If you have to pick one, do you want to love or to be loved?
Before I start, what does love even mean? The Oxford Dictionary defines it as (first definition):
1 An intense feeling of deep affection.
I mean it is correct, but it’s the surface definition. It’s the kind of garbage answer that tells you what you know already, but doesn’t go any further. I refer to these as horoscope answers. Why?
I understand that there’s statistics and correlation involved with zodiac signs, but there are people who abuse and skew their actions and beliefs (note: extreme confirmation bias) based on what signs they are. It is also extremely easy to manipulate the results in statistics. By manipulate, I mean that it’s simple for people extract partial results from statistics and bullshit them to support their views (special shout out to Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences, PSYCH-UA 10 course for a
horrendous informative semester – statistics is a powerful tool, but I just suck at math of all sorts).
An example of someone who might rely too much on horoscopes is like saying that I had to take a break from writing earlier, because I accidentally spilled some coffee on my table and on myself…again (this actually happened though). I’m such a klutz, but oh well, this is such a cancer trait though. No. It’s not. It’s because I’m clumsy and I haven’t organized my table yet. I feel like I can save this horoscope rant for another day.
Last night, my friend told me about a phone call she’s had a couple of days ago with a friend of hers. He fell in love with her. She never felt the same way for him (and she’s a lot better at exercising boundaries than I am, so she rejected him firmly yet respectfully. I believe that.). He’s been waiting and pining for her for years, but he gave into familial pressures, and got married recently. He called her after his wedding, and told her that this is it. He’s settling for the rest of his life. He’s been wanting to call her before his wedding, but was afraid that he couldn’t go through with it if he heard her voice. He ended up telling her that his only regret in life was to never ask her out. Even if he were rejected, at least he’s attempted something. She couldn’t do anything but cry.
I have extreme mixed feelings about this situation.
First of all, I have to say I respect this guy in certain aspects.
- He’s taken her rejection respectfully (yes, technically he didn’t get a verbal rejection, because he’s never asked her…but if it’s not a fuck yes, it’s a no – read this if you haven’t – it’s one of my favorite Mark Manson article that clears up a lot of unnecessary thinking. Sometimes inaction itself is action. Being passive is a choice. Sure, you might come up with excuses to be passive now, but let’s try our best not make 2018 into another year full of bullshit, shall we?). He didn’t try to convince her how she’s made a mistake or how she’d never meet a guy like him again (oh, please, all of the basic textbook “nice guys” say that).
- He didn’t cross my friend’s boundaries. This avoids extra unnecessary pain and confusion. Plus, I think my friend would probably slap him. She’s a badass like that. These actions speak a lot louder than words, and they’re admirable.
- He finally cuts his losses and moved on. Hear me out. There’s a flip side to this, because the cause of him moving on is because of external pressure from others. That’s not healthy, but he’s still moving on. Moving on is great, don’t get me wrong. Again, if you haven’t read the “Fuck Yes or No” article, I strongly recommend you to do so. It’s hard enough to be rejected. Sometimes the one who rejects the other person doesn’t necessarily feel any better. This is also important to be aware of. Chemistry and attraction cannot be forced as they’re organic. Therefore, moving on from anyone who is lukewarm (in this case, my friend only likes him on a frienship level) to you is good. His motive behind it is definitely questionable though.
- He’s stubborn. He also knows a great person to be with (not to mention my friend is really beautiful, too) when he sees one. Honestly, he has pretty good tastes.
However…I think this guy is also a coward in some aspects.
- Why the fuck would you marry someone just to satisfy your family members? Yes, I understand that there’s the pressure to procreate in collectivist cultures to extend the family tree with an extra branch or two, or three…or more just for the sake of not ending the line (precisely the reason why I used “procreate”, as that’s the main drive behind overtly zealous parents and / or grandparents). However…really? That’s the main reason? Wait, let me clarify. I don’t know this person, nor do I know his main motive, I’m just extracting a result from what I’ve been told. So, if this were the case, this guy has zero backbone when it comes to his family. He is also a coward who isn’t willing to stand up for what he wants. It’s important to realize that you are the one who’s going to be stuck with yourself in this occasionally great and shitty journey called life. People come and go, and if your deciding factors in life-changing things are based on your parents / significant other / friends…you’re going to learn your lesson in a really hard way.
- He has no healthy boundaries. Please refer to my paragraph above, or to my “Boundaries” post if you have the time and / or interest to read about it.
- The third reason bothers me the most. He told my friend that he’s settling for the rest of his life. Let’s pause for a second and realize that he’s not talking about buying a car or a property that he’s okay with. No. He’s talking about his wife. A person. How can he marry someone he’s okay with? How would you feel if you were just someone your significant other settled down with, just because he couldn’t get the “love of his life” and because his parents were requesting grandchildren from him? How would you feel if you were marked mediocre and okay? How would you feel if the person you were supposedly going to deal with a lot of life problems with as a team feels only lukewarm about you? Yeah. I’d feel super disrespected, and probably divorce him right on the spot (don’t worry, I’d probably have a pre-nup beforehand…but then I know I’m not settling for lukewarm, because life is too short to settle or to be stagnant). His wife is merely a convenience. Do you really want to be a convenience? I know I’m a pain in the ass sometimes, but I’d rather be the hardest person to deal with and not settle for the significant things in my life. Sure, I’m okay with settling for what’s for lunch or dinner some of the days, but that’s because it does not matter to me in the long run. I’m betting that his wife doesn’t know that he only sees her as a convenience and an easy way out. Let’s say even if she were to know…then it’s sad how she gives such meager value and respect to herself. In conclusion, he’s a fucking coward (and I’m not even trying to be low-key about being annoyed with this behavior). If you hate your life already, that’s okay, but don’t go running around and ruining other people’s lives, too.
Obviously, he picked to love someone over to be loved. Then he did a whole 180 turn and decided it’s pointless to pursue anymore, so he picked to be loved, but is it really great if it’s just purely settling for the next chapter of his life? This is a rhetorical question.
Even though my friend didn’t answer my question directly, because she said she doesn’t know what she’d choose…I think it’s pretty clear to me that she’s picking to love as well. It’s not to say that she’s not willing to be loved. She is, and I know that, but she cannot establish an inauthentic relationship with someone just because that person loves her (almost) unconditionally. It has to go both ways for her.
I think I feel the same way, too. I’d rather love a little more, possibly hurt a little more, too, than to be loved and feel nothing (but then that person will have to be worth it before I give everything in, obviously, because I’m not the type of person who settles. Anyone who knows me should know that already.)