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by MICHELLE SMITH 11 months ago in dating

I'm not an expert but I know that others can benefit from my experience. We are never too young or old to learn from one another.

I’m not an expert when it comes to being in a relationship. I’ve bounced around as most have, but I haven’t had many. The ones that I have been in have taught me valuable lessons. Lessons that have had to be repeated until I understood what I was doing wrong. As most people, I blame myself for the mistakes made. When in reality a relationship is a two-way street. Lesson learned!

I’ll start at the beginning. Unlike most teenagers I didn’t have a boyfriend in middle school or right away in high school. I made the mistake of sticking to the internet. Dating through a screen because I was too shy to go out and meet people. I had a small group of friends, like most teenagers but not many stuck around. My experience on the internet wasn’t a good one. I met people from around the world. Dated someone in Chili, then even a couple from Boston. I did the hook up thing because just like any teenager I would sneak around. It wasn’t until one summer my brother had a friend that hung around from the neighborhood, which eventually turned into my first boyfriend. The internet relationship wasn’t a real relationship, especially when you can’t touch or see the person. This relationship was the first in person relationship with the opposite sex. It lasted not even a year or about a year. I lost a friend over it because I was naïve and didn’t notice that she had liked the boy. Eventually other events in my life ended up changing the relationship between me and the boy. I call him a boy because we weren’t even mature enough to know how to date at that point even though he was more experienced than I was. We each had our issues we needed to work out. During that time, I still was searching for who I am. There are a lot of details that obviously are left out from this lesson, but most important lesson was dating over the internet. After the relationship with the neighbor had ended, I still was online talking to people because I felt more comfortable talking through a screen. Eventually, I met most of those people, but it never stuck. The internet I’ve come to realize is just a place to be someone you aren’t. You can be one person through a screen and someone completely different in person. Which I will get to in future experiences.

This first part is based on my internet experience and two real in person experiences. Life throws you curve balls especially when you aren’t paying attention. Chat rooms were the beginning. Then it was the neighbor. I’ve had my share my crushes which never were fulfilled. Like any girl growing up. I was always the shy and quiet one. At some points I still am. I don’t go looking for a relationship even though it seems like it. In my experience the internet is meant for research and even chatting not just dating. Now a day’s people try to make it seem like you can only hook up through a screen. That isn’t the case. I’ve had my share of trouble online, I’ve learned what to look for and I’ve learned to accept the fact that not everyone is looking for the same thing as I am. Standards and good conversation are an important thing. Even though to most people it isn’t. I’ve accepted the fact that I can be stuck up but that is only because I know what I am using the chat room for. I know what I am searching for and what I expect. After giving the online dating a try, I gave two neighborhood guys a chance.

First guy that I gave a chance to was a year older than me. My first relationship started at 15 years old and he was 16 or 17 years old. It took a while to realize that he was into me. To realize that we were dating. As any teenage romance begins, there wasn’t any real dates. We hung out. Listened to music, took walks and talked. Eventually it began to fade when sexual intentions began, as most relationships do. He wasn’t my first and that of course was a mistake. However, I wasn’t his first either. It went downhill from there, we never really had much in common either. We were going in different directions and each had our own personal problems to deal with. At the time I was naïve, I didn’t know that I had issues to work out on my own before I could take on another person’s problems. It ended before summer time, during my sophomore year in high school. We went our separate ways, we tried to work it out but like any teenager I ended up liking someone else. Also ended up going into a summer program which helped prepare students for college. Our friendship never blossomed. I felt guilty for finding someone else, but you aren’t always meant to be with someone if you aren’t getting along. We then went our separate ways. To this day our friendship was off and on. We haven’t talked in years but we each have families that we’ve created with other people.

Relationship number two, was a guy that lived across the street from my house. An older guy. Which of course wasn’t pleasing to my friend, but you live and learn right? Well lesson learned. No matter how old you are, you can tell if a person is matured. Well he was at times just as immature as me. We had things in common, we shared interests as any other couple would. Broke up many times and of course made up. It was on and off for about 7 years. A long relationship but a friendship was built. Eventually that friendship as well ended, not on a good note I may add. We did a lot throughout those seven years. Bought our first and second apartment together. Even though we weren’t together towards the end we ended up having my handsome son. We tried raising him together, but things changed. Through out our break up, internet dating crept into both our lives. We saw other people. There were milestones in our lives that we accomplished together. Overall, he as a great guy but it wasn’t meant to be. Lesson learned from this relationship was, that you can’t change a person who isn’t interested in changing or growing up. You can be a wonderful person but eventually you need to be responsible and see your own faults. We each had done our wrongs in this relationship. It only helped us grow into the people we are today.

As I stated in my introduction, I am not a relationship expert. However, I feel that as I share my experiences with others it may be able to help them see that they aren’t alone. I’ve learned that dating isn’t easy. It requires a lot of attention, communication, and effort. You must be willing to work through the hard times just as you are the easy ones. Internet dating isn’t a bad thing, especially since now a days it is the way to do it. Only thing I can say is be careful. Don’t rush into anything. Sometimes just meeting someone the old fashion way is just as good. You can never really know a person until you spend time with them. Don’t lower your standards for anyone. Don’t let others waste your time with games even though we don’t see it right away. Be aware of the little signs. Overall, we need to live life to the fullest but be cautious in the decisions we make because end up we following our hearts and that is how we end up broken hearted. Be evenly yoked with your partner, don't let the past experiences affect what you are just beginning.



Hello, my name is Michelle. I have a goal to spread inspiration where I can. Look forward to sharing my poetry and educational articles with you all. Suggestions are always welcomed on my Facebook page at

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