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Switch to Forum Live View How Important is Religion to a Relationship
6 years ago  ::  Jan 22, 2009 - 5:54PM #31
ArnieBeeGut
Posts: 1,407
Amen to what DesertKat said!

Except for the farts part...
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 23, 2009 - 8:46AM #32
appy20
Posts: 10,165
[QUOTE=DesertKat;1036913]If love were truely for only perfect people, then love would be for no one at all.  Love isn't about being perfect or even perfect for someone.  Its about being you and being content with yourself and the one you love.  Its about knowing that your loved one enjoys his farts more then you enjoy new shoes but being able to laugh it off on the good days and shake your head and tolerate it on the bad ones.[/QUOTE]

That is a bunch of crock.  For one thing, only a very small percentage of people succeed at love.  51% of relationships fail.  Just because the other 49% stay together does not mean they succeed.  I know a lot of domestic violent situations between people who never divorce.  The reasons these relationships fail is due to imperfections.  Love requires a certain wiring, certain skills, even certain looks, some luck that two people BOTH find someone with the same positive traits and even a lack of catastrophic life events.  It requires a "perfect storm" of desirable traits that favor long term relationships--both learned and innate.  My first psychiatrist was married over 50 plus years and I asked him once what the "secret" was and he said "luck."  The most honest reply I have ever heard a therapist make. 

"Its about being you and being content with yourself and the one you love. "

This is especially a crock.   As a person who is definitely "me" and content with it, who genuinely likes herself, I definitely have lived the limitations of being "myself,"  I have absolutely no sex appeal.   Try finding love when you lack sex appeal.  Please, don't give me that crap about my self-esteem.  My self-esteem is fine. Just because I am aware of a few flaws, does not make me self-loathing. I am equally aware of my strengths.  Unfortunately, those strengths  are not sexy.   I like who I am and that IS the problem.  I don't want to change and as I am,  do not attract anyone.  Just because I am content with myself does not mean someone else is going to be content with me.  That is the kind of pop psychology theory that is really full of holes.  Some folks need to change to be in a relationship and that change means becoming someone other than who they are.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 23, 2009 - 9:33AM #33
appy20
Posts: 10,165
Actually, it is limited sex appeal.  However, extremely limited to the point it might as well be no sex appeal especially in an area where single men are in a short supply and competition is very stiff.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 23, 2009 - 10:33AM #34
ArnieBeeGut
Posts: 1,407
Love is certainly not about picking apart words and trying to prove oneself "right."  What has been described is true for many - obviously not all.  No amount of sophistry and nitpicking can change what is real.  If all one sees are "conditions" then the prison one is in is of one's own making.  Love exits outside that prison.

All relationships indeed have the potential to "work" if there is love.

Love begins with oneself - you can only love someone else to the extent that you can love yourself.

Love does not exist in a vacuum.  Without love, things like communication, trust, etc. are meaningless; with love they flow naturally. 

Relationships are "hard work" only if one chooses to make them so.  What makes them hard is not loving oneself.  That creates the need to get from another person what they cannot give, resulting in conflict and "hard work."
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 23, 2009 - 1:57PM #35
appy20
Posts: 10,165
Yes, love is hard.  For one thing, life is hard.  There are tragedies, stresses of everyday life challenges, even the human brain when it rebels against monotony.   Those things present a challenge to love.

Also people do not choose the flaws that destroy their relationships.  Most people do the best they can with what they have.  People are a myriad of genes, life experience, nurturing experiences and many of these influences were not chosen.  Often, people are ignorant of their inadequacies so they don't know what to fix.  Only perfect people do everything right all of the time. Only perfect people are born and raised knowing how to love perfectly and find partners that are able to do the same.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 23, 2009 - 2:48PM #36
appy20
Posts: 10,165
I think our culture, pop psychology especially, does take an idea to extreme.  I think a good example is that others cannot make you feel, only you can make  yourself feel.  It is  true that we do choose how we react, however that should not let the button pusher off the hook.  Only a robot is not going to feel anything that a loved one does to them.  I do think there is an inherent limitation to the idea that we choose how we feel. I feel like the concept, pushed to an extreme, can be the death of empathy.

I do believe we can choose how we act much better than we can choose how we feel.  However, somethings that are not meant with malice can be viewed that way.  However, it is just as ineffective to perceive some things as benign when they are not.  This kind of falls into the art of living.  The lines have to be walked and determined differently by individuals. I do think with more love, there is more "slack" given to the other person.  That comes with flexibility in the relationship.  When there is so much stuff that one has to be flexible about then relationships do become more effort than they are worth.

