I had an exciting text from one of the teenagers in my life this past week. She just starting going out with her first boyfriend — they look so cute together!
The truth is, young love isn’t always built to last. Being a thoughtful young lady, this teenager asked for relationship advice.
What do you say? It’s one of the more important questions anyone can ever ask and I treated it with the relevant seriousness.
I’d never hold my fiction up as dating advice, though lessons I’ve learned have ended up on the page. Frankly, this teenager hasn’t read my writing yet! It should be labeled as anti-dating advice. My characters don’t date! They end up in the middle of wars, trapped together, enslaved to each other, half-dead more likely or not, or cursed.
My real life relationship is atypical. Knyght, my husband, is my first and only boyfriend. Ten years later, two years into legal marriage and I still date him, with hopefully man more years to come.
And that, is my best advice on relationships. Talk, pursue, seduce, never, ever take the other for granted. Communicate and strive to be selfless. That is what has kept Knyght and I together, despite everything that could have torn us apart, from coming from difference racial backgrounds, being separated by oceans, multiple times, or spending the last six months bouncing around from place to place, unemployed since our company in China suddenly shut down and we lost our visas. It’s vital to continue to learn about our partners, even after we’ve been together for years, perhaps especially after we’ve been together for years. People change. I’ve certainly changed. Today, I went back and read some of my old writing. Seriously, I used to be quite religious! That’s not me, anymore. If Knyght still assumed I was religious and ran our relationship on those assumption, well…let’s put it this way….sex would be nowhere near as much fun.
Just think though, this means you’re not stuck with the same person your entire life! It’s the same wonderful memories and shared vocabulary and history, but a new person that keeps evolving! Seriously, ladies, find your heels and diamonds, or your combat boots and cargo pants and get out and dirty with that special someone again. Guys, iron a shirt once in a while, dust off the leather shoes or whatever else gets your special someone hot and bothered and both of you, go do something together!
Everyone has their own style of relationships. Some people need to yell, or so it appears, and have stormy fights and then amazing make-up sex afterwards. If I could find a way to have the amazing make-up sex without the fight before hand, I would! However, the thought of fighting with Knyght is incomprehensible to me. It would be like shoving a blade in my own flesh. To be honest, I don’t see the point of fighting. It’s very rare that people disagree completely. It’s more likely to be a rough day, a difficult decision. Your partner should be the one in your corner. If they are not, you have something else to be talking about, and it’s not the grocery list or where little Sally is going to go to school. I love the fact that Knyght plays video games. All his aggression and frustration goes straight into snapping off bogies and when he’s finished, I get this warm, cuddly guy afterwards. For me, when I become agitated, Knyght will just quietly suggest that perhaps I should be writing. Leaving it all on the page usually takes care of my issues, at least the ones that want to spout all over the place and make grumpy little monsters in the room.
Coming back to my teenage mentee, or anyone asking for relationship advice, I really cannot say it enough. Talk. Talk about the whether, talk about you childhoods, talking about you dream, do things together and then talk about what you did. Don’t assume and never take for granted. Those are the things you can control. Jobs, the tides of politics or economics, most of us can’t effect very consistently. But our choices and our words, we can. In Terms of Derangement, Telos speaks very little. That’s one of the reasons that his relationship with Jarvis moves so slowly. Without communication, very little can happen!
But definitely don’t take dating advice from my characters Telos and Jarvis. They both have issues. Their issues have issues! It’s fantasy! Which is also fun in relationships, but that’s an entire different post.