There was a time in my life, a simpler time, where being someone’s princess was the end all be all. That was my ultimate goal in life.
I was also nine.
Point is, I am not that little, simple girl anymore. Being someone’s princess is not enough. Knowing that another person values me is amazing, and necessary to a healthy relationship but I do need to value myself. It’s more important that I value myself. At a very pure and basic level, I know myself better than any other person will ever know, or could ever know me. I know myself better than I would ever let anyone else know me.
There is still a child inside of me, sitting in front of the television with a plastic crown on in Cinderella pajamas waiting with breathless rapture for the glass slipper to finally find my foot. Because although I am doing my best to be my own best advocate and champion, who doesn’t want to be loved at fairy tale proportions.
And it’s not just women. We all have standards, we all have expectations of what we want in a relationship. Whether it comes from a Disney movie, or the model of our parents as we grew up watching them interact. We know what we expect out of our counterpart, and we are hesitant to settle for anything less.
Are we setting ourselves up to be disappointed, or is it proactive and intelligent to know exactly what is going to make you happy in a long term relationship. In fact, there are certain deal breakers for everyone where they will truthfully NEVER be happy if they don’t have them. So, if we compromise our initial set of non negotiables, if we feel that maybe our standards are a little too high and lofty for a normal mate to reach, we are in fact setting ourselves up for disappointment… and failure.
They call it “settling”. I call it selling yourself short. Compatibility is amazing and sometimes initial, but there is no guarantee that this instant chemical reaction will evolve into the type of bond you want. The type of bond you NEED to find and feel fulfillment in a close relationship with another human being.
So if I want a relationship in which the other person is my best friend, the one I go to when I’m stressed, the one I go to when I am troubled and in turmoil knowing he will calm the hurricane whipping through my brain… am I going to ever be satisfied completely with the “bond” we have if he is not those things to me? Will I even feel that there is a bond?
In no time isolation develops. And it’s not one persons fault over the other. It’s not really anyone’s fault, because even though our initial spark burns brightly still and we still find our way back to each other, we are never the same as we were back then. Before we started disappointing each other, before things were said and done that ensure the slate never gets wiped clean. The spark does not burn bright enough to get through the brick wall that can build between two people over time.
We try to change each other. We vocalize our discontent hoping that the other person will love us enough, will value the relationship enough to adjust themselves to fit it better. But that’s not really fair. Any change this person would make would only be temporary as it goes against their nature to be the way you want them to be instead of the way they’ve been for x amount of years. When they revert back to their natural behavior, it just makes things worse.
So when do you differentiate between a “bond” that needs more work, or a bond that does not exist. Just because two people live together, sleep together and share a life does not mean they share a bond.
I don’t mean to pose these questions as if I have an answer. This is not an advice column or a self help blog. These are the same questions that every single one of us has pondered, and that I am pondering now.
It is not my goal to have a prince take my arm and lead me to his castle where I will forever be his arm candy and waltzing partner. It is my goal to have an open, nurturing, beautiful,. understanding relationship. It is my goal to have a BOND within this relationship which makes it unbreakable, whether it be from inside factors or outside factors I will no longer tell myself that I am idealizing what love is, or that I am expecting too much from my significant other. I will no longer sell myself short, or allow someone who is looking for something from me to sell themselves short.
And someday I will have the answers.