Growing up with all of the Disney Princesses was amazing. The stories of heroism and triumph, the trials and tribulations of fantasy, not to mention the love stories. That was easily my favorite part. Every princess had a handsome prince there to save them, kiss them before sunrise or sunset, help them save their beloved kingdom, you get the idea. Reminiscing on all of my old favorite stories is great until I realize that all of these characters are younger than I am now. And that all of these characters are experiencing first kisses, relationships, and love before I am.
In recent years, I have begun to feel left out. Social apps and other forms of media are constantly flooded with depictions of relationships and love. It feels like everywhere I look, someone is getting something that I am not. If jealousy is a disease, then I am a sick, sick girl.
But honestly, why does it feel like everyone around me is moving at a much faster pace? For a long time, I resorted to blaming it on myself. I would tell myself that I am not pretty enough, skinny enough, funny enough, smart enough. The list went on and on. But more recently, I have sort of noticed something: a lot of people feel the need to grow up a lot faster.
Personally, I think it is easy to brush it off and blame it on the new generation of teens that have social media apps like TikTok that constantly have relatively glorified ideas of love, relationships, and hookups. Not to mention shows like Euphoria that’s storyline follows high school students involved in things I could’ve never even imagined when I was in high school. If so many of us feel like ‘everyone’ is experiencing things before we do, we feel the need to rush and get a handle on these things before it’s too late. And that is what I struggled with; feeling like I was too late.
I have never been in a relationship, been on a date, or been kissed. But that doesn’t mean that I have never had a crush, or that no one has ever liked me back. Unfortunately, that is the stigma that comes with saying these things out loud. People just assume that because I have never experienced these things means that I don’t want to or don’t see it as important when that couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Everyone grows and matures at a different pace. We all experience things at different times and at different places in our lives. A kiss is just a kiss, whether it is the first kiss or the 50th. A date is a date; it can lead to a second, third, and so on, or it is a good story to tell friends. Having not experienced it yet doesn’t mean that you never will or that you are late to the game. Instead of thinking of yourself as left behind or a late bloomer, think of those princesses. Think of it as waiting for the perfect frog to kiss, and think of yourself as the perfect princess.