If you want to touch a guarded girl, first, start with the eyes. Always with the eyes. Because there are words she won’t say, decisions she won’t make, steps she won’t take, for they have scarred her before and she has learned to be careful with men like you, but no matter how much caution she exercises and how tough her shell is, her eyes won’t lie and she knows yours can’t either.

So look into her eyes and let her know she can trust you. Not by words, but through the way you hold her gazes like you aren’t afraid to know more about her and all about her. Though, let her know she can take her time because you can wait. You see her and nothing she tells you now can change the fact that you appreciate her for the wonderfully unique individual she is. And no matter what time of the day it is, if she chooses to let you inside her darkest secrets, you will make sure she knows she’s heard and understood and never alone. You will tell her it’s all okay and ask her how she feels. You will look deep into her eyes, and through yours, let the girl see for herself — now more than ever — a beautiful being who is not damaged or broken but strong and brave and always deserving of love.

Grab her hand and let her know you are here and will be here for her. Not just in bedrooms at 2 AM but on any street and in any crowd, whether day or night, especially when she doesn’t expect it. Squeeze it a little so she knows you are proud to have her by your side and this hand is now all hers to hold whenever and for however long she may need. Find her skin like it’s a reflex. Even when you’re both doing your own things, have your elbow brush her arm, knee touch her thigh, or head rest on her lap just because it feels right and you need to know she’s there. Hold her tight and safe in your arms whether you two are cosy in bed or stand outside a dodgy takeaway downtown, whether it’s an eventful Saturday night or a mundane Monday afternoon so she never has to doubt that you want her for everything she is, not just her body.

Kiss her lips and let her know how special she makes you feel. Kiss her long and hard and passionately like you can’t get enough and nothing else matters, like she’s the force that pulls you together and the fire that lightens up your dirty, dark world. Kiss her just to feel her. Kiss her because it’s romantic. Kiss her till she feels comfortable and at ease enough to show you all of her, till she wants more of you and wishes to have you inside of her. Let it always be her choice and never make her feel like that choice changes anything. Once again, gaze into her eyes while pulling her close to you and reassure her nothing’s changed. Then prove to her just that by being attentive and consistent, by putting your thoughts in the small details, by wanting her just the same, if not more, every morning after.

That being said, the guarded girl won’t demand any of this from you. When you look at her vibrant smile, you won’t even suspect that she’s guarded. You will think she’s fierce and independent, and probably, she will keep showing the world all that. But inside, though very quietly, her aching wounds still wait to be healed and her lonely soul still dreams to be touched. There’s still a beam of hope that shines through her no matter how hurting she might be. However, that light is getting weaker and weaker and it’s not visible to just anyone, for someone like her is not for everyone. So if you see it, if you believe she’s for you, hold on to her. Choose her now and choose her every day.

If you want to touch a guarded girl, remember that whatever happens, never rush her. Be patient and always have her back. Then little by little, you will see her, like the first cherry of the spring, open those pretty pink petals and blossom into the extraordinary woman you have always seen in her and believed her to be.

If you do it right, you will be surprised even the sharpest edges become tender at your fingertips.