Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Is Romantic Love Overrated?

“We had three hot months together,” someone told me about his ex.

I replied, “What is the use of three hot months if it doesn't last?!”

I myself have been in short-lived intense relationships and I cannot help but wonder. What is the point of falling in love if it is not going to last longer than a few months?

Yes, I do agree with the “better to have loved than to have lost than to have never loved at all” statement. If we never learn to love life is meaningless.

However, as I have aged a little bit I start to wonder if romantic love is overrated...

I wonder why I waited so many years for Mr. Right and dating one guy after another only to be either disappointed or to be heartbroken. (I also question why I got stuck in the pattern of picking guys who always dump me for someone else too, but that's another story for another time.)

I also wonder why it is that I usually do not fall head over heals in love with (or have the rust of a strong attraction for) someone who actually does want to be with me. Or why I always fell in love with people only when it is bad timing for that person, myself, or the both of us.

I right now am in the process of trying to learn to appreciate a guy who really does want to be with me. Because he really does make me laugh and he is very easy to get along with. It's hard though when I constantly pine over a fleeting person that may not even be there for me tomorrow.

(And in case you are wondering I am honest with my current boyfriend about all these issues. He knows I have nothing to hide, and I thank God he is a very understanding person. He also understands that I am in the processing of embarking on the journey. That is, he knows it is new for me to be with someone who is at least somewhat emotionally available-someone who wants to be with me and give me a chance.)

I hope it gets easier for me to love a person who actually really does genuinely care about me. I hope to be able to once and for all be able to fall deeply in love with a person who is passionate about wanting to take care of me. I want to become passionate about a person who is a friend and a companion and a lover.

Concerning Romantic Love: The Answer for Me

I think romantic love is important in one way. It attracts people together so that the world will become repopulated. Romantic love also gives two people a reason to come together for more than just sex and having babies.

This kind of attraction that often starts out as infatuation grows deeper in time, and eventually that infatuation turns into real love. It gives two people motivation to spend time together and get to know one another. However, I also believe romantic attraction and love is not everything.

This point is best demonstrated by people who have been in arranged marriages where they have no choice in who they end up with. In this case, the two people often learn to love one another and they can even fall in love if they have enough in common.

The other issue related to infatuation and romantic love is that those exciting feelings wear off after a number of years. The longer two people are together the less exciting the relationship is if the two people neglect cultivating the bond they are supposed to have.

This brings up a very important point to me. Perhaps I should not date a person who I am instantly attracted to. After all, romantic feelings can die in time. Maybe instead it is better to allow myself to enjoy a relationship where my attraction to someone grows gradually over a period of months.

I have not yet given someone I am not that strongly attracted to yet a chance for longer than two months. But now is my chance, as I believe that true love can grow between myself and a person I know I have things in common with.

Other Issues: Timing and Chemistry

Sometimes it is very hard to give a new person a chance especially if that person is too available and too eager. This sometimes causes me to further fixate on feelings I have had for a person who I cannot even have. However, I believe this all is related to the timing in which I have met a new person.

That sometimes makes a difference. I believe the trick in this case is if I know I have enough in common with the new person eventually my heart will be replaced with the new love as I slowly let go of the space filled up by the old love.

Knowing whether this will happen or not is a matter of time. However, I would say after a period of six months or more if my romantic attraction of a person does not grow much I would end it. I say give a relationship time, especially if the relationship started at a less convenient time (i.e. for me it was when my grandma passed away that I started a new relationship).

Companionship with someone I am physically attracted to is very important, and so is that romantic chemistry. There are many reasons that romantic feelings come and go but if those feelings are never present at all it would be better to just be honest with one self and the other and move on.

My Ultimate Dream Relationship

I think the best of both worlds as far as a relationship is concerned is to be able to fall in love with someone who has some common interests as me. It also helps if I feel both emotionally and physically attracted to a person who is not constantly ambivalent about what he wants out of life.

It helps also if the person is not unsure what he wants from me. The huge challenge of course is to find someone I can fall in love with that appreciates me while I am still in his life, and not after I am long gone.

However, I am also learning to appreciate a person while he is still in my life and not long gone as well. It is not often that two people mutually appreciate and love one another at the same time when they first meet. However, it is possible. That kind of love does exist. I know it does. Time is the key.