Tuesday, December 11, 2012

the "be yourself" BLOW OFF

When it comes to giving dating and relationship advice, everyone always says "just be yourself" but I have to be honest, I think that's the worst advice ever.  Hear me out.  A relationship is all about working up to the point where you start really being yourself.  You kind of have to fall in love with the fake versions of each other, so you can accept the real, less-awesome, versions of each other later on.  Before you tell me I'm an awful person, ask yourself this:

Would you just "be yourself" in a job interview?  oh, hell to the NO.  Because then you'd have to admit to your potential employer that you'd spend at least two hours of the work-day balancing online shopping with looking at pictures of a friend of a friend's baby shower on Facebook. Right?  You have to be the best version of yourself.  The version that's impossible to keep up every day all the time.  Because that's the person they'll want to hire.

And that's exactly who we have to be for the first three months of dating.  When the H bomb and I started dating, I was the most laid-back person in the world.  I was an easy breezy beautiful Cover Girl.  I had no hair in unwanted places, I never burped, I loved every restaurant we went to, and I never got mad about anything.  It wasn't until six months later that I let a little of the real me come out.  I didn't always remember to shave my legs.  I burped.  I got annoyed if he didn't call when he said he would.  And I became more opinionated about where we went to dinner.  If I acted like that the first week we were dating, he probably would have dumped me via text message.  But by this time he was already in love and found my flaws peculiar and charming.  Plus, he'd already invested a lot of his time in us, so he was willing to overlook things that would have been more concerning earlier on.  Just like I was more willing to forgive some of the more problematic things he hid in the early stages of dating.  He used to describe me as "low maintenance" "easy to please" and "not crazy" but somehow I don't think he'd use the same adjectives today.

So, if you're still in the early stages of dating, only "be yourself" when it comes to all of your best qualities.  Save the neurosis, the chemical dependency, the anti-depressants, and the crappy credit report for when the 90-day return policy is up.  Trust me, by then, they'll love you anyway.