Before You Fall in Love with the Idea of Someone, Read This

“I think of lovers as trees ... growing to and from one another. Searching for the same light.” -- Warson, Beyonce’s Lemonade

 

Now this is a pretty rough topic to discuss, because it's surprisingly a difficult concept to accept. But if you have a significant other, crush, etc. think about it. Do you like this person? Or the idea of this person? Recent events landed me in a rollercoaster of emotions. This beginning with swooning over the honeymoon phase and then sorely hungover from being so carelessly drunk off of what I thought was love.

 

But it bothered me regardless. Losing someone AND losing the idea that you cling to so desperately, can be devastating in any respect. I am in no way lessening the painful potential of any sort of infatuation. However, considering why you have the people in your life that you have may make you appreciate them more, or maybe decide to lose them.

 

Honestly, despite any experience, I’m not here to help you distinguish whether you like this person, or just the idea of companionship. I’m here to just make you think. Consider where you are and what efforts are being made.

 

Your Mental Health is Key

When it comes down to it, there’s no such thing as “not being ready for a relationship.” Picture it now. A cute person, you absolutely adore, you picture yourself kissing them and cuddling them and going out on dates with this person. Now remove this person. Replace this person with anyone else you find attractive. If your feelings haven’t necessarily changed you might just be wanting a relationship, and not the person themselves. To ensure you want someone for their qualities you have to sit yourself down and evaluate what you want, both out of life and love. Once you have your own goals, your own achievements, your own path then finding someone that’s willing to ride this wave of life with you will become so much easier. This is from personal experience. When searching through Tinder in hopes of finding someone new it backfired and I became lost in a way. But once I became motivated to improve myself and my own foundation it made the cornerstone strong enough to hold another, and that person ended up sticking around. Love itself, when you’re in it, is a process. It needs attention and adjustment. Finding love doesn’t. It should be as second nature as breathing. You’re biologically wired to find someone you like in this world whether it be platonic or otherwise. You will know it when someone likes you back, you will know it when you’ve found someone worth your attention. Just set a good foundation and work from there.

 

You Have to Fight

I mean this in any sense. Fight with your lover, because you guys should actively disagree on certain things. By no means should these things include openness of the relationship, expectations of one another appearance-wise, personality-wise, pretty much anything beyond capability of immediate change. However disagree when it comes to politics. Disagree upon which food establishment serves the best burger. Fight about how Beyonce is an actual artist and he disagrees. Fight about all these little things. The human mind craves a challenge, and knowing how to bicker and resolve issues is a major component to ensuring that this relationship will last. Even if these dumb fights lead to someone on the couch. Humans aren’t made to be attached at the hip at all times. Fights, if in a relationship built to last, help one realize how important the other person is. Keep it healthy, NON-ABUSIVE (seek immediate help if fights get abusive oh my gosh I can’t stress this enough!!), then it will benefit in the long run.

 

You Have to Maintain Independence

Remember Jelena? Zanessa? These names are so powerful that there isn’t a red squiggly line under them. Please. Don’t become so fused together that when one name is mentioned the other follows. Build an independent reputation. Don’t include your SO in every story. Your SO shouldn’t BE your life story, you should have adventures, goals, and dreams of your own. Work on your personal appearance, work on your mental health, work on your physical health, maintain your goal of getting this grade in that class, or getting that promotion at work. Recognize your career goals and aspirations. The goal is to be able to say, “I can live without you, I just don’t want to.” Attain a level of mental health that allows you to be yourself and maintain your strength when this person isn’t around. Make sure you’re okay-enough to be able to function without this person should (knock on wood) things don’t work out. The best piece of advice I’ve ever heard was, “before looking for love, make sure you love yourself at least a little. Because If things go south, you won’t have the self esteem to recover.” I’ve been there, most people have. That raw emotion that comes with a breakup before you’ve flourished into the queen you are. It stings. I’m not pulling that trash line “love yourself before someone else can love you” because I know it’s damn-near impossible to absolutely love yourself, and honestly if you let things happen naturally (see above), then you’d have found yourself a cutie that helps you out by complimenting your insecurities. They’ll give you a boost when you need it. Just make sure you know how to boost yourself before you give that responsibility to someone else.

You Have to Grow Together

That being said, embrace each other’s differences. Build up your SO’s passions, and they will build up on yours. Grow in the same space, but blossom different flowers. The goal is not to morph into the same unit, but simply get to know one another as you guys change with the wind. Get to know their friends but you don’t have to spend your friday nights doing what they do all the time. Have them get to know your friends but don’t make them sit through Gossip Girl when that’s your current binge-show of choice. Have some habits and hobbies in common, but maintain your own independence and make sure you embrace all stages of life with your significant other. Not everything is going to be daisies and roses, there will be storms and sadness and rough patches that last years instead of days (although it’s avoidable if you pay enough attention). Just be careful with your person.

Moral of the story, don’t romanticize your own love life. It’s meant to be spent wisely, not plastered on a movie screen somewhere. Make sure you find your puzzle piece and not your placeholder to save yourself some heartache.