I’ve had some relationships and I’ve observed other people speaking about their own. Somehow one word that always comes up in the world of relationships is “maturity”, well I suppose because a big factor in the success of any relationship is maturity. However it seems like many people have strange misconceptions on the definition of maturity and the role it plays in relationships.
The key to maturity is knowing what you want and knowing how control your feelings. That part is the subjective bit because we all have different desires in relationships, and we all have different ways of controlling our emotions.
1. The more relationships you have had, the more mature you are
My friend’s brother was once arguing with his mother about how mature he was. To prove that he was indeed a mature teen, he began stating the number of relationships he had had and listing the names of all the girls he had dated, “Samantha, Cindy, Lee, Karen, Andrea…”
Your maturity level is not measured by the number of relationships you have had. You may have had a dozen relationships in the past 2 years but maybe it’s such a large number because you’re not good at maintaining them. But yeah, maybe there is the possibility that maybe you’re just one unlucky shmuck who keeps picking the wrong girls and ends up getting dumped every 2 months. Still, that doesn’t seem that likely.
2. If you can’t handle a friends-with-benefits relationship, you’re probably just not mature enough
This comes around in every single argument about friends with benefits whenever people try to defend it (cough… ad hominem). Being mature involves knowing how to control your emotions, not being emotionless. If you know that you can compartmentalise your sex life from your love life, good on you. But if you know that you sometimes can become attached to whoever you have sex with because of whatever reason and therefore you choose to not engage in friend-with-benefits or casual sex, that’s also fine. You know exactly how your emotions work and thus you control your feelings by not letting them be exposed to the things that trigger them. That’s good.
3. It’s immature to not be friends with/cut off ties with your ex
You don’t have to stay friends with your ex; unless you go to the same school or work at the same place, then maybe you should just be amicable. But you’re really under no obligation to stay friends. If he or she broke your heart, it’s alright to not speak to them for a while because seeing them or speaking to them brings back so many emotions. It is alright to be emotional and have all these feelings. Same with No. 2. You know that you can be emotional after a break up so you choose to not interact with the people or places or things that make these emotions go nuts.
4. If you’re perpetually single, it’s probably because you aren’t mature enough for a relationship
It’s because of the converse assumption that you need to be mature to be in a relationship. Don’t dismiss all single people as unwanted people. Perhaps they know exactly what they want in a relationship but haven’t found the person that can give them all that. That’s fine.