When it comes to marriage and choosing the right person to spend our lives with, we can’t help but wonder how we can be sure that we are making the right decision. The truth is, no one is perfect and we all have our flaws, and so finding someone who can tolerate us and whose flaws we can tolerate can seem to be a big deal.
According to Alain de Botton, a founder of The School of Life, there seems to be a lot of anger that we hold on to, anger and rage that we secretly have, and it has us sulking about the way our love lives have gone. He says that if we are able to turn that anger into sadness then we can make progress. Why? Because if we can turn rage into grief that means we have given up hope completely.
In his words, “scratch the surface of any regularly angry person and you will find a wild optimist.” Rage is primarily driven by hope. And when it comes to love and relationships, it is extremely hard to give up hope because there are many, many industries that are all designed to inflate our expectations on love and what a loving relationship or marriage should be.
One of the reasons why you will end up marrying the wrong person is because you are strange and difficult to live with. We all are. In fact, there are many things that are wrong with us, things that only our closest friends and family know about (and very probably our ex-lovers) but they would not dare tell us.
It’s like most of us are addicts but not in terms of a substance you are taking, but an addict in terms of a behavior or pattern you are taking in order to not be alone with yourself and with your thoughts, and more importantly not to feel your deeper emotions and get in touch with yourself and who you are as a person deep inside. So, you remain addicted to doing anything that keeps you away from yourself. And since you don’t know yourself, you can successfully relate to another person, let alone love them.
Love requires you to do things you don’t want to do. Not everyone is comfortable expressing their vulnerabilities. You probably don’t want to show your partner you are vulnerable and scared.
According to psychologists, there are two patterns of behavior that people use whenever they are in danger of becoming vulnerable. One group of people gets anxiously attached.
This means that instead of saying “I need you, I depend on you, I love you”, they say, “Where have you been? You’re 15 minutes late.” They start getting critical and strict when actually they want to ask the scary question, “Do you still love me? Am I still important to you?” But, they don’t dare ask those questions out of fear.
The other type of people is avoidant which means that when they need someone, they act cold and aloof, like they don’t need them at all. They don’t reveal the need and love they have for another person. Instead, they start rejecting them. And this pattern gets toxic because other people start wondering whether they are important to them which results in a lack of trust.
It’s as if we don’t dare to be humble and vulnerable and reveal how much we need another person, so in a way we reject love. We don’t know how to love.
According to Alain, love is not an instinct, but a skill that needs to be learned. To love is to have the capacity and willingness to interpret someone’s not very appealing behavior in order to find more benevolent reasons why that not-so-good behavior may be unfolding. Or in other words, to love someone is to apply charity and generosity of interpretation for someone else’s actions towards us. And in doing that, we will cut some slack for ourselves, because we are not perfect either.
Another reason why we will probably end up marrying the wrong person is that many of our early experiences of love are bound up with various kinds of suffering. There is a shift that happens when we go out and start dating and choosing love partners. We go out thinking that we want to find someone who will make us happy, but we are not. Actually, we are looking for someone who will feel familiar to us.
And there does a problem arise because familiarity and happiness are oftentimes two different things. Familiarity can actually be bound up with a particular kind of suffering and torture. This explains why when people encourage us to go out on a date with an amazing person and we end up “not feeling it” even though we agree that they are smart, charming, and amazing. We tell our friends that we didn’t feel the spark, that they were boring etc.
In fact, what we are really trying to say is that we have spotted that this wonderful and quite accomplished person won’t make us suffer in ways we are accustomed to suffering for us to feel that love is real. And so, we reject them.
We are not on a journey to be happy, we are on a quest to suffer in ways that feel familiar and this is the main reason why we will end up marrying the wrong person.
Mary Wright is a professional writer with more than 10 years of incessant practice. Her topics of interest gravitate around the fields of the human mind and the interpersonal relationships of people.If you have a general question or comment please fill out the form and we will get back to you as soon as possible https://curiousmindmagazine.com/contact-us/ .