When I was a teenager, I used to think about my ‘future spouse’ in an odd way. This is going to make some of you think I’m totally off my rocker. For some reason, I always pictured loving them unconditionally, but ultimately losing them to some kind of illness or sudden accident. Weird, right? I mean who dreams of having their heart ripped out of their chest.
In my last relationship, when things started going bad, I started dreaming of my life when we broke up. I didn’t have the courage to actually break up with him, but I started thinking about my ‘single life’ like this magical thing that I was eventually going to get, like winning the lottery.
Am I a one foot out the door kind of person?
The answer to the question ‘does the idea of forever totally freak you out’ is yes. Honestly, yes. The problem is that I don’t believe we ever stop growing or changing, and I’m not sure people can really ever grow together in exactly the same ways. I believe in love, and I believe that I am capable of loving someone, but I’m not really sure if ten+ years is possible if we really think about it.
There’s always the argument of ‘when you meet the right person’. It’s the same argument I get when I tell people I don’t want to gave kids. ‘When it’s yours’ or ‘when you hit 30’. It’s not that I believe it won’t happen, I just can’t see, in my current life view, it ever happening. I’m a ‘you never know’ kind of person. But I am freak out by the idea of spending the rest of my life with a single person.
Early on in my last relationship, we had a weekend breakup that ultimately should have ended the relationship. Of course I see that now, but I was in love, so went out of my way to make it work. The argument was that ‘experience’ was so important that you couldn’t be truly happy without it. Meaning, how could you choose to be with one person when you didn’t know all your options? It was him who said it, and me that was like ‘what the fuck does that mean?!’. But was he right?
Of course he turned around and changed his mind the moment I wasn’t cool with it. But maybe my overreaction to that was because I knew that I felt the same way?
One of my friends from high school would argue immediately with me. She met her husband when she was sixteen, they got married in their early twenties, have two beautiful children, and could never imagine being happier. And I’m happy for them. I feel like in my generation, that is rare. But are they the exception?
With the belief that we’re all worth something, which we are, we’ve stopped putting up with being not completely happy in relationships. It’s easier to say ‘I’m out’ and just walk away. It’s socially acceptable and everyone has baggage now. I consider it a good thing that we all feel the right to happiness. But are we missing out on the great things in life because we always believe we could be happier? There could always be something better? Instead of working through a relationship when things go bad, we just instantly give up. But that fear of wasting time on someone you’re ultimately going to break up with makes running much more appealing than staying.
Unfortunately I have no idea if it’s better to have the experience before you settle down or not. So far, I’ve only had the one serious relationship. I met him when I was 21, and we were together for almost 7 years. Before him, I had a few boyfriends in high school that really didn’t mean much now that I think about them, and a few sort of random dates/hookups in my first year college. So what do I now about relationships? Nothing.
If you know more, let me know. I’ve love to hear about which side of this argument you fall on.