With many rumors, stares from strangers, and your mother constantly worried about what the neighbors might think about your liberal dating style - having a relationship in Lebanon is no walk in the park. Here are a few pointers for the lovebirds who are trying to make things work.

1. Don’t let your entire family get involved.

Most Lebanese parents like to control every aspect of their child’s life, including their relationships. And to add insult to injury, your grandmothers, aunts, and your three neighbors also tend to force themselves into the equation. If it’s a new relationship, water it slowly with a few close friends and relatives before telling everyone and their mother about it.

2. Don’t get jealous over petty things.

And while you’re at it, quit the snooping - it doesn’t do you any good. Sometimes we’re so paranoid that we make up a scenario that wasn’t even there in the first place. Exes are exes for a reason, leave the past in the past and move forward.

3. Some secrecy, perhaps?

The entire world doesn’t need to know the nitty gritty of your relationship. Try to keep public announcements to a bare minimum, especially if they’re the type of things that could turn into rumors. This is useful in a country like Lebanon where your personal information can quickly become not-so-personal.

4. Make time for each other.

You don’t expect to build a solid relationship over WhatsApp do you? If there’s a stigma against dating in your community, meet up in group settings and have some face-time.

5. Don’t try to change the other person.

Simple, right? Forget whatever image you have of the “perfect” man or woman and focus on the actual person in front of you. As a society, we tend to get caught up in what should be, let that go and you’ll have a solid foundation to your relationship.

6. Be supportive of the other’s dreams.

It’s okay if they don’t want to get married right away, if they want to leave the country for a Masters degree, or if they want to explore some job options. Be patient with your partner and don’t get lost in what your friends and family are saying about where the relationship should be.

7. Carry your own weight.

Don’t expect the other person to completely carry you - whether it’s financially or emotionally. Each person has to bring something to the table.

.8. Learn to be yourself.

Yes, that means it’s perfectly okay to fart in front of each other. Just not on the first, or second, third, or fourth date. Better yet, let’s just hold off on the farts until marriage. Or not at all. But still, be yourself!

9. Communicate well and often.

Sharing what happens in your life is a major step in the serious relationship direction. Now, you don’t necessarily have to go and send snapshots of every single mug of Nescafe you drink, but discussing and sharing is a big part of being in love.


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