For my Communication class, we were told to read a book called "The Defining Decade" by Meg Jay Ph.D. Her words of encouragement and advice really stuck with me so I wanted to share a response to her book. Last week, I focused on her "Work" section. This week, we have shifted and her next section was on love. I bet you can only imagine how many thoughts I had. Here is my opinion on "Love".
This section of the book made me a lot less nervous and I think honestly, I know why. The last section was something that was so relevant to me. I am constantly focusing on my future and how to get ahead but love is something that has never really presented itself to me so I don't really focus on what there is for me to correct in a love type of relationship. However, right off the bat, I agreed with many things she was saying.
She mentioned on the first page of "An Upmarket Conversation", David Brooks thought about how there were so many classes you take in college but there were literally none on how to be smart when it comes to marriage. This is true. It reminded me about that whole thing that people say where high school really doesn't tell you how to prepare for how to do taxes, interviews, blah blah blah. While colleges do tend to focus on things that'll be seen in the real world, they never tell you how to become an expert on love.
She then went on to talk about how everyone is getting married later than they used to. This totally applies to what she was saying before about how people tend to focus on work more so they don't have time for a relationship, let alone marriage. How I liked how she mentioned that everyone wants it. She said " I have yet to meet a twenty-something who doesn't want to get married or at least find a committed relationship" I found this really interesting because I figured that there was still a ton of people out there who didn't want to settle down at all, especially some boys. However, I really didn't like when she talked about marriage being this "Taboo" topic. I feel like it's so popular in our society and honestly made me sad because I am definitely referring to marriage as a dream in itself. I know she doesn't agree with the topic being a taboo subject but I just didn't like how she said that it was in the first place because my big question is WHY?
The quote that most resonated with me was one that she also mentioned in the first chapter. She wrote "But doing something later is not necessarily the same as doing something better" I always loved this because I feel like procrastination happens with more than just school work. So many people delay relationships because they believe later will be better and maybe even some people will find something better so they miss out on the opportunities in front of them. It reminded me of this boy in high school who always thought that we would get together later in life but not now and my broken-hearted self was always like why not now? I am ready now. But people have their priorities in a specific order that blocks things out that they don't think they need right that second.
I also really liked the quotes she included from different people's perspectives on love and marriage. I found the girl who had her life planned out to at, meaning when she wanted to be married, have kids, where she would live, etc to be extremely like myself. I tend to be one of those girls who is nervous she'll never get married because she's not currently in a relationship meaning I won't be engaged by 27, and the list goes on and on. It's kind of like that old saying about how if you don't do this one homework assignment then you'll fail the class and if you fail the class…next thing you know you're homeless without a degree. It doesn't completely add up but it definitely stresses me out enough to make me think that there is some logic behind it.
There really is no hidden meaning behind this but I really liked the quote at the beginning of the picking your chapter family. It said, "other things may change us but we start and end with family."
Emma really reminded me of myself. She seemed like the girl who should be completely fine but she isn't. From the outside, my life seems pretty okay but I definitely have a lot of hardships within my family. However, I felt her fear in a different way. My family has not been torn up and any sort of way remotely close to hers but I definitely found the question of "Who's gonna be there for me if I have a car wreck?" To be very relatable. I constantly ask myself if I am going to end up alone because I don't have some boy who loves me for who I am other than my brother and my dad. However, I found a lot of differences between us. I think I most related to Cathy.
Next was Jennifer and Carter. Honestly, this second made me laugh because my real ass of a friend is named Carter and I kept thinking that he was in the wrong even if Jennifer was. However, I found this section to be really interesting. The whole idea of you should live with someone before you marry them was one I really thought to be true but after reading this section, I felt like there was nothing worse you could do for your relationship. I felt like the burdens that followed if the relationship didn't work out became so much worse if you had already moved in together. So that was very eye-opening in the sense that I don't think I'll live with my significant other until marriage or we're at least engaged.
Next was Cathy and Cathy has been my favorite story of the book thus far. I relate to her more than anyone else. This whole idea of her wanting whatever boy that is willing to give her the time of day is something I struggle with on a daily basis. I always fantasize about what my dream boy would be but I never actually look for that in someone because since there aren't that many boys prying anyways, I figure I'm lucky with whatever I get. Then when she began to speak about how she only has honest conversations with music. I feel like when I'm listening to songs, it's the only time I can openly feel a certain way without getting opinions of disapproval or just opinions at all. Music doesn't judge and that's what nice.
"Every problem was once a solution" Wow that hit hard. I thought about how the boy I am talking to now once was a solution for the boy who was upsetting me in my life. The new guy was everything the old one wasn't and that was enough. However, after further examination, the new one wasn't too great either.
The chapter with the big five really interested me. I felt this chapter was really educational and made up for the lack of education on love that was mentioned at the beginning of the chapter. I never really thought about how personality really was the most important factor. Who cares if you both like dogs and Game of Thrones if you value loyalty and he doesn't? It really made me think about how I was choosing the guys that I liked and how it takes more to be in a relationship than just having similar interests and social circles. I thought it was interesting too because Courtney was using Negative sentiment overdrive because she couldn't get passed the small, annoying things Matt did.
Overall, it was a really interesting section. It made me think about how much there is to know about making relationships work. It also allowed myself to see that I'm not alone in my certain feelings about love and how it's not bad to want it as badly as I do.