Archives for posts with tag: Marriage

Timing is a personal issue, most especially when it comes to life choices such as getting married… There are people who know immediately that they are with the right person already and there are people who take their sweet time and there is no right or wrong as long as the person is of age and lucid with decision making and not under the grip of mental obscurations.

Nothing in life comes with a failsafe and nothing can be guaranteed for sure but we cannot use these facts as a crutch to keep us helpless and immobile. Life must be lived and the best way we can would be to choose to make the best decision possible given the information we currently have.

It shouldn’t matter how long the duration was from getting to know someone and getting married as long as we aren’t teenagers who most likely don’t know better or too young to even understand what commitment means…

If we are mature adults… Most likely in our thirties onwards and have a grip on our own lives, our capabilities, our expectations, our limitations and personal preferences, we should be left to our own discretion about our life choices including whom we wish to spend our whole life with.

Time is an arbitrary marker which may or may not have any bearing to choosing whom we are to marry and determining whether we have chosen correctly. It’s true time has some bearing on relationships more than others but it is to be determined by the persons involved based on their life stage and personal preferences and not by an onlooker who feels that their comments have any validity.

Getting married is already a big decision as it is and many things should be considered I’m including the life stage and chronological age of the couples. There are many factors and variables involved–known and unknown.

Side comments are annoying at best and irrelevant… Whether or not the marriage occurred too soon or too late based on other people’s preferences is ridiculously unimportant and only serve to estrange the meddler/gossip with the target of their attention and gossip.

The nuances and factors for every relationship can only be realistically assessed by the people involved and while the people in the periphery are free to be bystanders, their opinions and ideas about why or why not should not weigh much compared to the people involved.

This is not to condone elopement dans hormone based infatuation and rash decisions but merely to share the fact that personal timing is not everybody’s business… Hence, before proffering moot suggestions which lack the insight and wisdom to appreciate situations based on the unique factors and criteria, it might be wise to harbor some respect for other people’s decisions or at least maintain neutrality and keep unsolicited advice to oneself.

(c) Niconica 2014

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One of the questions which besiege couples is “How did he propose?” This question is a loaded one which is not merely about asking for the description of the events, it contains a brick load of expectations which are toxic for all concerned–for the person asking as well as the people receiving the query.

How has it happened that lavish histrionic proposals are ranked high on society’s psyche and seems to engender social acceptance and a false sense that the proposal foretells the well being of the forthcoming marriage?

When the proposal is not television worthy, it received a disappointed response from the person who has asked as though he or she were reviewing and ranking the proposal. It would be nice if people asked questions only to find information without expectations.

Proposals which are out of this world and wildly romantic do not underwrite the quality of the relationship or love between the couple. It merely indicates the level of histrionic behavior willing to be undertaken for this given purpose.

Too much exposure to the media has caused us to lose sight of what is important in a relationship and in people. We must be able to respect that while for some people gossip worthy manners of proposing marriage seem to be suitable, there are people who take the road less travelled so to speak.

Somewhere along the way we have lost sight of the purpose if the proposal which is securing the agreement of the one we love to be our legal life partner. It’s not about drama nor theatrics. It’s about something more real–love. And hopefully a good dose of practicality and sense.

(c) Niconica 2014

It seems that somewhere along the way the real essence of weddings has gotten lost in the billion-dollar wedding industry.  We are being sold a dream and a fantasy while we lose our grips on reality on one of our most important life decisions.  There are only a few things more important that selecting our life partner and we must not get lost in the illusions which popular media and society have created.  

We may be exposed to Western television series which portray divorces to be as casual as break-ups, but we still live in a society where divorces are not legally allowed and annulments are mentally, psychologically, and financially costly.  With this in mind, our society encourages the idea of lavish weddings which may allow the faint-hearted to lose their grips on reality.

The wedding is not the endgame.  It’s just the beginning.  Therefore impractical notions should be checked at the door.  We cannot judge the quality of a relationship or a marriage on how much the weddings costs and how flamboyant the celebration was.  These are not definitive factors of what is more important–the relationship of the couple and their marriage and family life together. 

