Love is, most definitely, blind.
I dated my high school boyfriend, Warren*, for ten months. We had been together approximately four months when my parents invited him over for dinner. We chatted and laughed (as much as two dating 16-year-olds can comfortably chat and laugh when parents are present), and in my opinion the dinner went great.
But after Warren left my mom turned to me and said, “That Warren’s kind of a know-it-all, isn’t he?”
Suddenly, I could see she was absolutely right. Warren did have a tendency to share his wealth of knowledge about, well, anything. My mother had noticed it immediately. I, so taken with Warren’s guitar-playing and adorable braces, had not.
Warren’s somewhat know-it-all personality was certainly not a deal-breaker in our relationship. But it’s true that when we have deep feelings for someone we tend to overlook or simply not see certain things about our significant other and or possible problems within our relationship.
Often it is difficult to have a realistic perspective on our relationship or significant other when we’re in the throes of love. Our affection and nearness to the relationship can easily “blind” us to things that may not be functioning well or need attention. When this happens it’s difficult to see what may appear obvious to others.
This is why it’s so important to invite trusted people into our relationships. I don’t mean they have to join you on dates or read your texts to each other, but allowing a trusted friend or adult to see and know your relationship is crucial to maintaining a healthy love life.
Giving someone else insight into your dating relationship allows him or her to see both the good and bad and thus give you honest feedback about how they see the relationship going. However, this is not always an easy thing to do.
Asking for another’s honest opinion on anything in our lives can be difficult, but this can be especially true when it comes to romantic relationships. We don’t always want to know if there is something in our relationship that may need fixing or, worst of all, may be a deal-breaker. But knowing these things help us see our relationships in an honest way and thus know how to make the best decisions for ourselves and our significant others.
Before you run out and start asking everyone’s opinion about your relationship, make sure you deliberately find someone you trust. Know whose opinions are of value and come from a place of truth and love. It’s all right to be picky about who you let into something as significant as your relationship.
Here are the four biggest questions you need to ask about your relationship:
- Do you think this person fits me well? Do we have personalities, lifestyles and values that work well together? Am I accommodating anything about this person that could potentially become more difficult down the road?
- Do you see anything about this relationship that is unhealthy? How do you see us handling things like communication, quality time or physicality?
- Am I being myself? When I am around this person, do you see me being fully myself or am I acting in a way I think will get this person to like me most?
- Am I showing this person the love/attention/respect they deserve? Pretty self-explanatory.
We’re not always capable of seeing things other may notice in our relationships, both good and bad. But seeking an honest and healthy relationship starts with having a clear (and willing) perspective. Being vulnerable in such a way is a difficulty that will ultimately help us lead fuller lives, romantic or otherwise.
*Name has been changed.