So here’s a subject that’s come up in my life a lot and one I will always gladly have discussions with friends about. If you’re like me, then the only relationship you’ve been in was a primary school romance that ended when I moved town. Like all 5 year old children end a relationship, it was during a class and we fought over who was breaking up with who. Obviously, I’m not taking any of it serious, I do not count it as a ‘real’ relationship and so if we talk in that sense I have had zilch. When you are in such a situation many many people try and get you out of it even if that isn’t the right thing to do. I get it. They’re trying to be helpful, they only the want the best. My problem is when people use it as a substitute for happiness, and a cure for sadness.
If you are a returning reader, or a friend of mine, you will know one thing about me: I love love. The idea of it, the creative possibilities that come from it, and in general the feeling of feeling it. It is an emotion, and an act that has fascinated me since I was little. It is something I have written and will always continue to write about, because it is just so complex. The starts, the discoveries, the damn right insane things it makes people do, and the trance-like state people are often put in, all because of another human being. I am not a cynical man that has never been in love, nor one that doesn’t want to be in love. I am not a loveless ogre that has never tried to date or has never looked for love. But, now in my early twenties, far more mature than ever before, and having seen other peoples relationships, I regret nothing, and I am happy.
Relationships are a precious thing, screw that, relationships are a messy, strange, ugly and wonderful thing. But too many people have had broken hearts, have gained scars at too early of an age, have spent the time they should be learning to love themselves giving all their love to a loveless partner. There is a period in a persons life when they must discover the world, discover themselves, their likes and dislikes, and the things that they strive to live for. Some people can genuinely do that, and still be in a relationship, a relationship that succeeds. But there are people, who being too unstable, yet forced into a relationship because of social pressure have lost valuable time to help themselves, to go through those years of being a little selfish.
It is to those people I appeal and I feel for when I say that friends and family should be more careful with the way they phrase their approaches. A friend of mine told me that she was told by a friend of hers that at her age she should have a man, that she should know where she is going in life and that surely she cannot be happy without all that. As baffling as that is to comprehend it is a common thought and often statement that people address to long time singletons.
Yet happiness is directly one of the most important factors in why, I believe, I have been single for so long and why it pleases me that certain unrequited loves did not return feelings. I have had a very … complex … start to this life, shall we say. There have been so so many factors in what led to a very rocky, tumultuous and unpredictable relationship with myself and the world during my adolescence. During which I was surrounded by a concept and a socially defined ideal that you had to have had a certain amount of relationships and sexual partners before a certain age. That affected me, and along with all the other problems that were going on in my life, my brain felt it needed to search for one, almost out of obligation. Now, looking back, my instability and my naivety towards what the concept of a relationship was all about leads me to believe that had I had a partner, it would have been a poisonous and further destructive series of events. I never wanted to be, and still never want to be one of those people that hurt others, say things, do things that scar simply because of some insecurity or lacking of self-confidence.
Love is a pleasure, it is both a privilege and a right, and though I agree that at some point a broken heart is a paradoxically healing thing in the long run, too many people become used to them because they cannot be alone. Why can they not be alone? Because they have not yet given themselves the time to enjoy being single, to enjoy the feeling of understanding what makes yourself tick, what keeps you surviving alone.
Let me be clear again, I am not here to judge and to rant at friends or people who have, out of the kindness of their heart, tried to encourage me to find someone. I am writing this about the people that fool others into believing it is the sole key to happiness, that ones depression or problems can be ‘cured’ by a relationship. Sure, those things have truth in them, but it is not the only key to happiness, and if you enter a relationship unstable and not knowing how to love yourself, then make sure it is what you want and not feel you need. It is not shameful to love yourself. It is not shameful to spend years being single in order to be happy in the self you are presenting to a love.
I sit here, in my bedroom at home, a 21 year old man, feeling happier and more stable than I ever have done in my entire life. That stability, that happiness means the world to me, and it means that I can say I am ready for anything. I can accept that the times I looked for a relationship before, I may not have been prepared for, and may not have had the mental ability to love the way a person deserves. I am here, heart open, not looking for something to come to me. I will do what I always have done, I will continue with my life, making myself a better person, looking out for my friends, and should a feeling strike me, I will follow it with a passion. I will make sure it is something I want, and not something I feel obligated in. I will love like a person deserves because I will be ready and stable to do so.
Let me know your thoughts on this discussion to, open to either opinions.