I have just gotten home from a very long night. I’ve spent the last 4 hours talking to a girl with a broken heart, I couldn’t walk away when I saw her teary, clinging to a class of Vodka, desperately hoping to find a quick fix. So I asked her what the matter was, she looked at me, her eyes filled up with tears though she was trying so hard to be brave. She was fully conscious of the fact that she was in a club so she looked away in an attempt to compose herself. I couldn’t walk away, I took her to the parking lot, we sat there and all I did was listen. She poured her heart out to a friendly stranger who took the time to listen.
She had me thinking about what it means to be in a relationship in the 21st century. Before I even continue, I would like to add a disclaimer that, this blog is in no way trying to bash and talk ill of new age men or praise and victimize new age women. It is in no way a reflection of my relationship nor is it a memoir of past relationships. It is merely just a thought provoking blog inspired by a number of events, including tonight.
Being in a relationship in the 21st century is way more complicated than it should. It feels like so much hard work and ends up taking away so much from what could be beautiful, pure and eternal. The average 25 year old has probably been hurt numerous times, been cheated on, been emotionally and/or physically abused and is probably a hot mess, carrying baggage from relationship to relationship.
So we vow to ourselves that, ‘It won’t happen again.’, ‘I will never allow another man to hurt me like that again.’, ’I am done with relationships.’, ‘I just need some time alone. I will spend the next year alone. I need time to heal.’; ‘I will never, ever trust men again.’, ‘I need to stop being so reckless with my heart.’, ‘I will never give away my heart that easily again.’ Until we meet someone else, who takes us by surprise and we expectantly fall for them. Even after making all those promises to ourselves. So we give it one more shot in the hope that, this time around, it will be all we’ve ever hoped for.
Because you want it to work so badly, you’re determined to do things differently this time around. You miss him dearly but you won’t call him first because this time around, you’ve vowed you will never chase a man again. Dare you tell him how you feel and he sees you as clingy and needy, this time around, you’re a tough cookie. Men like tough cookies right? He doesn’t call you after a night out with the boys and your mind is made up because experience has taught you that it means he was out with another woman so you walk away. Dare you tell how this makes you feel, who wants a clingy psycho? You feel you love him but you won’t tell him because it’s only been 6 months and he hasn’t said it to you and this time around you will not be made a fool of.
We’re constantly calculating, measuring how much we allow ourselves to fall for him because this time around, we’re in control. This time around we are in charge of our happiness, this time around, we won’t get hurt because our hearts have had enough hurt to last us a life time.
We take away so much from what relationships should really be like, simple. Boy meets girl, they fall in love and live happily ever after. Sadly, this is not the case in the 21st century.
My heart is way too fragile for new age relationships. The risk has somehow tripled throughout the years, falling in love feels like sitting at a high stake poker game, waiting to lose all you have.
We’ve tainted the idea of true love.
By: Siphosethu Tetiwe