We’ve all gotten romance advice, right?
Please tell me I’m not the only person who others have felt the need to give unsolicited advice to on romantic matters.
I get it. I do. I’m not the most romantic person in the world. I might be romance challenged. Or romance illiterate.
(And yet I write Christian romance. Only by the grace of God could something like that ever happen!)
But anyway – I’m going to assume that this has happened to more people than just me. Humor me.
Keep in mind, when I talk about romance advice, I’m not talking about relationship advice. While romance is a part of that boy-girl relationship, the relationship has a lot of aspects that aren’t ruled by romance. So while the two go together, they aren’t exactly the same thing.
And, yes, people have given me relationship advice, too. I understand and can generally apply the relationship advice.
It’s that pesky romance advice that causes my brain to bend a little bit.
And keep in mind that romance advice can vary a little bit based on the gender of the person giving the advice. Let’s see if you can guess who gave what advice…
Dress sexy. (Um…do flannel pajamas count? Because when I work from home, that’s totally my work uniform.)
Put some makeup on. Even an old barn looks better with a new coat of paint. (I own makeup. That’s good enough, right?)
Be confident. Confidence is sexy. (I can do this in my flannel pajamas. But…does that mean overconfidence is super duper extra sexy? Asking for a friend…)
Make him feel special. (Which could probably be relationship advice, too, but in the context given, it was definitely romance advice. But they didn’t bother telling me HOW to make him feel special. I was supposed to figure that part out for myself.)
Use your best plates for dinner. Make the table pretty and just enjoy the time together. (If I had best plates, I would totally do this. 50+ years of a beautiful marriage was behind this advice. And the advice was more about making the time together distinctive and special more than it was about the actual plates.)
Give him your undivided attention. (I learned the processes of chemical mechanical planarization early in my marriage thanks to this tip. Twenty+ years later, I can still get by at company Christmas parties as long as I don’t spend more than thirty seconds in conversation with anybody…)
Speak his love language. (It doesn’t help that his #1 love language is basically a foreign language to me. More alien than Greek. I asked if I could just love him in my own language – it has to be better than nothing, right? I’m pretty sure that when I try to speak his love language, my accent is bad enough as to make me completely unintelligible. #romancefail)
I guess I understand why so many people have made a point to give me romance advice over the years.
If you haven’t noticed, a fair number of my female characters are romantically challenged, too. Thank goodness my heroes make up for it!
So tell me – what kind of romance advice have you received over the years? Anything really good you’d like to share? Or really awful? (I admit, the makeup one was definitely not the kindest advice I’d ever received.)
I do have to chuckle sometimes when people who aren’t in the position to know better give advice. You know – when someone whose child is three months old gives you advice on how to properly parent your second grader. Or when someone who has never had a serious relationship tells you how to keep the romance alive after a decade or more of marriage.
My grandmother used to tell me that advice is worth exactly what you pay for it. Then she would proceed to give me free advice. I miss her and her brilliant sense of humor. Regardless, though – we should take advice with a grain of salt. What works for one person won’t necessarily work for another. We’re all individuals with unique personalities and relationships.
But still…share your advice! I want to hear the best and the worst. 😊