The Sociology Of Relationships
I’ve been doing some thinking (yeah, big surprise, I know) and I’ve had a few conversations about the methodology employed by some people when it comes to relationships. I’d like to add my personal take on this so that it may be widely known (and I don’t engage in those useless men vs. women debates that ensue on Facebook so often).
My philosophy reads thusly:
You live long enough, you’re going to get hurt by someone who you care about. The end.
But since I’m blogging about it, I shall be prudent and expound.
Some people believe they are impervious to being let down, disappointed, betrayed or hurt. I’m not sure what the basis of this belief is — we are imperfect beings, mostly selfish and prone to putting our own desires ahead of any of those possessed by the person of interest. It’s human nature. It is not innate to be selfless and unselfish. It is a learned trait, whether it is your religious/moral upbringing, how your parents raised you or what have you.
Others are more realistic about it, albeit not any more ACCEPTING of the fact that it’s going to happen. Quite frankly, if you experience it early enough in life, develop the proper perspective in how the pain that comes from such disappointment can shape you for later in life and help you deal with the trials and pains that come with life as time goes on, then you’re probably better off. For someone to be 30, 35, 40 years old and learning this for the first time — this can wreck their life for good in some cases. I’ve seen it. Sad story.
But what happens to us when we meet someone? Do we truly take the time to sit back and assess this when all the goosebumps, good feelings and all the good times are flowing? We are often irrational, prone to rationalizing behaviors that are possibly red flags in some cases and too accepting of things that many of us would have never allowed in our respective ciphers when we were completely alone. This fact must be considered. It is often the silent killer of relationships before they even begin.
The critical thing about a healthy relationship is establishing/knowing the fact that there is a certain level of vulnerability that one must have if there will ever be seeds of growth planted. Some people never learn this. How do I know? They use various different defense mechanisms with the hopes that said tactics will shield them from further pain and disappointment that they may have experienced previously (or even someone young who is dating for the first time). What do these mechanisms consist of?
1. Putting up walls to the entrances to the heart.
2. Alienating behavior when a person encroaches upon “intimate” territory.
3. Off-putting conversations whose sole aim is to “test” a person and their sincerity for wanting to date.
4. “Hurt him/her before they hurt me”.
5. Dwelling upon the past and using specific actions from a person in a past hurtful relationship and relating anything similar to said acts as a sign to back off.
And many, many more.
Even the Bible says that we are to be “as wise as serpents and innocent as doves”. That statement, in the realm of dating/courting/relationships means simply — USE DISCERNMENT, not defense mechanism, but at the same time give someone a clean slate and don’t make them pay for the sins of someone who preceded them. Even if you have dated 64 people, the 65th person should get the innocent person that you were when you dated the 1st one.
Nowadays, with increasing infidelity, rampant selfishness and the desire to have it now and have it the way I want to have it mindset — this is a hard pill to swallow, but employing defense mechanisms always lands the defensive person in the very position they want to avoid by using said tactics:
It always backfires, so what then? Would you rather have the pain of trying to be straightforward and giving someone a fair, clean slate — take the RISK of being hurt (remember, vulnerability is part of the whole deal) or would you rather be plagued by a case of the “what ifs” because you used defense mechanisms and tried to avoid any disappointment, letdowns or any sort of pain — all with the false hope that somehow someone is going to stick around while being put through the ringer as both a test of their sincerity and loyalty and punishment for what someone previous had done.
Something to think about.