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Recent Letter to the ElderWisdomCircle™

DATING/RELATIONSHIP: Do I Just Miss Being Single?
Letter #: 402032
Category: Dating/Relationship

Original Letter

Hi im Charlotte im 15 years old and in a relationship of 5 months. I love my boyfriend so very much but something inside me is telling me to break up with him. He has never done anything wrong, unsatisfied me etc. i can hardly fault him. None of my close friends are in relationships and they all have freedom to play around with guys etc. I think this is what i miss most, freedom and not having someone to always take care of. 

A lot of my guy friends have disconnected from me since coming into this relationship and i have lost a lot of close friendships which really upsets me and I have tried to rekindle these relationships but they are just not interested and feel my boyfriend will get jealous if they are talking to me. I need someone to tell me if im being stupid and should just go on with the relationship because i love everything about it aside from freedom, but this is a big factor for me.I wonder if the grass is greener on the other side.

Elder Response

I am happy to share my perspective with you.  First, I want to ask you two simple questions.   How will you feel if I recommend that you break up with your boyfriend?  Pause and consider that for a moment.   Now pretend that I encourage you to stay with him.   How does that make you feel?   Do either one of those scenarios bring you a sense of relief or disappointment? 

My objective above was to help you clarify your feelings.   Make your decision based on what action helps you feel the best.   You aren’t wrong or right either way, so do what makes you the happiest.

With that said, I will give you a few more thoughts to ponder.   Five months is a long time to be in a relationship at your age.  Were you planning to stay with your boyfriend forever?  Rarely do teen relationships become long-term relationships (i.e. marriage).   There is a good reason for that.  Every relationship is a stepping stone for learning more about yourself and what is important to you.  The more relationships you have, the better your basis of comparison will be, and knowing what you don’t want helps you to know better what you do want.   You and your boyfriend will change significantly over the next few years, continually refining who you are.  Your thoughts, ideas, interests, beliefs and friends will evolve.   Even though you love your boyfriend, trying to hold on to the relationship could be a challenge.

Consider this ice-cream analogy. smiley  Pretend that vanilla ice-cream is the only flavor you have ever tasted and that you love it.  You know there are many other flavors of ice-cream available, but you don’t want to take a chance trying other flavors in case you don’t like them as much as the vanilla.  I know that is a silly comparison, but in a way, it pertains to your situation.  You are afraid that leaving your comfort zone will be a mistake and that you won’t find another relationship that compares with what you have.  You'd rather settle for what you already know you like.  However, I doubt you’d be questioning whether to go or stay if you were feeling fulfilled.   Wanting to experience more in life is a healthy and natural desire, one that is impossible to ignore. 

This relationship has served you well.  You will always have a special place in your heart for your boyfriend, but you are starting to feel confined and are likely to feel more so with time.   It is important not to ignore your feelings.  Trust and honor them.  Your feelings guide you through life. 

If you do break up, it will be difficult, especially at first.  It always is.  It’s hard to do something that you know will hurt someone else, and to risk the unknown.   However, almost all of us have been through breakups, and we survive.  It is part of the dating process.   If you do what is best for yourself, it will also be best for your boyfriend (though he may not think so at the time).  Over the years, I had my heart broken by several times.  I was devastated each time.  However, I don’t regret any of those breakups.  Each boyfriend enriched my life and added to who I have become. And, had I stayed with any of my previous boyfriends I would never have found my amazing husband.  They were all part of the process leading me to him.

Charlotte, if you aren’t ready to leave your boyfriend then wait.  There is no hurry.  The situation will either get better or worse.  Your decision will become clearer with time.   You have so much to look forward to in the future.   At you age, I had no idea about all the fun, relationships and adventures that were in store for me.

You are not stupid if you break up with your boyfriend.  It would be easier though if he weren't so likable. smiley  It seems that your primary desire is to be free, but that fear of making a mistake is holding you back.  You really can’t make a mistake because every decision gives you more information and a new platform from which to leap.   Trust your heart.   Your answers are within.  

Wishing you clarity, strength, confidence and happiness as you move forward on your journey.  I am happy to talk with you further if I can be of more help.

Best Regards,

Ms.Mary


    

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