Kirstie Taylor
Relationship writer for hopeful romantics. Forbes featured writer. Published in Cosmo // IG: @WordsWithKirstie //

Love is about others. Obsession is about yourself.

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Photo by Andriyko Podilnyk on Unsplash

Love creates many feelings in us: butterflies, excitement, uncertainty, and longing, to name just a few. But when you experience other emotions that cause you pain instead of happiness, is that still love?

This past weekend, I started watching the series, Euphoria. The trippy show follows a young woman addicted to drugs named Rue, and the people in her life.

Jules, Rue’s new-best-friend-turned-lover, quickly becomes Rue’s everything. Their relationship seems innocent at first, but it didn’t take long to realize Rue replaced her drug addiction with an addiction to Jules.

While watching this love story play out on TV, I felt a similar pang inside me. I’d fallen madly in love with a man when I was in college. We met, fell in love, and he moved in with me all in the span of a couple of months. …

“Whatever you do, rock onwards and upwards!” — Moira Rose

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Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara, Dan Levy, and Annie Murphy in Schitt’s Creek. | Pop TV

A father-son passion project turned wildly popular sleeper hit; that’s how I’d describe Schitt’s Creek.

If you haven’t heard of the show before this weekend, you’d be hard-pressed not to after Schitt’s Creek took home seven Emmys last night, including every lead actor/actress award for a Comedy series.

What started as a small, Canadian show on the basic cable network, Pop, grew into a meme-worthy, all-anyone-could-talk-about sensation after Netflix picked up the series.

Schitt’s Creek follows the Rose family after being defrauded out of their fortune and must relocate to an, ahem, oddly named town. While the show is laugh-until-you-cry hilarious, there are beautiful moments of family bonding and epiphanies that the Rose family goes through, along with the quirky characters in the town. …

And how to cultivate some for yourself.

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Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

Imagine: the moment you’re born, you’re assigned a person you’ll spend the rest of your life with.

Every morning you wake up next to this person, pour a bowl of cereal with them, and brush your teeth by their side. Each day you navigate the world with them; every up and down in life is experienced with them.

How important would it be for you to work on your relationship with that person?

Probably one of your top priorities. It would be exhausting to go through life with someone who’s a jerk or always tries to bring you down.

Well, the reality is, all of us are going through life with that person. The only difference is that person is us. …

8. Focusing on the bad, instead of the good.

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Photo by samuel hull on Unsplash

There are obvious ways to ruin your relationship. Like cheating, for instance. Sleep with someone else, and I can’t promise you’ll have a partner the next day.

But there are also little habits that aren’t so obvious. Ones that build up and ultimately push your partner away from you.

I’ve experienced a few of them. Ones I didn’t realize I did until the other person started talking about breaking up or when it was overall too late.

But luckily, being aware of any habits you have that are pushing your partner away can be a cause for change. …

Why happily ever after comes to an end.

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Photo by Charlie Foster on Unsplash

Have you ever been in a relationship you thought would last forever, but it didn’t?

What about believing a friend was part of a picture-perfect couple, but they split up seemingly out of nowhere?

I’m guilty of both.

I dated a tall, tan, and handsome man in college who I thought was my soulmate. We started our relationship in a whirlwind of a romance, and my friends always commented, “You’re so perfect, it’s disgusting.”

Um… thanks?

Eventually, we broke up in a messy sh*t storm, the exact opposite of how we began.

Then, there was another time when I logged on to Facebook to see that my cousin’s boyfriend changed his status from “in a relationship” to “single.” I was so sure they were destined to be together, I commented on the post, “This isn’t true! It must be a joke. …

Even if it feels awkward.

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Photo by Cody Black on Unsplash

Talking about money was problematic in my family. My parents stressed over it, used it as a means to control what I did, and instilled a sense of “always spend less than you make,” inside me. We talked about it a lot, but not always in a positive way.

Now that I’m an adult, money still feels like an awkward conversation, but more so because of how everyone else acts about it. In reality, I don’t mind talking about money. If someone asks me what I make, I’ll tell them. If I can’t afford something, I’m honest about it.

But I know not everyone is the same — especially women. …

Don’t let a day go by without telling your partner you love them.

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Photo by tabitha turner on Unsplash

How do you tell someone you love them?

There’s the obvious choice: saying I love you.

Maybe you say those three words when you wake up to see their adoring face looking back at you. Perhaps you mention it while they’re leaving for work. There’s nothing wrong with saying, “I love you,” but don’t think that’s the only way you can tell someone you do.

There are the not-so-obvious-choices, the gestures that anyone can do, in the form of daily habits.

Habits can significantly affect different aspects of your life, from your productivity to your health. But what I’m most interested in is how you can tell someone you love them through the gestures you do throughout the day. …

These answers will help you discover your biggest obstacles.

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Photo by Karsten Winegeart on Unsplash

You can swipe through hundreds of profiles and go on a new date every day, but no amount of effort can solve the issue of holding yourself back from love.

