed to do
What is the role of a student? Well, to study of course. There is a time and season for everything. Dating can wait until you go to university. (Well, technically, you still study in university… but you don’t get student prices anymore! So you are not a full-fledged student!) If your parents object to that, tell them that even the government sponsors dating in universities. That should convince them that university is the best place to find your life partner.
I was young once, so I know that it is not easy to control your raging hormones. But, your self-control will definitely pay off. Trust me, because I am no longer (that) young.