Change: the inevitable force that gives meaning to the ol’ “It’s not you, it’s me” break up line. Its cliché and maybe it’s overused, but there is some sincerity to it. When I think back upon my last relationship (as I often do while eating massive amounts of calories and watching Law and Order: SVU) it really did boil down to the whole issue of change.
|Kelsey Zeran, Guest Blogger|
Sometimes I think as women, we have this deep-seated idea that we are supposed to “train” men to be good partners. On several occasions throughout my life I distinctly remember my mother advising me to “nip it in the butt” when it came to unfavorable qualities in the men I dated. It’s as if we as woman are not only born with the ability to bear children, but also the ability to mold other adults into becoming the partners we’ve always wanted. To make a long story short, it didn’t work. I wasn’t able to craft my ex into the man of my dreams. I spent two years of my life trying to force him into possessing qualities that were not important to him, but that had become decidedly vital to me.
It was a slow process in coming to terms with that realization, but finally it clicked. There are so many things I am unsuccessful about changing within myself, what made me think I could change something about someone else? What I always hear from other friends and family who seem undeniably in love is that when you meet that “right person” you just know. And as frustrating and unhelpful as that statement seemed at the time, I think I’m starting to wrap my head around it now. I hope that the day I really meet my other half, I don’t want to change a single thing about him. I hope that all of his weirdness and quirks I find endearing or even matched perfectly to my own. Corny as this may sound, I am grateful for the tears and heartache. From them, I learned what I want in someone else, and most importantly what I will not tolerate. It was true when I told him “it’s not you, it’s me”, because it was me. It was me learning what I wanted; it was me changing my expectations. Hopefully one day, he finds a girl who is just as late (and thoughtless and careless) as he is, and then all those things that drove me up the wall won’t matter to her. And as for me, I am a changed woman. I know my limits, I’ve come to terms with my expectations for other people, and I’ve put change in its rightful place: it’s okay for people to change and grow on their own accord, but it’s fruitless to try and change someone else.
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