To the Future Boys That May Become Future Brothers-in-Laws,

Ah, young love. I love it, I hate it, and admittedly I find myself to be jealous of those who are successful with “young love”.

I just came to terms with the inner battle of my own “young love” that maybe, I am still too young to understand what love is. All the same, I wonder sometimes how girls that are younger than I am have the strength to carry out long lasting relationships. Is it because maybe they know something more about love than I do? Are they just naive and evasive of potential problems? Or maybe.. they have found their soul mate at the  ever young age of 12 years old?

How do you find true love at 12 years old?

It’s weird being the oldest and seeing my younger sisters interact with boys. I’m going to be really frank, we all talk about a lot of different things. What we never talk about is our love life (read: my love life. Or possibly Eleanor’s.) You may be marveling at this title that I have chosen for this post. Clearly, my sisters (and myself, for that matter) are a long ways off from finding a soul mate and husband to spend the rest of our lives with. I’m not sure how I will react to seeing them holding hands with (gasp) a boy, but here’s a letter of affection to whoever may choose to pursue either one of my lovely sisters:

To the Future Boys That May Become Future Brothers-in-Laws,

First off, seeing my sister texting you, holding hands with you and going places with you makes me cringe just a bit – not because I dislike you, but because I’m trying to figure out where all the time went, and if this is actually reality. As strange as this sensation is to me, I’m trying my best to come to terms with the fact that she is growing up and I was once like her.

So take care of her – tell her that she is special and beautiful. Take her out on dates – plan them and surprise her. Let her take charge and surprise you. Be spontaneous and discover new things and new places together. Make memories with her.

Don’t hide things from her – honesty and trust are two major pillars in a relationship. If you can’t be upfront with her, ask yourself why. Are you afraid that she will judge you? Are you hiding something that you aren’t proud of? Do you think that you can just ‘sweep it under the rug’ because it doesn’t matter? If you are hiding something, then maybe it does. Be honest – the less you hide, the easier if is for her to confide in you.

Communicate with her – tell her how you are feeling about certain things. There is no need to lie about how you feel – a true lady and gentleman respects their love’s feelings.If you can’t see her in person, text or call her. Let her know that you are alive (please) and that you are still thinking about her.

Respect her – remember that a relationship is a two way street. If you both respect each other’s wishes and feelings, the relationship will go a long way. No means no, and if you can’t understand that, then you best be moving on until you do.

Respect her family – This is key, my friend. As her family, we aren’t going to bite you or hurt you. We just want what is best for our sister. My parents want someone that will respect them and take care of her. So talk to us, get to know us and spend time with us – if you really want to marry my sister, the reality is, you’ll be marrying us too.

Understand her – understand who she is, what she loves to do and where she has come from. Try to read between the lines of the story of her life and help her to heal the wounds of the past and build memories for the future.

Most importantly, LOVE her and PRAY her – if you really love my sister, please do all of these things. Pray for her – her dreams, her hopes and her struggles. Pray for her family. Pray for her well being and that she will be able to follow in God’s path of righteousness. With God on your side, your relationship will flourish. Take pride in knowing that “If God is for you, who can be against you?” (Romans 8:31).

So love her unconditionally and make God the focus of your relationship. With all these things, I hope to call you my brother-in-law….many years down the road, of course!

Rachel

^^ And I think all of this is my hurt speaking, but hey, at least now I know what I need to look for in a potential husband.

So live out and love mightily, keep God as your focus and of course, spill ink while you do.

Posted by

A Vancouver-based writer who won't let her height get in the way of her dreams! Lover of God, good food, coffee & beer, corgis, and exploring with family & friends. Producer & host of Y57 Media on Vancouver Co-op Radio, CFRO 100.5 FM and a weekly contributor for Curiocity Vancouver.

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