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20 Dating Mistakes I Made In My Twenties That I Wish My Mama Could Have Warned Me About

Now that I am in my 30s, sometimes I look back on life in my 20s and wonder what the heck I was doing. Between all of the things I’d like to say to my 25-year-old self and the crazy things I got up to, I almost can’t believe I survived back then. But the biggest thing I learned in my 20s was that being single is totally awesome… Though I admit that it took quite a few dating mistakes to get there.

Although I’m now happily married, it took kissing quite a few frogs to get there. Beyond that, dating in my 20s was complicated for a variety of reasons. I spent quite a few years dating people that weren’t right for me for a variety of reasons, including guys who didn’t want to “put a label on it,” guys that tried to convince me to do something that I wasn’t comfortable doing, and girls who just couldn’t commit. And when talking with friends of mine, I know that I wasn’t the only one to make more than one major dating mistake in my youth. From dating someone just because they are “boyfriend material” to staying in a relationship because you’re afraid to be alone, here are 20 dating mistakes we’ve all made in our 20s.

1. Being with someone who refuses to “put a label on it.”

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Sometimes, people are just sketchy AF when you first begin dating them. While it’s normal in our hookup culture today to not put a label on things for a while, eventually… it needs to happen. But when you’re in your 20s, you might end up dating someone who refuses to put a label on it for much longer than you should.

2. Dating someone who won’t commit to you, but swears they will… someday.

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Similar to the person who refuses to “put a label on it” is the person who says they will commit at some point but isn’t there… yet. I was with someone like this for two years and it was probably one of the biggest dating mistakes I ever made. Seriously, if you want to commit to someone and they don’t want to commit to you, don’t wait around. If they aren’t sure yet, they’ll never be sure.

3. Staying with someone who is upset when you try to dump them, and swear they can change. And then they don’t. Again.

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Whether it’s a cheater or someone who isn’t making enough time for you, we’ve all made the grand mistake of being with someone who promises to change and then doesn’t. It might seem like a good idea to give them a chance once or even twice, but you can’t keep doing it because it will only drive you crazy. They won’t change. Move on, girl.

4. Dating someone simply because they seem like “boyfriend material.”

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Another mistake that I made in my 20s is dating someone that I thought would be good “boyfriend material.” This could mean someone that’s super cute or just someone that is really well put together but you kind of end up dating them just because they seem like a good idea even though your heart isn’t fully in it. Don’t do it.

5. Dating someone who is “good on paper.”

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The whole “boyfriend material” thing can extend and get even worse when you date the person who is “good on paper.” This is typically someone who seems like an ideal match for you, but you just aren’t attracted to them. Trust me when I say that it’s better to let them go than to try to date them for a month and a half only to decide in the end that you just can’t do it. Trust me.

6. Chasing after someone that you want to date… for too long.

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Being in our 20s, we are still figuring out what we want. But we might also have a crush on someone that we think we want and end up chasing them for way too long. It happens to us all because crushes are hard to ignore, but at the same time, if it doesn’t happen then you need to let it go sooner than later.

7. Dating (and marrying) someone at a young age.

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This was advice that I got from a friend who made the unfortunate mistake of getting married at the ripe old age of 22. Granted, not every young marriage ends in catastrophe, but many of them do. There’s a reason why so many of us are waiting longer to get married and, primarily, it’s because we are just too dumb and unsure of life at a young age to know what we want in a relationship, much less a marriage.

8. Thinking you’re going to marry the first guy you slept with.

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This happens, but it’s pretty rare in today’s world. Although I have seen these kind of relationships work for some, I’m personally a fan of dating around a bit before settling down. The advantage of this is that it allows you to figure out what you want in a partner and what you want in the bedroom. At the same time, though, I definitely though I was going to marry my first boyfriend at some point. That was a huge mistake.

9. Changing your lifestyle dramatically for someone you want to date.

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A friend of mine went vegan for the boy she was dating because he was smart, ambitious, and seemed like a great catch. Unfortunately, going vegan made her bloated and she ended up gaining a total of 30 pounds. It wasn’t a good look for her mostly because she was miserable and just couldn’t keep up. In your 20s, it’s easy to want to change for the people you love… but you should probably be smarter and make those changes for YOU, not for someone else.

10. Agreeing to do something you aren’t that comfortable with because you like someone.

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The worst reason to do anything, as far as I am concerned, is because your partner is pushing you into this. Although this can happen with having a baby too soon (which is just TERRIBLE), it can also happen with smaller things like experimenting in bed. You just don’t want to go there.

