Relationships 101: Falling In/Out Of Love

Part 2: Falling In/Out Of Love

[box_dark]In Part 2 of a three-part series on relationships, The kNOw youth write about something we all need, looove, everything from the good to the bad. Part 1 of the series focuses on the power of friendship through the years, finding a friend in the opposite sex, and friends who help break down walls. Part 3 focuses on the strengths of family and overcoming abuse.[/box_dark]

Communication Is Important
My healthiest relationship would have to be with my boyfriend, Mongsai. We have a healthy relationship because we communicate to one another without hesitation. I can openly share or discuss any topic, subject, or problem with him. We listen to one another and talk to each other. The main thing I love about Mongsai is the support he gives me. When I’m sad and feel like a complete failure, Mongsai pops up and encourages me to keep on taking steps. He’s there for me. It might sound cliché, but it’s true. We understand each other and accept each other for who we are.
-Angelina, 16


Only Human
Relationships are needed because we are human. It’s our nature to love and receive it in return. We need relationships to develop mentally and emotionally. When we have relationships we learn how to socialize with people. We learn how to treat people, how to talk to people, how to be open minded. We learn how to grow. It’s in a relationship where we learn how to communicate with others.

I desire relationships because I’m human and I just can’t be left alone (in life that it is—but we do need our space sometimes). I desire relationships because I love to touch, hug, kiss, slap, and sock. It all works for me (not in an angry way or anything). I love relationships because I love people. I love to talk, laugh, and play with people.
-Laqusha, 21


Poetic Freewrite: Hands Open
I have an unhealthy relationship with myself. At times I love who I am and who I have become, but it’s not like that all the time. Although my mind is gifted, a hole in my heart is empty and something’s missing. Stuck expression on my face shows content, breathing through trees and poetry is my way to vent.

It’s funny how a man of flesh and blood intertwines with fate, solid thoughts no confession with my faith. Not a deceiver will make a way, through my life of misfortune, words of wisdom, and torture endured by my soul, the flesh is my prison. Of course I’m nothing but a passing wind, my past relationships were okay, but quickly turned sour because both females were good friends. In time, if the opportunity presents itself, my eyes are open and my hands are open to grasp others.
-Marcus, 18


Working To Build Trust
Unfortunately, I’ve had my share of bad relationships, but this time around, I think I’ve got it right. I’ve been with my boyfriend for about five months now. This relationship doesn’t feel like the others. When we first met, I got the oh-so familiar “butterflies.” We started spending more time together and I saw that he paid attention to me, and didn’t treat me like the others did.

I’ve dealt with a lot of deception and lies in my past relationships, and it’s such a big relief I don’t have to put up with that anymore. My other boyfriends would neglect me and take me for granted. That really lowered my self-esteem. My current boyfriend doesn’t do any of that. On a daily basis, he tells me that I’m beautiful and despite all the problems in his life, I’m the one thing that makes it all right. Whenever we have an issue, we talk things out. We don’t avoid the problem, which can make it worse.

We both agree that communication has been the key to our relationship. We came into this relationship with a lot of baggage, but we both tried hard to work through our issues. It’s hard to do it alone, so we don’t. Working through our problems and our honesty is what helps us build trust.
-Jaleesa, 19


A Chemistry Through The Years
It was the golden days! I can still picture her in her beautiful black dress. That was the start of my relationship with my sweetheart. My relationship is a very healthy one. I’m in love with a very understanding and affirmative lady. She knows right from wrong and doesn’t put up with lies. I believe we both share similar traits, which is why we don’t have many problems. We give each other space and rarely argue about anything. I let her do what she wants and I trust her with all my heart. We have been dating for four years now.

Our love is always full of excitement and entertainment everyday. Whether it’s hot or cold outside, we both know how to keep the love in the air. Examining my girlfriend’s behavior and reaction toward other people made me realize that she is a confident lady. She’s friendly and helpful to others.

When we have our downfalls, we work together to get each other up! When I’m mad, she doesn’t yell at me and she doesn’t tell me things to upset me more. We both try to make the other feel happy. I believe we have a chemistry that has helped us stay together this long. She doesn’t disrespect my family or me. We aren’t a perfect couple, but we strive for it.
-Dasen, 18


A Bad Relationship
Being in a bad relationship has put my wall up high. I was in a relationship where he messed with my head and emotions. He constantly told me that I was big, and that he doesn’t date fat girls. He told me that I am ugly and I should lose weight. All of that got to me. I wanted to lose weight and I tried to be different. Then I asked myself one day, “What do I see in him?” I couldn’t find a good or straight answer. By the time I realized this, the relationship had gotten worse from verbal abuse to physical abuse. He would slap, choke, and hit me. Ending the relationship was hard because I was scared and nervous.


Worth It
My best friend and I have been able to click without getting into any major altercations. We have had minor debates and disagreements though. We met at night school and connected from there. She, I, and a few others go to the clubs or just to a friend’s house to kick it. I really don’t know what made us so close, but it’s been worth it.
-Kevis, 18


Get Back Up
“Sometimes love comes around and it knocks you down, just get back up when it knocks you down,” are the lyrics to a new song, called “Knock You Down.” This song reminds us youth that it is okay to fall for someone but just get back up. Often times, it’s hard to get back up, especially after being in an unhealthy relationship. It hurts and can be hard to move on. It can make you torn between wanting to make things work and wanting to leave. It can make you build a wall to protect yourself from being hurt again. Unhealthy relationships leave lasting scars, not just for you, but also for future significant others. These scars must be covered or hidden, but are always felt. It’s hard to get back up with when you have scars.
-Arena, 16

The kNOw Youth Media
The kNOw works to support and equip young people with the journalism and advocacy skills they need to tell their stories and the stories of their communities.

In 2006, over 25 youth began participating in weekly after-school writing workshops where they congregated in the hallway of a two-story building in West Fresno and learned the essentials of creating media and telling their stories. The group evolved over the next five years and is now proudly recognized as The kNOw Youth Media.

Through our program, we create opportunities for our youth participants, who in turn create long-term positive change in their communities. Our approach weaves youth development and youth media innovation to produce our biannual youth publication, multimedia projects, and community forums.

The kNOw began as a project of New America Media, which was the country’s first and largest national collaboration and advocate of 2000 ethnic news organizations. In 2018 The kNOw became a project of Youth Leadership Institute.

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