DEAR HARRIETTE: I have never been in a relationship. I am almost 20, and I have never experienced romance. Many of my friends have already had boyfriends or girlfriends, gotten involved in summer flings or even found their life partners. I, on the other hand, have dated various books, ranging from F. Scott Fitzgerald to Mark Twain. I care more about my education than anything else, so I’ve never had time to be in a proper relationship.
Since it has been so long, I wonder why I haven’t caught anyone’s eye. Sometimes I wonder if it is the way I look or dress.
Though I have never been in a relationship, I have gone on many dates. However, I never seemed to enjoy them, and it always ends with us being friends. It has been so hard for me to get into a relationship. Is there something wrong with me? I feel like there is something I am doing wrong. -- Mid-Life Crisis
DEAR MID-LIFE CRISIS: First, let me assure you that your crisis is less “mid-life” than it is “coming-of-age.” You are young. Your life is just now unfolding before your eyes, and you are learning about what and who you like. Though it may not seem so, it is perfectly normal for you not to have fallen in love yet. It’s good that you have dated. That means you are allowing yourself to meet people and see if there is synergy.
Have patience. You haven’t met your match yet. You may want to put yourself in environments with people who share your interests. What about joining a book club where people read books and come together to talk about them? What else interests you? Find out what clubs or gatherings exist in your areas of interest. Keep your eyes open to notice who else is there. You are most likely to find a compatible partner if you look around in spaces that make you comfortable.