hi guys, am so sorry, should have published this long ago, but really so much work. doing this took alot of guts and “red eyes”. but the good news is it an abridged version. its an except from Tekana Ikoko’s writing on
Teen relationship series. we published in The Hephzibah Initiative magazine tagged “TEENS 101″,but i really felt the urge to share it on this platform as well.
so quickly lets rush to the juice.
Teen: Sir, am a teenage boy. I love this girl whom I am hoping to get married to, and we are just hanging around. Can’t we date as teens?
Tekena: Teen dating is like a man who went to farm without a sharp instrument. Teen dating is like a woman who went out with rumpled clothes because she couldn’t wait for her clothes to be ironed. Teen dating is a young man or woman who feels love, but is yet to define who is he, and what the wants in life, and thus can’t conclude who should be with him in life. Teen dating is hopping into a next available taxi, without know where it is heading to, just because you want to get out of where you are. Teen dating is an invitation to misuse of time, focus, and misplaced priorities. Teen dating is doing a good thing at a wrong time.
Teen: But Sir, believe me, there will be no sex, no romance, and we both are Christians. Are you saying it is still a sin before God?
Tekena: It is beyond the issue of sin before God.
It is a waste of purpose and priorities….as a teenager marriage should not be your focus….you are just hanging around aimlessness….even if there is not sex and no romance,…it is a distraction and a hindrance to discover your full potential… and since the journey to marriage will still require a minimum of 5 to 7 years, either of two things will happen…either you will burn each other out for lack of intimacy and you will cross into intimacy, and finally start having little kisses, romances and finally sex… either way, you would have wasted your time….
Teen: But Sir, don’t you think teens should at least have an experience in other to know how to handle future relationships in the future?
Tekena: We don’t get experience of how to avoid accidents by getting into an accident. We don’t have to learn by the path of experience. People who wait to learn by experience come out with broken arms, broken legs, and broken hearts. Experience, is a bad teacher. We learn best by reading from books of people before us. Scripture says, the things that are written are done for our learning, that through READING, we might have hope. I don’t have to contact Ebola, HIV and go to Hell on earth, before I know it’s wrong. Please don’t buy that fake lie. You need no such experience. Does a fish attend swimming classes? Please go through the path of wisdom.
Teen: Sir, I don’t think you are being realistic. If we don’t start dating early, are we going to be 30 years old before we get married?
Tekena: I wish you could expand on what you mean by realistic. And nobody said you have to wait till you are 30 years old to begin the process. Starting to date early is no guarantee that you will arrive on time. My emphasis does not just rest on age, but on maturity. No doubt there are some 19 year olds that are more matured than some 29 year olds, but this is no license to take on a responsibility that we are not yet ready to give it the time and attention it deserves. A secondary school students or a 16, or 17 year old, who had just managed to get into the university, and has not even passed her first semester exams, and has already began to play with the fires of love, should know that the possibility of a heartbreak is so high that only one in a thousand will still be dating the same fellow when they are in final year. If people understand the effect of multiple heartbreaks, they would stop jumping into ill-timed relationships. Often, it is even the many wrong experiences that keep us from getting married later.
Teen: But Sir, what about our biological clock? Some of our parents married early and they are enjoying their marriages. So why not us?
Tekena: My dear, times and seasons have changed. Gone are the days when a man was the sole bread winner in the family and was told to “settle” down and “buy” a wife. In the 21st century, a woman is a co-bread winner, and “she brings her food from afar.”
Teen: But Sir, I am already in love with this guy. He has been a good friend of mine and he is my classmate. Are you saying we have to break up? What reason will I give him? He will think I have found another boyfriend. I don’t want to hurt him.
Tekena: When love is sentimental and born out of self-pity, it becomes corrupt and crooked. I don’t know how your generation defines love. When God loved this world, he killed his son, so that he could get more sons and daughters. Please keep sentiments aside. If the foundation or basis of your “falling in love” is faulty, do something about it. The hurts and pain is the scar of life for doing a stupid thing at a premature time. Wake up, endure the pain and embrace wisdom.
Teen: But Sir, it won’t be easy….
Tekena: I never said it will be easy. I have been there. I was in a relationship in my third year in the university, that broke all the principles of godly relationship. All my friends, her family, and most people on campus knew that we were together. But my dear, when man sees the invisible and embraces truth, then all things that are visible become secondary. God and his word take first place. I took my cross, endured it, and embraced the shame. I felt lonely at times, but I didn’t go back to my vomit. It was four years later, that I met my wife. But this time, I was better prepared and matured. It pains me that I hurt her, but I am glad I obeyed God.
Here is my advice: SLOW DOWN. Read books. Grab wisdom. Build your life. Develop maturity, and don’t allow your need for someone to be close to you to now become a lame excuse to tie yourself at an early age to a puppy love.
May God teach us to unlearn the lies of Hollywood and Nollywood.
Teen: Sir, can a book truly prepare a man or a woman for relationship?
Tekena: Thanks for asking. My dear, reading a good book that teaches godly principles of relationship will save you from lots of trial and errors. I would recommend you read the following books; WHAT THE RABBIT DID NOT KNOW; HI, CAN WE BE FRIENDS? SEXUAL PURITY and for the ladies, HOW TO GET THE GUY YOU WANT WITHOUT SELLING YOURSELF. It will save you many heartaches. I wish I read such books when I was a teen or young adult.
Teen Dating Counsellor