It’s Valentine’s Week... and love is in the air. Or is it? Is love about that whisper of sweet nothings or the ten-carat diamond ring? Is love about surrendering to each other or about being the winner in the relationship? Is love about loyalty and perseverance or about the challenge of the relationship? What are relationships about today? And why are so many falling apart?
Here’s a quick run down on the different relationships we are surrounded by:
The one based on lust: This is usually in the beginning of a relationship. When both the man and woman loose oodles of weight; buy brand new clothes and have brand new interests (usually influenced by the new love interest). This relationship provides a better high than any drug and allows very little time for sleep. However, this is a relationship that if started with a bang and was fumed by very little more than love and ‘common’ interests, is unlikely to last. Chances are, one or the other will get bored once the conquest is made and thoroughly enjoyed, and the relationship will end just as abruptly as it began.
The one based on money: This is longer lasting if the money is longer lasting but unless the less moneyed one in the relationship is very skilled, this one is usually in the hands of the one controlling the wealth. If it is the man, which usually seems to be the case, the woman will pine while he cheats on her, covers it up and cheats again. She’ll have many babies in the hope to keep him reigned in, and he’ll probably walk all over her repeatedly while letting her buy handbags by the dozen, and take frequent vacations. This one can last very long, but may not be the happiest of relationships.
The one based on childhood romance: This used to be the ‘fairy tale romance’ of relationships, but with hedonism and wealth the order of the day, these relationships barely make it to adult hood.
Women are more independent and have higher expectations in life, so they’re happy to swap their high school jocks for the nerds who are now running the world. The nerds in turn are only to happy to have finally acquired their main conquest in life and will quickly spread out the red carpet. Before long this conquest will be bored and probably have an affair with that high school jock — claiming (to herself) that he was her childhood love. How long lasting is this relationship? Probably until the cheat gets caught or a younger, more attractive conquest comes along!
The one based on friendship: This may not be a marriage or love relationship at all. But this is probably the one that will work. This is the one where the foundation is strongest. Where the couple knows how to accept that change will come, highs and lows will be experienced and along with periods of excitement, there will be stretches of calm. This is the couple that may taste excitement somewhere else, but come back home to each other, or resist a temporary thrill just so as not to hurt their best friend. The person they care most deeply about.
So, during your romantic Valentine’s Day dinner, when you’re gazing at each either through champagne eyes, and trying to remember what you fell in love with, also remember why your love grew.
What brought you together and why you have tolerated the lows as well as enjoyed the highs. Focus on the friendship and let it grow in your love. Those friendships are the new Valentine’s — the new love!
It’s easy to buy a good romance, but for an enduring relationship, you have to play your part in doing it right!