Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Charming Meets Naive

picture from

In the same marriage prep class where I learned that men don't get hints, I also learned that the person you are dating won't change after you are married.  But everyone does change, right?  So what did my professor mean?  Here's a story to illustrate:

When I was in college I had a friend.  He was tall, dark, handsome, and charming.  He was raised a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  He had served a mission.  Unfortunately, he also liked to go to Las Vegas on the occasional weekend to gamble.  I was flattered that he liked to talk to me, and I enjoyed his company.  One day we were both setting up for a ward dance and he asked, "Why do girls like you never go out with guys like me?"  I said something terribly clever like, "Because guys like you don't ask girls like me to go out."  I was naive, and probably would have gone out with him had he asked.

So, suppose our story was different, and Charming had asked out Naive.  She liked his company, and was frankly a bit lonely.  They had fun together.  They had things in common.  They fell in love and decided to get married.  They both believed the other would change.  Charming felt that, once they were married, she would go on a trip with him to Vegas and she would loosen up a little and discover that gambling was fun.  Naive knew that Charming was aware that gambling went against what they had been taught and that she didn't like it.  He loved her and he would not want her to be unhappy!  She was sure he would not gamble anymore once they were married.

Of course, before they have been married for too long, Charming will want to take her gambling, and she will refuse to go.  He will be offended, and so will she.  He will determine to have fun anyway.  She will determine to teach him what is right and will nag him when he gets home.  Pretty soon he will want to leave more, and she will want to nag more, and neither one will be happy.  Could they change?  Yes.  But will they change before they wreck their relationship?  Maybe not.

The truth is, if someone loves to gamble before they get married, they will love to gamble after they get married.  If they tell their Mom every word you say and everything you do before you are married, they will do the same afterwards.  If they play video games for hours every day before they get married, they still are going to do that after!  It really is best to find someone who you can love without exception.  Find someone who makes you feel like you want to be a better person when you are with them, and not someone that you feel you can "fix" or "save".

Keep in mind that this is a lesson from a marriage prep class.  If you are Charming, or Naive, and have already married someone who you thought would change, you are now operating under a different set of rules including "love your choice", and "you can only change yourself".  There is still hope for your happily ever after, and there are other stories I will tell another time that might help.

As a final aside, it is true that in the story above, Naive is also charming (of course!), and Charming also happens to be naive.  They both failed to realize that the person they were dating would not change when they were married.

1 comment:

Michelle said...

Interesting. Is this advice directed at someone we both know and love? You're right, though. My answer would have been that girls like you don't date guys like him becausae the don't keep the standards of the church. I guess that's why I didn't date much.