If Love Is Tight And It Hurts, Then It's Not Your Size
We have to go back to our earliest childhood memories to start collecting all those messages stored in our memory that have made us completely distort our concept of love.
Many of us have gone home and told our parents that another child was bothering us and we got the answer: “Don"t pay attention to them, they"re doing that because they like you," or now in adolescence if someone ignores us completely, our friends tell us that “they are acting that way because they like you."
And so, there are endless phrases and situations from which we have extracted several extremely harmful absolutist messages about love: “If he loves you he will make you suffer," “he treats you with indifference because he wants to get your attention," or “he"s jealous because he cares and can"t handle the idea of seeing you with someone else."
How can we get rid of these toxic teachings about love? Because this is not love. If love is tight and hurts, it"s not your size. It is not made for you because it doesn"t make you grow, it only oppresses you.
Deconstructing the myths of romantic love
This idea of love wrapped in passion, lust, jealousy, suffering, violence and unrest not only hurts women but also men. The men must assume the a role of “supermen" that can be light years away from their true sensitivity and way of understanding relationships.
But it seems that if both sexes move away from the rules governing their gender they will not be able to achieve the passionate and ideal relationship that society expects of all “great love stories".
However, this love is far from the real way relationships work. Psychologist Robert Sternberg was the first to study the types of love that existed, and in none of them did jealousy, violence, control over the other or isolation from others appear in their definitions.
The damage the messages from the media has caused us
Some of the messages thrown at us from movies and songs are subliminal. They seem like nice movies but they really do not expose a natural relationship. The stories are full of pseudo-romantic clichés that do nothing but feed an even more dysfunctional idea of romantic relationships.
A woman does not have to be rescued, nor does a man have an obligation to rescue anything or anyone. As people, men and women, must try to be emotionally auto-sufficient. A partner should complement us and provide more fullness to our life, but it"s important that we can stand on our own.
Dysfunctional ideas about love come not only from movies, television or music. They are in all human spheres, which is why when violence and abuse emerge, it is extremely difficult to establish a prevention on all levels. But only then will change occur.
Not long ago a book called “Marry and Be Submissive" was released. It is not a book titled ironically to draw the attention of readers; it is a book, as its title clearly indicates, formulated to “teach" women how to be good wives.
When love “is not your size"
There are many indicators that can reveal that you"re living an abusive, dysfunctional relationship that nullifies you as a person and makes you continuously experience toxic emotions:
The person you have by your side does not care when you"re wrong nor when something is good for you. They simply ignore everything that has to do with you. They are only interested in what you can give them and the benefit that he/she gets out of the relationship.
You are not a part of making decisions
They only make plans with you when it means that you"ll adapt to the plans that he/she has already made. Your opinion does not count when it comes to enjoying leisure time together. You are just a “plus one" and don"t participate in the decision-making.
They show that they are upset when you go out with your friends, who he/she always criticizes casually. This person is selfish as a direct result of suffering from a lack of self-esteem.
Jealousy is not a sign that they love you, just that they are afraid of everyone and everything. Insecurity makes them feel like they are not on your level and at any point you will cheat on him or her with another person. It their damaged ego that they fear the most, much more than the fact that they may lose you.
They ridicules you and boycotts your aspirations
He or she does not respect your aspirations and continuously boycotts what you want to do in life, ridiculing your work, and academic or personal aspirations. He or she continuously adopts a haughty and ironic attitude about your endeavors.
This person uses phrases like “I don’t know why you even try", “it"s absurd to do it now, you"re not old enough", “but are you going to earn more money doing that or not?", or “doing this is your first step towards leaving me“.
It"s much better in this life be single than to be with a person that the only does things to upset us.
Solitude is wonderful if you know how to enjoy it, and will always be better than being with someone who oppresses, devalues and controls us forever to benefit themselves.
Forget about fairy tales and princes. Take charge of your life, and next time choose a true story, in which the two of you practice love and understanding. This makes love much more interesting and durable than what the movies sell us.
Images by Ania Tomicka