11. Staying with someone who is uncomfortable with your unexpected weight gain.

caitsgettingstronger/Instagram

Remember that friend of mine who gained weight after she converted to veganism for a boyfriend? Well, said boyfriend said she got “fat”. Thankfully, she was smart enough to dump him right away but it still impacted her self-esteem. If someone thinks your body isn’t good enough for them, then they aren’t good enough for YOU.

12. Breaking up with someone because you’re too similar.

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Sometimes, in our 20s, we don’t know what we want in a date and we don’t know what we don’t want either. This can be really frustrating, especially because sometimes we end up breaking up with people who are actually quite similar to us… needlessly. We think that love should be more exciting instead, and make this disappointing mistake.

13. Dumping someone because they’re “boring” when, really, it’s just that you like the drama.

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This is another mistake that a friend of mine has made and had to learn from. I’ve made it to, to be honest. I used to think that love should be super exciting and dramatic, and so I broke up with anyone that I thought was “boring” not realizing that really, I was the problem there.

14. Not knowing how to fall for the “nice guy.”

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I made this mistake many, many times in my 20s. In fact, I continued to make it all throughout my 20s until I finally met my husband a month after turning 30 years old. It’s crazy to think back now, but I used to think that nice guys really did finish last and that they weren’t for me. I don’t know what I was thinking, but it’s a mistake I wish I had never made because I missed out on being with some good people in my youth.

15. Ignoring the red flags when you’re dating someone new because they seem great.

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That guy that seems really exciting but is a bad tipper? Well, that’s a bummer. And it may not seem like a big deal at first, but his lack of generosity to wait staff may translate to many other relationships. It’s no wonder that I fell hard for my husband, who is not only the nicest guy I’ve ever met but also incredibly generous. That’s just one example of a tiny red flag and the kind of thing that many of us ignore when we’re dating someone.

16. Constantly putting the other person’s needs above your own.

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In my 20s, I made a lot of dating mistakes (as you can see on this list) but none was bigger than putting everyone else’s needs ahead of my own. This is actually a mistake that I am still trying to work on because, as a people-pleaser, it’s not easy to do. However, this is where the whole self-care trend comes in… Definitely a necessity, in our 20s and after.

17. Making compromises all the time for their benefit, but not asking for the same for yourself.

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Look, compromises in relationships are good and even necessary. However, you know what’s NOT good? Making compromises that benefit the other person, and never asking for the same in return. We all know that a compromise doesn’t necessarily mean that something is 50/50, but rather that someone gave in a bit more than the other person. Don’t be the one to give in a bit more all the time, please.

18. Being with someone because you don’t want to be alone.

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I’ve seen many friends make this mistake: Stay in a relationship for much longer than they should have or simply date someone that they weren’t totally compatible with all because they were terrified of being alone. Look, being alone can be terrible, but it can also be great. In fact, learning to be alone is a vital part of growing up and coming into your own… So don’t stay in a relationship simply for the sake of having some company.

19. Not dating because you’re afraid to open up your heart.

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Another thing that some of us (cough, ME, cough) do is that we simply don’t date in our 20s. Okay, so I did technically date… But other than a couple of boyfriends earlier in my 20s, I generally kept myself off the market. This was because, as I realized later, I was terrified of opening up my heart because I was afraid of it getting hurt. In the end, though, I realized that this was a terrible reason not to date and I had to get out there again.

20. Never advocating for what you truly need in a relationship.

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It takes a lifetime to learn and put into practice, but advocating for your needs and wants in a relationship is key. In fact, advocating for yourself is one of the most important things you can do in life in general — with relationships and everything else for that matter, too. I’m lucky that my husband and I have become really good about this even before we met, and we continue to do this in our relationship now. In fact, sometimes he has to push me to advocate for myself… and I’m always grateful for it because the truth of the matter is that the only way you will get something you want or need is to speak up. After all, your partner can’t read your mind and know that you want roses once a month, but they can certainly do it if you ask them.


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ANTM’s Eva Marcille Bravely Comes Forward With Her Story Of Having Hide In ‘Multiple Places’ To Evade Her Abusive Ex-Boyfriend

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ANTM’s Eva Marcille Bravely Comes Forward With Her Story Of Having Hide In ‘Multiple Places’ To Evade Her Abusive Ex-Boyfriend

Shade is often thrown around on any given episode of the Real Housewives franchises. Gossip is what makes the reality show interesting. Sometimes, however, when lies spread, the truth that is ultimately revealed can be hurtful and speak more about reality than what was intended.

On last night’s episode of “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” one of the women, Marlo, tried to come for a castmate to poke fun at her financial woes. The shade turned out to expose longtime abuse.

