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An Open Letter to the Next Guy Who Tries to Date a Girl With Anxiety

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at CNU chapter.

If people had to wear signs above their heads that described their personality for everyone to see, mine would be “silly and unique.”  But people don’t come with signs—they come with a million mixed signals and weird conversations that leave me laying wide awake at 2 a.m. overthinking every word and punctuation mark of every text we will ever send. I will question you, make fun of you, drag you on day-long shopping trips as I try on every possible clothing item in each store, and probably get on your last nerves, but I will also wear your tee-shirts, laugh with you, go on adventures with you, and promise to love and support you through anything.  Every girl is her own kind of crazy; you just have to find the one you can tolerate a little more than the rest.

I am certainly crazy and quite frankly a little weird, but honestly, who isn’t? I walk into walls, trip over my own two feet, and accidentally punch myself in the face when I am trying to cocoon myself in blankets because I am forever freezing, but I promise I have the purest heart and would never do anything to *intentionally* embarrass you in public. I hate mornings. I love dogs. I only like surprises when I can guess what it is before you show me. I’m hardly on time for anything. And if I haven’t responded to your text I’m probably napping, eating, or watching YouTube makeup tutorials. I’m fairly simple to understand, but I don’t understand how dating works these days.

In today’s hook-up culture it is so hard to find a guy who doesn’t just want to “hang out” or who cares about going out on an actual date. And thanks to Tinder and other online dating sites, the problem doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. This new kind of dating is confusing because there are many different levels that cause a lot a stress to girls with anxiety.  Most of this ambiguous “talking” phase is filled with overthinking and lots of screenshots of our conversations sent to our best friend to help us decode your message. Are we talking? What does that even mean? Why are you taking more than five minutes to answer my text? That’s not talking. I don’t really know. There’s just a lot that goes into relationships and you’re not really making this easy for us. Sure it would be great to have you by our side to share our experiences with, but we’re in no rush. We still have a degree to finish and a job to find. In the meantime, we will be making lasting memories with our best friends that will be stories we will tell you about one day.  

But also, this is a gentle reminder that every story has two sides. The eyes that seem to shine the brightest have also cried the most tears. The smile that lights up her face is because she doesn’t want anyone to see the sadness inside. When she accuses you of something, it’s because someone else’s intentions were once not as pure. When she flinches from your touch, it’s because someone else’s hand was not so gentle. Be patient and kind in your love for her and make sure to always make sure she never goes to bed upset because if her pillow could talk it would tell you all the things she wishes she could. 

The beauty of love is that it is perfectly imperfect. It is not made to be butterflies and happiness all the time. There are fights and times you don’t want to ever talk to each other again, but it’s after the hard times that you grow stronger as a person and as a couple. Divorce is not an option for me. I have seen its ill effects first hand and would not wish it on my worst enemy. It seems like the easy way out when the road gets rough, but you should know that I’m never the one to take the easiest route. We’re in it for the long haul if you’ve made it that far.  But I hope now you can understand my reasons for being hesitant to trust you, to actually believe you when you say you like me, to be entirely honest with you about what I’m thinking, or to cry in front of you because I have learned that trust is like paper: once it is wrinkled, it will never be straight again.

Know that every girl comes with some baggage, but some girls’ are a bit heavier to carry. This does not make them unlovable; rather, they are the ones who need it the most. When I finally find someone who hugging them makes it feel like all of my broken pieces are put back together, and every time they smile I can see the world in their eyes, then I’ll finally realize why it never worked out with anyone in the past.  Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together. In the meantime, I hope you are happy and having a nice life. I can’t wait to hear all your stories. And I can’t wait to meet you.