August 17th, 2020
As we watch relationships dissolve en masse, for a variety of valid and irrational reasons, I reflect on how they last.
(It’s almost like social media has publicly revealed that maybe humans are not meant to be exposed to so many thoughts and opinions all the dang time.)
When two people are asked how they’ve kept their relationship, of any kind, going for so long, you will usually get a variation of “It takes a lot of work.”
Well, that’s not a lie, but it also isn’t very helpful, is it?
Generally, at some point in every relationship, something will happen that will make one or both people say “Fuck this.”
At that windy juncture, they have to choose a direction. They can decide to change, or end, the relationship; they can also decide to go forward and make it work.
I don’t think these “Fuck this” situations are always dramatic events. It could be a friend who has backed out of plans with you six times in a row. It could be a relative who has expressed beliefs or thoughts that you can’t find a way to reconcile. It could be a seemingly small thing, which is really the raindrop that shoves over a boulder of pain or resentment.
It’s not that people in long-term relationships don’t have times when they say “Fuck this”; it’s that they decide their relationship is bigger than the moment.
And, in a way, that’s the secret to every relationship that we all keep to ourselves. I have no idea how many times I have inspired the people in my life to say “Fuck this.” They have no idea how many times I’ve said it, either.
But when I think about it, the fact that we do it and we still decide to stay together is one of the most beautiful parts of being a human. We get to determine its worth with our time and our hearts.