Have you decided to love?

Have you decided to love?

Have you decided to love?

Comments Off on Have you decided to love?

Good Men Project

It was ordinary. Not fluffy, not overly romantic. Real. The kind of real I coveted in couples who married shortly after high school, in wrinkled older spouses walking down the street, still holding hands. I had wanted “real” so badly I often wondered if I had given so much power to the fantasy relationship that I couldn’t hack it, that I sabotaged it so I could never have it for myself.

What I missed when assessing other people’s relationship was their reality. I saw sugar topping the cookie, not the month-old flour involved in the baking. I saw the delectable outside they presented to the world and attempted to live by what I saw; one irresistible duo, with no flaws, no weaknesses. No wonder it never worked. At the first sign of trouble, I wept, panicked and began to mourn the loss of what would surely be next. I just knew the end was coming. I beckoned to it and created all the right circumstances for it to happen.

I viewed relationships as a cycle: infatuation, crazy-making love, annoyance slide, disinterest, then the break.

Until this morning, reading those words “Love is a Choice,” I never realized, making love a choice means you give yourself permission to make decisions, too. You know how aggravating it is to complete a series of jigsaw puzzles, only to discover that each one is missing a piece? A piece you had hidden but forgot where you put it? I can finally understand how to hold myself accountable for what I do or don’t do in relationships, and that was the missing piece.

I had been a subconscious victim of my past relationships, “But he was like this and was angry all the time, and he was unfair and a slob.” I was a spouse blaming and removing my own control.

This is what happens when we hand the reins of our life over to another. I ceded my own power, subtracted my own vital input, and lingered on the outskirts of my partnership, forever a blamer and bystander until I changed something.

The Good Men Project started off with some strange stuff and even stranger controversies but they really are coming into their own with a lot of thoughtful pieces. This is one of them.

So many couples break up not because they need to — but because the fairy tale went away. Because it always does.

But that doesn’t mean the relationship needs to end…

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