So halfway watching this movie, a quote comes up:
“I was engaged once…but it ended shortly. I didn’t know who he was anymore.”
Something along those lines. But it got to me, and it really made me think..and as I continued watching it, I saw the consequences of a couple getting engaged… the horrors. Not saying that I’ll never get engaged– it just made me think. The person you thought you knew before you are going to live your life with forever…just really isn’t the person you love.
And it’s scary when you think about it. It’s like investing yourself with a split personality. Why? And more importantly, why can’t we know what a person is like before getting engaged? Why is there always secrets being hidden, different sides of their anger we never knew existed, a completely horrifying person beneath the facade of the one we love? And it doesn’t even have to be a big thing..something as subtle as a racist comment, or even passively revealing their controlling, authoritative behaviour on you. Maybe they’re actually possessive. Maybe they’re actually sadistic. Maybe they’re actually a mama’s boy. And it sucks, when you slowly realize that the person you promised to share your life with doesn’t exist anymore. They’ve become a whole different stranger the moment that ring gets on your finger. But why?
I feel like the #1 thing couples should do to prevent this two-faced horror is to never. ever. lie. to one another. Not even about something that’s bothering you. Always tell them what is bothering you. Even if it is something trivial, like putting your favourite mug in another spot. Tell one another your thoughts. Share your secrets. Because to love is to trust, and without trust and without taking that leap of faith, there is no love.
Everyone’s guilty of it. Everyone’s done it: breaking a promise. They may be extremely important, or extremely trivial. It irks everyone; you guys made plans and you get all excited about it and then — they flop. It’s simply disappointing, frustrating and most of all, annoying. Some promises aren’t meant to be broken, and those are the ones that you really need to think about before saying “I promise”. But, there are promises that had no choice but to be broken..And you can’t really blame people for sometimes breaking promises, I mean, life happens, and things may happen suddenly without warning. You can’t get mad over those.
So, what are some promises that shouldn’t be broken?
I want to believe that dates mean something. Means two people are giving a chance at love with one another by getting to know one another, and to spend some time investing in that. I don’t believe that flopping on a pre-set date you both agreed on deserves a second chance- of course, unless a family member is in critical condition or something, or you suddenly got a stomach flu (still a shady response). Some of you probably don’t see dates as super important and that’s totally fine. The reason why they shouldn’t be broken is because it simply says : I’m not interested in you enough to do anything to see you.
You know what this means: effort. If you’re serious about the person, and you’re serious about the relationship, then put effort into it. Effort automatically equates to you really putting yourself out there to love and be loved and honestly, there’s a lot of respect for a person who puts effort in. You know they care about things that matter to them. You know that you matter to them. And if you want a serious relationship without putting in effort, you’ve already broken that promise of the relationship. It’ll go nowhere.
3. Your Engagement.
Pretty self explanatory, no? I mean, you gave the girl your heart. You invested in her. He loves you. And by saying yes, you’re invested in him too. Don’t suddenly start freaking out about how you now realize that maybe he isn’t who he really is. You had the entire time you were dating him to figure it out. If he’s not the one but still proposes, don’t say yes out of guilt. Because the guilt of breaking off the engagement is, probably, a lot worse. And if you’re the one that proposed, don’t you think it’d be a slap in your own face if you suddenly realize that after promising this lovely girl your life with her, you actually didn’t really wanna? This isn’t changing your clothes- this is changing your heart. Which proves to show, superficiality is never as important as what lies underneath.
4. Your marriage.
And the epilogue to the engagement, of course, is the exchange of vows. You vowed to someone you love for heaven’s sake. If you really loved them, nothing should change, even if fights happen. Children may happen, and old age may start to happen too- but you guys fell in love for a reason. You guys mutually agreed to live your lives together, through thick and thin (I hope)- but when the going really gets tough, you chicken out? As long as there’s life in you, fight for it. Fight for what you know you guys have. If you guys can’t even keep the promise of being together for as long as you’re able to, why promise it in the first place? Promises are your responsibilities. If you can’t handle all aspects of your responsibilities, don’t promise anything, especially on love.
People confided in you for a reason- they trust you. And when they ask you to not tell anyone (because really, we all need to tell someone), try not to. Gossip is juicy- but if you want to be a trustworthy person, you have to be able to keep a secret. Especially if it does not involve you personally. Some people may be horrible at keeping secrets- and if you’re one of them, just tell your friend that it’s probably not a good idea if they absolutely insist you cannot tell anyone. Don’t put yourself on the spot in the future- disclaim yourself if you know you burst out spontaneously. Be responsible. Your friend would probably respect that than having their trust in you broken.
What’s the difference between these promises and all the other ones that if broken, wouldn’t be as much as a cause for alarm?
