She Real "Cool": Is Being Too Laid Back Keeping You from the Relationship You Deserve?

by Dalila Thomas

The “cool” girl. Everyone strives to be her, and all the guys want her. And why wouldn't they? She's the liberal, down-to-earth chick that knows a thing or two about sports, sweat-pants-hair-tied-chillin’ with-no-make-up-on kinda chick. Sexy, free, no rules when it comes to love and relationships.

But the cool girl is on the latter end of her twenties or early thirties, has experienced several year 'meaningful" relationships—none of which ended with marriage. Not to mention most, if not all of the men cool girl was in serious/meaningful relationships with in the past have now married or gotten engaged.

Suddenly, being the cool girl, doesn't seem so hot.

I was first introduced to the “Cool Girl” in the book Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn:
Cools Girls are above all hot. Hot and understanding. Cool girls never get angry; they only smile in chagrined, loving manner and let their men do whatever they want.
After reading that, I stopped for a moment—I could instantly relate. As young women in this society, we’ve all grown up hearing the same thing about the kind of girl guys want: chill, low maintenance, goes with the flow. However, without setting boundaries and expectations within your relationship, how can one truly be on the road to marriage?

In the summer, I ran into a pastor—at bar of all places. He was from out of town, there for business, and the designated driver for his motley crew. I had never met him before, but after he told me that he was also a marriage counselor. I had been dealing with some relationship worries (and had taken a couple shots), so I said, “What the hell?” (no pun) and opened up about my relationship. There were a ton of gems dropped throughout the hour-plus conversation, but the thing that stuck with me was this:

“If your job promised you a promotion, but they never went through with the paperwork or gave you the title, after some time, you’d inquire about it. They’d say, ‘Oh no, we’re gonna give it you, just wait, it’s coming.’ But after months/years of waiting, would you stay when there were other opportunities for growth?”

I answered no.

His response: “What’s the difference from that, and your relationship?”

Yikes. That kind of made me think. Am I a pushover? Is the “Cool Girl” a pushover?

In the book, the character who describes the “Cool Girl” is acting the part for a man. Unfortunately for me, I’m not acting. I’ve always been a tomboy. Chill. Growing up in a two parent home, played sports, close relationship with my father, so I was never “needy” for a boyfriend. Now as an adult, I’ve been in a relationship for 6+ years. And while my main focus is my career—and I’m letting the relationship work itself out—marriage is still definitely on the brain.

But I often find myself wondering, Is there hope for the “Cool Girl” on the road to marriage, or will her laid back mentality cause her to become road kill?

Yikes. That kind of made me think. Am I a pushover? Is the “Cool Girl” a pushover?

After thinking about what I read and assessing the years of my relationship, I knew what I needed to do: communicate with my partner about how I was feeling. See, stressing and nagging about marriage will never be my thing. I’m a hopeless romantic and believe that when a man is ready, he will let you know by making the obvious gesture. But momma also didn’t raise no fool. As naïve as I may be in certain situations, I knew this was something that needed to be discussed for my peace of mind. So I asked him about his goals for us in the next few years… and got an honest answer.

Marriage is on the menu for us. Tomorrow? No. But in the next few years? Yes.

Ladies, know the difference between the truth and a trick. You must know your partner. When it came to my partner and I, I assessed this answer and accepted it. Why? Because throughout our relationship, there has never been a promise made that wasn’t kept.

As women, as cliché as it sounds, we have a certain intuition that causes our nostrils to flair when we smell bull. For me, that wasn’t the case. However, I can’t speak for others. Now we all have a timeline, which usually includes us miraculously having all aspects of life aligned by the age of 30. Well, that’s usually not the case. The older I get, the more I realize that.

You’ve heard the saying, “God laughs when you make plans.” So my theory is: if your relationship is in a good place, fret not. Keep being yourself, know your worth, address issues head on along the way.

But above all else… Stay cool, girl.

Photo: Shutterstock

Dalila Thomas is a regular contributor at For Harriet.

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