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lonelyace

Giving yourself up for romance

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Something I've noticed about people in romantic relationships, is that the concept of compromise in a relationship can lead to people compromising a piece of themselves.

 

For example, I was once rocking a pair of five inch heels, and my friend loved them. She really wanted a pair of shoes like them, but her boyfriend doesn't like when she's taller than him, so she doesn't wear heels anymore. Or in a more extreme example, my mom has a friend who had a phd in rocket science and worked at nasa. When he married his wife, she didn't like how much time he devoted to work, so he gave all of that up to be a high school teacher.

 

This idea of giving up a piece of yourself so that someone else will love/continue loving you is so alien. I always thought that if anyone was going to love me, they would have to love all of me, heels, career and all. And now, knowing that I'm aromantic, well, I'm not sure how those things play into my life.

 

Anyway, I just wanted to share my thoughts and see if anyone else had similar feelings.

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People are so confusing...

I don't get it. I get it when it co mes to some default you have (like someone who makes annoying noises (seriously if I was my mother I would divorce just for the peace of my ears 😀)). But when it comes to give up what you love to do... Why should you sacrifice your passion for one person?

People think it's cute and romantic but I think the partner is just selfish and think he/she should be the center of his/her lover's universe...

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I've been thinking the same. People often change a lot when they get into a relationship and it often starts with spending less time with other loved ones because of it. By the time the relationship ends, they don't realise they've sacrificed a lot of themselves. People don't often realise they're doing it even if they're being told and that's the most frustrating part😓. Yeah, sometimes I feel like I don't understand it because I'm aro but it still seems really off that it happens.

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My friend stopped watching Doctor Who because his wife doesn't like it, which is just mind-boggling to me.

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In some sense I can understand it. If one commits to sharing one's life with someone else, that's going to require compromises. Especially if they plan to have children, they are going to have to give a lot of things up.

 

That said, I agree that a lot of things that people give up for their partner is just silly.

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i totally agree!  it bothers me so much.  people say a good relationship requires compromise, but i say two or more people who are compatible and who love and respect each other shouldn't need to totally change themselves or give up major life goals.  if you need someone to do that, you're not compatible, you don't love them for who they are, you don't respect them, and you don't deserve them.  and if you feel the need to do that for a partner, you don't respect yourself.  rather than "if you love them enough you'll do anything," i say if you love yourself enough, you won't.  you have to love and respect yourself before you even think about loving someone else.  plus, shouldn't you have talked about this stuff in advance?  like your feelings about having kids and careers, what would happen if one of you needed to relocate, etc.  it's the same thing with fighting.  people say fights are a normal, healthy part of relationships, and i'm not saying you'll never disagree or you shouldn't express your feelings, not at all--i'm saying: 1) if you can't seem to agree on anything and you're always driving each other crazy, then again, you're probably not compatible, and 2) when issues do arise, you shouldn't fight; you should have a mature, respectful, and open conversation.  my best friend and i have been friends for 14 years and we've never fought.  but you know, allos don't think about this stuff the same way in terms of non-romantic relationships.  we've all seen people ditch close friends of many years for a romantic partner of a couple weeks.  they do this crazy stuff for people they barely know, and who will probably not be in their life for very long (but either way it's rude and bizarre), because this is the thing: to them, romantic love/relationships are more important than anything.  it's this whole 'other half/significant other' thing--if you don't even think of yourself as a complete, significant person without a romantic partner, it makes sense that you'd abandon not only everyone else in your life for them but yourself as well.  if you don't have a strong sense of self, it's not like you're actually leaving much behind.  you know?  imagine feeling that way.  i can't.  it's sad, really.

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18 hours ago, aro_elise said:

if you don't have a strong sense of self, it's not like you're actually leaving much behind.  you know?  imagine feeling that way.  i can't.  it's sad, really.

A while ago I saw a friend whom I hadn't seen or talked to in quite some time. I asked her how she was and what she was doing with her life. She said she didn't know, she didn't have a boyfriend at the moment, and she didn't like anyone either. "No, how are you?" I pushed. She said she didn't know because she didn't like anyone. When I asked if her identity was based on who she liked, she thought for a moment, and then said yes. I know this sounds fake but it's an encounter that really happened. Obviously she's an extreme case, but it really shows that people really do base themselves around who they date.

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10 hours ago, lonelyace said:

A while ago I saw a friend whom I hadn't seen or talked to in quite some time. I asked her how she was and what she was doing with her life. She said she didn't know, she didn't have a boyfriend at the moment, and she didn't like anyone either. "No, how are you?" I pushed. She said she didn't know because she didn't like anyone. When I asked if her identity was based on who she liked, she thought for a moment, and then said yes. I know this sounds fake but it's an encounter that really happened. Obviously she's an extreme case, but it really shows that people really do base themselves around who they date.

that's truly wild.  i would have been like "what are your hobbies, interests, career goals?  what's going on at school/work?  any fun parties, travels, read any good books?  what did you do last summer?  how's your health?  tell me about your friends and family!"  like these people must be doing something with their life besides sitting around hoping for someone to come their way and ask them out.  you'd think.  

