My friend recently fell in love.
The story was extraordinary on many levels.
She basically was done with looking for a serious relationship but reluctantly met a guy on Tinder and one day she told me she finally found true love.
And just like what was written in novels, he made her understand why nothing and no one has ever worked before. She opened up to him like no other, she let herself be honest, comfortable, and most importantly, vulnerable in front of him.
That was what struck me the most, because I can’t seem to remember the last time I let myself be vulnerable to someone. By definition, that means I didn’t fully show the true extent of my feelings and my expectations for the relationship. Because what if he hadn’t felt the same way? What if I was invested in this more than he was? What if I wasn’t detached enough to see him truly for who he was and the relationship for what it was? My ego was too big to be hurt by a man and dependent on a man for my own happiness. I needed to be in control and carefully navigated my heart away from any potential heart-broken-ness, by every choice of word, by every act of care. I got too smart and too smug, because I can get things I want and I was able to let go the second things derail from my own expectation.
I didn’t fully realize that until recently when dating men whom I felt intimacy with but never anything beyond. It was always a calculated move to step closer or move away. What I got in return after each of them was the inability to feel anything. And scarily almost, I was content with my lack of capacity for feelings. Nothing lasts, I’ve come to presume, so what is the point of clinging for things that are unreal? Yes, sometimes I get flushed by their serenades or entertain myself with the thought that they may actually care. That we might move to something else. But my guard was up before anything was bound to happen, and so the story went. I shut down emotions and turn to enjoy the hunt.
Social pressure of companionship
My friend told me what she learned from all the failed relationships and what she was experiencing now. She said we are programmed to craft ourselves into different versions of who we perceived to be more socially acceptable to family, colleagues, even friends, which spills over to your life partner and the romantic relationships we have. Simply because we want people to like us. We build mechanisms to shield away from constant validation and feel victorious from winning people’s love. We’re dead scared of being alone and crave for any forms of human connection. We’d like to think we have a support system, to think people give a damn about our well-being, and thus we become more and more of a version which sustains social support and likeness. A relationship often fails because sooner or later, this facade we crafted will fail to work anymore. You see more and more of who your partner truly is, so vice versa. Also, it’s very tiring and energy-consuming to keep up this crafted version, rather than just saying what you really think and accept anyone for whoever they are. So we bid adieu to someone we probably have never really known, and leap into another facade with someone we most probably will never really understand.
And true love, then she decides, is when there’s no more facade. When you’re so secured about who you are, who your partner is, and what the relationship means that there’s no need for crafting anything anymore. No rush, no clingy-ness, no compromises, no ‘working for it’. So brutally secured that even if you’re not with him/her, you know it’s okay. He/She truly cares. They will come back to you and find true happiness in each other’s presence.
Now I miss being truly vulnerable with someone but at the same time, cynicality kicks in and I wonder if I ever can find that kind of security and before that, how many times I’ll be kicked in the balls for reminder that love sucks and men are not meant to be fully trusted.
What if it truly takes 2 marriages to really finally reach that point of equilibrium?
Ain’t nobody have time for it, you know? But, you cannot exactly burn all the bridges and hope for miracles to happen…so How to do I meet true love?
A post by DA.