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I am having trouble finding a boyfriend. What should I do?

I want a boy that is friendly, nice, loyal, and that is not a bully.

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Your desire to have a boyfriend is a natural part of life. However, you need to ask yourself why do you really want a boyfriend. I can speak from experience on the subject. When I was in ninth grade, I wanted a boyfriend. I was not a popular student. I just wanted to fit in with the popular students. It seemed that the popular girls all had boyfriends.

At eighteen, I found a boyfriend. At nineteen, he and I were married. At forty-four years of age, after twenty-five years of marriage, and two beautiful children, he divorced me.

Now, I wish I had not been so intent upon having a boyfriend. But I will tell you that I did not find my boyfriend at the places I liked to hang out. I loved attending church functions at your age. The man I married did not like church functions. I knew this before I married him, but I thought I could change him. You cannot change a person. I did not find him in church, and this became a major division in our lives.

My advice is to find out who you are. Do not do what I did. I married a man who validated me. He told me who I was or who I was to be, and actually, that was the problem in our twenty-five years of marriage. I became who he wanted me to be. I lost the person I was born to be. Today, after being divorced for five years, I am just finding out who I really am. Today, at fifty years old, I have lost so many years trying to be someone my ex-husband wanted me to be.

Don't rush love. Find out who you are and what you want to do with your life. Then begin hanging out with people who share your similar interests. Although opposites attract, run from your opposite. Find someone who has compatibility with you. It is hard to pretend for someone else, even if you think you have fallen in love.

One more point: do not date anyone until you have assurance that the person is compatible. Dating can lead to prematurely falling in love with the wrong person. I know. I did it. I am still recovering from divorce.

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I am going to pretty much give you the exact same advice that you have already been given, but maybe the more you hear it the better it will sink in. You are in high school. This is a time to discover yourself and who you are as a person, not to define yourself as an accessory of someone else. Go out and do the things that you like to do and have fun doing them. Learn all that you can about as many things as you can. As you begin to discover things that you enjoy doing, you will put yourself in situations where you will start to meet people who share your interests. When you meet boys who share your interests, start out by being friends with them. Friendships last a long time when they are based on shared beliefs and shared interests. You can build up an entire network of people, boys and girls, with whom you enjoy doing things. The, as you get to know people, maybe there will be that different spark with one of them. If there is, remember that you are both still young and your lives are likely to take you in different directions when it comes time to go off to college. This is why friendships are so much more important than romantic entanglements at your age. Yes, you want a date to the prom,, but why not go to the prom with a friend and if something comes of it later on, after you have both found your paths in life, then it was definitely meant to be. If not, you have an old friend to catch up with when you come to your ten year reunion. I know that seems like it is a long way off now, but believe me when I tell you that time flies! Enjoy your life each and every day and look to your own future - a future that makes you  happy and is not dictated to you by anyone but you!

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Pohnpei is right. At your age, it really is not important that you concentrate so much on having a boyfriend. You will find that boys will come and go. This is actually a process that is helping you learn what you want in a boyfriend. For example, when you have a negative experience with one boy, you will know that next time this is a quality that you do not want. For now, just concentrate on school. You will see that throughout high school you will learn a lot and have many experiences that will hopefully guide you in finding a boyfriend who is nice and loyal.

Here's a few pointers:

  • look for someone who shares the same interests as you
  • look for someone who has a reputation for being nice
  • look for someone who you can easily talk to
  • look for someone who likes you for who you really are
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Sadly, (especially since none of us knows you) the only advice you're going to get is cliches.  Here are my two cliches.

First, there's no hurry.  If you're in 9th grade it's not like you're nearing some time limit where either you get a boyfriend or you are a loser for the rest of your life.  Plenty of attractive and likeable people aren't matched up in 9th grade...

Second, all you can really do is be who you are.  If you manage to attract some guy by pretending to be who you're not it will never work out anyway.  So be who you like to be and have faith that that will eventually get you the right guy.

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