…Just a lazy girl with way too many blogs. So, like the rest of you, right?
I just started up a new blog with a girlfriend of mine. It’s in it’s infancy, but I figured I’d let the few of you following this blog know in case you want to find me there.
I may begin posting here again as well…jury is out on that.
Anyway, head on over to Matter to Spirit if you want to find my words. Thanks!
The phrase “ignorance is bliss” exists for a reason. It’s meaning and all of it’s variations (You can’t miss what you never had, what you don’t know can’t hurt you, etc etc) gain credence with each passing year of life as we slowly but surely realize: the more you know about something, the less you can ignore.
I wrestle with whether ignorance is a positive or negative thing when applied to relationships. Would your friend be better off never knowing her man cheated on her? Can mediocre sex be satisfying to someone who has never experienced mind-blowing chemistry? Should the habit of dull nights on the couch be satisfying to a couple that has never truly been on an adventure together? Should someone who has never known what it is to be treated like the world’s greatest treasure accept being undervalued?
In short, can ignorance be a good thing if it serves to benefit a relationship or is it simply a less direct form of settling?
It is said that the less partners a person has, the more satisfied they are with the one they end up with. With little emotional, sexual, and romantic experience, needs and wants are less matured. This inexperience is exactly why so many people romanticize their first love. It is easy to spend your first serious relationship convinced that your partner is the end-all, be-all. Not knowing what else the world has to offer, this person is not only good enough; they are the best conceivable mate. We look back later in life at a sea of firsts, an inexplicable feeling of perfection that has never been replicated. The reason that magic is never found again is because it is largely a product of emotional innocence. Knowledge is a one-way street. The second we know more about our needs and our wants, there is no going back.
So who has it right? Will those who marry their high school sweetheart wake up one day wondering what they missed, or are picky serial-daters sabotaging themselves by raising expectations in a low expectation world?
In a young relationship, it is easy to immediately lose sight of yourself and mold your daily life around that of your partner.
This occurrence is normal, and typically socially acceptable during the brief window of the honeymoon phase. It is a common rhythm that so many of us fall into without even being aware. The new relationship takes precedent over everything else, and the slow decline of alone time goes unnoticed. More often than not, your single friends and their increasing irritation will be the only concrete indication of the fact that you have begun to orbit around your mate.
The tiny voice in your head will try in vain to remind you to call your friends back, or get your ass to the gym. It will inevitably be drowned out by the much louder, more insistent excuses that you’re so eager to accept. Commitments are broken, evenings at the bar with your friends are replaced by nights in front of the TV with your mate.
That said, the honeymoon phase is not ultimately a disaster simply because it is – in most cases – exactly what it claims to be. A phase. The intoxication of novelty eventually fades, and once again sober, we rejoin our lives already in progress. A new, more balanced rhythm is created, and we make room for new love instead of letting it run the show.
Disaster only strikes when this behavior is not just a phase.
We all have those friends that fall off the face of the Earth the second they find someone who can tolerate them. Suddenly they develop new interests that sync up with that of their partner. They are enveloped by an entirely new social circle. This person will not be heard from again until something goes wrong, and they need a shoulder to cry on, or a wingman to help seek out a rebound. That friend will then repeat history the second they latch onto someone new.
What I will never understand is how the aforementioned friend doesn’t realize that these relationships failed likely because they gave up their identity. Willingly, freely, eagerly they threw away their alone time, single behavior, friendships, social life, career focus, and probably good grooming habits all to be fat and happy. They allowed their life to revolve around their love, and their happiness to be completely dependent upon it. Ultimately, all they have is their partner, and when they no longer have that, they return to reality empty handed.
People who perpetuate this pattern illustrate how vitally important maintaining your identity is to the health of a relationship. Sharing interests, friends, and special moments together is equally as necessary as spending time apart. Too often, one or both members of a couple forget to blossom as a separate entity. Once someone becomes completely emotionally/financially/socially dependent on their relationship, they are giving love a death sentence.
Part of a couple or not, each of us must never forget who we are, or how to stand on our own two feet. We are all unique and interesting in our own right, and those idiosyncrasies are the very things that will attract/ have attracted a mate. When you enter into a relationship, consider the consequences of losing yourself- what does that leave for your lover?
And where does that leave you when you’re alone again?
Also conveniently found in the “About Me” section! But let’s be honest, who reads that shit?
I’ve never been an easy sell. I don’t fall in love often, quickly, or eagerly. In the past I’d even say I earned myself the somewhat dubious reputation of a serial dater. Once upon a time I considered myself the friend you avoided setting up with your respectable single friends, cousins, brothers. I didn’t do sleepovers or get close, and just about everything out of my mouth was an involuntary stock response to the same old questions I’d been asked for years.
Basically, if I dated you, odds were I’d dump you. The process leading up to that moment was probably drawn out, full of excuses and misdirection. In a foolish attempt to spare your feelings and my own, I’d avoid telling you anything true. My insistence that nothing was wrong and inability to share anything deep about myself were just because I needed time, certainly not because I saw things going nowhere. I’d be tired, cranky, feel sick, but it wasn’t you. I’d give you the crumbs you needed to survive until they were no longer enough, and then I’d cut off the supply entirely.
Hell, even my current boyfriend- the love of my life and the man I want to marry- was repeatedly dumped by yours truly. Repeatedly. Nice, right? (Don’t ask me why he stuck around, just high-five me)
Anyway, that’s not to say that I gave nothing. For every man I’ve ever been with, I’ve given some little piece of myself to him. And he has, in some way or another, given something to me. A life lesson, a memory, an embarrassing story to exploit.
So here they are. All the men I’ve loved, the ones I’ve loved to let love me, and the one I’ll love forever.
At the end of the day, good or bad, love or loveless, we’re all a little damned if we date.
It’s truly disconcerting to know that somewhere out there in the world, each of us has at least one of our very own time-bombs.
With no way to safely disable it, approaching it in an attempt to do so is never a safe course of action. Odds are you’ll end up destroyed or at least maimed beyond recognition.
If you choose to risk an explosion, people around you will look at you and wonder why you did this to yourself, why you were cool and collected one moment and the next you’re a ghost of your former self.
And so most of us know and live by the school of thought that it’s altogether better to keep these bombs where they belong- far away and unacknowledged.
I’m referring of course to the X bomb, for which ignorance is really no solution either. The problem with the X bomb is that you can drop it in a sentence, or a cautionary tale with minimal fallout…but when it’s dropped on you, it’s a whole new mushroom cloud.
What’s worse is that once you’ve buried the X bomb and moved on to that aforementioned willful ignorance, there’s really no way to predict precisely when it may fuck up your shit.
We all know and accept that they become a dangerous part of life, and it’s a risk we all consciously choose to take. When you love someone, you realize that somewhere down the line it may just blow up in your face. We decide love and a potential trail of these bombs is worth it, we tread lightly and hope for the best.
So…all I want to know is, when do these fucking things become inert?