Anita L
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Is It The Person or Their Abilities?

Can they or can’t they?

I thought I might write a little thing to help people in relationships know if they are in a good relationship or not. There are all kinds of tests you can take on the Internet but those really don’t tell you anything because they are all based on questions that you can answer with a slanted point of view. What I mean by that is we can answer those questions any way we want to depending on how delusional we actually are about our relationship and/or the person we are in a relationship with.

Some of the questions are so vague and general that they can apply to anyone about anything such as “When someone tells me something funny, I want to share it with (insert lover’s name)” True or False. Or “I have a hard time sleeping because I’m thinking about (insert lover’s name)” True or False. Both generic questions and can apply to anyone at all.

Sometimes there are better compatibility tests that actually take the characteristics of the person, or rather the claimed characteristics, because we tend to see ourselves in a different light than those around us, eh? Even if we are totally as honest as we can be, we still see ourselves quite a bit different than others do. I guess it’s best to try to describe yourself than to have someone else do it because only we know what goes on in our heads but still, if there’s a big discrepancy, that could be trouble.

We could do what people used to do and just see if we get along but people seem to be in such a big hurry now to know whether or not something is going to work out way ahead of all that time investing and then having to see it as wasting time if it didn’t work out. We need to know if that other person is going to be happy sitting at home on the weekends playing some stupid video game or Netflix and chilling or if they are going to be champion party animals. We want to know ahead of time if they make noise when they eat or if they snore, if they know what a trash can is and where it is located in your house.

Let’s say that you find someone that has passed these tests and you are going along fine for some time. You decide that you can take them around your friends. They pass that test as well. All of your friends seem to be willing to accept your new love. You guys are settling into a kind of comfortable easy routine with each other. You might even be feeling that little pull inside your mouth to say that little sentence—that three word sentence that is so weird in the beginning—I love you. But do you?

Do you actually love the person or do you just love what they do for you? What if something happened to this person and they could no longer provide you with the same level of enjoyment? What if you had to do something for them? What if you had to do everything for them? What kind of dilemma will you be faced with if suddenly your loved one is no longer able to be a self-sufficient being and must depend on you for some of their care? What if, heaven forbid, they are no longer able to perform sexually?

That is what leads me to ask this question, and from what I see in a lot of so-called relationships these days, this is a big concern. Would you stick with the person you claim to love if they were no longer able to satisfy you sexually the way they once were and you maybe had to find other ways? What if there were no other ways? What if your loved one became a quadriplegic? Is it the person you love or what they can do for you?

See, I’m willing to bet that not that many people these days are going to be willing to take on the chore of caring for someone who is no longer able to function as a normal person. Once someone comes with a whole set of very extreme needs, similar to those of a baby except in grown-up terms, things change and nobody wants to be bothered with that stuff. It’s too hard, it’s too much trouble, it’s too depressing. I mean people who work in nursing homes don’t even want to be there. That should be obvious from the news we hear sometimes.

I can imagine that tons of relationships break up when men and women come back from wars with serious physical problems that they didn’t have when they left. Yeah, we are grateful for their service but that’s about where it stops. Women can’t imagine themselves with a shadow of the boy they fell in love with, the one with both arms and both legs, a handsome face with two eyes looking at her. When he comes home missing some of those parts it is more than she can take and whether they have babies or not, she can’t take looking at him and if it’s his legs that are gone, she doesn’t want to be inconvenienced by a slower moving wheelchair-bound husband who is likely depressed to boot.

Would I want to deal with any of that? I don’t know. If it were someone that I truly loved, who was love worthy, then I can’t imagine that I would turn them away but my selfishness might take over. I can’t say because I’m not in that situation. What I know is that before I tell anyone I love them I have to be sure that I’m willing to go through at least some difficulty with them that I would not go through with the next person. After all, I am not a savior. I am just a person who craves the company of another human being and if that human being isn’t perfect then I should be able to manage that just fine. The level of imperfection I am willing to accept is something I probably should have figured out ahead of time so that people don’t get hurt by my selfishness should the unthinkable occur. 

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