I came home to the most delicious smell ever. My feet were aching from my work heels after non-stop standing in them for the past 10 hours. I could not wait to get them off. Walking barefoot on the carpet of our little apartment to the kitchen, there he was wearing an apron and his favourite old white slippers. Sigh, this is why I love being in a relationship.
Lately I’ve been coming across magazine articles with a recurring theme of being a ‘Happily Single’ lady. And while all that is great, I thought why aren’t there more ‘Happily in a relationship’ lady stories out there in the mags?
While I know they preach the amazing freedom of independence without that ‘ball and chain’ as many single ladies claim. There’s also a lot of perks to being in a relationship. So here’s my RE: to those single articles, just why it’s so great to be in a relationship. Yes that’s right, a deep, meaningful, I-want-to-shout-out-about-our-love kind of relationship.
I’ve heard the arguments and I agree with many points. A single woman today can definitely say she can accomplish things without being defined by a relationship. But what if you could have both? The freedom to be yourself but also the support of another person who just ‘gets’ you. A big ask right? Does it have to be?
When did having ‘standards’ in a relationship make dating so hard? And I don’t mean just the standards in your partner, because no one is perfect. But I mean standards in a relationship such as mutual attraction, respect and trust among other things. Should we give up what we want out of relationship, just because ‘it’s just not done that way anymore’?
Back in the day, men had to go through a whole courtship to prove his love and commitment to a woman. Nowadays, it seems a lot of the chasing has been happening the other way. We almost feel guilty for asking for a bit of trust in the relationship. Now, I’m always one for the modern woman, and I accept that times have changed. Back in the so called ‘good old days’ women were also kept in the home, most weren’t allowed to work and not even allowed to vote. But what I’m getting to, is to resurrect chivalry. And if the guys aren’t willing to do it now. Maybe we should set the pace. If they really want us, maybe they should show a little effort. Goes both ways, as ladies we also need to work at it.
There is no such thing as an ‘easy’ relationship. Look at your favourite couple, and ask yourself why they have such a seemingly wonderful relationship? Do they make an effort to go out together? Do special things for each other? No relationship, of any kind, is an easy one. Great relationships take effort. You need intimate time with just each other. Time to get to know each other as people. Why do I love being a relationship? It’s like having your best friend always by your side, with all the benefits attached of going exclusive.
It always frustrates me when I hear of people who can’t accept the other person as who they are. You can’t wear that, or you can’t do this. While they may argue that they are just being caring, there are limits as to what ‘caring’ means. What does ‘caring’ mean to someone when they are restricting another person from being who they truly are? Like a wise friend once told me, “I wanted her to love me for me, not who she wanted me to be”. Being in a relationship is a rollercoaster, make it a ride you enjoy! Love the things that make you different from each other, they provide a unique perspective to the way you see things. Yet another reason why I love being a gal in a relationship, he shows me the other side to me.
Change can be a good thing, but it should be something you want to do, and it should be for you in the first place. Don’t change something if it’s just so someone else will like you. It has to be a decision where you know you’ll be better for it, you’ll even feel better. For example, changing a habit such as always leaving dinner table before everyone is finished eating is probably a good thing to do, it would help you show you respect the other person and are willing to spend the time with them as they finish. Whereas changing the way you talk, like hiding your accent for instance, just because you think the other person won’t like it isn’t cool. I firmly believe, that a loving relationship should ADD to your life, not take away from it. You should still be able to see your friends, or wear that sexy dress or comfy jeans that shows the world who you are. Don’t hide your personality. A truly loving relationship, can open up the world to you in other ways. This is what makes being in a kick ass relationship totally rad!
There should be no ‘lonely’ when you’re in a REAL relationship, no matter how far you are from each other. Your partner is like your biggest fan, he or she should be there to support you, give you advice when you’re lost, hug you when you feel down and be willing to make compromises.
Now that’s a big word. Compromise is one of the biggest things I’ve learned from being in a long term relationship, and it’s not something I detest at all. Some people find compromise a really hard thing to do. But you know what? If you want something to work, you have to starting thinking in terms of two, of us, of we. Weigh out the decisions thinking of the bigger picture. Sometimes people ask my partner and I how we did it. A little bit of background, my fiancé and I both lived in different countries when we first met, and when I eventually moved to his country, he lived in a city that was a 12 hour drive from me. At first this lasted about 3 years, then the big trial happened when I had to move back to the country my family was living in. But we made it work.
We all have our own individual lives, friends, worries, careers etc. But when it comes down to it, by compromising and saying: ‘It doesn’t matter what life throws at us, just as long as we know in the end we always end up together’ is the only thought sometimes to get through. The want to be together. You can say all kinds of things about timing, about missed opportunities, or hurdles. But in the end, if you really want to make it and your relationship is a priority to you, then you have to make compromises. It’s not going to be easy. But nothing worth having ever was.
There was this article I read, which I’d love to share with you now. Just to show you that love can literally make you move mountains!
I love being in a relationship. In our 20s some people may see we’re not ready for a serious kind of relationship. Bu t I think it doesn’t matter at what age you are, it could be anytime that you find yourself ‘ready’. Being in a relationship has taught me many things. And I can say with conviction I would not be the same person today had it not been for my partner. I’m a very independent person, and have always liked things to go my way. So has he. But together we found a way to embrace both our personalities, to create a sense of flow unique to us. Being a relationship to me is more than about just one person, like they say ‘it takes two to tango’.
So in response to this ‘Single and Loving it’ fever, while I agree, enjoy learning to love yourself first (because you can’t be in an equal, loving relationship if you don’t have a good knowledge of who you are yourself) there is also a good side to being a relationship. You have that person you can share your life with, it doesn’t have to be so scary. It’s actually quite comforting. Being single is a great time in your life, embrace it, learn new things and know your boundaries too. Learn how you want to be loved and how to love others. But don’t diss being in a relationship. If you’ve had a bad one before just know it wasn’t meant to be. Either you, him/her, or both of you weren’t ready for it or weren’t willing to be part of a relationship like that at that time. And that’s okay. Be willing to wait for a love that is all encompassing and enduring. It does exist. It might not be now, or next week, but sometimes it’ll come when you least expect it. Enduring because you make it enduring, you put in the time and love to make it work. Encompassing in a way that it enriches your life rather defines it.
Like I said before, remember no one is perfect, but that doesn’t mean love can’t be. Love in its purest form is a beautiful thing, don’t shed a tear for it, rejoice it. Don’t get it confused with feelings of belonging to something, or the fact that you’ve grown just so used to person that you just have to be in a relationship. Know that you can shine and be supported at the same time, and you’ll learn how good it feels to be happy for your partner’s successes too. It takes a level maturity to say, I can’t be the person you need right now. Be fair to others, if you’re not ready or willing to make some compromises to get to the point of “let’s make this work” then don’t waste time throwing hearts around (I am hearing ‘Jar of Hearts’ play in my head). There are too many people out there in relationships that shouldn’t be in them, if you’re in what they call a ‘toxic love’ get out, now! I agree to go solo, but if you get in the right kind of relationship, one that fits you for now, or even longer, then cherish it!
So there it is, being in an honest to god nurturing and heartfelt relationship is the bomb, being single is too, both have the potential to make you happy, it’s really up to both of you to make it what you want it to be. Cheers readers! xoxo Lari