Eva Marcille revealed on RHOA that the reason she has been moving from house to house isn’t that she’s lacking money but rather scared for her safety.

Twitter/@atlantainformer

“I still feel a sense of threat,” Marcille told her castmates on last night’s episode. “I have had to move five times, and I still feel a sense of uneasiness. He’s just so petty sometimes. I’ve walked outside of my balcony before, and he’s been standing in the dark. And it is the scariest feeling ever.”

Marcille is an American actress and former winner of the third cycle of America’s Next Top Model who is of Puerto Rican descent.

Marcille alleged that she has a restraining order against her ex-boyfriend, Kevin McCall due to stalking and domestic abuse.

The couple, who share a daughter together (though she refers to him as a “donor”), separated in 2015. She has since gone on to marry Atlanta lawyer Micheal T. Sterling; they too share a child.

Marcille dispelled gossip that she and Sterling have frequently moved around because of financial troubles.

Instagram/@omfgrealitytv

“Every time I move, he finds me,” Marcille said on the episode. “Because of that, I live in multiple places. Safety is a priority for me.”

Sterling took to social media to support his wife by saying “Everything we got, we earned the hard way. And every day that I wake up, I work for legacy, not labels. Motivational use only.”

Marcille told the women that a former friend, who she had a falling out with, began spreading lies about her. “The lies are real gross, and the hate is beyond,” she said on Instagram.

Her alleged abuser, who’s had a history of erratic behavior at least on social media, said Marcille is just using the claims against him as a fake storyline.

“It’s sad when she gotta keep using my name for her storyline if I was the husband I would be like “Real hoe of Atlanta is you out your mind, or is you still obsessed with your child’s Father? Why is he in our storyline so much ain’t I enuff headline for our relationship?” McCall said on Twitter.

Marlo also said on last night’s episode that Marcille was using old claims to back up her current financial situation.

Last year on “The Wendy Williams Show,” Marcille said that McCall has never been a part of her daughter’s life.

“He thinks that biology is more important than being present,” Marcille said of McCall. “He’s extremely dysfunctional, and he’s not at a place where it’s safe for himself or for others.”

Fans of Marcille were quick to offer her support on Twitter.

The less reasonable are demanding more details.

Others were quick to highlight their favorite and most empowering quotes from Eva on the episode.


READ: News Of This Woman Killing Her 11-Year-Old Daughter Because She Suspected Her of ‘Having Sex’ Is Proof Of The Perils Of Purity Culture

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Are You A Victim Of Abuse? Use This Checklist To Help You Determine The Truth

Calladitas No More

Are You A Victim Of Abuse? Use This Checklist To Help You Determine The Truth

There are three ways that abuse can be identified. By the way your partner treats you physically, by the way they treat you emotionally, and by how you feel about the relationship. This checklist of twenty signs of abuse is one tool that you can use to see if you, or someone you know, is a victim of abuse. And remember, more resources for dealing with abuse can be found by calling The National Domestic Violence Hotline on 1800 799 7233.

1. They have grabbed you and refused to let go.

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This falls into the category of physical abuse. No-one should grab you to make you feel threatened and unsafe. No-one.

2. They have pulled your hair.

Instagram: @theerinblythedavis

This is another form of physical abuse. Sure, a bit of hair pulling in the act of passion is fine. But when it happens as part of an argument, or when your partner is deliberately trying to hurt you or make you feel threatened, that is abuse.

3. They have thrown things at you and/or destroyed your belongings.

Instagram: @beatfreak1996

One way your significant other may try to control you is through your belongings. Throwing things at you and destroying your belongings is designed to hurt you physically and emotionally. Threatening to do so also falls under this category of behavior, too.

4. They have left you with bruises, black eyes, bleeding, and/or broken bones.

Instagram: @veeegooose

While abuse doesn’t necessarily have to leave marks on your body, a sure sign of physical abuse in your relationship is when your partner does leave marks. Research shows that once it happens the first time, a “threshold” of sorts has been crossed, and an abuser is more likely to hurt their partner again.

5. They have threatened to hurt or kill you.

Instagram: @raquelitt

It may not seem like abuse, since there are no physical marks left from a threat to hurt or kill you. However, these threats are still part of the arsenal of tools that abusers use. How? Because these threats are designed to control your behavior, and make you feel powerless. Abuse in a relationship is about the abuser gaining and maintaining power, and death threats are a way of emotionally controlling you.

