By Yali Perez
As a single mom trying to balance raising a son, working full-time, managing my lupus, exercising, watching anime and, you know, paying bills on time, I decided I needed more on my already-full plate! So, I threw in a new relationship.
The good news is, just like in my A Mom’s Guide to Anime series, I turned to anime for credible advice. What better medium to help me with love and romance than my first love…anime! Who needs a relationship coach?
I’ve been out of the love game for years at this point, so consider this some advice and a refresher, for you, and me! Let’s take a look at some of the lessons from some of my favorite anime, and how to apply them in a new relationship.
Very important note: This is meant to be lighthearted and fun and should not be considered a substitute for real or professional advice. Don’t yell at me.
Build a basis on friendship, like Yusuke and Keiko from Yu Yu Hakusho
Before Yusuke and Keiko from Yu Yu Hakusho were a happy couple, they were childhood friends. The pair know a lot about each other: their strengths, weaknesses, likes and dislikes. They can tease each other without taking it too personally, and easily comfort one another when things do become personal.
Friends often love each other, but it’s not always the same as romantic love. The latter can cause us to make some impulsive or rash decisions because it feels more serious. So take it slow! Friendship can be easier, and the perfect basis for a romantic relationship.
Be honest about your past, like Inuyasha and Kagome from Inuyasha
Everybody has a past! Even if you’ve never dated before, you likely have experience being a friend, sibling or child. It’s super-important to talk about your past experiences with your current partner, because it can help you learn from each other.
Take Inuyasha and Kagome, for example. This couple has a lot of variables to deal with. She’s from modern-day Japan; he’s from the feudal era of Japan. She’s a human; he’s a half-demon. And yet, that seems like it pales in comparison to his past relationship with the priestess Kikyo. And it sure doesn’t help that Kagome is the reincarnation of said priestess.
The couple seemed like they could get over all of their issues, but comparisons to Kikyo and unresolved feelings quickly became a mountain they had trouble climbing! Only when Inuyasha was honest with Kagome about his past love could the couple truly have a real chance (and Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon confirms they do!).
Talk about your past, so you can focus on your present and future!
Meet the family like Romeo and Juliet from Romeo x Juliet
Look, I can already hear you yelling at me after that last one. “Yali, you must be joking!” Look, of course I am. This is an example of reverse psychology. Stick with me.
In Romeo x Juliet, the pair’s families do not get along, which becomes a major obstacle in their relationship. Due to their warring nature, Juliet must also kill Romeo. Details, details.
But the point here is that families can often become an important factor in romantic relationships. Since we often seek approval from our parents and siblings on our partners, they have an influence on us. After all, some of our first meaningful relationships in life are with family.
So when your partner doesn’t get along with your family? That can complicate things, and you might feel like the bad guy in the process. Compromise and communication can be very important here, but above all else, it’s best to do what makes you happy, and if your family is happy too, then it’s a win-win!
With all of that, I hope you found some time to laugh, but also some helpful little tidbits! While these anime relationships can feel unrealistic or exaggerated, there are lessons to be learned throughout.
Love is serious and complex, but you don’t have to be rigid in how you approach it! If you can find the fun and humor in your relationship, and watch some great anime in the process, then you’ll have everything you need as a couple!