Let’s talk pressure today, friends. You know, the kind that bears down on your shoulders and tries to get the best of you? It’s an evil little monster, isn’t it? And after some comments in yesterday’s MEMO TO MEN, I got to thinking about all the pressure that comes with Cupid’s arrow — or lack of Cupid’s arrow. The vicious cycle starts when we’re teenagers. We see our friends having all these new experiences — seeking out with boys, stealing secret kisses — and we start to panic. We can’t be the last of our friends to have these experiences, we think. So we sometimes just jump in head-without-heart to simply get it over with. Another item checked off our romantic to-do list. Done. Easy as that.
But somewhere down the line, we realize just what a mistake we’ve made. Maybe things don’t feel the way they should. We don’t feel those butterflies. We don’t feel that giddy, school-girl glow coming over us. We feel, well, nothing. And it’s the worst none-feeling feeling in the whole world. And that’s when, sometimes, we realize that we let all that pressure get the better of us.
Well, me? I don’t want to just do it. First kiss. First date. I don’t want to just get them over with. Because that’s not what any of them mean to me. They all mean something to me — every first kiss, every first date, even every first fight — and I don’t want to be left feeling like I let someone else’s pressure lead my heart into making the wrong decision. I’m starting to believe that things will naturally happen when they’re supposed to, so I’m not going to rush things along. If I do, I’ll miss the beauty of the scenery along the way. And something tells me I don’t want to miss out on even one second of that beauty.
Do you ever feel that sort of pressure, friends? Are there certain things you’ve done just to get them over with? Was it worth it? Have your views changed as you’ve gotten older? xoxo
[Photos via Le Love]
I wanted to get the "Meet the Parents" stuff over & done. I wanted to get money talks just over & done. All the other stuff like the first kiss, first family function, first one-on-one stuff that comes along…that I love to savor…=)
Oh yes is there pressure. I'm in an almost 2 year relationship so yeah there is TONS of pressure. I'm trying not to rush it at all…I hope!
People aren't trying to say for you to rush along your first date. They are saying that if you don't put yourself out there to meet a guy; you will never have the option to go on the first date.
Everything's a pressure, but you just have to take a deep breath and push through it and you'll find that it wasn't so hard after all =D That's what I think. You'll be surprised how easy and relaxed things can be if you just don't think too much about them.
Dinx @ Lovely in Random xoxo
This was a very inspiring post. If I knew then what I know now that I'm older, I could have slowed down the immense rush of feelings and caught my breath . . .
you shouldn't be hard on yourself, reading the comments i don't really think anyone is putting pressure on you. i mean other than the occasional anonymous practically begging you to do online dating (don't blame you for not doing it). everyone is in a different place in life. i'm in college and while some of my friends are moved in with their boyfriends, that's just not where i am or could imagine being right now, and there's nothing wrong with that. we tend to compare ourselves cause we see people our age doing this and doing that while we're at a totally different place, and that makes us think we're behind or missing out when that's not the truth at all. i don't think you should do anything for the sake of getting it over with but i do hope you realize you can date someone you arent head over heels for. dinner and a movie is just laid back fun, you don't have to see a whole future with a person to do that. dating is just for fun until you get into committed relationships, and even then it takes time. anyway i'm not ranting cause i'm sure you know that, just think you're being too hard on yourself and building up expectations for firsts, and you don't wanna be so stressed out about it when it does happen that you forget to have fun! ignore the anon's that are rude/relentless, keep talking to guys and see where things go from there. and just because a guy friend has a girlfriend doesn't mean it won't be you with him someday! i've dated boys who i saw date other girls. it just means they know they found something better 😉 sorry this was so long!
Olivia : I am still learning says
Reading your post made me think of myself back in school… I wanted so badly to be the first who had kissed a boy, with tongue! LOL…
So I forced the moment 🙁 I told him I had a secret to tell him and took him into another room and kissed him. Thank God he kissed me back, but it wasn't meant to be… I wanted so badly to rush things I took that special moment away. And to make things extra horrible, a few years later we ended up working at the same pizza joint my senior year… and every once in awhile he would say… "Hey Olivia, I have a secret to tell you…" Worst. Experience. Ever! lol
However! If you asked about my first real kiss, I would tell you it was the sweetest thing in the entire world… and it was a simple kiss on the cheek from my boyfriend of a year. It was during a slow dance, and it was perfect.
Slow is always best. Let things unfold the way they should, otherwise it's not magic like it should be.
Anarchist Girl Scout says
Yeah, I don't think people are "pressuring" you to rush into anything, but, rather, suggesting that you need to think about taking actual steps toward putting yourself out there if this (dating and meeting someone) is something you really want. Also, I think planning too much for a first date is a waste – they're all awkward. That's the experience, and it is an important one . . . though not necessarily comfortable.
