Dear Single Natalie,
Right now you’re in the middle of the dating scene, holding out hope that you’ll meet “the one.” Well I’m here on the other side, 13 months married to a wonderful man. We even have a son who just turned 3 months old! I’ve been thinking a lot about you and everything you have gone through, and I want to give you a few tips.
First, don’t get stuck in the friend zone. Believe it or not, you got your wish! Your husband is your very best friend! But guess what? You didn’t find him in the friend zone. You were attracted to him first, and the friendship grew alongside the love as you dated each other and spent time together. I know you spent a lot of time pining for friends and worrying about ruining your friendship if you told them how you felt, but that thinking is skewed. The fact is that every friendship with a guy that doesn’t end up being your husband WILL BE RUINED once you meet “the one.” And that’s just how it is, because when you get married you won’t be texting all your guy friends about how much you love your husband and love being married. That’s not how it works. So, just be brave and be honest. Don’t get stuck, because all those friendships will be “ruined” eventually. You may as well “ruin” them in pursuit of the man of your dreams.
Second, enjoy the journey. You are always so worried about if you’ll find the right man and when it will happen. And it all works out! Trust the process, and enjoy the journey.
Third, enjoy being single. Take opportunities to work on yourself, your goals, your dreams. Solidify your identity and your interests. Try new things! Exercise! Find out who you really are and what you have to offer in a relationship. Be careful not to be pressured by the Insta-perfect girls with the perfect hair, the perfect make-up, and the perfect clothes. You just be you. Don’t let a guy define you. Make sure you know who you are first. You are enough!
Finally, be hopeful. Throughout the process of dating you will find men who challenge you, men who mistreat you, and men who just aren’t that into you. Be hopeful. Keep your head up. Every experience you have will add to everything you have to offer. With each relationship, each date, and each friend you will find qualities you want in your future spouse. Sometimes you’ll hurt, sometimes you’ll cry, but don’t generalize the world off a few tough experiences. Know that the right man is out there and that every guy in between is preparing you for him.
Be strong, be happy, be more than friends, and everything will work out just fine.