I’m starting to resent the word “love”. You know what happens to us girls when we fall in love? We become stupid. Logic is often tossed aside and everything is sugarcoated in a sweet haze of romance. I remember a scene in Sex and The City and how I cringed when I heard these words; “She was a smart girl until she fell in love”. It reverberated in every pore inside me. As of now, I am the epitome of stupid in (and out of) love. And stupider for thinking that my ex-boyfriend was different from the rest of the male population. We all think alike when we’re in love, don’t we. Even the most level-headed valedictorian stops thinking. That’s the problem right there. We.stop.thinking.
As girls, we grew up reading fairy tales. At least most of us have heard of Cinderella, Snow White and Belle. And the three words, HAPPILY EVER AFTER, which unveiled a promise of a beautiful and magical wedding. I said wedding instead of marriage because we didn’t know the difference between an occasion and a lifetime of commitment when we were five years old! Who would?! But I like to think that we took “happily ever after” with a pinch of salt as we got older and wiser. Our feet are firmly grounded (most of the time) until we get swept away by a not-so-prince-charming. But we do grow up. We adapt faster to changes and we don’t run away at the first sign of trouble life throws at us – usually in the form of a guy. More often than not, it’s the girl who exhibits her quiet strength by putting up with the bullshit her boyfriend dishes out. Because (and somehow it all comes down to the First Lady of the Caveman) we’re wired to nurture life and love. We roll with the punches and endure a greater deal of emotional and mental stress. So we are entitled to a few breakdowns occasionally- think PMS and mood swings!
Men, on the other hand, have an unrealistic and archaic notion about love and relationships with almost Disney-ish expectations. What gives! Especially when they think she could be The One. At the beginning of the relationship they outshine the likes of Edgar Allan Poe, William Shakespeare and William Blake with mellifluous words. And what happens to us girls? We get swept off without so much as a buoy. And I liken it to waves dragging us into the middle of the ocean with no means of escape and it’s deep seas, ladies. Expectation is the root of most broken hearts.
Suddenly the atheist becomes a believer. But for how long? Because the haze will eventually vanish…along with the guy. I do have a theory though. Since Prince Charming was deprived of fairy tales and the “happily ever after” endings as a wee lad, he’s trying his hardest to steer his notion of a relationship to his Ivory Tower. He never knew that our fairytale princesses had their fair number of wretched hurdles to overcome before said “happily ever after” like the wicked stepmothers, poisonous fruits, insects, and a beast. At the first hint of a difference in opinion or a few squabbles later he’s suddenly thinking “nope, not The One”. Then he crashes, headfirst onto concrete. Hopefully it knocks the prehistoric mindset out as well or he’ll be Prince Bachelor, death by expectations. He gives up on the girl and the relationship without even fighting for it. What ever happened to working things out or giving it another try? That’s a long shot suddenly. The relationship hardly stood a fighting chance with him at the head of carriage. We need to take control and not fall too hard in the beginning. I fell hard and I’m paying the price with tears and sleepless nights…
I’ve realized that when a guy falls in love with a girl he builds her up in his mind, with a set of qualities only a saint may possess. When she’s happy, smiling and full of fun, he starts picturing her as wife material. He’s doing the victory dance in a sexy thong paired with a whistle and glow-in-the-dark light sticks. In his mind, she can do no wrong. Hah. WRONG, DAMNIT WRONG. How many types of idiot can a guy be? I don’t know for sure but I bet we’ll lose count. He falls in love with ONLY her good side. But when the dark side rises to the top, being the irrational creatures that men are, he becomes critical of her every action! When the love of his life is pissed off, annoyed or moody, he gets stumped. He has no idea what to do next and freaks out. Because he forgot that she’s just a girl (not a goddess or a saint that he had in his mind) with more complex feelings than his limited range of emotions could possibly comprehend. And what does he do? He runs the opposite direction! The Shakespearean prodigy is suddenly sprouting words like, “we’re not compatible”, or “we’re two different people”. This is the same guy who declared his undying love mere 5 months ago and brought her home to meet his parents! Yeap…speaking from experience.
Sometimes a guy’s mother paints an abstract (by this I mean dumb and unrealistic) notion of how his future wife should be as well. Sometimes I’m flabbergasted at what I hear! I’m sure his mother had good intentions but definitely a misguided execution of that intention. Her son is her prince after all and she wants the best for him. That’s when she unwittingly says, “Find a loving, kind, caring, patient, unselfish, adoring, god-fearing, sensible and strong girl”. Wow, dearest mum, were you thinking of Saint Mary when you pictured your future daughter-in-law? Have you never lost your cool or had a few bad days/weeks/before? She’s doing all women a disservice here! If I ever have a son I’ll ask him to marry the girl who’s a little crazy, drives him mad but loves him all the same and handles his shit. Let’s face it; we all have crazy inside us. Different levels of crazy. We just don’t go batshit crazy unless absolutely necessary right?! Like a betrayal of trust? Burn down his house, I say. (Okay, kidding…I think. Maybe set his plant on fire?)
My point is this: Girls dreamt of their perfect wedding and Prince Charming but we GREW UP. We mature faster (than the boys) and know that relationships are a series of roller-coaster rides. Guys, on the other hand, played with battleships and army tanks, but no amount of ammunition prepared them for the ups and downs of a relationship. They did learn one thing perhaps! To blow things up into epic proportions. So please don’t let them steer the relationship into their Ivory Tower unless you want to be a crash victim. Take gentle control and call him Captain once in a while to let him think he’s in charge. And guide him. Tell him what he can and cannot do when your dark side surfaces. It’s easier with instructions. They’re that simple.
P.s.: I ‘m sure not all men run at the first hint of trouble. Maybe they’ve been reading fairy tales…
You rushed into it and now I’m bearing the brunt of a broken heart.