Truth be told, the wedding is merely a means to and end–which is joining ourselves legally with the person that we love and being able to start society sanctioned life and family together.  It was probably a bigger deal in the olden times when there was no indoor plumbing, no vaccinations, no electricity, and no modern conveniences–therefore weddings were a means to literally surviving. 

I think that we have, as a society, become obsessed with the trappings that we have lost the point entirely. We must endeavour to always keep it real. 

(c) Niconica 2014

When we reach our thirties and forties, many of our friends and acquaintances have most likely gotten married and already have kids or are having kids.  Being single among our peers might make us stand out like a sore thumb and make us wonder whether there might be something wrong with ourselves–and similarly others might have the same thoughts about us.  After all, if we were probably more emotionally skilful or otherwise appealing, shouldn’t someone have snagged us by now?

It might also make us emotionally inept.  Lacking experiences, we might be wont to believe the anecdotes of our married pals who do not have a successful marriage and therefore have the time to still hang out with us and ‘kiss and tell’ so to speak.  The successfully married ones are less wont to tell interesting stories or spend time elaborating about the virtues of being single or go on about the woes of being ‘too loved’ by their wives that they feel that they are emotionally tethered and unable to be free.

We must beware of drinking water from a polluted well even when it’s the only one available.  At the risk of stating the obvious, these unhappily married people are the polluted wells I speak of, they are widely available and have the time to share their emotional toxins and negative thoughts and woes with anyone who would care to listen, and we might think that their tales are cautionary and informative of what might be to come for ourselves.

We must not seek advise or tips on having a healthy relationship or marriage from people who have failed miserably at it, despite their protests that they had nothing to do with the pitiable state of their relationship and claim to be the hapless victims in the situation.  As a friend, perhaps we might lend an ear to them if they need to share their story but we must discern that their predicaments need not create a map of fear in our heads about what relationships might be like–and make us cling to being single and causing us our chances at having a happy and healthy relationship.

When we drink (or take advise) from ‘polluted wells’ (negative people) we are setting ourselves up to fail by being contaminated by their thoughts, behaviours, and misconceptions.  We have probably lived in this world long enough to know that each experience requires our participation and it is very rare to find a relationship failing at the hands of merely only person.  We may wish to provide more wholesome point of views to our unfortunate friends and help them improve their relationships instead of enabling their negative thought patterns, or even worse, adopting their tainted view on relationships.

Do not seek advice about health from a sick person.  Do not seek guidelines on a successful relationship from someone who has failed/failing/ailing relationships.  It is simply this simple.  If we forget this fact, we will doom ourselves to follow in their footsteps and we will have no one but ourselves to blame for allowing it.

(c) Niconica 2013

 

When we get to a certain point in our lives and we find ourselves still single, it may be that it is because we have not met the person who is meant for us but at the same time we might wish to question ourselves as to whether we have contributed to the situation as well by having dating criteria which hinder the opportunity to meet the person who might be suitable for us.  It’s a bit of a double edge sword when we have a preference for a person with certain attributes because while it’s good to have standards, it might be these same standards which might keep us from allowing in certain people whom we might not have imagined dating but yet be suitable for us in the long run.

We must be reminded that we are not omniscient and sometimes, we might lack foresight or a realistic assessment of ourselves.  Our outlook and expectations might also have been skewed by our own biases, upbringing, or popular media.  These would contribute to our possible limiting ourselves of the possibilities available which we have not considered, encountered, or imagined. We must also review whether our criteria for the ideal mate or the ideal range of mates are really our own, or whether we have adopted the acceptable criteria of our society, culture, religion, parents, family, or friends. In order to be able to secure our future happiness, we must be honest with ourselves as to which qualities we are really looking for and not confuse the expectations of others into the equation because this might compromise our chance at a truly suitable mate.