What do I feel pressure about? Work and dental bills. I love my job, but it doesn't afford fancy things like, you know, caring for my health. Pressure.
Good luck on all fronts.
Oh, and for the record, Internet dating? Stupid. Waste of time.
Melissa, please allow me to ask you (respectfully) some tough questions. What ARE you doing to meet men? Honestly, please don't take offense and delete this just because it doesn't conform to the feel-good, fluffy, sugary-sweet comments that obviously fuel your sensitive ego…..but you so badly want to meet someone, that's a given. If you were absolutely content with possibly remaining single, you would lose 3/4 of the material that you post. So, again, you have a goal (terrific!) and we're just anxious to see what steps you'll take towards achieving it. I don't see you reaching out or branching out…you seem terrified of leaving your mother, you seem to have no career goals or higher education goals, your life is just, well for lack of a better word, stuck in la-la land. I admire your journalistic endeavors, but yes, you HAVE to put yourself out there and shake things up a bit. You're 30 yrs. old…wouldn't you like to own your own home, advance in your career, cultivate friendships, both male and female, invest a little money, learn a new skill, support a political or social cause? Watching endless tv, re-arranging your Pez dispensers & spending the entire weekend deciding whether to drink cocoa or root beer is NOT going to showcase the lovely person I'm sure you are. Begin a new journey, be bold, be courageous, be independant…..be YOU….because I'm quite certain Mr. Melissa Blake is not going to just happen to get stuck in a snowstorm outside your mother's house and walk up and ring your doorbell for assistance, and fall madly in love with you at first sight!!! We all wish for you to make your dreams come true!
What are you doing to realizing your dream of being in a relationship? When you were in highschool and decided that you wanted to be a journalist, you took steps to do so. You went to college, wrote for the newspaper, etc… All of that was awesome and proof that you are a strong, capable woman who can do anything she puts her mind to. We're all waiting and wondering, when will you put that drive towards finding someone?
You could do internet dating if you want and just not tell anyone. If you feel there's some stigma on that then don't tell your blog readers, just try it out in private. You can immediately delete your profile if you change your mind and no one will be the wiser.
On the other hand, you could join a club or look for local events that you could attend to get to know people. I think it's your choice what you do in your free time, but you do seem very sheltered. It will not hurt you to get out and try some new things. Maybe your sister or a friend could join you so you don't have the do it alone. We just want to see you on the path to finding someone and that doesn't seem to be happening right now.
I'm worried you're the one putting pressure on these firsts! My first date was not the most magical date I've ever had. I actually don't even think I'd call it magical. I don't really remember much about my first kiss except who it was with and where it was- but I don't remember any of the (I'm sure lovely) feelings that went with it. It wasn't because he wasn't a great guy who I liked at the time and who gave me butterflies, he was. And it wasn't because I rushed these things- I really didn't. But the trouble is you can like someone a whole lot before a date, and during the first couple of dates and despite all of the waiting and being sure it just doesn't work out. I don't think having these "firsts" with someone other than my husband made them any less special then, nor did it take away from my "firsts" with my husband. By all means, date when you are ready, and only date people you are interested in. But if you are waiting to do these things with "the one" you may be setting yourself up for disappointment. Some people go on one date with one person and realize they are meant to be together forever and that is beautiful. Most of us end up kissing a couple of frogs by accident first and that's OK too!
Melissa Blake says
First Anon — Just because I wonder about things like first kisses and first dates doesn't mean I'm not content with being single. I've very content, actually, with my life, and even though I don't post a minute-by-minute account of my activities doesn't mean I'm not living a full and rich life. I am.
Regarding career and educational goals, I love my job as a newspaper adviser and I've never had a desire to go to graduate school.
Again, don't push your dreams on other people. Just because you have goals and dreams and you've lead your life a certain way doesn't mean that's what's best for everyone.
Melissa Blake says
Very true, Laura — i think people do tend to put a lot of pressure on themselves!
I've done way too much in the "just get it over with" state of mind. Young people can be so dumb, me included x)
Now I pace myself, and I never rush things. Pressuring yourself is never a good idea, I think that's one of the reason I have ME.
But a side-effect of having been in relationships is that I utterly dread the butterflies when a guy comes along a stirs them up.
I don't like saying this; but I sort of hate being in love 🙁
Well, maybe not the love part, but the feel of not being in control..
I'm such a control freak x) I should work on that. Hehe.
This is one of the best intimate blog post that I have ever read. Very intimate and true.