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  1. Christine Bacas Tutor says:

    Kelly, these points are SPOT ON! I wish I had a relationship with my mom where I could talk to her about this subject. (Unfortunately, I don’t have a sister.) Every young girl needs to read this post! It took me YEARS to realize the fine points you mentioned to sweet Abby. I had to go through the school of hard knocks, living through bad relationships and battling with low self-esteem. I knew Keith was the one when early on, I babbled self-consciously about a subject that he and I disagreed on the proper way to handle, and in the end, he said, “Hey, if it’s important to you, then it’s important to me!” And that was that! I’m saving your letter to give to my girls when they’re old enough. Thanks, Kelly!

    1. Chris, that’s such a sweet story of you and Keith. :-) I know what you mean – I had to learn these lessons the hard way too! I’d rather Abby and Bailey learn life lessons like “how to balance a checkbook” and “how to drive on ice” and skip all that low self-esteem dating losers crap. I sure hope talking about dating and love early and often will help!

  2. Lori Anderson says:

    ooooooh soooooo beautiful! thank you for sharing!

  3. frugalfamilytimes says:

    Kelly – this is wonderful. Truly, truly wonderful. I’m pinning it in hopes that Pinterest is still around when I need this. My dgt is turning 10, so another decade? Yup. A Decade. I’m not kidding my self or anything. ;)

    1. Robin, thank you so much for your comment and the lovely pin too! I’m in denial too. Abby asked when she will start dating, and Ty said when you’re 22. She hasn’t figured out yet that he’s kidding, and I don’t plan to correct her. :-)

  4. I’m a twenty five year old mans man and this letter really made my day…I remember times when the girl I loved dropped her half of the sandwich on the ground and I gave her mine without thinking about it, I remember that at times after she told me she didn’t think she could love me that I wondered if I tried too hard, gave her too many compliments…now I realize that there’s nothing wrong with being honest, and girls are complicated heck maybe a ill crazy, and as a man you have to be honest with them (as if you could be anything else with a girl you love, it’s hard to contain your excited when with them) so that during all their moods and changes as we grow up, they can remember the one guy that always saw nothing but the best in them

    1. Tony, thank you so much for your heartfelt comment. It makes *my* day that this letter spoke to you!

  5. Kelly, stumbled upon this post on Pinterest and every point was true. I have been divorced for almost 9 years and had given up on finding someone and was even accepting of the fact. Lo and behold, the right guy finally walked into my life, and just like the quote, I realized why it had never worked out with anyone else. I do not have a daughter, but these points will be valid for my son.

  6. Reading your post really makes me smile and think about the first time I feel inlove hahaha. It’s the best feeling ever. Wondering what will be my reaction if my 10 year old son will ask me same question. I hope I can be as cool as you. Once again thank you so much for sharing your post.

  7. Christa Fry says:

    I’m reading this at 22, I have a boyfriend and I know from reading this that he’s who I need to spend the rest of my life with. We argue like an old married couple sometimes, but when it comes right down to it, we’re always there for each other. He’s in the Army four states away and a 12 hour drive. I’m here at home attending nursing school. Even though we’re far apart right now, we have not our own, but each other’s hearts in our chests. We’re very happy with our military relationship. It is hard sometimes, but we look forward to every moment we have together and we work hard to stay with each other. Even when you’re deeply in love, things can be hard. You shouldn’t give up, especially when you’re still fighting because that just means you both still want to fix it. Love is patient, kind, gentle, self controlled, etc. It is also strong and when you take proper care of it, nothing can break it’s bond.

