Let us begin with this: nothing here is universally applicable, and thinking it is will turn you into a ball of neurosis, so don’t even go there. However, everything here is, in one case or another, true. Whether or not you want to accept that is your decision, but that doesn’t make it any less so. This is not meant to be cynical, and I really do apologize if it comes off that way. But I find that as much as I like to adhere to principles of positivity, it’s just as important that we are honest and realistic about life– and relationships especially.
1. That they don’t talk about your intimate/personal life with anybody else.
Hah. HAHA. They’ll tell you this because they know that what’s your business should remain your business exclusively. They realize that by discussing their personal or sexual life outside of your relationship, they are ultimately also discussing yours, something that really shouldn’t be shared without consent. But it happens. It happens at a rate that you don’t even want to know about. And you’re probably guilty of it yourself. We want to gossip about the passionate night we had, and we want to talk through issues with a third party because we’re all farsighted when it comes to relationships.
2. That something is really bothering them– something that you are dismissive about, or don’t acknowledge as a valid reason to be upset.
Nobody wants to be the crazy person who is in tears over something you haven’t given a second thought to. So they’ll tell you it’s fine, and that nothing’s wrong, and it’s usually for one of two reasons: they want you to want them and to give them the attention that will probably soothe whatever irrational mind-ache they have, and/or they just don’t want to look nuts. Sometimes we need to be a little more consciously attuned to people in this way.
3. That appearances mean nothing.
We all know that appearances don’t equal love. We get it. But we are lying if we say that we don’t sometimes succumb to the battle with our ego and find ourselves preoccupied with someone’s appearance. It doesn’t matter, it shouldn’t matter, but in so many ways, it tells you a lot about a person: how they respect their body and how they express themselves physically lets you know who they are at some level. This is not just a matter of being “fat” or “thin” or “hot” or “not.” It’s more than that, and people are lying if they say it never factors into a relationship: it’s usually what we’re attracted to first. It’s the basis of a healthy sex life. It doesn’t mean you have to conform to standards of beauty: society’s or your partner’s, because love makes all of that irrelevant– but in that truth lies the reason appearances aren’t to be entirely dismissed. Love does not make us disregard our penchants to take physicality into consideration, it makes us look at someone as though they are everything we’ve ever wanted physically: but what’s important is that that mindset stems from loving something much deeper, and not the other way around.
4. When they really, really don’t like friend(s) of yours.
I don’t think this requires an explanation.
5. That money doesn’t matter.
It’s kind of the same thing as appearances– it doesn’t equate to love, but we should realize that especially within the context of marriage (which, technically, is more of a business contract than anything) it would be ridiculous to NOT consider how your partner is going to contribute to your life together. I’m not talking about being a millionaire, I’m talking about the innate drive to pay the bills and be able to afford things you’d like to do together. Aside from these basic reasons it should matter, there are many people in the world who are concerned about it for many other reasons that are far more materialistic. Don’t be fooled into thinking otherwise. Their words are probably as shallow as your bank account.
6. Any reason for not calling, not wanting to get together regularly, or be in a relationship exclusively: they are all excuses.
This is the cardinal rule of relationships. Any excuse for not calling or texting or checking up on you or wanting to see you is just a way of telling you that they aren’t that into you. They aren’t that into your relationship. It doesn’t mean it’s over, but it does mean they’re not all there. If someone wants to call you, they will call you, I promise. Their “dead” phone or trip to their grandparent’s or crazy night out or the fact that they are sooo busy will not stand in the way. We are the ones who suffer from thinking that any of these things are plausible excuses more than once or twice.
7. That they don’t ever think about their ex… and worse, that they don’t ever compare.
We all know we shouldn’t, but we do. They do. And it’s time to stop crucifying them for it. It’s such a taboo to say that our exes cross our minds because, yes, it’s unfair to our partner now, and it’s selfish and that relationship is over so we shouldn’t care. But sometimes we do. Because life is unfair, and people are selfish, and we’re allowed to be sometimes. Letting those sullen thoughts cross their mind once in a while isn’t the same thing as acting on them, mind you. And while the latter is a horrid offense, the former is fairly common, and relatively non-concerning.
8. That they love you.
I don’t think that people mean to lie about this. I really don’t. I do think a number of things come into play when those three big bad words come out.
- They don’t understand what it means to love someone, so as far as they are concerned, they’re not lying.
- When you say it, it’s easier to just say it back rather than destroy the relationship when they have the inkling that they’ll eventually grow to love you.
- People love people for all the wrong reasons usually. Reasons that do not yield lasting relationships. Reasons that are really indicative of the fact that what those people are feeling are ions away from real love. They don’t know this. They’ll say it anyway.
It’s not about saying it as it is showing it, and saying why they show it. That’s what we should be looking for. It’s much like anything else: we have to forgive people for being human and unable to love completely all the time. We have to start embracing that relationships, like the people in them, will be flawed in a thousand ways, and what makes them last is our ability to cope, not our ability to ignore the issues or deny their existence.
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