Updated: Jun 4
Faith & Dating in 2022
A Think Piece Inspired by A Love is Blind Season 2 Episode I half watched.
Let's paint the scene: I was at my best friend's apartment drinking wine, eating Chinese food, and giving live commentary to whatever was playing on TV at the time. I had made the semi-conscious decision not to watch the second season of Love is Blind, but the bestie needed to catch up, so here we were.
One of the girls at this point in the series, announces that she's a Christian and after she leaves the pods breaks up with her fiancé because he is not a Christian. During the break up the guy says,
"You knew before we left the pods what I believed. I can't believe in 2022, you would break up with someone over something like that."
While he was clearly within his rights to be upset, it was the "I can't believe in 2022" that stood out to me. In my mind, this inflection was a bit dismissive of her reasoning and beliefs. It made me think of what I may have done in her situation.
From My Perspective
In most of my interpersonal relationships, I’ve never felt like I was enough.
I've always felt that I had to be smarter, more useful, prettier, thinner, or more obliging in order to make the people I loved stick around. I've felt that I had to learn how to earn love or approval from the people I loved so that they would love me back.
Merely existing in these relationships didn’t keep people from leaving, and so I thought my existence was not enough.
I also have complicated relationships with all of my parents (all four of them - biological and step-parents) because I’ve always been self-sufficient, so while most of them would tell me they love me often growing up, it was most frequently after I had accomplished something. When you consider that I am the oldest child in a blended family & a pseudo-parent to my younger siblings: I didn't get to have my own problems nor did I often receive praise or love for simply existing. This combined with the truth that I wasn’t really seen unless I was accomplishing some task, it explains how this cycle of feeling that I had to earn love began.
I tried to be the best or at least better than average so I could be seen, praised, and feel loved. One of the most interesting things about being raised by people who are still figuring out their own traumas and triggers is that they don’t know how that affects the kids that they’re raising until the raising is done.
And if I couldn’t be the best or better than average, then I resolved to become as small and as un-bothersome as possible.
To the Point
Romantically, this looked like falling in love with one of my childhood best friends, fighting myself not to tell him, telling him, him ultimately rejecting me, and finally ending with me losing a friend and all hope of romance.
I thought I would try promiscuity, but that wasn’t for me. Following the trend of being “good at something” in pursuing casual sexual relationships was too easy. For all my insecurities, finding a partner to please led to me being trapped in a cycle of numbness and depression, because after my clothes were back on I was back to being alone. At my core, I wanted to be loved and sex at best is only an imitation of intimacy, when what you really want is love.
Now through all these cycles and changes, I always considered myself a Christian. My relationship with God got me through the tough times and showed me how to access even better times. And as much as I actively tried other solutions, I’ve never felt more loved than when I was intentional about maintaining my relationship with God. During these seasons where I was setting time aside to hear God and meditate on His Word, I could feel myself in the arms of God.
I’ve never felt more loved than when I cried out in grief or despair or heartbreak and God reminded me that I was not alone in any of these feelings.
I’ve never felt more loved than when I prayed to God and asked him for me to have a job and to be back in school for my 21st birthday. I then spent my 21st birthday at work and in school.
My needs seem small, but He was noticing even my smallest needs because I exist and I don't have to do anything to be loved by Him.
I can’t imagine love without God.
And if someone doesn’t believe in God the way I believe in God then I won’t ever believe that they could ever truly love me.
But all of this wouldn’t fit in my Tinder profile. So here is me saying it out loud.
To All My Christian Singles
I know it's rough out here, but I am still hopeful. If we believe that the God of the universe loves us so deeply that He is actively participating in our lives, then it's not a stretch to believe that He knows our heart's desire when it comes to a romantic partner.
You are not the only one who believes what you believe or who wants what you want .
In the words of Michael Bublé:
And I know some day that it’ll all turn out
You'll make me work so we can work to work it out
And I promise you, kid, that I'll give so much more than I get
I just haven't met you yet
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