Becoming an Uncertified Relationship Expert

My entire life up to this point (at least the last five years of it) has been in some way characterized by my eternal singleness. Some of my friends started dating as early as the 7th grade, but I’ve been completely absent from the dating scene. I oftentimes even joke that I can’t even get boys to look in my direction. Still, my position as the best friend has put me in the position to dish out both solicited and unsolicited relationship advice for years and at this point, I think I’m finally getting a hang of it.

At the moment, I feel like I’ve seen it all and experienced none of it. Recently, I’ve had a few friends tell me I’m going to be absolutely killer when it comes time for me to be in a relationship, but I’m starting to wonder if that’s actually true. Sure, I’ve been paying attention all these years, but seeing and doing are completely different things. It’s hard to gauge how much I’ve actually learned. Will I carry the same you-deserve-the-world attitude into my own future relationships that I have for all of my friends, or will I allow myself to get distracted by some boy’s pretty eyes and ignore how he treats me?  

There are quite a few people in my life that come to me for relationship advice on the regular. I can spot a toxic, abusive relationship from miles away. I’ve learned that the key to a good relationship is communication and 90% of relationship problems can be solved by honest conversation. I can be a voice of reason and a shoulder to cry on. I tell my friends what they need to hear, whether they choose to listen or not.

I like to think I have it all figured out. It’s been a hot minute since I gave relationship advice that made things substantially worse than they were at the start, but I know I’m not perfect. I’m only a confrontational person in theory, like when I tell my friends they have to start some drama with their significant others in a get-some-answers-or-get-out-of-there type of way. I don’t know if I could confront someone when things seem shady.

Still, I think it’s beneficial that I know the key is in conversation. If you’re not communicating with your significant other, feelings are going to get hurt, someone is going to feel unappreciated, and there will be tons of misunderstandings. The nice part of that is that I never really had to learn it on my own. I learned it all through watching my friends in their relationships. Without even trying, I’ve become an uncertified relationship expert, and hopefully, I’ll be able to use that for myself one day.