Ladies and gents of the 21st century can learn a thing or two about the rules of courtship and romance from the hit British period drama, Downton Abbey.
Lady Mary Crawley, Downton’s no-nonsense suitor magnet, has no qualms about making her love interests earn the honor of her time and affection. Take a cue from Lady Mary and you may be surprised to find just how timeless some rules are – no matter what the century.
Here are the top three relationship lessons we can learn from Mary.
(*Warning: Spoiler Alert)
Don’t let a past mistake keep you from moving on.
In the show’s first season, we see Mary involved in a scandalous midnight escapade with handsome Downton visitor Kemal Pamuk, which of course, had quite the tragic ending. While initially devastating, we eventually see Mary recovering, learning and moving on to fall in love with Matthew Crawley. Of course, doing this with the utmost of poise, style and grace doesn’t hurt.
Allow yourself time to heal before rebounding.
Season four’s finale left us hanging as Mary contemplates if she’s ready to open her heart to another so soon after Matthew’s death. Potential suitors, Lord Gillingham and James Blake both made their interest in Mary clear and now she must make a decision. This decision, however, is something Mary is taking her time with – a whole season’s worth of time. Wise move, Mary. Giving it some time to heal and be 100% ready is well worth it before rushing into another relationship.
Let yourself be pursued.
Dating etiquette has come a very long way over the past 100 years, but some ideals are timeless and can still apply to the modern dating scene. Mary lets herself be pursued by men who are adamant in winning her heart. She even throws in a bit of a challenge because nothing worth having is obtained too easily, and Mary knows this. Call it old-fashioned, but nothing compares to the man who puts in an earnest effort to chase the woman he loves.