Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Stupid, Selfish People Murder Relationships

I know the title is a little harsh, but allow me to explain. Think about your last failed relationship, why did it not work? Did you feel your man never saw the real you, listened to you, or appreciated you? Maybe he cheated on you? Perhaps he was a spendaholic that had the family on the edge of bankruptcy or even in it? Maybe his head was able to spin 360,like Linda Blair’s in The Exorcist, when a vaguely attractive woman walked by.It all boils down to one thing, being stupid, and well, maybe selfish too.

I don’t mean being stupid as far as not being able to do advanced algebra—hey, that’s me. Some men, not all, like to walk around and pretend to know nothing about women so they can continue to act in their same, self-absorbed ways. There are two things wrong with this scenario. As a culture, we know what women want. They want to be listened to, courted with romantic gestures, treated like they are the most special thing in a man’s life. We dispense this message in a variety of ways, books, poems, songs, movies, even commercials. Then there are your more outspoken women, which may number in a man’s life from sisters, co-workers, girlfriends, even spouses who willing say what they want in so many words, but the men still don’t get it. What gives? If I could definitively pin this down, I would be a rich woman. Let’s look at the guy’s side too.

As women, we say we want men who will treat us well, take care of us, love us, and always be there for us. We want a combination of a lover, father, and friend when you get down to it. Many women score this right out of the gate when they pick a responsible man in college. This is the man who will insure their combined offspring will make it to college, but they aren’t satisfied because they want a flashier model. Someone who’ll rev the engine of his Harley as a signal for her to jump on for a wild ride. The decent men battle all the time being put aside for bad boys. These same women try to get their responsible men to take them back after their walk on the wild side, but most are too smart. What causes this incredibly stupid behavior?

Even though we knew we shouldn’t have done it my sweetie and I shared details of our relationships gone bad. My details of being taken for granted by my ex or taking care of an overgrown boy paled to his tales of being left by various women for a local bad boy who appeared on the scene. How could any thinking woman leave this darling man mystifies me. Notice the emphasis on thinking. He’s very attentive, attractive, and supportive in all ways. What gives?

He explained that in hindsight he met women who only wanted what they wanted and they never participated in activities he might like to do. They didn’t even watch television shows he wanted to watch. He suffered through both The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. The list continued including only going to restaurants the women liked. The theme here is he was only allowed to do whatever the women wanted to do because he didn’t even enter into the equation in their minds. I know most of you are thinking he went along with this? True. I’ve been there and done that too. In the end, since his feelings and needs never mattered it was fairly easy for the women to walk away. What do you call it when all you do is take advantage of someone, then leave with someone new? I wouldn’t call it love.

This happens all the time in the United States. I mention the United States because we do have the highest rate of divorce than all the other countries. We are more than double Canada our nearest neighbor, and probably the most like us. We are the way we are because we as a society are self-absorbed individuals. We want what we want when we want it and take it if at all possible. This explains why people walk out of relationships all the time when a hot bod walks by. They don’t think, but respond to an impulse.

Throughout our lives we may have twinges of attraction for different people for various reasons. Maybe it’s your doctor, or your helpful butcher, or even your son’s college roommate. We don’t act on them if we’re smart because we’ve weighed the consequences as soon as we’ve felt the tug of attraction. Of course there is a big difference between casually meeting people in everyday life and actively looking for people. The man or woman who admits to their mate that they fallen for someone at work, didn’t actually fall. They worked to get there by setting up encounters, buying new clothes, even going out for private lunches so they could talk. Sounds different than their eyes meeting across a conference table and they knew they were destined to be together. Ironically, the old mate may have financially sponsored this budding relationship.

People just don’t approach you UNLESS you give out signals that you are approachable. When someone gives you an interested look, you look away to signal your disinterest. People who FALL into relationships while already in one do not look away. Instead, they stand still, smile, even approach the other interested person. They want what they want, which at the time might be one more person.

We’ve established the basic American is selfish. He or she hears via the media to grab all the gusto they can get from life, to indulge themselves, and that it is about them. It’s all about their wants. This type of thinking greatly appeals to people, but never addresses long-term consequences, which also explains the obesity epidemic in our country. The man or woman who treats their mate shabbily eventually leaving them for a newer, flashier model is not a long-term thinker.

Men going through mid-life crisis will often hook up with a twenty-something female who might admire his bank account, his car, or even his nicely weathered features. What the man fails to realize is that his newest possession is counting the days until she can dump his mature carcass. Women on the other hand often abandon good men for a chance to be a skank for a week or two with a known bad boy. This type of behavior gives all women a bad name.

So in retrospect, why are stupid people destroying relationships? It is because they are self-absorbed and short sighted. It is almost like they are in a relationship with themselves and this other person is only in a supportive role. They are short sighted in the fact that they leave the only person who will probably put up with their dysfunctional form of a relationship. I think these people should have warning labels stamped on their foreheads.

Please don’t give me any crap about a bad childhood that caused them to be the way they are. I saw a cartoon once that joked, “Who hasn’t had a dysfunctional childhood?” They all shared the basic talent of behaving well until they got their target hooked. Isn’t it amazing they forgot this same basic behavior once they settled into the relationship? As adults who want adult relationships, we need to act like thinking adults as opposed to spoiled brats. Maybe then, we can bring the divorce rate down. Ironically, the highest rate of divorce is in Florida, where the elderly divorce each other in droves convinced that their fantasy man or women is right around the corner… in the nearest retirement village. Some people never grow up.

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