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Friday, September 28, 2012

In Love with a Future Missionary - Part 2: Can't Stop Being in Love

Hi Brother Jo,

So I emailed you a long time ago about a guy that I am absolutely in love with, and who was preparing for a mission. I sent the email on a different account though... I don't use that one anymore.

Well, we made it clear to each other that I wasn't going to wait, and that I would be actively dating while he was gone and if I happen to be single when he comes back then we will see where things take us. True to my word, since he has been gone I have gone of a couple of dates.

My predicament is this: I miss him so much, and I think its affecting my motivation. I still study my scriptures, say my prayers, attend church and write in my journal everyday, but I am having issues with staying focused in terms of study for college. I'm usually very studious, and I don't really understand why this is happening. I haven't really studied properly since he left, which is terrible considering he has been gone almost three weeks now, and I am very worried that I am falling behind. Its just every time I sit down I start thinking about what he is up to, etc.

Can you think of any ways to combat this?

- Smitten

Dear Smitten,

I don't know that you should fight how you feel.

Being in love is a rare and wonderful thing!

You shouldn't write him love letters, of course.

And you should definitely keep dating.

Perhaps your feelings will change with time. Perhaps they'll change because you'll find someone else.

Perhaps he'll come back and feel differently about you or you'll feel differently about him.

But for now, so long as you don't distract him from the work, I think you should enjoy these feelings. Write about them in your journal. Dream about the future. Let the journal become a release of expression, and don't let the dreaming keep you from reality.

And, as Sister Jo always says, nothing takes our minds off ourselves better than being of service to others.

- Bro Jo


Megan said...

From the little I know about love and dating, I know it's normal to have withdrawals from the man you love. I've seen my sister go through many break ups and stuff and it takes a while to get used to not being with them all the time and getting used to dating other guys. I know it's not exactly the same thing because the guy probably still likes her, but it takes a lot of patience with yourself to get through this.

Amberlie said...

True story! I think it's important to understand that what she's feeling is normal, and that it's not going to last forever (unless she wants it to).

It can also be helpful if you give yourself time to embrace those feelings. Sometimes we want to put those feelings aside because they hurt, but you miss people because you care for them! You shouldn't let the sadness or longing take over! But acknowledge that you have feelings, and bring them to the Lord. He can help you learn how to be happy, even when times are hard (and being apart from the person you love for two years pretty much fits the definition of HARD!). He'll help you learn how to cope!

One thing I keep in mind when things are difficult and I have responsibilities (school, callings, family stuff), and all I want to do is curl up and cry, is that the Lord will consecrate the affliction for my gain (2 Ne 2:2). Learning how to go on with life even though things are difficult will definitely help me be a better parent, that's for sure!

Remember to keep ALL the commandments, take care of yourself spiritually and physically, and definitely take the opportunity to grow closer to the Savior and gain a deeper appreciation for the Atonement (it's not just for sinners!). Don't waste the trial! Things will certainly get easier! And you'll learn a lot from the experience, and isn't that what life's all about?!