Relationships in YA when done right it can be epic. However, when done wrong, well, they can get me to want to bang my head against something and swear off relationships and make do where your biggest relationship is with your irate Beagles (dealing with Beagles is surprisingly a lot easier than dealing with, well, people since all you have to do is feed them). So here are my top five turn offs:
5) He Watches You Sleep:
This was an unfortunate trend you can blame on Edward Cullen but has been embraced by many other YA boyfriends. The good old I’m sneaking into your bedroom to watch you sleep. To be blunt about it, it’s a cheap alternative to sex. Where the couple chastely lies together. GMAB. You know what most teens would be doing if they snuck into their significant other’s room like that. And quite honestly, I wish they were having sex. Not because I’d really like to read sex scenes in YA, but because having a guy stare at you all night that just creeps me out sort of more than doing the nasty on your My Little Pony sheets. I mean, at least that’s quasi normal. But having Edward, Patch, Sam, or any other YA boyfriend stare at you all night long without making a move. Watching you snore. You really have to wonder. Why? Just why? Besides, don’t you like your privacy. I know, I’d like to get a little sleep without the guy I have a crush on seeing me drool before we get to third base. But hey, that’s just me.
4) He Picks Out Your Clothes:
If a guy tells me I can’t go outside dressed the way I am, I expect that he’s my father and that I’m under the age of eighteen. And no, I don’t want to date my father and I don’t want to be under the age of eighteen again. So how is this a supposed turn on? Besides, making me want to slug whoever says my t-shirt is too low or my shirt is too short. Look, if you want to be the fashion police get your own show on E! (I’m talking to you, Travis Maddox).
3)He’s into Younger Women. Really Young Women:
He might be a hundred, or a thousand years older than you. But he’ll try to justify that by stating that you look the same age physically. You know there are lots of humans in their twenties or even thirties who still can pass of for a teen, but if they got in a sexual relationship with a sixteen-year-old it would still be illegal. It’s called statutory rape and there are strict liability laws against it (at least in the United States). And I know there are some people who think we should repel them, all in the name of true love and all. But really? Are you saying a sixteen-year-old is mature enough to be making life effecting decisions and that a hundred year old can’t manipulate her into oh-say-ending her life to become a vampire or some other paranormal creature!?!?!?! Plus, if you want to get really a visual representation of how gross this is look at Jacob Black and Renesmee Cullen from the Twilight Saga. As much as you try to justify it, the boy is in love with a baby. And don’t give me that crap that his feelings for her will only be sexual for her once she reaches maturity. You know in the back of his mind what he is thinking and you know that the Cullens and him are going to brainwash the poor girl into thinking he’s her one true love. The point is, these relationships just don’t work for me because when someone has years of maturity on a person they can use their naivety against them.
2) He Claims You’re Soul Mates:
And Santa Claus is real. Sorry. I’m sorry. But if someone told me were soul mates, or long last lovers, or something like that I’d be laughing in their face. Really this is just an excuse for a lazy author to pair two characters with very little build up. The best part of romance in books, at least to me, is the build up. I am a huge witty banter fan. A fan of longing. Of not admitting your feelings, but slowly realizing hey you feel in love with your hot video game playing friend. Being told that handsome pretty boy is your instant soul mate doesn’t work for me.
1) He Tells You He Wants to Kill You:
Instead of a sign of romance, this should be a sign to run, run as fast as you can and get away. I don’t get what’s sexy about a guy wanting to rip out your throat but somehow maintaining a perverse sense of control. It really doesn’t make sense. None at all. But apparently publishers think it’s a major turn on. For reals. I don’t even understand. To me this is a sure sign to get a restraining order.