Love is hard.  Not because of lack of self-love but because life has so many unpredictable aspects to it.  While we can control ourselves, we cannot control life or others.  If you can go into a relationship without any values or strong beliefs, it is easier to navigate a relationship.  It is also easier if you need a relationship more than anything else.  It is also easier if you have an easy going temperament.  Temperament is something one is born with.  Temperament greatly affects how much discomfort is felt by individuals when dealing with life.  People are not born blank slates. 

Then there is, the less you need a relationship, the less you will put up with.  When you are economically self-sufficient, content with your own company, fewer emotional needs then there is less to be gained by a relationship.  Compared to solitude, love is hard.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 23, 2009 - 5:46PM #37
DesertKat
Posts: 436
What a load.

You are differentiating relationships from love.  My grandmother and grandfather were married until my grandfather met his maker.  But they didn't love eachother.  They didn't even LIKE eachother.  Relationships are built upon what we are willing to tolerate and little else.  If we are willing to tolerate being in a marriage or relationship without love or respect, then we will.  I don't.

And, frankly, the reason you are alone is because you CHOOSE to be- just as I chose to be alone until I entered my current relationship.  It was better to be alone or date casually then be tied to someone I couldn't love or respect.  And don't give me that crap about sex appeal either- I have seen some of the ugliest examples (physically and emotionally/mentally) of humanity have a relationship.Hell, I work in a psych hospital and very few of even my worst patients aren't in a relationship. 

Love, real, lasting and hard-work love, is about knowing yourself.  Its about being able to be with yourself and its about being able to love others.  Being in a "relationship" is just about waking up next the same body every morning.  There is a difference.
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.
Winston Churchill
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 23, 2009 - 5:57PM #38
ArnieBeeGut
Posts: 1,407
You are right, appy, that some ideas if taken to the extreme are ineffective or counter-productive.  For example, since feelings are an unconscious reaction, we cannot "choose" to not feel something, so I would definitely not agree with the proposition that we can choose our feelings; they are what they are, and it is indeed natural to feel hurt at times by loved one's words.  That still doesn't change the fact that nobody "made" us feel it - at most they were the stimulus.  The trouble in relationships comes when we start blaming another for our feelings.  "You made me feel xxx" is always a false statement.  (I am talking about words here, not physical acts).  So you are correct to say that we cannot "choose" our feelings, and it is also correct that our feelings come from inside us and are not "made" by any other person.  Learning to respond mindfully when difficult feelings arise is one of the biggest lessons that can be learned in intimate relationships.

Regardless of how we feel, we can choose how we respond, as you say. 

When another person does or says something that crosses our boundary, then the fact that we love ourselves (as well as the other person) implies that we set a limit with that person.  Failure to do that causes problems in relationships.

If you believe that love is "hard" then it will indeed be hard.  In my experience, the "hardness" of love is directly related to the degree of self-love.  Having a relationship more than anything else is not coming from love, but from fear and neediness.  People do have all kinds of different temperaments, and there is good evidence much of it we are born with.  That will likely affect who we are attracted to and who we are in relationships with, and it doesn't change what I am saying.  Love is not restricted to only those with certain temperaments!

If your choice is solitude over relationship because you find the latter too hard, then who am I (or anyone else) to say you "should" choose otherwise?  You are completely content with your choice - you have tried intimate relationships and have realized that not being in one is what works best for you.  Maybe you have gotten the message from people that there is something "wrong" with you for that.

Blessings,
Arnie
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 24, 2009 - 8:35AM #39
appy20
Posts: 10,165
Attractiveness gives you choice.  It is easier to commit to someone you are not settling for. I have a few women in my family that "settled" and it is quite sad. It is better to be alone. It is not remotely fair to oneself or to the one that is "settled" for.   It is rather heartless to the one settled for.  I am alone because I don't have suitable choices and am too self-sufficient and ethical to settle.  I also truly believe that I deserve better than settling.  Everyone deserves better than that.  Unfortunately, it isn't mathematically possible for everyone to have the person or one of the persons that one wants.
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5 years ago  ::  Jan 24, 2009 - 10:36AM #40
ArnieBeeGut
Posts: 1,407
You (and everyone for that matter) certainly do deserve a relationship that is not just  "settling," and I don't see where anyone has suggested that.  Perhaps you are under the impression that your only choices are between being alone and "settling."

Maybe you would be willing to express what you mean by to "settle."
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