Some of the greatest writers of children’s fables were male: The Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen, even Walt Disney. You are not a tiny princess awaiting rescue by a valiant man, a symbol of frailty and naïveté, or the punch line in a morality tale. The women in those stories were crafted by a different sex at a different time for a different audience; these days you slay the dragon yourself.
Friendship, love, and family don’t hinge on any single success or failure; you would do yourself a disservice to administer litmus tests to things as labyrinthine as love and affection.
Don’t try to trade on it; it is something specifically and only yours to explore and enjoy with someone you love. If you treat it as anything more or anything less you’re just gambling away your shot at true intimacy in pursuit of a false sense of self worth.
Forget the love you see in screenplays and on sitcoms; your life is more tangled, more interesting, and frankly, much longer than a movie.
Stay on point, don’t try to cram too much in, and realize when the conversation is over.
I don’t know why people say this; it just isn’t true. You are your own woman, and if you become a mother you will clearly make your own choices. I’ll tell you what my mother told me: ” When you start your family, simply pick the things I did that you liked and keep them, and take all the things you hated and never use them.”
You are doubtlessly going to engage in some unhealthy, unwise or otherwise questionable behavior somewhere along the line; this is part of learning your limits and establishing your comfort zone. Please have enough self-awareness to at least make the conscious choice to participate, rather then floating through life getting swept up in whatever trouble comes your way.
See: Wu Zetian (China), Benazir Bhutto (Pakistan), Mary McAleese (Ireland), Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (Liberia), Angela Merkel (Germany), Golda Mier (Israel), Aung San Suu Kyi (Myanmar/Burma), Pratibah Patil (India), Gloria Arroyo (Philippines), Tarja Halonen (Finland), Michelle Bachelet (Chile), Helen Clark (New Zealand), Margaret Thatcher (Great Britain), Janet Jagan (Guyana).
Running a tally of who gets what in life will only frustrate you and annoy everyone else. It serves no purpose; the way life’s benefits and hindrances are doled out will never make any sense.