During my freshman year of high school, I was meeting new people, having memorable experiences but, I was also watching my close friends from grade school drift apart. I found myself praying for someone to talk to and spend time with. Within a few weeks, a boy from my seventh grade math class had reached out to me and asked me to the homecoming dance. Little did I know that 3.5 years later, I would end up having him as my date for an additional 10 dances.
I held a strong belief in God’s will that we were brought together for a purpose. I know that we are not the perfect couple but, I also know that without him, I would not be the person I am today.
As I watched my friends go through a variety of different relationships, I had to confront the trials of my own. It is through this that I realized the aspects of a healthy relationship that I hold close:
Contrary to popular belief, just because you have high standards doesn’t mean you’re shallow or stuck up. Standards are one of the most important things when looking for a relationship because we become like the people we spend time with. In a pursuit to be the best version of myself, I want to be around people who bring positive attributes into my life and encourage me to grow.
Having standards for appearances, amount of money or social standing won’t prove to find a quality partner, especially in high school. Odds are, most (or all) of those things will change as they enter adulthood. Standards for kindness, work ethic, compassion, and faith would give you a better idea of the kind of person you would be spending memorable moments with.
I spent four years on my high school dance team which meant practices every day and evenings spent at school sporting events. Even though dance took up most of my free time, it was something I was very passionate about. My boyfriend understood how important it was to me and respected the fact that we wouldn’t be able to spend as much time together as other couples were.
Many people start to discover who they are and what is important to them as teenagers and young adults. There are sacrifices that a teenager shouldn’t have to make to keep a boyfriend and that includes compromising who you are or what you love to do. Make sure whoever you chose to devote time to respects your passions, priorities, opinions, and body.
No one is perfect and neither is any relationship. Both you and your partner will inevitably make mistakes, but having grace for the other person can go a long way. When things happen to try to understand the whole situation before reacting.
I watched tons of my friends have fights with their girlfriend or boyfriend simply because of a misunderstanding. If they had chosen to sit down and talk things out first, it could have saved a lot of heartaches.
In my relationship, we hold honesty very high. It is better for me to know that he maybe doesn’t want to hang out because there’s an important basketball game on rather than thinking he’s sick and finding out later that that wasn’t the case.
For a person to be honest all the time can be very difficult, especially when the truth could hurt someone. But, more often than not, secrets come out and cause more damage that honesty in the beginning ever would. Being truthful from the start, including not telling lots of white lies, creates a solid foundation of trust for a relationship
It is important to remember that most relationships that occur during teenage years don’t last forever and that is okay. Have faith that God has a plan for you and sometimes that plan might include being single for a while or important lessons learned from failed relationships. Romans 12:12 reminds us to “be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer.”
Amy McNulty (18)