Diego and I are best friends. Like, you know how guy best friends are—playing GTA together, binging on food together, and generally low-maintenance? That's how we are! Buddies, if you may!
Diego, who just recently graduated from the De La Salle University, and I met on a blind date. He didn't show up on the first attempt, but he and I crossed paths again on another. We would go out on dates you'd normally see teens doing. He met my parents a few weeks after we started dating. He would eventually shake hands with my Mom the first time, and he'd tell me, “Grabe, sobrang lakas ng handshake ng mom mo!” Yung Dad ko daw, hindi siya tinignan. Nakakatawa lang! See, it was only my first or second time introducing a guy to my family.
Funny how Diego would tell everyone that I broke up with him a few weeks after we started dating. We didn't really break up—I was just like, “You should see other people.” Na-sad sya at binalikan ko sya. We eventually got back together! That said, I think, at four years, what we have is now my longest relationship ever.
How do Diego and I make it work? Just giving each other time for ourselves to do what we need to do. We go really well together, and we’re definitely not needy. We’ve never had a big argument, believe it or not. I'd call our relationship smooth-sailing! Of this, I think how friendship plays an important role in solidifying the relationship. You as partners really have to go through that stage first. If it’s too fast, I believe it won’t work out.
I do get crazy as a girlfriend, though! There are random times I'd tell Diego, “Beso mo yung parents ko!” or “Hintay ka na lang dyan” whenever I'm doing my makeup. Four hours in my makeup chair? Trust that Diego won't complain. I think I got this approach from my Lola—that as the lady in the relationship, you really have to train your boyfriend right. Think, “Ganito ako eh. Kung ayaw mo, humanap ka ng ibang girlfriend.”
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Aside from love, I think I've found a sense of luck in Diego—he's the most supportive boyfriend you can ever ask for! I have a scheduled shoot? You'd see him following and waiting for me to finish. Remember how I've gone extreme with my hair and outfit choices? You'd see him still cheering me on. On top of everything, I find Diego very maalaga and respectful to my family. That’s really my number one thing.
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Photographs courtesy of Gabs Gibbs' and Diego Herrera's Instagram accounts