I made a phone call to my student advisor asking whether I needed this last credit for my co-op job. I don’t. So technically, I don’t have to work this last week (ie. next week) at work. Long story short, coop students would accumulate overtime hours that can cover for this last week of work. Well, unfortunately, due to being a part of the golf varsity team, I had to miss a week of work earlier in June for Nationals. My overtime hours accumulated by then, covered for that. Thus, I would be the only one at work next week, with a couple admin people. I don’t need to work it. I have all my credits. I don’t even get paid for this week. But no. It’s apparently going to affect my transcript, saying something along the lines of “this student has horrible ethics” if I don’t work the week. So, of course, I will stay the week to work it. Alone. Cleaning out shit from unused areas in our department, like what a co-op student does best.
What’s even better is that my parents admonished me for even bringing up the fact that my friend asked me to go on a trip with her. They stared at me like I had a mental problem- and after a couple scruffs became harsh scorning- sneering and copying with much contempt, my question of whether I was allowed to go. She asked why she wasn’t allowed to go, my mother mocked, and gave several scoffs to go with her mockery. Where does she think money comes from, trees?
Seriously. A simple ‘no’ would have sufficed thank you. Guess they like it over the top. I was just asking. But I guess I won’t ask anymore.
Then my boyfriend just texted me with great hope that I could come with him for the long weekend. My fam’s heading down to Niagara, he said, and they’d love it if you could join us. I had stared blankly into the phone, already knowing that even though I wanted nothing more than to say yes, I’d love to accompany you guys, I had to force my fingers to say Sorry. I don’t think I can afford missing out Monday at work. Have fun!
Yeeeah. I don’t know. I feel kinda shitty.
They yelled, screamed, judged, and most of pressured me into being the perfect daughter. Why don’t you understand this, yelled my father, who was teaching me mathematics since I was in junior high. How many times do I need to repeat myself, he yelled again, frustrated, while I shrank back in my seat, digging my nails into my palms and yelling at myself why I didn’t I understand. I just didn’t. I couldn’t- not with his menacing frown and the slicing words that shredded any confidence I had in me. I was pretty much useless in their eyes, a waste of space. I would never be right. I would always be in the wrong. I would never know when to do things myself, how to do things myself, and be able to survive alone, they believed. I was useless. Not like their son, on his way to making partner at Deloitte who recently bought his own car with his own money and has already seen half the world with an equally successful long term girlfriend. I am the failure, I am useless. They hold no confidence in me, yet judge me whenever I show I have no confidence. Have more confidence in yourself they say. And yet, all this time, all they’ve been doing was stomping it out, destroying it, while pretentiously encouraging me that I should have more in the first place. How messed up is that? I hate being weak. I wanted to prove them wrong. But they’ll never give me the chance to. Each fight I have with them only puts me in more shit. Why do I bother anymore? I want to get out of the house. But how could I? If I could just keep running forever, I would. I want to run away from all of this and just be left alone. I have faced it. And there’s no stopping them- no matter how hard I’ve tried for the past 16 years.
At the end of the fight, my father said: I think you have a grudge on us.
And for a moment of silence, I took those words in. Maybe he was right. Maybe I did. I remember I had written quite an angry post when I was little- oh very, very little if you were wondering- and it’s right here actually, in my hands.
I will prove you wrong.
I had written that many many times over on the page- guess I was adamant about it. Maybe that’s why I give such snarky retorts that make them angry. And it actually gives me a little bit of comfort to see them angry. Because they can feel what I feel. But at the same time, they get to show it while I get to hide it.
So it makes me wonder. What the hell is family.
1. Finding your missing sock after making out.
2. Getting your period on time.
3. Being yourself.
4. Watching movies while cuddling up.
6. Sleeping (just sleeping) together.
7. “I love you”
8. “I love you too”
9. Discovering they actually meant it.
10. Their unique smell.
11. Holding their hand.
12. The moment of utter peace in their presence.
13. Doing things together whether being outdoors or lounging with the TV.
14. Tickling them.
15. Taking a shower before seeing them.
16. The first kiss.
17. Independence without them.
18. Dependence with them.
19. The morning/good night texts.
20. Knowing they’re the one.
Last night we were lazing in my room, both of us literally half asleep- it was about 11:30 pm and he had come over for a short visit after a few beers with his co-workers. I was dozing off for a bit until I saw him just lying there looking at my ceiling. I asked him what was wrong and he shook his head and said nothing, just thinking. He had the same thinking face from before. So I asked him what he was thinking about and he gave me an awkward smile/chuckle. “Nothing,” he said.
It’s strange how as we grow older the more we become paranoid. At that instant, I was thinking that he was thinking about us. Why did I think that he was thinking that? Perhaps it was because of the thinking face he had on. Or maybe it was because we were lying on my bed doing nothing and just lazing. It’s amazing how the lack of activities can make you think. What was he thinking about? I don’t think I’ll ever know. And that’s it- we will never know, we can only make educated guesses. You can’t know what a person’s thinking about because it’s a web of things, and maybe something totally unrelated in that web of thoughts affects the train of thought in something else. Have I confused you yet? Same.
