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My track record with finding love hasn’t been all that stellar. Whenever I went to the church youth dances, it was always with the idea in mind that I was there to find love. From thirteen to eighteen, this was a very amorphous feeling at best. But, I never danced to any song unless I was facing a male. The same held true of the young adult dances (from about 21 on). However, I had zero luck in finding a date.

Anyway, since you guys seem to like lists a whole bunch, here is my list of unrequited loves. By the way, for the record, none of the pictures I’m using here in any way does more than represent the man I’m talking about. Okay? Then let’s get to it.

1. Daddy– Like many neurotypical girls, my first love was my own father. NO, my dad never acted on this girlish fantasy! However, I learned a lot from my Daddy. He taught me that asking questions is the best way to get answers. He taught me what makes kites go up (air pressure) and what makes eggs go down (gravity). He taught me to always start a thought at the beginning and work my way around it until I came to the end. The most important thing I learned from him is that mistakes don’t count as failures unless you don’t learn from them. Why does he count on my list of unrequited love? He was taken…by my mother. There’s one thing for sure, though. You can bet, thanks in large part to him, I know what true love looks like.

2. Mr. X– I’ve already told you about him. I don’t know if I ever thought of him in terms of romantic love. As I’ve told you, to me he was more of a brother than a lover. The fact that he chose to build up my trust in him to a very high level and then spend it all in two shots should tell you why I think of him as a “lost love.” Do I feel bad that I lost his love? Not any more. From Mr. X I learned what an abuser looks like.

3. Aaron– This was a guy from school. We were in the same grade. The March that I turned sixteen some of the guys in my age group learned that I hadn’t ever been out on a date and I had never been kissed. They teased me mercilessly about it until I decided I would shut their mouths for them. How? By going out on a date and getting kissed! I chose the class nerd, who was as stereotypical a nerd as you could ever hope to find, right down to the greasy hair filled with dandruff and the thick, horn-rimmed glasses. He asked me out while we were in the library together. His mother was his chauffeur when he came to get me. He took me on a date to the county fair, during which we learned he had either forgotten or lost his wallet. Thankfully, my mother had trained me well and I had enough money for a telephone call. He called his mother and she took me home, by way of his place. No, we didn’t make out and we couldn’t have even if I’d been interested in that because his room looked like a bomb had gone off in it. Even the bed was covered in junk. Finally, his mother brought me home and I favored him with a quick peck on the lips.

4. Mr P– I’ve told you about this guy, too. I was stupid with this guy in a way that positively fails to describe how stupid I was with him. However, I did learn a thing or two from him. For example, if you put a guy in the “Friend Zone” and he writes you a letter on four sides of paper telling you how much he wants to hurt you. Run! No so-called love is worth it if it kills your dreams. If all he seems interested in doing with you involves some form of sex, he doesn’t love you. Also, if you’re engaged for longer than a year and he still can’t name a date, he’s not going to. Break it off and look elsewhere. After this one, Daddy gave me a blessing assuring me that there was a man I had chosen before I was born. That helped a little.

5. Mark– I haven’t told you about this guy. I met him at the Branch shortly after he came home from his mission (church service in a foreign country, usually lasting eighteen months to two years). I developed a crush on him that I’m embarrassed to talk about. I truly thought he was “The One.” From Mark I learned that love needs to be double-sided. In other words, if you’re in love with him and the feeling isn’t mutual, it’s a crush. It’s not love. The best advise I can give you on guys like this is to just let him go. Like any wild animal, if he comes back, he’s yours forever. I did that. He married another woman and turned out to be a workaholic. So, I guess you could say I dodged a bullet on that one.

6. Unnamed Non-Member Guy– This is a guy I met through a family friend. He was renting a room and I was there to visit my best friend. He took one look and asked me out. Now, by then I had a policy that I would go out with anyone at least once, but no kissing on the first date and no honking of horns to summon me to the car, also no smoking or drinking around me. He was a non-member and I felt that I needed him to know where I stood. However, from UNMG I learned what dating is all about. It’s about having fun and getting to know each other. We did a lot of fun things on this date. He took me to dinner. We went miniature golfing, followed quickly by hover cart racing (that’s racing on a hover craft floating in water, in case you don’t know what that is). Then we had like half an hour to kill before our movie started so we sat in the cinema parking lot and talked and talked and talked. I had a really good time. 🙂 I never saw him again. 😦

After UNMG, I couldn’t get a date to save my life. I understand now that the reason for this is the fact that I chased all the men I liked around like a little lost puppy. Even this taught me something. I learned that most guys don’t like being chased by women. They prefer to do the chasing. Ever hear the old saying, “he chased her ’til she caught him”? That’s what that means. I’m not saying lead him on. I’m saying, be yourself, have fun and don’t turn into a creepy stalker.

As I mentioned, one snowy December, it finally dawned on me that I was being too forward with the men I was surrounding myself with and I didn’t even love myself. I spent an hour alone in the CareBearers’ office praying to the Lord about it. I told Him I was tired of looking for someone I didn’t even remember. I said that I understood He knew the man I was looking for and I didn’t even know where to start looking. So, I had come to a decision. From that moment on, I wasn’t going to look any more. I was going to concentrate on falling in love with myself, rather than trying to find some guy to love me. I would continue going to church dances, but I would go with the idea of having fun and not finding romance.

Interestingly enough, it turned out that the man I was looking for was someone I already knew.

Question Time: Were you ever too forward with someone you thought you loved? Did it turn out badly or did it work out for you? Did you ever decide not to look for love any more? What was the reasoning behind your decision? Tell me your story. I’m listening!