Keep Your Pedestal — I Don’t Want To Be Put On It

Dating is complex. We’re dealing with people’s misperceptions, unintended projections, and misplaced insecurities, all while trying to figure out if the other person is worth sharing your Netflix password with.

But what gets me the most is this idea of putting the other person on a pedestal. Whether you are the one providing the alter or have found yourself unwillingly upon one, they suck.

Putting someone on a pedestal is making them into this grandiose idea of a person. Maybe it’s their looks that have you dreaming about finally obtaining them all for yourself. Their success in their respective industry may be the allure that places them always just a step above you.

But when you do this to a person, you minimize them to an idea. A notion of beauty. An idea of success. They’re no longer a complex human being, wrapped up in traumatic life events and insecurities — no, they’re a perfect anecdote that you’ve created.

No longer is there room for error. No longer is there room for childhood pain. No longer is there room for the slightest diversion from this illusion you’ve crafted.

This is why I find pedestals dehumanizing.

I am not an idea — I am a person. I am not my looks — I am my past blended together with my soul. I am not just my accomplishments — I am my failures as well.

The notion of “she’s so out of my league” is ridiculous. We are all conscious human beings figuring out how to navigate this thing called life. Who is to say that someone like Beyonce is better than the person passing you on the street? Or the nerdy guy at your office waiting to get the nerve to ask you out for a coffee?

What kind of ego do we hold on to place ourselves above others? What kind of messages were we told to think of ourselves as less than others?

With love comes all the trauma of one’s past.

We will continue to find ourselves in this comparison game though. It’s only natural, given the media-driven society we live in that promotes certain ideals.

The key is to be aware of the way we think of other people. Trying to date someone that you put on a pedestal will never work if you aren’t willing to take their hand and help them down from it. To unravel and dive into the deeper emotions and traumas that live in one’s psyche.

Putting yourself in a position of less than, instead of giving yourself a nice stepping stool to rise up to their level, will ultimately lead to a constant feeling of inadequacy.

Relationships level the playing field.

Once you enter into a relationship, you both hold power. At any point, the connection can be terminated by the other party.

That’s a lot of power to have if you were previously in a position of watching the other from below. It can also feel like a scary place to be in with someone that had already idolized you.

When entering a relationship, you become team members. You’re no longer vying for someone’s admiration or proving you’re worthy to date — though I’d argue that isn’t healthy either.

A relationship is a level playing field, and both parties need to feel at ease with that being the reality.

Admiration doesn’t need to be lost.

With this being said, admiration is not the enemy. Appreciation for how your partner looks and the hard work they put into their career is still important.

But you can love different aspects of a person without thinking they’re better than you. You can accept a person’s love without feeling you’re above them.

Hold on to that passion. That’s still a beautiful feeling.

Love yourself and insecurities begin to vanish.

Self-love is a quick remedy to feeling inadequate. Believing you deserve the best is going to help you rid any notions that you’re better than a person that’s willing to treat you like the magical human you are.

You can only love another as much as you love yourself. People nowadays are in relationships ridden with insecurities and wondering why things aren’t working out.

Getting off or taking someone off a pedestal starts with genuinely loving yourself.

Let’s take these pedestals and burn them in a fire of awareness. Let the expectations and idealizations be released from the embers. Embrace the ash left behind as acceptance of others for all that they are. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Dating + Relationship Writer & Coach

Keep up with Kirstie on Instagram, Twitter and