We will be the ones being in a relationship with the person and if we do so choose to enter a committed relationship, we will be the ones enjoying or suffering within the confines of our choices therefore, we must consider which qualities and criteria are truly ours in order to be able to proceed with dating and selecting the right partner–and giving ourselves a fair chance at happiness.

(c) Niconica 2013

 

In a relationship, sometimes it’s not so much the actual presence or absence of the person or the frequency of interaction as much as the feeling of safety where it is understood that one won’t be rejected or abandoned.

The fear of rejection or abandonment can be so primal and embedded that to admit it would make one unbearably vulnerable that despite its relevance to the dialogue, it would be the last thing ever to be discusses or revealed.

This factor then makes the situation more complex in that the other person involved is not aware of the crucial element to be considered and would in effect be feeling rather confused about the dynamic of the situation.

When a person in the relationship is acting out, before anything else, it needs to be established that the relationship is a safe place where issues can be brought up and discussed and the concerns would be treated seriously without the other party leaving or rejecting the other.

Usually a safe zone is established by making a commitment to the other and while ultimately there are no guarantees, the context of the commitment creates a safety net for both people to interact… More so than if there was no agreed upon commitment or relationship.

So in undefined or “it’s complicated” pseudo-relationships, things tend to get messy precisely because of the lack of the safety net which a mutually committed relationship provides.

This then entails that one or both partners must constantly watch out for themselves because any moment could be the last moment in the relationship.

And as time passes and the situation gets more serious and/or convoluted, the hidden vulnerabilities surface and cause more tension without being able to be addressed properly without entwining serious risks in the pseudo-relationship.

Talk about being caught between a rock and a hard place.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s

We’ve always been conditioned that “growing up” constituted finding a partner and getting married.  We buy into the whole fairy tale or myth of social conditioning that we might sometimes let the pertinent details fall the on the wayside–we get swept up with the whole merry-go-round we forget to consider whether we are doing everything for the right reasons.

Why are we doing the things we are doing? When we decide to commit, is it to prove something to ourselves or to other people? Is it because we need to find solace or escape from something? Is it because we think that it is the solution to all our problems? Or, is it because we truly think that it is the right thing to do, from the bottom of our hearts.

As much as marriage is enveloped in romance and roses, before we take the first crucial step towards “permanent commitment” as we know it, we must get right to heart of the matter–even if it means being pragmatic because “an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.”

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s

What do we do when we fall for someone who belongs to another? In this instance, I am specifically referring to someone who is not married, but in a committed relationship. There seems to be a clear taboo against going for a married person but it seems to be that it could be that prior to saying the big “I do” the saying that “it’s all fair in love and war” might apply more so than after a or the person is married.

After all, there is a widely held belief that marriage is supposed to be permanent–though we know that this is not always the case, we’d like to think so. So going forward with this belief, it is said that it’s better to change one’s mind about one’s partner before rather than after someone is permanently yoked–however there’s something about this which can be distasteful–since acquiring someone who belongs to someone else seems in a sense like a violation.

It would be better to find and fall for someone who was available in the first place and not invite the unique complications which falling for an unavailable person and not feel guilty for taking something which does not rightfully belong to us. Of course, if this situation happens to someone else, a friend for instance, the answer is straightforward: Don’t go there.

However, when we find ourselves in this situation, it’s another matter entirely. It becomes an inner battle where we end up asking ourselves the tough questions which were so easy to answer when it did not apply to us. It’s a matter of wrestling with our inner demon and wondering whether we should give in and pursue what might construe as our heart’s desire.

I had asked myself this question when I found myself in the situation where I was developing feelings for someone who was on a “cool off” from a committed relationship. (And for that matter, what is a cool off really? Can someone define that? A break-up by any other name…) After some serious thinking about the nature of cool-offs and break-ups with the result that they are almost one and the same thing, albeit one is sugar-coated, I felt that it might not be “so wrong” to explore possibilities with this person.

