I can say with great certainty and absolute honesty that I did not know what love was until I knew what love was not. – P.T. Berkey
I’m probably the only person I know who can answer the question “what’s your type?” with “I don’t have one.” If you were to line up all the guys I’ve ever had a crush on, or even just the few I’ve been serious with, you’d be left thinking WTF does this girl even like?!
So often we tend to categorize people based on what they look like, or we have laundry lists of what we want in a future partner. Usually these lists are arbitrary and serve no purpose other than to accidentally weed out potentially great guys. Does it really matter if someone is a certain height, has a certain hair color, has tattoos, or makes a certain amount of money? I get that a super rich, tall, blonde guy is appealing, but let’s be real here – most people aren’t Alexander Skarsgard. And that doesn’t mean they can’t be just as beautiful and just as great of a partner. We’re all going to end up looking pretty ratchet one day, you guys. As cliché as it sounds, the only thing that will stay the same about someone is who they are on the inside.
But what about the “deeper” laundry lists? The ones about religious and political views, football teams (Welcome to Oklahoma!), etc. Personally, I’m not a fan of those either. Yes, let’s add in Baptist, Democrat OU fan (do they even exist outside of my family?) to the already ridiculous list of things that don’t matter. Your perfect partner doesn’t have to have all the same beliefs as you. Despite many arguments to the contrary, it honestly does not matter unless you decide to make it matter. What does matter? Respect. If you both have it, it won’t matter if you don’t see eye-to-eye on everything. Worship as you wish, vote as you wish, and let your partner do the same. If your views line up, that’s cool but if they don’t, it shouldn’t be a deal breaker.
Think of pursuing a relationship the same way you think about making new friends. You don’t have all these random physical qualities or beliefs you want your friends to have (I hope anyway – that’s insane!). Most people DGAF if their friends are ugly or pretty, gay or straight, Christian or Atheist, Republican or Democrat. Think about how utterly boring it would be if all of your friends were exactly like you. No thanks!
I’ve found the best thing you can do to find “The One” is pray and surrender what it is that you really want to the universe. Focus on how you want to feel rather than exactly what you want someone to be like. Almost daily starting my freshman year of high school, I asked for God to send me true love and happiness. That was it – nothing more. It doesn’t matter if prayer isn’t your thing or if you don’t believe in God, just put what you want to feel out there. Say it to yourself, write it down – whatever. Just acknowledge it.
The result won’t always be instant, but it will be worth it. My freshman year of high school was 2004 and I didn’t meet my husband until 2012, which was the end of my senior year of college. The relationships I had in between then were interesting and not always the best decisions, but I learned something important from all of them. All of them were extremely different people both inside and out. I love that. Dating really different types of guys just makes it that much better when you eventually find your BFF and settle down. You can confidently say that you’ve seen what else is out there and that nothing else compares. You will never wonder “what if” later on.
Worsham and I like to joke about how three-year-old him should have been waiting for me as soon as I exited the womb so we wouldn’t have to deal with other people. But if I were literally able to change the past, I don’t think that I would. The people you date help shape who you are, and that’s just one more reason why you shouldn’t stick to any preconceived ideas of who you think you should be with. No one knows what type of person they should be with, especially when they’re young.
As my 16-year-old self used to say all the time: JUST LET IT HAPPEN! Have fun and know that it’s being taken care of.
So ditch the list, focus on how you want to feel, and be open to all types of people. You never know who might end up being your perfect match!