Thought Catalog

Stop Wasting Your Love On People Who Don’t Deserve It

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Brooke Cagle

Infatuation doesn’t have an opportunity to persist if all your partner wants to do is sleep with you, a disconcerting desire of an unprecedented number of potential partners found on dating apps of the technology generation and the general population at large. The advent of dating apps like Tinder, Hinge and Bumble has made locating people you find attractive and interesting who actually do want to be in a committed relationship with the right person seemingly as challenging as discovering a four leaf clover in a field bountiful in three leafers. This is especially true for twenty somethings with ample time to explore.

Discerning who wants to hook up, who wants a relationship, and who will hook up with someone who doesn’t make the relationship cut while they are seeking a relationship, gets muddled in confusion far too easily for comfort. Sometimes people don’t even know what they want.

Deciding whether or not you want to be in a relationship with someone should not be indecisive, it should be strong, gripping, exciting, a “heck yes!” feeling and subsequent decision, but if you really like someone and all they want to do is hook up, we don’t always do the right thing, we don’t always walk away when we know we should deep down inside. Infatuation should be a result of imagining you and your potential partner have actual potential. We do ourselves a gargantuan disservice when we spend far too long crushing on someone who has made it clear through obvious signs, words and behaviors that they do not want to be in a monogamous relationship or at least, one with us.

Deluding ourselves with fictional rationalities that they will eventually want the same thing we do, as we continue giving them our bodies, pieces of our hearts and our hope is like voluntarily walking through a gorgeous garden of roses that contain poisonous venom and understanding deep down that you don’t deserve roses with poisonous venom, you deserve safe roses that will keep you healthy, happy and full of vitality. I love flowers and that analogy came much too easily, but you get my point.

Hookups are like cotton candy, unless you are not wise and do not take into consideration whether or not your partner has an STD, in which case they may very well be like cotton candy plus an STD. In this case, all of those infatuation induced butterflies and the thrilling emotions intertwined with a new romance must be tossed out the window. If the person you briefly thought you had potential gives the, “I am only interested in hooking up,” vibe as if you are somehow Denny’s of the dating world rather than the five star restaurant every woman deserves to be treated, however subtly or unsubtly they indicate these wishes, how can you begin to fantasize about a future with this person? While he or she may dangle the possibility of love directly in front of your eyes, you just can’t. There is no way infatuation has a chance unless you find yourself one thousand percent delirious.

Hedonism has become ubiquitous as both sexes, especially the younger ones, can find beautiful people to hook up with at the mere touch of buttons and swipes. No one gender is “at fault,” if this is to be considered a thing to fault. If most people ask themselves what they really want, it is not a hookup but an actual, meaningful, loving relationship. Sure, hooking up at late hours works if all both parties involved crave is a hookup, but I am of the opinion that for most of us, if we take just a bit more time to think, we know that more substance, longevity and lasting love is desired. We really do want love plus the cotton candy that comes with love rather than eating cotton candy alone.

And if you aren’t getting the most incredible love in a committed relationship, you are likely in the wrong relationship.

Purposeless connection, senseless embraces and meaningless conversations shouldn’t exist because this life is too short for anything void of depth, sincere intentions and fearless hearts meeting fearless hearts.

No intelligent, thoughtful, loving, lovable person will only want to know how a cutie longs to feel your body or view sexy photos that don’t mean anything the next day. How does he want to touch your heart? How do you want to touch his? Acts of affection, acceptance, support and admiration for you really are, these are what truly matter.

How he wants to learn about your mind, who you are, what you believe, what you think about, what you love, this is the genuinely good stuff, the five star restaurant stuff. Meaningless kisses, dates with people who are only looking to get laid, late nights at bars desperately searching for someone to take home, a body containing physical warmth, yet lacking in real mental warmth, mixed signals and bereft mornings, people attempting so urgently to fill a void that they’ve created to keep their hearts at arm’s distance, these are the moments that could have been spent loving yourself with your whole heart or taking the chance to fearlessly love another.

Our culture has fostered an instant gratification environment, craving something right here, right now. Our right now attitudes of the technology generation have rippled onto how we treat people and how we date, and it could not be more detrimental to our own mental health. Timidity in new social settings has become the new norm. We’ve developed irrational fears. We are too cautious with our conversations, too afraid to take the time to get to know people, too hesitant to show someone our pasts. We’re so scared to let people in, scared of getting hurt, scared that someone might see us for who we are and not want us, which may very well be the saddest thing of all. But the beauty in that fear is what lies on the other side—something strong, something authentic, something like love.

Real love is rare. I think most people get the definition of love wrong. Real love is not selfish or contingent on some ulterior motive. It is not about the vanity of having a significant other or having someone to talk to when loneliness strikes. Real love is not based on the hormonal high in the beginning, intense chemistry, good looks, an adorable laugh or fancy dates. It’s not contingent on status, wealth, or any other superficial measure of ostensible worth. No, real love is when you let someone in, all the way in and they let you in too. Love is when you keep coming back and they keep coming back, no matter how hard it gets. If you lose someone for being yourself, then you never had them to begin with.

Love is a sense of peace and lightness that comes with the thought of them. Love is being vulnerable because you feel accepted for all sides of who you are. Love is willing to commit to someone as they are without expectations or hopes that they will change. Love is loving who someone is today and how they act today without expectations. Love is how someone treats you and how you treat them every single day. It’s when you know deep in your heart that you are exactly where you are supposed to be and who you are supposed to be with when you are with them.

Love someone so passionately it makes you stronger, wiser and able to live life even more to the fullest.

If you don’t settle for anything less, then you leave yourself open to only the truest and greatest of loves. You can believe in the person you are becoming, you remain respectful of yourself and you can finally give and accept the type of love you so deserve. TC mark

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