Enjoying the getting to know stage was heady, however, questions still had to be asked since it could not be denied that a cool off might mean that there was still the other person in the picture. However, it was hard to not notice the speed bumps along the way and some resistance to the process of getting to know each other better, and with much resistance, I was compelled to ask the hard questions as to whether the said person was indeed truly available.

As the flirting was fun and made me feel special, I was reluctant for this experience to potentially end through ascertaining whether the coast was clear and whether the other person was out of the picture, but I thought that it might be better to find out earlier before more time is expended. I eventually found out that they were “back together” and “better than ever.” Alarm bells started ringing in my head, and as much as there was much encouragement on the other person’s part to keep up the playful banter, I had to put my foot down and beg off.

Now, I did not know whether I owe this to the sprouting of newfound morals or to a sense of self-preservation, but it did not seem right to be in an ambiguous situation when the person is unavailable. In a sense it felt like folding too early but at the same time it also felt right because I did not want to be the person who wonders what it would be like to gain someone fairly and squarely. Of course, life isn’t as clear cut as that and I could easily have gone the other way–which is why it boggles me that I’ve chosen this path.

Realistically speaking, my chances weren’t so bad but I really chafed at the idea of having to “win” someone’s love in this manner when there is a rival whose had a huge head start. I wondered whether it was really worth it to go about it in this manner? And I think when it got right to the heart of it, I doubted how much I really want this person in the first place.

Did I want this person enough to go for it? I could not answer the question. If he is happy with his current partner, who am I to mess with something good, especially since I cannot guarantee that I would be able to provide the same level of affection.  If he isn’t [happy with his current partner], the same question still stands as to whether I would be able to meet my own expectations in being a “good partner” (whatever that means).

All this logic is well and good until I see them together and the melee of emotions come rushing in, and once again, I find myself wondering: What do I do? Was it right to have taken myself out of “the game” early? And I wish that I had the “right” answer for this but I don’t. It’s really never that easy when we deal with “messy” emotions, and I suspect that we won’t ever really know what the right thing is and we’ll just have to wing it–as we do much of life.  Shall we just roll the dice?

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s

While it’s easy for people to grasp the idea that actions can do damage. It is often overlooked that words carry weight and incur consequences.  And this so-called “harmless flirting” falls into the same category since words and/or actions are employed in doing so.

If the title does not suffice to make the point, I’ll say it again: There is no such thing as harmless flirting.  When one gets rejected, caught out, or stuck in a tight spot in one way or another, it’s easy to chalk things off as “harmless” but know that saying it does not cause harm, does not mean that it doesn’t, especially when there are feelings involved.

Toying with people’s emotions in a flippant manner does not only show a blatant disregard for others but also manifests poor emotional discipline.This manner of operation leaves a trail of broken hearts on all fronts and should not be condoned.  Of course, it is easier said than done when we are caught in the pangs of infatuation.

The phrase “harmless flirting” is also often employed by people who are in committed relationships when they want to excuse their inexcusable behavior when they indulge in dalliances on the side.  It’s only “harmless” until someone gets hurt–and sooner or later, someone always does.

The next time someone brings this up as a “reason” for their selfish and self-indulgent behavior as an excuse to feed their egos and consciously or unconsciously break hearts… be very aware of the kind of person one is dealing with… It’s definitely not someone worth wasting more precious time and energy on.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s

To be sure, it’s a catchy title… and it didn’t disappoint! I would recommend this to anyone who is seriously seeking love, relationships, and/or marriage.  It’s not preachy and there’s certainly no sugar-coating when they share interesting–and sometimes uncomfortable–factoids about the discrepancies of the male and female psyche.

While there is not much handholding throughout the book as Allan and Barbara Pease candidly share with us their thoughts and findings on the matter, there is a certain clarity that dawns upon us and one cannot help but feel a bit more equipped to delve into the vast underpinnings of the male and female psyche as applied to romantic partnerships.

I cannot say enough that we need to read up and learn more about the inner workings of romance and how being aware of gender differences set the scene for more effective communication and understanding between partners. Why Men Want Sex and Women Need Love would be a good place to start.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s