We all know realistically that the relationships you see in movies are far from the truth. We all know that those romantic fairytales may happen, but they happen far and few in between. Yet we still want that from our partners. We want that romance, that fire, that passion, that excitement. But what happens when we feel as though we are not getting that?
You should never settle for less than you deserve, but do you think you deserve too much? There is a fine line between settling with the wrong person and just needing to adjust your expectations. The movies show us that we should be brought roses, surprised with small gifts, taken out to restaurants, always laughing, singing in the rain…you can pick out anything you want from any movie that has a romance aspect to it.
We watch these movies and these TV shows, and they become engrained into our minds from a young age that we deserve that in a relationship. And when we don’t receive that, we think we are settling or not getting enough in the relationship…that we deserve better.
But, it’s not only the TV shows and the movies that put this in our minds, it’s also other couples and relationships around you. You see them and assume their relationship is great, because that is what you are seeing on the outside. I have heard far too often from people that when them and their ex-partner broke up out of sheer unhappiness, people kept asking them “aww why? you guys were so great together and so happy”.
We see other couples joking with each other, laughing with each other, holding hands. We hear them talk about the date they went on over the weekend and how much fun it was. We hear about the fancy vacations they take. We see their social media posts smiling ear to ear together. And we think, “I WANT THAT!!!”. We start to see our own partner differently.
“Those couples are always making jokes and laughing. Our relationships isn’t like that…ugh, my partner is so boring”. “They are always holding hands and being cute. Ugh, my partner barely even shows me affection in public”. “They went on such a cute date this past weekend! Ugh, my partner never takes me out anywhere”. “Woah!! They went to Europe! Ugh, we barely go to the city a couple hours away”.
These perceptions we form of romantic relationships begin creating unnecessary conflict in our own lives that otherwise wouldn’t have been there. We begin looking past all of the things that we love about our partner, because we start to only care about the things they are not doing or don’t have. But….we never think it’s because we are comparing relationships. That’s not it. We are just seeing “examples” from other relationships that we know are not impossible to do, and just want you to WANT to do that.
This unnecessary conflict arises from an insecurity in our own relationships, and fear. It arises because we are putting ourselves out there and being vulnerable with someone whom we are starting to share a life with. This fear comes from the possibility of finding the “one” and the person you will be with forever, and all of a sudden you become unsure because there “might be someone better out there”.
We begin seeing all of their flaws in an attempt to defend our hearts from being broken. We begin seeing their flaws because we realize oh shit…this might actually be the one. When you think you found your “one”, we imagine it to be bright and beautiful and magical. We imagine finding our “one” to be a surefire thing that we won’t ever question, because we just “know”. But in reality, we become frightened, anxious, cautious. What if they break my heart? What if they realize they want someone better? This fear and anxiety comes from a place in our hearts that contain the DEEP love we have for this person.
What if we think we deserve too much, because underneath it all we are afraid that our partner deserves more than we can give them?
Finding your “one” isn’t always magical. It’s not always sunshine and rainbows. You will fight, you will argue, you will feel like you hate each other at times. There will be times where you can’t even stand looking at this person and don’t want them to speak one word to you. The tiniest thing could blow out of proportion.
“Babe, can you please clean the dishes in the sink?”
“I will later, I just want to relax right now”
“You don’t think I want to relax right now?!”
“I had a long day at work, but I will do the dishes later!”
“I had a long day at work too and I come home and there’s a mess in the kitchen when you KNOW I can’t stand that. I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t want to do them knowing that it means a lot to me. Don’t you WANT to make my day better when I come home? Do you think I can relax knowing there are dirty dishes in the sink?!”
Like really….look at how that simple ass scenario escalated so much. And we all know it’s true! When in actuality, the person saying “I will do them later” could have received a response like “okay, cool”. And that be that. We begin to believe that they should want to do these things for you. That’s what the movies say, right? Have we ever sat back and thought about how many things our partner might want from us, but don’t feel the need to bring up or argue about it because they know it’s not the most important thing?
Have we taken a step back and thought to ourselves “you know what? Yeah, it would be nice if my partner brought me flowers all the time. But he always brings food home because he cares so much about if I eat”. “You know what? Yeah, it would be nice to go on a fancy date. But we cook at home and spend that money on practical things around the house”. “I would love to come home to a super clean kitchen after work and the living area straightened up. But my partner also hates when I wear shoes in the house, which I ALWAYS do.”
It’s much easier to blame our partners for not doing all of the things we see and want, rather than having to focus inward on why we are blaming them to begin with. You fell in love with them, didn’t you? You made the decision to want to build a life with them, didn’t you? At one point and time before all of this unnecessary chaos arose, you found everything about them to be amazing, didn’t you?
So buck up, put your big girl panties on, adjust your expectations, and allow yourself to be happy with the person you love.