  8. Yes, love is all of that and is such a great rush. Great article and love the list!

  9. I am 15 and I have made many stupid mistakes in my recent years with love, chose the wrong person, said the wrong things, and made the wrong decisions. And when I think of love, I think of my parents. They do everything for each other, treat each other well, and never hurt each other’s feelings. But they also fight sometimes…and it happens, but every time they forgive each other without having to say sorry. That is part of love. Some people used to call me desperate. It was mostly true. I am young and clueless, I don’t know what love is or how to love. Sometimes I feel like I am just dating because i just want to have the feeling to have someone to talk to when everyone else is busy, not be lonely, have someone to tell me I am pretty, but after I read your advice, I now understand that I thought I was in love, but really it was just a friendship with a boy. We never loved each other, we didn’t even call it love, we “liked” each other, and to me, they are not the same things. “Like” is a friendship whether it is with a girl or with a boy. Love is exactly what you described it as. Thank you so much for the advice it helped me in so many ways, and when I grow older and eventually have kids, I will let them know exactly what you said so that they probably wouldn’t make the same mistakes I have.

  10. HeartWarmed says:

    I love this post, thank you so much. Wish I’d read it 20 years ago, before I married someone who wasn’t great for me…but then I wouldn’t have my beautiful children today.

    Now I have given myself a second chance, and I live in hope of meeting someone who I connect with like this.

    Wish me luck!


  11. Lucky Lady says:

    I always tell my daughter that in the future she should marry someone that will treat her the way that her Dad treats me and her- with respect, love and deep affection. She has the perfect example of what a good man should be right here at home. I hope she will be blessed one day as I have to find such a wonderful husband.

  12. This is seriously fantasy. I challenge anyone to prove this is true and still happening after 20 years of marriage. My letter to my daughters will be honest, raw and no fairytale BS. Perhaps then they may have a chance at finding true respectful love.

    1. My dad still does these things for my mom and they’ve been together 34 years.

    2. My husband does those things for me and more.
      We’ve been married 37 years. Maybe I’m just one of the lucky ones, but this type of love and devotion exists for us!

    3. You are completely wrong. My husband does all of these things for me and more. I feel sorry for your daughter if you force your jaded ideas onto her.

  13. its a lovely article Kelly. Im glad I found this. its straight from the heart and fits my life!

  14. Just wanted to let you know that I found great comfort in this post. Our generation has corrupt views on how things are meant to be and what needs to happen when. I started dating a guy and knew I really liked him but everyone kept asking me “are you in love?” and “is he the one?” to the point that it made me nervous to think about it. I’m 24 years old and had never been in love before… I had no idea what the heck it meant until one day, I realized that he made me happy and that I could no longer picture my life without him. A few days later, stumbled upon this post that made things so clear for me and simply confirmed that it’s not actually as complicated as people make it out to be. Reading this list made me take a deep breath and made me smile. I’m young. I’ve found someone who truly cares for me. I wish I had had this conversation a long time ago but I guess it came at the perfect time after all. Thanks for giving nurturing motherly advice for all of us.

  15. my soon to be 17 year old daughter started dating this boy right before she turned 16. He has been a life long friend of hers. She has never dated anyone else. Growing up in a small town and he lived very close by, they have been best friends forever before he asked her out. She says they are going to get married. They just know that they are meant to be together. Watching them together, I know that it is a match made in Heaven. The way they care about each other and support each other and each others decisions and they are help mates to each other. I have been married for 26 years and did/do not have this. I am enjoying watching the two grow up together in such a close and intimate way, and watching how they work their way through the rough patches of the relationship. They are laying a great foundation for themselves. And if it doesn’t work out, they are teaching each other what it means to be and have a great partner in a relationship.

  16. I cried! Well written. As if I had written this myself!

  17. RestyledMom says:

    This is going to sound absolutely crazy BUT you kind of made me cry in a good way. My daughter is 7, I’m a single mom and trying to explain love is so far off my radar but at the same time on it (if that makes any sense at all). Teaching her about forgiveness, love and moving on -all wrapped in a nut shell…and some days I am hoping the nut isn’t me! Thank you. I will most certainly share this post on my blog!

    1. You are too sweet! I’m so glad to hear the post resonated with you. :-) Hats off to you for tackling this tough but important subject with your daughter already!