5 Reasons Today's Relationships Don't Last
By Nikki Sue Alston | 2/06/2015
1. Your TV Lied To You
For those who grew up in the 90’s or 00’s; the television was probably your babysitter. You watched Disney princesses fall in love over and over again, as well as movies with the ‘Mr. Tall-Dark-and-Handsome’ always saving the day. If life were a movie, we would all have dimpled-cheek, chiseled-ab-hotties bumping into us at coffee shops - falling instantly in love - and living happily ever after. If this has happened to you, you are the exception, congratulations. That shit doesn’t happen in real life.
The entertainment world is quick to portray the falling in love part, but doesn’t give you an update down the road. Ever notice how the movies end shortly after the protagonists find true ‘love’? Disney doesn't show Cinderella’s problems with her in-laws; Snow White’s husband being jealous of her friendship with dwarves; or Ariel becoming a hoarder. Love songs/books/movies forget to mention that relationships are hard-freaking-work. I have found that most of my comrades jump ship as soon as they don’t feel ‘in love’ anymore. That ‘in love’ feeling is just that; a feeling. Unlike the typical representation, love isn’t just an adjective, it’s a verb. Love is something you do. There aren’t any songs about marriage counselling, learning your partner’s love language, or battle-picking. There will be rough patches that you will have to trudge through to get back to that loving feeling. I can attest to loving my partner, but not always liking him. He is a pain in my ass sometimes, but he’s MY pain in the ass.
2. Technology Wants You To Cheat (Physically and Emotionally)
With apps like Tinder, Hot or Not, and numerous dating websites [Ashley Madison *cough…cough] all of the legwork in finding a side-piece has been automated. The Internet will take your word for it when you fill out the ‘relationship status’ on your profile; there’s minimal incentive for these companies to keep a full-time vett-er on staff. Not to mention the additional privacy your cellphone offers. There was a time when people only had a house phone, one that anyone could answer. It was a lot like Chat Roulette, but not quite as funny. Nowadays, cell phones come equipped with texting, messenger apps, and email; no more awkward conversations with surprise-spouses. It has become easier to connect with one another and maintain relationships with friends, family, and a lil’ something-something on the side.
3. It's Easier To ‘Stalk’
In the past, to stalk an ex, you would have to work pretty hard to know what they were up to, who they were seeing, etc., or so I’ve heard… With Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, it has become incredibly easy to check up on an ex. It doesn’t even require having contact with them (unless you are 15-weeks-deep in their newsfeed and accidently ‘like’ something).
Chances are, it will remind you of the good times, which were sparsely scattered throughout the relationship, and can leave you longing for past-love. Even in toxic relationships (that you know would never work); having the ability to click on their profile…go through their life…stalk a person they are pictured with…read into their cryptic status updates, can drive someone mad. This is dangerous territory for the committed relationship.
4. 80/20 Theory, AKA: “Grass Is Always Greener”
Ever heard the saying “the grass is greener on the other side”? Of course you have. Well, it’s true. The birth of social media has greatly pressured people to maintain this ‘front’ of perfection and happiness. Just look at billions of tweets, status updates and photos we are bombarded with daily. A lot of smiling couples, engagements, weddings, and babies (not necessarily in that order). I don’t believe in finding someone who 100% is perfect for you. Perfection is an illusion, a smoke and mirrors type trick. I believe in the 80/20 theory. You can find someone who is 80% compatible with you, but they’ll leave their shoes in your doorway: won’t close the door when using the bathroom; leave bobby pins all over the house, which will annoy the shit out of you, etc. The small things add up. Then you meet someone who you think has that 20% your partner doesn’t! You start to think ‘Hmm, maybe the grass is greener’. So you do the logical thing; you dump your boo-thing, and start seeing this person. What’s that? They chew with their mouth open, are vegetarians, and hate your dog? Your EX boo-thing is looking pretty damn good right now (especially on Facebook), too bad you broke things off! That grass isn’t so green after all, is it?
5. We Live In An Age of Instant Gratification
I really can’t complain about this one too much. I am an avid online shopper, Amazon Prime Member, and Netflix Subscriber. I love not having to go into the store to buy clothes, household goods, and pretty soon groceries (local startup GoGo Grocer is making this possible). Having the world at our fingertips leaves us with little patience for problems or inconveniences, especially in the relationship department. There is no quick fix for relationship problems. No matter how many self-help books, apps, or blogs say there are. It takes a lot of patience, hard work, and determination to have a happy, successful relationship.
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