“Your love is nothing I can’t fight. Can’t sleep with the man who dims my shine!”
Lady GaGa said it best in her song “I Like It Rough” from her The Fame album.
That’s the problem with many relationships these days. People have been so conditioned to thinking that being coupled is the most important thing there is to a social existence. Ranked above friendship, a career, even above your own happiness. That last part always had me confused though, think about it- Being with someone is more important than being happy. I must have grown up on too many fairy tales because the two (being coupled and being happy) always used to go hand-in-hand in my books. So when did it happen that happiness was not a side effect of this “relationship” we’re trained to desperately seek?
I figure it happened somewhere between puberty and your first kiss. Hormones start raging and then peer classifications start changing from friends to a multi-dimensional grouping including the people who started having sex way too early to those who felt like they’d never have sex at high school because they were religious, unpopular, fat, tall or whatever reason they felt applied to them. The pressure to be aligned with someone especially in a sexual nature becomes ingrained in the minds of the adolescents and they start to adjust their outlook on relationships and what they were looking for in a partner for the sake of being accepted by their peers. This stage in life is understandable for many because during those years we are still trying to carve an identity all our own and it’s a teething process. However, some people get stuck in the ‘high school’ stage of relationships right through the course of their life and I often wondered why.
Now my experiences in high school were totally different because I cared little for my classmates, and I didn’t consider them to be my peers in any form shape or fashion. Apart from a uniform, we had very little in common. As isolating as it may sound, I was still relatively popular, however I still used to watch on in amazement at the lengths people went to get accepted by a group of people I felt were none too ‘awesome’ to begin with. For example, there was this young girl who was in a physically abusive relationship with one of the older ‘cool’ kids who I just thought was a walking colonic bag but apparently he had a way (and a fist) with the ladies. I say that is utter garbage personally but it is nothing new and far too typical these days. Again, youthful ignorance could be tagged as being responsible.
As an adult I find emotional dependence is the primary cause of people ending up with partners that really are shit. More so than the story about being financially dependent on a person, it’s love. Often times people are ashamed to admit they’re in love with the person who ‘dims their shine’ so they make up other excuses which they’re less ashamed of, and even wish were true. I’ve always been of the stance- I rather be happy alone than miserable together- not to say I jump ship at the first sign of trouble, but I do make sure I am well taken care of emotionally and I don’t need another person in my life (apart from my friends who I love dearly) to make me feel ‘happy’ and trust me, it took a few years to get to a point in my life where I can say I’m happy. Sure, shit happens on a daily basis but that’s life, knowing I have good friends who have my back and more importantly, being able to stand on my own two as the Hip Hop and R&B artists put it, has given me this sense of calm and level-headedness which comes in quite handy when the world is falling down around you and anarchy is in the streets.
If my readers are to take anything away from what I wrote, let it be this:
1. You’re worth more to you than you are to anyone else, value yourself appropriately.
2. Love who you’re with, but never be blinded by the feeling to the point you’re no longer self-sufficient
3. Spend time developing solid friendships. Lovers will come and go, but your friends will be there to have your back.
4. Learn to be happy alone or you’ll never know how to be happy with someone
5. Never mistreat those close to you. The same way you wouldn’t want someone mistreating you and
6. What goes around DOES come around, maybe not today, but when that other shoe drops you better pray you’re not under it.
Now go on, live, love, and glow!