01 Nov, 23

is my perception of a healthy relationship skewed by watching american rom-coms and growing up observing my parents' dysfunctional relationship? i recently read an article, "relationships are coevolutionary loops" (link#1) by henrik karlsson, part of a series where he narrates his experiences with his current partner (soulmate if you want). in this particular piece, he talks about how they create a "home" together.

this article reminded me of the excitement of sharing life with someone, where "conflicts" or divergent perspectives are viewed more as challenges to be overcome, leading to a more optimal life for both parties involved, rather than deepening discord. and that to achieve and sustain this, it's crucial to share the same context... "even though i disagree with you on this, i trust your judgment and believe you have good reasons, so there must be something to it, let's figure something out"-kinda thing.

in the article, karlsson discusses the loss of this particular context in periods when he doesn't communicate with his partner as frequently, and how critical it is for them to get back on track. i think i know what he's referring to. i think i felt this shift myself, but i wasn't able to get it back on track.

it baffles me how the majority of people have to spend 8 hours at work, devoting their time to a completely different world than the one inhabited by their life partner or just loved ones in general, and then try to sync up in the remaining little time left. it's just bullshit.

however, my current full-time employment experiment is teaching me that the value of my skills and time is much higher than i initially thought. so perhaps this reality, where i can work as long as i want to is possible.

when i'm with someone, i let myself be completely consumed by them. if i don't feel the connection, i know it right away, although sometimes it takes me a while to act on it. inspired by this article, i have decided that i don't want to date just for the sake of dating. i don't want to just hang around, and i don't want any casual hookups. this is a struggle as i am a very affectionate person who needs physical contact daily, but i am confident in my decision. trying to take it as a design assignment – "how to source consensual, and pleasurable physical contact outside of a romantic relationship?"

also... lately, i've been listening to a lot of love songs, especially "islands in the stream" by dolly parton and kenny rogers. the song reminds me of the beauty of loving someone, knowing they love you back, and having no doubts about it. i want that.... yet, i wonder if this is just some heteronormative illusion, having nothing to do with real love, and is merely a pop culture-induced fantasy.

i don't want to settle for anything less than the kind of relationship described in the article. am I willing to risk being alone for the rest of my life to avoid settling? i guess so.

take care 🌱

link#1: https://www.henrikkarlsson.xyz/p/making-a-home-together?utm_source=profile&utm_medium=reader2