Don't Undermine The Love You Have In Friendships

Don't Undermine The Love You Have In Friendships

Why love in friendships is so much more fulfilling than we give it credit for.
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As a society, we have allowed an exploitative culture of love to permeate our industry. The intense commercialization of our most basic human experience not only connotes the capitalistic tendencies of our culture but is additionally indicative of our tendencies to allow such abuses to unfold.

Our top-down complacency with the industry of "love" mars the entire premise of this emotion; which ought to be something of pure, unadulterated connection. To find love is to find solace within another person; to build a home within the unfamiliar.

With this intense cultural obsession with love creates an overwhelming sense of necessity attached to this rare experience. People search in the highest and lowest of places to find this sensation which has been so acutely sensationalized by our society.

Being single I realized my life was not without love. Love intertwines itself within our human experience in so many different capacities, some more subtle than others. Love grows around us in the relationships we form with the people who surround us. Platonic love offers the same vital nutrients of life, essential to our human growth, that one with a romantic partner would.

In the mid 18th century "Romantic Friendships" existed as a common experience within our world. These relationships served as an outlet for people to express love and overt expressions of their sentiments towards people in their lives, despite the lack of a sexual component to these friendships. It was like having a romantic partner, but these relationships could be plentiful rather than singular throughout your life.

The commercialization of romantic love has undermined and historically outshined the importance of romantic friendships. I wonder if people might experience more satisfaction through their personal lives if we could revert to the sentiment of true value placed on friends. The love which we are able to derive from the people close to us brings light and warmth to every facet of our life.

So while society and Hallmark might make us feel like we are missing out by being single, the depth of love which we can experience regardless is powerful and important. The sense of connectivity which we can experience surrounding ourselves with people who understand and value us unconditionally is immeasurable.

Love does not manifest itself in one singular way. Love in any capacity is a beautiful thing to experience and share with another person. Don't undermine the love that you have, no matter what shape it might present itself in.

Cover Image Credit: Tycho Atsma

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An Open Letter To My Boyfriend's Mom

A simple thank you is not enough.
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Your son and I have been dating a while now and I just wanted to thank you for everything.

Wow, where do I start? Ever since the day your son brought me into your home you have shown me nothing but kindness. I have not one negative thought about you and I am truly thankful for that. I first and foremost want to thank you for welcoming me with open arms. There are horror stories of mothers resenting their son's girlfriends and I am blessed there is no resentment or harsh feelings.

Thank you for treating me like one of your children, with so much love but knowing exactly when to tease me.

Thank you for sticking up for me when your son teases me, even though I know it’s all in good fun it's always comforting knowing you have someone by your side.

Thank you for raising a man who respects women and knows how to take responsibility of mistakes and not a boy who is immature and doesn’t take responsibility.

Thank you for always including me in family affairs, I may not be blood family but you do everything you can to make sure I feel like I am.

Thank you for letting me make memories with your family.

There is nothing I value more in this world then memories with friends and family and I am thankful you want and are willing to include me in yours. I have so much to thank you for my thoughts keep running together.

The most important thing I have to thank you for is for trusting me with your son. I know how precious and valuable he is and I won't break his heart. I will do everything I can to make him happy. This means more than you could ever imagine and I promise I will never break your trust.

The second most important thing I must thank you for is for accepting me for who I am. Never have you ever wished I looked like another girl or acted like another girl. You simply love and care for me and that’s all I could ever ask. Every person in this world is a unique different person and understanding that means a lot.

The third most important thing I must thank you is teaching me how to one day in the future treat a potential girlfriend that I may interact with as a mother. I am not a mother, but I one day plan to be. If I ever have a son it is because of how you treated me that I am able to be a humble loving mother to this new face that could one day walk into my door. How you have treated me has taught me how I should one day be in the future and I thank you for that.

This may seem all over the place but that’s how my brain gets when I try and thank you for everything you have done for me. It’s all so much and even the little things are so important so I promise my scattered thoughts are all with good intentions and not meant to bombard you. I just want to get the idea across to you that you are important and special to me and everything you do does not go unnoticed.

Sincerely,

Your Son’s Girlfriend

Cover Image Credit: Christian Images and Quotes

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I’m The Kind Of Person Who Is Happiest When I'm In A Relationship, There Is Nothing Wrong With That

Please stop acting like there is.

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There seems to be this odd notion that it's not alright to be the kind of person that prefers being in a relationship to being single. Usually, when I mention to people that I tend to be the happiest when I'm in a relationship, I get met with, "Well. you aren't ready for one yet until you are happiest by yourself" or "That isn't good, you'll always be dependent on someone for happiness then" or even, "Well, if you can't make yourself happy, then you can't make anyone else happy either."

Allow me to clarify a few things here.

First of all, just because I am happiest when I am in a relationship does not mean that I am not happy when I am not in one. I am still capable of being happy outside of a relationship, and I am capable of making myself happy. Generally, on a day to day basis, I'm pretty happy.

The thing is, I'm just in love with love. Even just knowing that there is someone out there that cares so deeply about you that they want to spend a part of their life with you is incredible. To me, there's just no better feeling in the world than having someone that you can share your life with. Sure, coming home from work, making myself my favorite meal and watching some Netflix in bed by myself afterward would be a great way to end a day and would make me happy.

It would make me immeasurably happier, however, to come home from work around the same time as the girl I'm dating does, share stories of how our respective days went while cooking a meal together, and ending the night cuddling in bed watching Netflix together until we fall asleep. Nearly anything I can do by myself that will make me happy can be enhanced by having someone I love with me to share it with.

To counter another point, I am not, nor will I ever be, dependent on someone else to be happy.

As I've mentioned, I'm completely capable of being happy by myself; I'm simply happier when I'm in a relationship. I also tend to be happier than I am normally when I am listening to music and writing. Nobody would ever say that I'm dependent on listening to music and writing or that I shouldn't write a single letter or listen to a single note again until I learn to be even happier without them than I am with them.

I get that some people just like being single and think it's enjoyable. They don't like being tied down or committed to any one person. They like being able to go out and do whatever they want without having to think about anyone at home worrying about them. They don't want to put in the work of having to worry about someone else. I'm not that kind of person. I'll never be that kind of person.

I love being tied down and fully committed to one person, knowing that they are committed to me, as well.

I love having someone that I know cares and worries about me, and that knows I care and worry about them, too. I simply adore being in a relationship, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

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