When I was a teenager, I had a friend who was obsessed with having a boyfriend, and she was pretty disappointed that she didn’t have one. She angsted over it constantly, gloomily looking on as some of our friends paired up into their various (incredibly short lived) relationships. In hindsight, she probably knows how silly it was to be jealous over some awful, awkward relationship between two awful, awkward middle schoolers, but when you’re 14-years-old, never been kissed, and just want one of your effing crushes to like you back for once, it’s easy to romanticize something you’ve never experienced.
But if she suddenly got a boyfriend, would she have been ready to have one?
Being ready to be in a relationship isn’t just a matter of age, it’s more a matter of maturity, where you’re “at” in your life. For example, you can be 15 and more ready for a relationship than a 23-year-old who just got out of one and is desperate for another. See what I’m saying? So, where do you lie? Check out these eight signs you’re actually not ready for a boyfriend (or girlfriend) right now. Best that you know now than experience a rude awakening.
Above All Else, You Feel Left OutRemember that part in Clueless when Dionne and Murray start making out after their harrowing freeway adventure, and Cher starts to admit that she really wants a boyfriend of her own? Yeah, that's you when you see your friends making out, or your friend telling you she can't hang because she's going to be boo'd up with her bae all night. You feel like everyone else in the universe is in a relationship except for you, and you hate it. Honestly, it's totally natural to feel that way. Who the hell wants to feel left out, especially considering all the unfortunate implications that are dumped on girls who seem perpetually single? But you're not ready for a relationship if you mostly want to be in one so that you can be like "everyone else." Besides, most people you know aren't in a relationship anyway, and you don't even know how happy people's relationships are. Maybe that person whose relationship you're jealous of is actually absolutely miserable. Still feel left out knowing that? Clueless
You Don't Feel All That Comfortable Doing Sexy Stuff YetIf you feel like this, don't worry, a lot more people feel this way than you can possibly imagine. Your lack of emotional readiness for ~sexy happenings~ doesn't mean that you're immature; I mean...do you know how many immature people are hooking up right now? It's just a personal preference, one that you'll have a hard time dealing with if you're in a relationship. I know, I know, you could end up with someone who doesn't pressure you to do anything you don't want to do, but I'm going to be real: There will be an expectation from most partners that you're going to at least be willing to make out, be in various states of undress, have sex, etc. If you don't feel ready for that yet, you might not really want to bother seeking out a boyfriend right now because he'll probably expect that. Only do it when you feel ready! Freaks and Geeks
You Just Want To Get Through Some Sexual MilestonesHey, more power to you, girl! But you might want to think long and hard before only getting a boyfriend so you can complete your sexual milestone checklist. I mean, if you get a boyfriend who also wants to largely use you for the same thing, then maybe you can work something out. But a relationship is more than blowjobs. It's not fair to whoever you end up dating to only really be interested in them for sex, period. The To-Do List
You Think A Relationship Will Make You HappierI mean, a relationship can make you happier. But relying on a relationship to cure you of a depression is fruitless, and incredibly unfair to your potential partner. What happens if you're not happier after a few months of dating? Do you kick your bae to the curb because they didn't fulfill this unattainable goal for you? I'm not saying you shouldn't be in a relationship if you're experiencing depression or even just a sad patch in your life right now. But if you're seeking romance to dull the pain, you're asking for some serious disappointment. Submarine
You Get Ridiculously JealousOkay, it's time for some brutal honesty with yourself: Are you a super jealous person? Would you be paranoid if you saw your BF talking to another girl? Would you be the type to try to break into his phone? Would you make sure he never hung out with any other female friends ever again? Yeah, uh, you're not ready for a boyfriend. Well, scratch that: You're not ready for a healthy relationship with someone. We all get jealous sometimes, but if you get jealous at everyone from your friends to your siblings? Yeah, you need to get a grip before you show your jealous streak in a relationship. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
You Just Got Out Of A RelationshipSis, now is not the time for a rebound. Have some casual flings if you want, but rushing into another relationship when you're still hurt and low key caught up on your ex is trouble waiting to happen. Be gentle with yourself and let time heal some wounds before you jump into another relationship. Legally Blonde
You Just Love Flirting And Casual Hookups A Lot Right NowWhether you're just a massive flirt or you're really into no-strings-attached hookups right now, ask yourself if a relationship is actually something you want in your life right now. Do you truly want to dedicate your attention and energy to one person and one person only? Or do you feel pressured to have a relationship because you feel guilty about hooking up or being a flirting machine? Would you actually be able to keep your flirty ways to a minimum if you were in a relationship? Are you just looking for a boyfriend or something to seem more respectable? Be real with yourself and answer these questions honestly before pursuing a relationship. Don't feel ashamed, just be honest. Misfits
You're Really Busy Right Now, Straight UpYes, you can be a busy girl and still have a relationship. People manage to do it. What they don't manage to do is tell you how taxing it can be to balance a relationship with school, work, extra-curricular activities, etc. A proper relationship requires time and dedication, and if you barely have time to hang out with your own friends these days, throwing a boyfriend into the mix will be a challenge. And frankly, getting your future on track right now is more important than being official. You'll have plenty of time to be in a relationship when you can balance your life better and when you have less responsibilities. But for now? Just chill. Just Another Girl on the IRT