If he was thinking about us, would it have been a good thought or a bad thought? Was he thinking “Man, I don’t think I can do this anymore”, or “Man, this is great”. I don’t think I’ll ever know. Or maybe he was thinking “My cleans are getting smoother”, or “IBM sucks”. Who knows. The best I can do is guess. So that leads me to my own train of thought: Why guess when the answer is right in front of you? Don’t guess. Take it as it comes.
How many of you have experienced this before? Taking a little “break” from the relationship. It’s like a breakup, but not really. Basically you guys decided that you’ve had enough of each other for the day and (maybe after an argument) break if off. A small pause, a small “hold on, let me get my shit together first and I’ll be right back” kind of break.
Well, I’m here to tell you no. No, small breaks aren’t feasible. Small breaks aren’t real breaks- and it sucks for one or the other person in the relationship to think that there is such a thing as a small break. My first relationship ever, took a ‘small break’. I honestly thought that it was just, you know, a temporary break. He said to me “maybe we should take a break”. And to me, that meant a little pause to gather our thoughts then get back together.
The “maybe we should take a break” literally means “we need to breakup”. It’s just a nicer, albeit pussy, way of putting it. Oh yes, it’s true. Small breaks NEVER work. There is no such thing as small breaks. When I asked him, a few days later, whether we were still on hold, he told me “yeah.” Then I asked him when we would get back together. He then told me the truth.
I guess I was never fond of that phrase after, go figure. Of course it devastated me and it hit me so hard right then and there when I realized that shit, the small break literally meant break up. So when people throw around the use of “oh we’re on a break”, it kinda bugs me a little. Not because it’s silly, no, it’s because one of them is going to get hurt tremendously in the end, which is inevitable anyways. And to be weened into that stage is the worst. There is no such thing as a good breakup, unless both people ACTUALLY end up mutually agreeing that neither loves one another anymore, honestly. There is no such thing as a little break. It’s either in or out. You can’t be ‘sort of’ in a relationship. It’s like saying “I’m kind of divorced, but not really”. And if you think about it, it doesn’t make any sense.
So what’s the point of this? The point is that if you had to take a break from the relationship, you might as well break it off. It means that things don’t work well enough for the both of you to stay together through the rough patches without calling it quits. Just think about it- if you end up marrying each other, and the SAME problems arise, are you going to go through a “small break” again? What if you live together? How can you not see each other while on this “small break”? What happens to your children? The house?
So please, man up. Face it. Face the problem. Don’t run away with a ‘small break’. Because it will keep coming back to you, worse and worse until it escalates into something so terrible you either end up in a horrible relationship, or a horrible break up. The relationships that keep bouncing on and off can’t work. The ones that ‘broke up a couple times and got back a couple times after’ won’t work. Think about it. Just think about it.
I probably sound like a douchebag to all of you who may be in this scenario, but I’m here to tell you that I’m not trying to spite you..I’m trying to help, whether you take this little advice or not. Be confident in what you want and be assertive for the things you want. Don’t settle. Always strive for something more. If you know that it’s bad for you, drop it. If you know it’s good for you, let it enrich your life. Don’t make excuses. Make decisions and stick to them. Because like you, I have been in this situation before and I know exactly how it feels. Sometimes, the bad things in a relationship are overcome by the good because you’re desperately trying to salvage this. But it’s the bad things, not the good, that make or break the relationship in the end.
Said his parents.
It’s still a touchy subject for me, but I told them (as confidently as i could) that I would be pursuing something along the lines of graphic design. I don’t recall their reaction after. But I’m sure it wasn’t anything near being impressed. Afterall, I would graduate with a Kinesiology degree. What is this girl thinking? Why is Stephen dating her? Just today, my mother was telling me she was talking to his mother earlier and again, she brought up the subject of what I would want to do after university.
Their sons are engineers, with bright careers ahead of them while I, who is dating one of their amazing sons working for IBM (for that matter, both of them do), am stuck in the very big rut of ‘no clue what to do after university’. I could only imagine what is going through their heads. If Stephen is dating a girl, she better have a good career. She better be making some good money. She better not be a gold digger. She better prove her worth to date our son. Which makes it even more stressful. A parent’s advice will always be taken to heart.
So if I don’t find something amazing fast, I might as well say good bye.
I actually believe in karma. And it’s not revenge, it’s ‘what goes around, comes around’. Do unto others as you would have others do unto you –I think that’s the most useful thing I’ve learnt from the Bible. And quite frankly, it seems that karma is always around me, when people have done me wrong, they feel the repercussions later. When I do something wrong, it comes back to haunt me in another form. And that’s what scares me- it comes back to haunt me in another form. For example, I was guilty for making fun of someone, a little too loud. Then I completely embarrass myself in public the next day. It’s happened to me so many times I can’t even tell you the details. When one of my exes dumped me for another person (unsuccessfully though), I ended up doing the same. Is that karma’s doing? Is that karma telling me that the debt has been paid? Will I get karma-ed for that? Will my boyfriend leave me if one of his exes want him back? I won’t know. Even though I feel like I’ve been treated more unfairly than fairly, all I can hope for is that karma can sympathize with me and give me this break.