Weekly With Carly: Relationships 101

By: Carly Ann Clegg
By: Carly Ann Clegg

COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Howdy and happy Friday! My name is Carly Clegg and we’re going to get real close this spring. Of course I’d like to introduce myself as the loudest and proudest member of the fightin’ Texas Aggie class of 2014, but also as a sister, daughter, friend, fiancé, follower of Christ, Disney lover, California dreamer, life enthusiast, risk taker (sometimes), a listener, a storyteller, singer-in the shower, dancer-anytime/anywhere, sale/vintage shopper, hug giver, and career searcher.

My book will continuously be unwritten, I strive to live life by the fullest, and squeeze life’s lemons to the last drop! Throughout each chapter of my 22 years of life, I learned multiple lessons and “as iron sharpens iron,” my friends and family have sharpened me along each journey.

With that, I’d like to share some of my experiences with you, particularly in the dating/relationship world. As for credentials-I’m no expert, no official dating advice giver, no licensed psychologist, just a woman with an incredible circle of family and friends that have helped mold me into the person I am today. They are the reason that I feel that I have a good head on my shoulders, to put my self out there, and start a blog about one of the most intimate topics in a person’s life-dating.

I would like to start my blog about dating and relationships at its core: YOU. You are the author of your own life, the leading lady or man, the star of the show-not the best friend, not the outsider. So, lets talk about you.

I’d like to challenge you this warm Friday afternoon (darn Texas weather), to reflect on your past. Your college/high school years, who you were before a tragedy in your life, how you felt when you had your first baby, when you got your dream job, if you’ve dealt with the passing of a loved one, if you’ve been broken, if you’ve been lost, if you’ve been found, if you finally passed that exam that lead you to your next chapter, if you discovered what a munchkin cat was, if you finally acquired the taste for sushi, if you traveled to a far away land, if you started a relationship with God, or started a relationship with a stranger-whoever you are, wherever you’ve been, wherever you’re going, and whenever that will be, you are unique, loved, cherished, and ARE somebody.

Self worth… it’s as though messages today in movies, magazines, and books forget that this is a HUGE concept in who you are as a person let alone, but even further in starting a relationship and making it last. (Let me explain: yes, we might love them, they probably make us laugh, and we’re guilty of splurging on them when they come out on DVD-they’re sometimes outrageous, embarrassingly relatable, and admit the ugliest of truths but rom coms are the reason why some men and women have an unrealistic perception of what life and love should be. [Rom com = Romantic comedies]

Lets refresh your memory: ‘He’s Just Not That into You’ is the perfect example of a rom com that deals with “interconnecting story arcs deals with the challenges of reading or misreading human behavior.” And yes we all love the scene where Justin Long’s character finally appreciates Ginnifer Goodwin’s character but it’s the message behind the characterization of Gigi that is surprisingly applicable to many single men and women! This outlook of desperation and uncertainty acted out by awkward forms of flirtation like touching ‘his’ biceps, laughing in a certain way, and pacing by the phone are all for a slight chance that these actions with hopefully will get you a second date.

These techniques, ladies and gents, have somehow been taken seriously by some of the dating population, creating a misrepresented view of love. However, truth is also brought upon rom coms; in ‘He’s Just Not That Into You’ Gigi puts Hollywood’s idealistic love story into perspective:

“Every movie we see, every story we're told implores us to wait for it, the third act twist, the unexpected declaration of love, the exception to the rule. But sometimes we're so focused on finding our happy ending we don't learn how to read the signs. How to tell from the ones who want us and the ones who don't, the ones who will stay and the ones who will leave. And maybe a happy ending doesn't include a guy, maybe... it's you, on your own, picking up the pieces and starting over, freeing yourself up for something better in the future.”

I’d also like to point out that Disney Princesses are just as guilty, (this confession takes a LOT out of me, considering I’m probably a little biased when it comes to anything with the Walt Disney Company, but reality is…) exhibit A: a lot of attention on relationship awareness stems from ‘Beauty and the Beast’. So moms, listen up!

Belle in Beauty and the Beast not only is kidnapped and separated from her father, but is constantly tormented by the Beast as he locks her in his chamber and refuses to feed her as she refuses to obey his commands. (Let’s not forget the tenderness of the Beast, his spell that he’s under, and the fact that Belle teaches kids how to read, be patient, and embrace the importance of family!)

I’ve sat through too many lectures in school to not bring this to your attention, and additionally, I feel as though it’s astoundingly relevant than ever before. With sex trafficking becoming more apparent and prevalent, it’s time we start being proactive by educating our young ones and providing them with knowledge about self-awareness and self-worth.

Throughout my blog, you’ll be reading interviews from my best friends, receiving an unbiased perspective about life and love, seeing pictures that describe my life, hearing personal moments in my life that I am willing to entrust you with via videoblog, getting some stellar advice from my parents (both biologically and those of my friends), and even further I’ll also delve into a spiritual take on relationships and discuss why it’s important to keep God in the center.

Dating is a universal, fun, exciting, sometimes heartbreaking, can’t eat, can’t sleep, butterfly feeling kind of game, and as cheesy as this is, and as much as I used to love High School Musical-we’re all in this together. See you next week! And as Ellen DeGeneres encourages us-be kind to one another!

Stay Tuned For Weekly with Carly:
Next Week Feb. 7th: Dating “Dating without the intent of getting married is like going to the grocery store with no money.”

Valentine’s Day <3/Single Awareness Day/Love yourself day/or just Feb. 14th: Loveology: Jealousy/Trust

Feb. 21st: Rock Me Momma Like a 3rd Wheel-How to be the rejected friend and break up counselor at the same time-I’d like to call this the “Break Up Diaries”

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