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On 12/30/2018 at 11:05 AM, aro_elise said:

people say a good relationship requires compromise, but i say two or more people who are compatible and who love and respect each other shouldn't need to totally change themselves or give up major life goals.

... 

like your feelings about having kids and careers, what would happen if one of you needed to relocate, etc. 

2

 

I also don't get how people can get to a point where they should be committed to each other and still haven't sorted stuff like this out? If I wanted to have 3 kids and my s/o didn't want any kids, you'd think that would be a deal breaker, but you constantly hear about couples who still try to 'make it work'. I guess the feeling of being in love is evidently very overwhelming, so much so that the practicalities are lost to save it. 

 

On 12/31/2018 at 5:22 AM, lonelyace said:

When I asked if her identity was based on who she liked, she thought for a moment, and then said yes. I know this sounds fake but it's an encounter that really happened. Obviously she's an extreme case, but it really shows that people really do base themselves around who they date.

1

 

My word... this kind of made me sad.

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I actually have first hand experience with this shit. Not about the giving yourself up part but the strange partners with "interesting" claims-part.
As confused teen, I once been in a "relationship" with a friend I would refer to obsessed with me. He loved me in a romantic way but it wasn't mutual.
He had problems with certain things I wanted to do / change about my body, e.g. getting a tattoo (love tats).
This made me hella confused and I still don't understand how people can talk about "love" when you can't let the person you (allegedly) love do what they wanna do and love/enjoy. Acting like the other person doesn't have a life of their own and individuality.
Didn't take long for me to get really annoyed and mad about his attitude. I communicated all of my discomfort but he kept his points.
So, I left. Without any remorse tbh. I despise this kind of behaviour, nobody owns anybody (probably why I cringe everytime I hear/read "be mine" like...the fuck?).
It's one thing to be concerned about someone but in this situation it was all about control or some other toxic thing.
Remember him literally saying "I'm afraid I won't love you as much if you do xy". Well, too bad!

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Sometimes when living with someone else is is just easier compromising on some stuff to make living together more pleasant, like a flatmate who doesn't like Zombies - just watch zombie things when they are not around*. That would have been my solution here

On 12/16/2018 at 5:54 AM, Skittles87 said:

My friend stopped watching Doctor Who because his wife doesn't like it, which is just mind-boggling to me.

especially if Doctor Who is something he shares with friends. Watching tv shows with friends is like having a mini movie night that still gives you time to do other stuff. 

 

So I guess I understand the 'sharing space' stuff, like not buying peanut butter if they have a severe allergy*, following the rules of the person most fastidious about the bathroom*.

But there is insidious stuff that goes into changing them as a person that I don't like (I think it's borderline abusive), like influencing them until they become vegan even at restaurants* or purposefully being so dramatic about their taste in music that they conform to what you like* or implying certain friends are 'bad influences' so you stop talking to them* or declaring that being a time poor couple that you should follow their religious routine so you can spend more time together*. 

 

The big stuff doesn't make sense to me, surely the children question should always be a deal-breaker? there might be some negotiation room depending on whether it is pregnancy or parenthood that is the issue, or child vs career balance. But no kids means no kids. 

 

*real examples that happened to my friends

 

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On 1/18/2019 at 11:46 AM, NotHeartless said:

This made me hella confused and I still don't understand how people can talk about "love" when you can't let the person you (allegedly) love do what they wanna do and love/enjoy. Acting like the other person doesn't have a life of their own and individuality.

I think sometimes, love comes with idealization of the person : these people don't love the person, but rather what they see in him/her. And so they try to change him/her for who they want. That is not a very sane thing to do.

 

On 1/18/2019 at 11:46 AM, NotHeartless said:

(probably why I cringe everytime I hear/read "be mine" like...the fuck?)

Same. I hear it a lot in songs, and everytime I'm wondering why this is romantic and why people would like to belong to someone. I always thought it was super possessive.

 

On 1/22/2019 at 5:07 AM, Apathetic Echidna said:

implying certain friends are 'bad influences' so you stop talking to them*

Let me guess : you were the bad influence, because you was trying to tell your friends how abusive the previous points were?

 

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On 1/21/2019 at 11:07 PM, Apathetic Echidna said:

The big stuff doesn't make sense to me, surely the children question should always be a deal-breaker?

See I think people don't have enough deal breakers, and are more afraid of leaving a relationship than staying. We don't empower people to stay single, locking people in to giving up parts of themselves for love. 

The common practice of dating is so possessive and ownership based, and people aren't aware of it or the harm. If you fear breaking up or being single, that's a problem. Regardless of sexuality. I once had a partner say theyd rather stay in a bad relationship than be single. Which turned into they'd rather stay bad friends than be alone. It's a huge blow to self confidence and worth on the other side to know someone isn't valuing you, but wants to avoid losing you more.

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