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Monday, September 24, 2012

In Love with a Future Missionary - Part 1: Getting Too Serious

Dear Brother Jo,

It’s me again, back for more advice. I’m so grateful for the advice that you’ve given me in the past… I went from a relatively shy 16 year old that had my fair share of guy friends but that I didn’t think would ever date me, and now at 18 I get asked out on lots of dates (the stuff in your how to get a guy’s attention and how to get a guy to ask you out really does work!)

Anyway, I’m now 18 years old and I’ve fallen in love with the most amazing guy I could ever have been blessed to meet. Let’s call him "Luke".

I met Luke a while back before he was a member of the Church. He is also 18 and was baptized more than 6 months back. His best friend (also a good friend of mine) invited him to church activities and also took him as his wingman on double dates. I went on a few casual group dates with Luke before I realized that I liked him very much, but I ignored my feelings for him because I knew he wasn’t a member, and I focused my attention on dating other guys. I continued being friendly with him, and we soon developed into being very close friends. Not too long after he was baptized, I realized that I was in love with him, and that I care for him deeply.

At least a month ago he told me that he loves me, and that he has liked me since our very first date. I told him that I returned his feelings. My issue is that… he hasn’t gone on a mission. He plans to go as soon as he can (he has to wait a year after his baptism of course), and he’s been attending all of the mission preparation classes and has completed the Preach my Gospel manual. I completely, wholeheartedly believe that him going on a mission is the best thing. I know I will miss him terribly, but he told me not to wait, and I don’t believe in that anyway. A small part of me wishes that I could wait for him, or that he was already an RM and we could start a relationship, but the other (larger) part is so excited for him and the decision he's made.

We aren’t dating exclusively. Since the time that we told each other how we feel I have dated other guys.
Well, the question in all of this is… Should I have admitted to him how I feel?

He told me his feelings first, and I didn’t think I should lie about it. Even though we aren’t ‘exclusive’ as such, he tells me he loves me when we say goodbye. He also tells me that he'll love me for all eternity, and that try as he might he will never find a girl like me. Is this too serious for a guy who is leaving on his mission in 6 months? If so, what should I do about it?

And on a vaguely related note, he always tells me how amazing and ‘perfect’ he thinks I am. I find it flattering, however unrealistic. He places me on a pedestal, and he keeps asking me what he can do to improve himself so that he is worthy of my affection. Is this something I should be worried about?

Thank you in advance,


Dear Smitten,

I think the only thing you have to worry about is being alone together.

There's nothing wrong with how either of you feel or your plans; as for expressing your feelings . . . well, yeah, it’s premature to be that serious, so I think you should both focus on being a little more casual and a little less expressive.

As his mission gets closer Satan may try to use you as a temptation to keep him from going. Don't freak out, but be aware.

I'm glad he hasn't asked you to wait, and glad that you realize you shouldn't promise that you will.

Very happy for and proud of both of you,

- Bro Jo

Dear Brother Jo,

Thanks, I definitely will try harder to keep things more casual between us. We've only ever double / group dated, and are only ever alone together for a couple of minutes. Sure we have own conversations, but it’s always in public and mostly at church activities / dates and within sight (but not necessarily ear shot) of friends and or leaders.

Sometimes when we're with friends they will all 'conveniently disappear' (They have all guessed a long time ago that we liked each other, but I still don't approve of how they think we should get it over with and just be a couple).

The first time that this happened it was at night and on a date. All we were doing was talking, but as soon as I realized that we were alone, I explained to him that we'd better go and find them. He was a bit surprised, but I told him even though I didn't intend on anything happening, I would rather not give anyone the opportunity to even think that something dodgy is going on. So I guess I'll have to go and discuss the expression of feelings thing with Luke.

Also thanks for that warning, I will be on my guard :)


Dear Smitten,

Good girl.  Let us know how it all turns out

- Bro Jo

Dear Bro Jo,

So I had that little talk with "Luke".  

He told me he actually had been thinking about us getting too serious. 

He agreed that we needed to be more casual, so now we're both working on it. I'm glad that it went well, I was a bit worried about how he'd take it because I didn't want to (as you would say) burn any bridges that I might want to cross later.

- Smitten

[Readers - Part 2 of this series will publish this Friday. - Bro Jo ]

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