Now you might be thinking, “I’m not holding myself back! I’m trying.”

I hear you. I see you. I understand that sentiment because I used to be in your same shoes.

I dated man after man for over ten years. I thought I was doing everything right: signing up for multiple dating apps, compromising in new relationships, dating men I otherwise wouldn’t date, and putting my heart on the line.

But I couldn’t see what was right in front of me: the issue wasn’t who I dated. …

You don’t need to pursue happiness. You can be happy now.

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Photo by Vlada Karpovich from Pexels

Everyone wants happiness.

I’m not talking about money, flashy cars, being surrounded by beautiful people, or fame.

I’m talking about real happiness, the kind that lives inside you.

Every single person has the power to become happier, right now, in ten minutes.

But, surprisingly, most people won’t.

“Happiness is a direction, not a place.”

— Sydney J. Harris

The key to happiness isn’t found on the outside; it’s on the inside. And it’s not going to come on its own. You have to be facing the right direction.

You need to be focused on what you gain in life, every day, rather than what you lack. …

3. You have the entrepreneurial spirit of Gary Vee.

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Photo: Anthony Tran/Unsplash

This article feels like every parent’s worst nightmare.

But the fact is, our parent’s generation grew up in a different time. Going to college or working as soon as they graduated high school was:

a. the only choice most were given.

b. a reasonable choice.

With the economy how it is and the job market limited, we have to face the truth that college doesn’t always mean a better job.

Luckily, the younger generations are in a position to choose when and whether they go to college. …

Why it’s time to take them off that pedestal.

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Photo by Chermiti Mohamed on Unsplash

Dating is a multi-faceted venture. We’re dealing with people’s misperceptions, unintended projections, and misplaced insecurities. All while trying to figure out if the other person is worth sharing your Netflix password with.

But what causes people a lot of pain, and they don’t even realize they’re doing it, is idolizing the person they date.

Ever heard of the phrase “putting someone on a pedestal?”

People create this phenomenon when they believe the person they’re dating is above them in some way.

Maybe the other person’s looks have you dreaming about finally obtaining them all for yourself. …

What to do after you’ve been eternally left on read.

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We have to face facts — dating in today’s tech-prominent culture means that people are held less accountable for their actions. That’s why trolls wreak havoc on unsuspecting YouTuber’s comments, petty Twitter wars are unleashed, and someone you went on a date with can disappear from your life completely.

Ghosting — cutting off communication with someone abruptly, akin to passing over to the next life — has become so ingrained in our culture that people have to wonder if a three-hour delay in response means the person is busy or if you’ll never hear from them again.

I’ve only been a ghostee once in my life, and it sucked a lot. …

And you probably don’t realize you’re doing it.

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I’m the kind of person who worries about my friendships, over-thinks the littlest things in my relationship, and, more often than I’d like to admit, lets my insecurities dictate my behaviors.

One less-than-stellar habit I struggled with was seeking my approval, from the people closest to me, to compensate for the lack of my own.

I really didn’t like myself. But I figured I could fix that with other people liking me.

The insatiable need for people to want me in there lives started when I dated a man who was verbally abusive. He withheld his affection for me when he was upset or wanted to control my actions. He had me work for his approval. That could look like something as simple as helping him run his lines for an audition he had or skipping a meal so I could show him I was serious about losing weight (even though I was a thin 21-year old). …

A few truths about the dating lives of confident people.

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Photo by Christiana Rivers on Unsplash

My old dating life felt like I was an apple at a grocery store.

I waited on the shelf while people looked over all the apples available. I would make sure my shiny, red side was showing, hiding the brown dent I’d gotten from that time a stock boy dropped me on the floor.

When someone finally picked me up, I’d wince whenever they turned me around and saw that ding on my backside. …

The truth isn’t always pretty, but, in this case, it will help.

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Photo by John Schnobrich on Unsplash

“I’m afraid that if I get into a relationship, I’ll have to take time away from my first loves: surfing and snowboarding,” said a man I’d recently struck up a conversation with on Hinge.

Does that sound too honest for a dating app convo?

I was assigned to write an article by one of my clients. I needed to craft a piece to help people revamp their dating profile. But I haven’t been single for over a year. I needed to research the apps to remember how they’re structured.

I downloaded Hinge, Tinder, and Bumble.

After I studied the setup of each app’s profiles, a brilliant idea popped into my mind: why don’t I match with people and ask about their dating lives? …

1. They don’t try to make people like them.

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We all know that person in our lives that exudes likability.

For me, it’s Sarah.

Sarah is the person everyone wants to be around. Sarah makes new friends with ease. She’s the person who has no problem getting dates. She’s the one in the room who people notice when she walks in.

I don’t secretly wish Sarah trips and falls on her face. Far from, actually. I want to be her friend.

And while she doesn’t have by-the-book physically attractive features, she’s still highly attractive, nonetheless.

I’ve always wondered why some people, like Sarah, naturally attract people into the lives in the way they do. I overthink every scenario, to the point where I’m probably awkward to be around. But the question of what makes people highly attractive lingered in my mind for years. …

Don’t be a jerk. Send a text.

