Today I read an article... This article... and it made me think.
Lately, I have been checking in with myself. Making sure that this path is the path that is right for me, that I am happy in my decisions and with my life. The answer is yes, I am very happy. While I don't feel happiness every minute of everyday - no one is expected to be happy that much - I do feel some happiness almost everyday.
I've also been trying to understand my past decisions and this passage really hit home and I completely agree and realize that I may have fallen into this trap a time or two.
"We make mistakes, too, because we are so lonely. No one can be in an optimal frame of mind to choose a partner when remaining single feels unbearable. We have to be wholly at peace with the prospect of many years of solitude in order to be appropriately picky; otherwise we, risk loving no longer being singer rather more than we love the partner who spared us that fate."
However, I disagree with the turning point in the article where the author quips "We mustn't abandon him or her..." when sometimes, that is the only thing you can do when you've found that you've married someone who is so incompatible with you that you are embarrassed to introduce them to people in your world.While I know and understand that your partner can never fully satisfy your every need and they will disappoint, anger, frustrate, enrage, and hurt you at many points in your lives together. They should never control, dominate, belittle, or abuse you in anyway, It they don't acknowledge their behaviour as horrific and wrong and take immediate action to try to change it, then "abandon" them and do it quickly!
When I look at my life as it is now, I see a friendship with my partner. We enjoy each other, we were friends first and always will be. I look forward to a life with my best friend. He is a remarkable, but flawed, person. But who isn't flawed. He would never do anything to hurt me, and if he does hurt me, he would acknowledge it, change it and move on. As the article says "The person who is best suited to us... (is) the person who can negotiate differences in taste intelligently - the person who is good at disagreement." I have been getting better at being good at disagreement and I have been getting better at not being a martyr. I am lucky that I have a very intelligent partner who is able to disagree with me well.
"Compatibility is an achievement of love; it must not be it's pre-condition". As J and I work together towards being parents, we are learning where compatibility lies and where it needs work. It is a labour of love - and it should be... relationships are hard work, but they are worth it if both parties are willing to put it in. Relationships are far from romantic, and they shouldn't be approached as such, instead, I believe they should be approached as a business interaction that start with love and only build.
Not sure where all of this is going, I just felt the need to put down my thoughts after reading this article. I have married the wrong people before, but I am glad that I never started a family with them. That would have been 100% life long commitment and I would have never come back from that. Now, as I sit here, with my daughter in my belly, I am reminded of the commitment I make to her that I will always try to be a better partner to her father. I make this promise to her so that she can have a happier life. While that doesn't sound like a commitment to J, it is a commitment to my family. And one I intend to keep.