Learning Teenage Lessons About Boys

To Our Granddaughter,

Boyfriends — on my goodness! Boys can be tantalizing, terrific, and terrifying. Some of life’s biggest bumps occur when we give our hearts to those sweet — yet ruthless guys. What fun! What misery!

Not only can I not spare you those bumps and bruises. I wouldn’t choose to do so. Everything you learn with regard to boys occurs to prepare you for future relationships. The “how to” book gets written as you live it. You learn how to love. You learn to forgive and to let go. You also learn when you want to disengage. Most important, you learn how to bounce back from upsets by relying on your own inner resilience and strength.

In the end, your ability to return again and again to your own worth and your own faith in yourself turns out to be one of life’s most significant lessons. Boys come and go. Your love affair with yourself lasts forever and determines whether you have a happy life or a somber one.  

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When you truly love and accept yourself, you defend yourself from the pain others can cause. The extent that you love YOU, also determines your ability to love and accept others. This counts for everything and measures the outcome of your heart.

Do you remember the song I sang to you when you were small? “A — you’re adorable, B — you’re so beautiful, C — you’re a cutie full of charms. . .” Drag out that song and sing it again and again.