I have been thinking about love lately. I have often said I never fully understood the word until I was about 30 year old. At that time my cousin Jason had been in a car wreck where he sustained a brain stem injury. In that torturous week that followed we gathered in the hospital and watched the blood supply slowly stop flowing to his brain, and I came to understand the word.
I know this sounds like an odd time to find love but that is exactly what happened as I stood by a boy I loved from the day he was born. I held his hand as machines breathed for him and prayed not for his recovery, not for a miracle, but for whatever was best for him. Like a light had been turned on in my head, I realized that true love is unconditional and freely given. I know I am capable of unconditional love and I both feel it for others and I know others feel it for me.
BUT the other day I am watching a TNT showing of "When Harry Met Sally" and Billy Crystal is saying how men and women can never be friends because the sex thing always gets in the way. And THIS raises the question that should never be asked: Can married people actually UNCONDITIONALLY love each other?
I mean, really?
I. Don't. Think. So.
Lets say you get married and life is great then not so good then you get a divorce because you find you can not longer live with THAT person. We will have to punt on the reasons for the divorce as there can be many ..and really, shouldn't there be many reasons to end a marriage in the first place? Sure you felt love for them. You made love to them. You declared your love at them... but when they walk away with half your stuff and control who sees the children and when and how... you might not even be fond of them after that! So did you ever really love them? I mean really? Because if you did you would have loved them regardless of how they acted before the divorce, right? Your love for them would have been unconditional, right?
You can have an addictive child and you can toss them out, call the cops on them, refuse to see them but you will always love them and you only use tough love on them BECAUSE you love them unconditionally. A spouse is different. It is meet my needs or hit the bricks so I can find the missing person that WILL meet my needs and I will love them... if that is possible... which I am beginning to think IS NOT.
There are rare cases where two people have undying love for each other. They stand by and defend and support the other until the bitter end and when one dies, the other can't seem to live alone with a part of their heart missing. But that is the exception and not the rule! Today most marriages end in divorce and the second marriage is less likely to last than the first. Not only that but we KNOW that divorced couples are not known for LOVING each other... excluding the guilt free hook ups I hear happen from time to time.. that ironically might have prevented the divorce had they happened prior to the big split... but I digress.
So here is the question that should not be asked: If men and women can feel love for each other and then fall out of love and even into dislike... was it ever really love? Trust me, if we are going to share our lives together I WILL HAVE CONDITIONS! I want the house maintained a certain way, I need a level of privacy and you KNOW I have expectations on sex. Therefore... am I incapable of unconditionally loving anybody as a spouse? Does this in turn make me unlovable?
3 weeks ago