After 30, “I Don’t Know Why I Love Him/Her” is no longer an acceptable answer
I’ve had yet another conversation with a friend facing an internal struggle to allow a man she knows isn’t really good for her to continue to stay in her life and take up her brainspace, heart space and energy.
So, I asked her. Why? Why him? Why do you believe you love him?
She replied, “I don’t know why.”
I told her she better figure it out.
I said right then and there, it was almost cute in our early 20s to say we just loved someone because we felt it. But 9 times out of 10, what we were feeling back then might have been everything else but love, or simplified versions of it that our tiny brains could process at the time.
I hate to take the glamour and wonder out of love because it is one of the most powerful and inspiring and amazing things we have to hold on to during our existence. I don’t poo pooh it by any means. However, if you are a grown woman and you can’t make a list of the reasons why you love your significant other, I’m worried for you. “I just do.” Is not enough.
I’m afraid that I’ll come off really judgemental by saying that’s a lazy ass answer, so I’ll stand in my truth and be a bit judgy.
Those answers are lazy. It requires nothing of you but to simply feel and it certainly requires nothing of the other person except they breathe.
The more I think about the people I love, I find it’s actually quite easy to articulate why I love them and what makes them so special to me.
There are some people in my life who know how to make me laugh. Some people who make me look at myself and strive to be a better human being. Some people make me feel safe. Some people make me feel like I can do anything I put my mind to because they believe I can. Some people remind me to take care of myself. Some people give me the safe place to be vulnerable to cry or be angry.
Like I said. The list goes on and on. I’m not in some mystical haze about my feelings for the people I love. It’s clear and it can be articulated. As we get older, we should get some clarity. We shouldn’t use love as a crutch to be lazy about our relationships and hope they succeed on automatic pilot.
As I’ve mentioned in other posts, like an annual review at a job, or report card time for school, we live in a world were assessments help us decide if we are achieving goals, moving along at a proper rate, and even helping us figure out what is a good fit for us and what’s not, what we’re good at and where we need a little more help. It doesn’t hurt to look at our performance in relationships as well as the performance of others. Trust your boss doesn’t write in your review, “Eh, I don’t know, we just like her.”
Should you treat the people in your life like a check list? Should you be constantly evaluating them? Absolutely not. But taking serious inventory from time to time about your relationships can prove fruitful.
So if you can’t come up with one good reason why you love the person you love, dig a little deeper. I’m sure you’ll find one. You should want to find one.