I have a son and a daughter, and although they are very young, I find myself thinking about the type of person they each will enter a relationship with. I pray that my husband and I are able to give them the tools they need to choose wisely.

My daughter reminds me of myself. I think this girl entered the world with a bit of sass. She can barely talk, but she lets you know how she feels in very clear terms, and I love that about her. I hope she is able to do that in every area of her life, especially when it comes to matters of the heart.

As a mother, and a woman who has made mistakes in love in the past, I want my daughter to have a clear head when she chooses the man that she thinks is “the one.” I don’t want her to be clouded by the romanticism that comes with loving someone. I want her to understand everything that comes with sharing yourself with a man.

I know that we all live and learn, and I am sure that heartache may come her way, but as her mother I want to minimize how much pain she experiences. I want her to learn lessons the first time, instead of repeating the same mistake over and over again.

Here are a few things I hope my little girl figures out before the right man comes her way.

  1. You are beautiful just as you are. If a man makes you feel less than beautiful – ever—he should get the boot as far as I am concerned.
  2. Never change who you are for the sake of love. Compromise is necessary when it comes to establishing a relationship with someone, but compromising does not mean changing the essence of who you are. You should only change for yourself.
  3. Always put your values first. If you begin to compromise your values because you love a man, you will lose yourself in no time and that is no way to live.
  4. It’s okay to need a man. I am as independent as women get, so please don’t leave me a comment about women not needing a man. I make my husband feel needed because I do need him, and he needs me too. Can I survive without him? I certainly can. Do I think a woman needs to throw that in her man’s face all the time? Not at all.
  5. Never forget your dreams.  Never, ever let go of any dreams God put in your heart. If he is the right man for you, he will respect and support your dreams. If he doesn’t, another man will.
  6. Respect is non-negotiable. If your man thinks he only has to respect you sometimes, he is sadly mistaken. Respect is a must at all times.
  7. Find Your Own Joy. A partner is there to add joy to your life, not to make you happy. You are ready for the right man when you are able to find joy in your life without him.