Love: Slowing Down to find the Improbable Ideal

I recently got to thinking about relationships and how we often see our ex-partners as disposable and unimportant, simply because a romantic relationship has ended. I have relatively decent relationships with most of the people that at one point or another, were important in my life. People are sometimes a hugely important part of our lives and with the drop of a hat, we would step over them dying in the streets. I understand that people grow apart and that breakups are sometimes necessary for someone’s personal growth (or sanity) but so many of us relegate our former “loves” to the bottom of the garbage pile.  I think the ease with which we do this, reflects poorly on us and it begs the question, “how genuine were the feelings in the first place?” Another question that comes to mind is, “Can we be in love with someone we don’t know?”

In today's fast pace dating world, many people skip the "getting to know each other" phase of the relationship.   I think this leads many people to prematurely declare that they are in "love."  Often times, it seems people fall in "love" without even being friends. That is the only way I think one could so easily walk away from a love not caring whether they lived or died. Or worse yet, wishing them dead and meaning it or taking steps to ensure it happens.

Very clear cases of bitter breakups and divorces are often a part of prime time news. We see once openly affectionate, "loving" couples who have  become violent and sometimes uncontrollable.  I guess it proves that we can never fully know someone else, or, maybe we simply know what our partners want us to know.  So, if we can never fully know someone and we cannot love someone without fully knowing them, maybe love is simply a highly improbable ideal.

I don't know anyone that would agree to date or marry someone they suspect would one day do them physical or (intentional) emotional harm.  Yet, so many people find themselves in these kinds of toxic “love” relationship. I don't see the trend of bitter, hateful breakups ending anytime soon. But with each passing day, courtships become shorter and shorter  and so does the average relationship.  To achieve the improbable ideal, lets focus on the friendship. Maybe we need to accept that once we fall in love any number of things can happen to break up a romantic relationship but nothing can destroy love. Maybe we take a moment just to realize how absurd and impossible it is to truly hate someone we love. Maybe we all just need to slow down and take more time to know and understand someone before we make any commitments to, or declarations of love.

Posted on December 10, 2013 .