Monday, April 19, 2010

Relationships

Lately I have thought about which kind of relationship I want to be in - in the short or in the long run. Reading a blog called "Wanted: 25% Girlfriend" written by Tim Ray, I became really inspired to define "the perfect way of relationship. But before I get to that I want to give some thoughts on my definitions of relationships.

Marriage - and other relationships with "heavy commitments".
Most people who gets married are making a life long commitment (even if they might at a later point break this commitment - at the time they enter the marriage, it is a life time commitment). For most people who enter a marriage there are other expectations than just loving eachother.
1) they live together
2) they have financial commitments together
3) they have sex together
4) they do not have sex with other people
5) they becomes part of eachothers families and are expected to show up at christimas, birthdays etc.
6) they share a lot of the housework
etc.

What I really like about these constallations is the continuity, the sharing of the every day life -
I love to wake up in the mornings next to my partner, I love talking while preparing or having dinner, I love sharing memories...
Personnaly I think that this kind of relatinship is probably the best constallation as long as there are kids involved.

What I don't like is that there tends to be a lot of expectations which were not announced at the beginning of the relationship. There tends to be a lot of "shoulds".
- we should have sex x times a day/ week
- you should be greatful for any presents from you inlaws
- you should spend x days a year with the family
- you should never get attracted to anyone else
- you should priorities family birthdays over a weekend with the guys/ girls
etc...
In my marrigage one of the shoulds was treating my mother in law in a particular way, which included not telling her to stop smoking in my kitchen. - I didn't sign up for this rule.

Long distance relationships and other relationships with out the same adress
The long distance relationship can either be a relationship where they basicly live at described in the marriage one, but one part travels a lot and therefore the person is not physically there - OR it can be a couple who have chosen to not live together. - in this category I am thinking of the late.
Obviously these people do not live together and in general they keep their finances apart.

In this category I have less expectations about how I would expect people to orgnaize but they would:
1) have sex - when they meet
2) not have sex with other people
3) be in contact by phone on a regulary basis
?????

What I like is that living apart means activley CHOSING to be together. - it might not always be the case, but I like the idea of being alone when you want to be alone. Being together when you want to be together. etc.

What I do not like about this is that it in some cases ends like the marriage situation with a lot of expectations and shoulds. In other cases there are very clear communications about expectations because the life style is not the typical lifestyle.
- I know that some long distance relationship does live in a very structured way: we see eachother every or every second weekend. This doesnt allow for the spontanous "I want to be with you tonight" - but it does give the freedom to be alone and to be longing for the other person, but it also tend to be a kind of prison: when we are together you are supposed to have me as your first priority.

Lovers and friends who have sex.
Many singles (and some who are in couples) choses to have lovers - which means that the relationship is purly or mainly based on sex.
1) they have sex
2) they make an agreement of who else to have sexe with

I know people who have had the same lover for years. They had sex, romantic moments and maybe holidays together, but they didn't share much of their every day life.

To me this is like signing up for the fitness center, which might be nice and healty - but I do not see it as an alternative for me. I guess that I am just seen the lover at compromising and not going for the full package of what I want from a partner

It's like having a friend I only goes to the movie with. It might be nice to see this friend, but if I find a friend with who I would go to the movie AND share other things, I will prioritise this new friend.

Multiple partners.
It's getting more and more common for people to have multiple partners. - the lover could be one subgroup.
The idea of having several partners is that we all have different wants. In many cases being in a relationship can be compromising your wants because you and your parnter have different wants. In order to fullfill all these wants you could split your life between different partners - who each can fullfill some of your wants.

It can be a bit like having long distance relationsships - but I would see it more complicated logistic wise.

The 25% girlfriend
The blog on 25% girlfriend was talking about wanting a partner - more than a lover. Not wanting to have multiple partners - just wanting more time alone.

At first I liked the idea, but then I thought: isn't that a 100% girlfriend? someone who would love you and respect that you wanted to spend time without her? - isn't that why I have felt very attracted to long distance relationships: to be togheter when we want to and have plenty time on my own?

The more I reflected on the idea the more I changed: the long distance relationship is just an excuse for me. I love waking up together, I love the small talk after work, I love getting to know all the small special habits you see during the daily life. So the longdistance relationship is just an excuse for me for not having to tell how many things I want to do with my friends and that I want my partner to have a lot of things he wants to do without me. I love spending time together without talking, but at times it's hard for me to stop talking - so it's easier to be alone, when I need some quiet time.

So actually, if I could design the perfect relationship, I would have a 25% relationship, 100% of the time.

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