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Dear You,

First of all, I don’t believe in perfection. If you do, then you’re not the one.

Secondly, when we meet, understand I’m guarded.

I’m no longer the thrill of the chase-catch me if you can-crush every moment Aries 20-year-old girl.

You’ll be meeting someone with trust issues. Reporters can sense when a stranger is lying. However, closer to home, I made the mistake of doling out the benefit of the doubt. Second chances seemed like sixty-two.

I’ve learned to trust my gut. Second chances no longer exist in my relationships. And I need you to respect our relationship. Without mutual respect, it’s called “complicated” on Facebook.

Thirdly, I used to hide my issues from future prospects. That’s changed. If you feel like running, Forrest, thanks for coming out. Here’s your participation medal.

I want to hear your story. Learn about your past, present, and future aspirations. But if your past includes, “I cheated on my last three girlfriends,” I’m paying for my Shirley Temple and walking away. Or if you met your wife in a strip club, I don’t need to explain my groan of discontent.

And we’ve arrived at the fourth. After four or five dates, some people expect the your place or mine tour. Ending with the bedroom and meeting the next morning over breakfast. It’s a neither.

No offense to people who jump into bed on the fourth date. Or third. Or before they know the other person’s first names. That’s their choice. But I’m not them. If you want someone who jumps into bed on the fourth date. Or third. Or before you know their first name, obviously you can find them.

I want someone who doesn’t embarrass me because of my quirks. Because giggling during a wedding is part of who I am.

So, someone with a sense of humour would be awesome. Who can laugh when we’re lost on a hike – unless it’s in bear country. And when we take a road trip. If you can’t see the humour in a wrong turn on the TransCanada, then I’m flagging down an Uber.

And I want someone who cries. Who isn’t afraid to express their emotions. If you see a touching commercial with puppies, cry. If your eyes aren’t damp after watching the video for Paul Brandt’s Risk, I can’t help you. Not a tear after The Notebook? Are you dead inside?

I don’t expect our relationship to be smooth sailing. We will argue. We will disagree. All I ask is for honesty. Please be loyal. Please don’t betray me.

And if I’m entrusting you with my heart, please handle it with care. Because it’s delicate.

And I just ask that you don’t break it again.

Always,

Tessa