6. They have threatened to take your children away or harm them.

Instagram: @stephaniemaurasanchez

Even if you have children together, children shouldn’t be used as a bargaining chip in your relationship. Even more importantly, your children’s safety is non-negotiable: no partner of yours should threaten it. By the way, this doesn’t just apply to children. Pets can also be used to manipulate and control you in a relationship.

7. They have forced you to have sex.

Instagram: @jennylikesjewellery

Sex is not a “duty” to be fulfilled in a loving, equal relationship. Nor should your partner guilt trip or manipulate you into participating in sex acts after you have refused sex. Consent needs to be freely given! It doesn’t matter how long the two of you have been together. Otherwise, it’s classed as sexual assault.

8. They try to control you and treat you like a child.

Instagram: @silvia_almanza

Abusive relationships are about control and power. Part of treating you like a child is making you feel like you don’t have any control in the relationship, or even your life, so that you continue to stay and endure the abuse.

9. They make you feel like you need permission to make decisions or go somewhere.

Instagram: @kreeturefeature

This applies when you feel like you have to text at every moment to update your partner about where you are. And when you can’t spend time with friends or family without getting permission from your partner. This is because abusers commonly try to isolate their partner from other, platonic relationships with other people.

10. They try to take complete control of the finances and how you spend money.

Instagram: @loudmouthbruja

Controlling how money is earned and spent is known as financial abuse. People suffering from this type of abuse are commonly denied access to money by partners for doing simple tasks like grocery shopping. Or, sometimes the abuser decides whether and when their partner is allowed to work.

11. They cannot admit to being wrong.

Instagram: @abs_ter

Part of being in a respectful and loving relationship is being able to say sorry and to admit fault. An abusive partner refuses to apologise, because doing so would threaten their position of power in their relationship.

12. They accuse you of things that you know are not true.

Instagram: @estephaniaabarca

This is about control, and manipulating you. After all, if you’re spending your time trying to prove your innocence, then you’re not going to spend your time planning to leave the relationship, are you?

13. They do not take responsibility for their behavior.

Instagram: @lu.pazmi

The reality is, it’s not too much to ask someone to take responsibility for their behavior – even more so when it’s someone you’re in a relationship with. However, your partner doesn’t take responsibility for their behavior because doing so would threaten their position of power in the relationship.

14. They use “The Silent Treatment” to get their way.

Instagram: @yappaririri

Chances are you may have experienced “The Silent Treatment” before, in elementary school. And that’s where that behavior should stay. An equal, loving relationship is not built on one person using silence to manipulate the other person into conceding a point.

15. They make subtle threats or negative remarks about you.

Instagram: @noshophotography

Of course, there’s always room for some friendly sledging in a loving, respectful relationship. But, it turns into abuse when your partner does this on a regular basis to frighten, or control you. It’s possible they may even pass it off as a “joke”, or say that you’re “overreacting”. But again, if you’re in a loving relationship, then your partner should respect the fact that you’re hurt by a “joke”. They should not continue to make these types of comments.

16. You feel scared about how your significant other will act.

Instagram: @erikakardol

Repeat after us: you should have no reason to fear your partner in a loving, respectful relationship. You should have no reason to fear your partner in a loving, respectful relationship.

17. You feel that you can help your partner to change their behavior.

Instagram: @amnesia.r

But, only if you have changed something about yourself first.

18. You watch your behavior carefully so that you do not start a conflict in your relationship.

Instagram: @cmirandads

An abuser does not abuse all of the time. They maintain a cycle of abuse in the relationship. Things go from being tense, where you feel like you have to watch your own actions, to an incident which involves verbal, emotional, financial and physical abuse. Then, your partner attempts reconciliation or denies the abuse occurred, and the relationship goes into a calm stage. However, tensions will begin to build before long, starting the cycle once again.

19. You stay with your partner because you are afraid of what they would do if you broke up.

Instagram: @msstefniv

In other words, you feel trapped in your relationship because of your partner’s current, or potential, behavior. This can range from hurting you, your kids, your pets, your friends, and your family. Or, destroying your belongings, compromising access to your finances, or hurting themselves.

20. They don’t pass “The No Test”

Instagram: @kaitlyn_laurido

“The No Test” is pretty simple. Observe what happens the next time you tell your partner “no”. This could be in response to being asked out on a date, or maybe doing them a simple favor. Disappointment is a normal response to being told “no.”  However, pure outrage, violence, and/or emotional manipulation is not a reasonable response, and may indicate an abusive relationship.

If you feel that you are experiencing an abusive relationship, please seek help. Call The National Domestic Violence Hotline on 1800 799 7233 for assistance. Please take care if you feel that your internet or mobile phone device use is being monitored.

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