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home : columns : dear harriette April 3, 2020

2/12/2020 7:48:00 AM
Scholarly reader wants to find love

DEAR HARRIETTE: I have never been in a relationship. I am almost 20, and I have never experienced romance. Many of my friends have already had boyfriends or girlfriends, gotten involved in summer flings or even found their life partners. I, on the other hand, have dated various books, ranging from F. Scott Fitzgerald to Mark Twain. I care more about my education than anything else, so I've never had time to be in a proper relationship.

Since it has been so long, I wonder why I haven't caught anyone's eye. Sometimes I wonder if it is the way I look or dress.

Though I have never been in a relationship, I have gone on many dates. However, I never seemed to enjoy them, and it always ends with us being friends. It has been so hard for me to get into a relationship. Is there something wrong with me? I feel like there is something I am doing wrong. -- Mid-Life Crisis

DEAR MID-LIFE CRISIS: First, let me assure you that your crisis is less "mid-life" than it is "coming-of-age." You are young. Your life is just now unfolding before your eyes, and you are learning about what and who you like. Though it may not seem so, it is perfectly normal for you not to have fallen in love yet. It's good that you have dated. That means you are allowing yourself to meet people and see if there is synergy.

Have patience. You haven't met your match yet. You may want to put yourself in environments with people who share your interests. What about joining a book club where people read books and come together to talk about them? What else interests you? Find out what clubs or gatherings exist in your areas of interest. Keep your eyes open to notice who else is there. You are most likely to find a compatible partner if you look around in spaces that make you comfortable.

DEAR HARRIETTE: I work a lot. I come up for air every so often. It is then that I panic because I sometimes feel like I have no friends. I was free the other day, and I called all the people I consider close to me -- about six people -- and nobody was available. I thought a little more broadly -- nada. I think that I have isolated myself so much that I am no longer a priority for the people in my life. How can I turn that around? -- Reclaiming Friendship

DEAR RECLAIMING FRIENDSHIP: Go back to your list and fill it out more. Write down the names of people you care about and want to keep as friends. Pay close attention so that you pick people who are top priorities. Next, pick a time each week or each month -- whatever frequency works for you -- when you can schedule time to get together with friends. Invite someone far enough in advance so that they have time to make themselves available. You can ask them to let you know by a particular date so that you have time to invite someone else. Over time, pay attention to how many meetups you are able to schedule, and if they are fulfilling. It will become obvious which friendships are worth rekindling. Pay attention to see if you want to introduce new friends into the mix.

Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to askharriette@harriettecole.com or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.





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