Apologue #3: Happiness = Commitment-Phobia?

This past weekend a buddy and I suddenly got into the context of why we both won’t settle. Now, I’m exactly as my blog puts it: quirkyalone. Just in case for the few who don’t actually know what that means, it generally means that I am a person that actually enjoys singledom. Yup, you heard it right. I enjoy being alone and single and generally prefer this lifestyle over dating indiscriminately. I divide my lifestyle equally as I can organize among myself, family and friends, work and favorite past-times. Going back to the main conversation, my friend on the other hand is an all-around, fun-loving type of person. Juggling with work and being a single parent of two children keeps them busy but my friend loves to hang out to unwind but also loves date nights and getting intimate, just as much as the next person. But, has a big red X when it comes to settling down and committing into a relationship.

My reasons are a tad longer and need to be explained so I’ll tell my story another time, but my friend on the other hand, claims that they feel they will never love anyone else the same since their first lover. Hence they feel the love that they give to another won’t amount to the real love they have felt before and feel guilty of not giving to their new significant other 100% of their true feelings. Which also brings in “commitment-phobia” into the scenario. When I asked if commitment was the problem, my friend denied it at all cost. They know they can love, it’s just not the same kind of “love” that they genuinely know it to be.

My buddy then used the example of the character that Ben Affleck played in the movie, “He’s Just Not that into You” as something that describes themselves perfectly. Why does a piece of paper signify anything between two people if they truly love each other as they say they do? If you love them, then you love them – end of story. Now, I may be preferring singledom as a lifestyle but I’m not celibate. When it comes to marriage, I’m all for it. It’s just that I’m not interested in doing anything about it now. But when I heard about this, it felt as if I could hear the cries of all single people who want to get married that can’t, fill my ears to the brim on why this is so wrong.

Moving along, I have Friend #2 who also follows this similar train-of-thought. This friend has been dating someone for three years, has a wonderful and loving relationship with their significant other but does not want to get married ever. My friend enjoys hanging out with other friends and just chilling, going out and having a couple drinks and like most people in our age (twenties), can also get too busy saving it up because work takes a great toll in our lives. Wrapping it all up, I feel that you can’t label the “C-word” to a couple who has been in a happy relationship for three years and not wanting to get married an answer to all their problems. So, what exactly stops us from actually “tying the knot” and settling down?

As I pondered over my past dating experiences, the only conclusion that I could allow myself as a viable explanation pertaining to most circumstances is that we fear of obstructing our happiness through the cost of relationships. We are people that don’t like to break patterns, we are people that fear everything – from rejection to getting heartbroken, we are people who don’t like change. Friend #1 claims their first love is the only love they will ever have in their life but that doesn’t stop them from meeting new people and enjoying that “I am single and can mingle all I want” persona. Friend #2 loves being in a committed relationship but doesn’t want to commit marriage using excuses as work that keeps them tied down. But when you dig deeper, both people are just afraid of the big changes that can change their lives from good to bad or even from bad to better. I feel that they just need to realize that sometimes taking that step towards commitment and not be reared in fear of it can bring forth new experiences they have never felt before. I just wish that their commitment-phobias won’t wall them from their true happiness and like any good friend, all I want is for them to be happy.

Now, I’m sure some of you may have wondered why I never write the names of my friends or reveal the gender of my friends or past admirers. It definitely isn’t easy keeping up this game of charades but I just want to prove that not all relationship problems and lingering thoughts come from one specific group of people. For example, the two friends I wrote about tonight are actually one male and one female. You take the guess, who’s who. But does it really matter what their gender is compared to what they go through and feel? Absolutely not. This makes all problems just as real and not one more serious than the other because of sexist reasons or any other forms of tolerance of making excuses saying, “all men have commitment-phobia” or “all women want too much from their men before marriage.” None of those reasons are viable as to why we feel the things we do and so, I just thought it be more interesting if I wrote everything gender-less. This is all new to me as well so bear with me; I’m certainly no creative writer (I’ve always hated English while growing up). I just wanted a new approach when it comes to hearing people out and their problems they encounter through relationships. Trust me when I say you’ve all been warned for my ramblings.

3 thoughts on “Apologue #3: Happiness = Commitment-Phobia?

  1. I like how you diagnose their distaste of commitment as fear. Being 26, my biggest hang up with commitment is fear of missing something better with someone else. In Austin, TX having too many options has become a dating obstacle.

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