I’d love to preach monogamy until I’m blue in the face, but we all know that there’s little we won’t do outside of our relationships when it comes to living in 2014. Maybe it’s because we’ve been programmed to believe that there will always be greener pastures over yonder, past the straight up wifey material we decided to think of as just a stepping stone before reaching something better. I use the word “better” very, very loosely. You see, this is a common problem in not only college, but even life after the socially acceptable one night stand with a girl in a tutu and bedazzled bra. (The fact that I just referred to that as socially acceptable is just…#Syracuse.) We’re quick to pick out the flaws in our current partners because we’ve fantasized the perfect mate with their perfect qualities: the chiseled six pack, geekish hair, boyish face, and perhaps even their character persona on The Office. Yeah, I’m lookin’ at you, Jim Halpert.
You see, it starts as simply as after a break up. After any break up that we don’t consider our fault, we’re given that “you deserve so much better” speech. We yearn to hear that list of incredible qualities we want others to notice about us, even if they are all white lies. Sure, it makes us feel better in the moment, but what it’s really doing is building up our ego enough to take up all breathing space. Yes, it’s good to have confidence, as it is the sexiest trait about a person next to their movie collection. But, too much confidence not only leads to low-self esteem one hit wonder bachelorettes, but also sets your sights so far up in the clouds that the person you think you see yourself with in ten years actually doesn’t exist. And if this person does exist, you’d be in a mental hospital chit chatting with a professional about the other voices inside your head as well.
Now, I’m not saying you shouldn’t experiment. I mean by all means, we’re 20 something. But when you do find yourself looking for the right person, you probably shouldn’t be comparing every person that comes your way to a failed relationship. That’s not fair on either party. When it comes to comparing anything new to that first love and that first… we’ll call it, “bond,” no matter how terrible of a relationship it turned out to be, you will mentally turn it into something that Nicholas Sparks would call a movie. *Cue Enya* This is when you need to level with yourself. That person has left your life for a reason. Going back to them is like taking back the clothes you donated to Goodwill. No relationship, no hook-up, no (insert your ultimate fantasy person here), will ever compare to your first love, because no other person can be your first love. I mean, think about all of the times that person pissed you off, and how many times you said “I wish he/she did this, said that, was more like this…” All of those little wishes are what create the fantastical person you think you will one day land. If you do, great. You probably won’t though, and it’s because you have standards that don’t actually match real life.
My advice? Hit reset. Your past might influence what you perceive to be desirable and perfect, but you have the power to change how great of an influence your past has on your future. Sure there’s a time and place for everything, but don’t get stuck in the world of one-hit wonders forever. Let yourself be happy. Monogamy, monogamy, monogamy.
(Unless you live in Utah.)
Have a great Monday.