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My friend, Alex, met an event planner at a party in Los Angeles. She described him as charismatic, sweet, and ambitious — a mix of personality traits you typically don’t find in the men of LA.

They went on several dates: the movies, LACMA, and a wine n’ paint night.

The morning after they grabbed sushi together, Alex texted this guy. She didn’t hear from him all day. A little weird, but she figured he was busy.

But that day turned into another day, which turned into weeks. …

Write Now

How this relationship writer steers clear of fluffy advice and tells it like it is

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Photo courtesy of Kristie Taylor
Write Now provides a glimpse into how different people write for a living. Today's edition features Kristie Taylor, dating and relationship writer.

Who are you?

My name is Kirstie Taylor. I’m a writer based in Los Angeles who focuses on dating and relationship advice and I’m also the co-host of the Content Writers Mastermind. I write for Medium, Thought Catalog, Cosmopolitan Magazine, and have been featured in Forbes and Elephant Journal.

I’m currently writing a book, as well, What I Wish I Knew About Love, with Thought Catalog Books, coming out in 2021.

What do you write?

I write content that helps people navigate the crazy world of love. I try to steer clear of any fluffy advice and just tell it like it is. I write from a place of personal experience, and that’s my favorite style of writing. …

Making friends as an adult can be hard enough. Don’t let your confidence get in the way.

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Photo by Helena Lopes from Pexels

I have an adult friendship insecurity.

I used to worry that all my friends hated me. I spent way too long crafting the perfect response to a friend’s text that probably took them two seconds to type. I either tried too hard, or I didn’t try at all.

Now multiply all those insecurities by ten when it came to making new friends. I didn’t have any confidence when it came to meeting new people.

Making friends as adults is hard enough as is. …

Perhaps you’re not scared of what might happen, but you’re afraid of what did happen.

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Photo by Chermiti Mohamed on Unsplash

“I’m not afraid to try again, I’m just afraid of getting hurt for the same reason.” — Anurag Prakash Ray

A friend of mine from high school, Haley, once told me, “It’s hard for me to trust guys because of how badly my ex screwed me over in the past.” She told me that whenever she got close to someone, all she saw was her ex in them. They could be the sweetest guys, but any sign of vulnerability and her heart told her to run.

“And it sucks,” Haley said, “I want a boyfriend. …

They help to sell movies, but they won’t help your love life.

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I’ve had plenty of people lie to me.

Friends. Family. Boyfriends. More boyfriends.

And while some of those lies hurt and even caused a lot of problems for my life, the myths I was fed by society ended up impacting me far beyond any lie one person told me. They shaped the way I experienced love up until the very day I stopped to question if they were true.

And I’m not the only one that’s bought into these lies; until we question them, there’s no reason to think they couldn’t possibly be true.

We read about these lies in magazines under titles like “How to Get The Man So You Can End Your Tragic Single Life.” Movies like Pretty Woman instilled them in us by watching Edward swoop into Vivian’s life like a knight in shining armor. …

My ex’s perception is the result of a fact of life we all experience.

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Photo by Marco Testi on Unsplash

Usually, I’m not one for a drama-filled breakup. I cry, sure, but I do it the privacy of my own bedroom, occasionally succumbing to a late-night call to my ex.

But after two particularly nasty breakups coincided with the worst bout of depression I’ve experienced, I made some classic crazy ex-girlfriend moves.

But what I realized by becoming a cliché ex is, no matter what you do in life, there will always be that person who sees you in the wrong light. …

If you’re not, it’s time to find someone who will prioritize you.

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Let me say this loud and clear: wanting to be a priority in someone’s life isn’t a bad thing (notice I said “a” and not “their top”).

When you like someone and see a potential future with them, it’s natural to want those feelings to be reciprocated. One way of determining if that’s the case is whether they prioritize you.

Chances are, you’re putting effort into the relationship or whatever it is you two are doing. …

I’ve thought about your words a lot since.

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I could hear the waves crashing outside as your hand crept up my thigh. I knew where you wanted things to go, but I wasn’t ready.

We’d already been making out for an hour, and multiple times, I told you I didn’t want to go further. I knew you; we’d been acquaintances for a year and had enough mutual friends to fill a room, but I didn’t know you like that. I wasn’t sure I even wanted to.

I pushed your hand away and then felt you push yourself up against me. …

From unhealthy dating patterns, to loving the single life — these books have you covered.

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Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

I was in one relationship after another for over a decade.

I never stopped to take a break; I never saw my serial dating as an issue. I didn’t want to be alone, so always having a boyfriend in my life — or someone about to become a boyfriend — seemed like a perfect solution. It meant I was never alone. I didn’t have to deal with the pain of previous relationships ending. I’d keep on trucking until I found “the one” (which I mistakingly thought I found, more than once).

But after two particularly shattering breakups that seemed identical, I realized love wasn’t bringing me the happiness I wanted it to. …

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