Today on Facebook, this conversation pops into my feed, posted by a friend:
It’s a bit long, and worth the read, I believe.
The essence of the idea is:
if marriage is a horrifying concept for you and you think it is an evil trap, don’t get married
It talks specifically to men, about how they make all sorts of fun of #theballandchain and how it’s #lastchancetorun when the flower children are walking towards you.
Of course, while this specific attitude is pretty male-centric, the overall ideation of “I don’t really like the person I say I love” is prevalent in every gender, every gender combination, and played out in hundreds of thousands of ways.
- Making fun of the person you love with your friends
- Pretending to be one person to get the ring, then becoming another
- Trying to change your partner to be someone fundamentally different
- Complaining about your partner to gain sympathy from friends or strangers
- Ignoring your partner’s ideas and suggestions to accept them as gospel when you read them on the internet the next week from a total stranger
And we’ve seen these played out so often in sitcoms over the years that it seems normal to us that the people who share their lives together are “stuck” and don’t really like each other, but hey, whatcha gonna do, huh?
I had a conversation a couple weeks ago with someone who tried to convince me that my partner was an adult (granted) who could get his own damn water (or ask me to get it for him) if I got up during a movie to go to the bathroom, and I was not obligated to offer to get him something.
But WHY would anyone think that way about someone they supposedly love? Why would anyone getting up from the damn couch NOT offer to grab something while up, if they think about it?
I mean, sure, sometimes I’m distracted, and I might just space it off, but to think it and choose NOT to offer because, why? They are an adult?
Well, yeah. That’s ALL the fun of keeping him, thanks.
And then there are those who get a partner, and immediately feel like they can “relax,” and put their effort into impressing total strangers they may never know or care about, rather than the one person (or several people) they have hand-picked as better than the rest?
Part of love is finding that person you don’t have to impress ALL the time. It’s a relief. But like you said, this leads to taking for granted and ‘not needing to impress’ can quickly become ‘not needing their input’.
But it’s their input we need the most.
These sorts of things make no fucking sense to me.
Then, there’s the friend who was complaining about their partner loudly and constantly to a group. I asked, “Well, what did they say when you talked to them about this?”
“Oh, I haven’t.”
And this is not the first or the only time with this person or others.
WHY would anyone not go to the person they claim to adore, to love and to respect (at least on social media) BEFORE going to the rest of the world?
Or, why would you make fun of your partner(s) in front of people? Why would you do ANYTHING to tear them down to anyone, ever? Why wouldn’t you want to lift them up, talk them up, make them seem like fucking gods of every gawddamn thing (that they are actually gods of—the rest you can just NOT TALK ABOUT).
Because, really, when you talk shitty about your partner(s), it’s reflected on you.
And even if science didn’t point out the reflection effect…you do know you’re talking about your own damn decision, right? The one YOU made and continue to make?
I just don’t get it. I love the people I love. I like them. I enjoy spending time with them. I smile when I think about them. I lift them up to others. I praise what is amazing about them. I give them the benefit of the doubt. I go out of my way to make them happy. I tell them what I like about them. I ask them if they need anything. I say please and thank you.
I can’t imagine living any other way, or understand why I would want to.
NOTE: This is not specifically denigrating any relationship dynamics that don’t include loving this way by negotiation, although YKINMKBYKIOK. I’m not here to yuck your yum. I’m also aware that people often NEED to turn to others to get an outside perspective. You are an adult and you know the difference between often and casually denigrating a loving partner to others and trying to find out whether something is horribly wrong or abusive. Don’t get all up in my grill about that straw man.