Someone very close to me is going though a horrible breakup. It's brutal to watch. I just want to fix it all for her but I can't. After listening and consoling (with the required amount of ice cream) I realized something...break ups are harder if you're from Jersey.
There are two major reasons for my theory. First, we have a certain social pressure to deal with here. Our moms and dads, brothers and sisters, co-workers and friends all ask questions like, "when are you guys going to get engaged?" Those same loved ones will also jinx any vacation you ever take with your boyfriend because they'll predict that "this will be when he asks you to get married"! I actually witnessed a mom tell her daughter to get her nails done before a vacation with her boyfriend so she wouldn't be caught off guard when it is time to take the ring picture. You know, that enviable photo showing off the new ring on her finger with the sand of some tropical beach in the background. Well, that engagement never happened. The feeling of disappointing others is universal (although Mom guilt seems more rampant in the Northeast. Can I get an Amen?).
The real reason break ups are more devastating to us in New Jersey is because of TIME. Let me explain...my friend seriously dated someone and even though there were red flags, she told herself, "I'm 37 years old, I just can't start over now". The thought that Father Time will take away her ability to have a family is tearing her up and the embarrassment of not moving into the next phase of life in unison with her peers is heartbreaking. She tells herself, going back into the dating pool could take years. While this is an unpleasant prospect for some, in New Jersey this is unbearable.
In Jersey we move fast...we think fast...we don't understand patience. Think about it, we're honked if we are one nanosecond late hitting the gas when the light changes. Life is like that here and a set back like this can make you feel like you'll never find anyone in time. To anyone going though this and to anyone who has had a string of bad relationships PLEASE HEAR ME...
It's ironic, but spending TIME is the only way to save your time. Taking your TIME is actually the only way to know if someone is really a good person. Anyone can fake it up front. I searched for the exact words to help my friend, this was my text:
When you feel up to your next relationship please remember to make the new guy prove himself over TIME. Time is the only true filter for honesty and intentions because time is the one thing that a jerk is never willing to put in to get what they want. Time is the only true way to weed them out.
It's like a cruel joke isn't it? We want to move on...we want to shed the pain asap. Being whisked away into a new relationship always seems like a fix but the problem is moving too fast is always wrong. You've heard it a million times: "Time will tell". TIME is the only thing needed to let someone reveal who they really are and time is the one thing a fast-paced Jersey girl never seems to have.
Forget the pressure from your parents...you'll get there when it is right for YOU. Let time be your keeper because being methodical is the only way to know what you have and in the end it is what saves you. Take your time because you deserve it.