And, better yet, telling a good friend or mentor about these boundaries is a great way to stay accountable. Never make your partner feel alone, especially when you’re with them.
“A lack of boundaries invites a lack of respect.” Breaking or bending the limits the parents set only serves to make things difficult for everyone (trust me on this one). Being present for one another is one of the greatest signs of love.
You’re going to have to rely on other relationships in your life or God (if you have spiritual beliefs), and that needs to be understood from the beginning in order to have a healthy romantic relationship. As my great friend John Haskins solemnly pointed out, “You either work towards marriage or you break up. It sounds dramatic, but it’s true nonetheless.” If you are a committed person, that’s great!
If you have a boyfriend or girlfriend because you depend on them, that’s not going to end well. But rushing into commitment, or anything else in a relationship, doesn’t often do much good.
Your friends on Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter don’t need to know what’s going on.
Setting these boundaries definitely goes a long way in having a healthy relationship.
But, we’re all human and we’re all inherently fallible.
You won’t be able to support one another 100% of the time. Maybe you’ll both go through individual challenges at the same time. You don’t need to be thinking about the wedding during the first date, but if you know from the start that the person you’re dating isn’t someone you can see yourself spending the rest of your life with, then why waste time?
I know people who feel the “need to belong to someone.” It’s a dangerous mentality and it’s a road that only ever leads to heartbreak or unhealthy attachment. If you can see yourself with the other person far into the future, that’s a great sign.
But, it also needs to be understood that love is a marathon, and if you’re a teen there’s only so much you can (and should) do before you reach a certain age. Don’t ask for nudes, don’t flirt with other people, and don’t take them for granted.