Thursday, October 16, 2008

love, lust, cheating, youth and relationships. . .

(I borrowed this from a friend....I like what she had to say)

its rough draft essay- wrote rediculously fast but i think it is important that people read it.

Current Dating Habits and the Youth's Pitfalls of Love

What is love? Are there such concepts as soul mates? Is it possible to be in love at a young age? There seems to be a universal confusion about the concepts of love, relationships and communicating with your significant others. As a victim of my youth, I feel the impact and confusion of my emotions and feelings toward the opposite sex. It appears so easy to "fall in love" with another boy right after the last chapter of love has ended. So if I keep having these feelings of true love, then how do I prevent myself from falling into the standard, dating a boy a week practice like most of my demographic? How do I practice healthy relationships when everything in my body persuades me to make decisions against such goals? By defining love, lust and recognizing the differences as well as acting upon this new awareness will begin a new practice on dating and better the future practice of marriage. "I love you". This common saying is heard throughout the world in different languages and in some cases, attached to other words such as, "She meant nothing to me, I love YOU." I know a few people whom cheated on their spouses at one point and they claim to truly love their spouse; they just made a mistake. Who am I to argue against what a person FEELS? However, what these people and other people fail to recognize is the definition of their claims. Joshua Harris, author of "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" rejected this common saying related to love stating, "Why do we feel compelled to compare love to a pit or a mental disorder?. . . because they remove personal responsibility." (pg 63). Society has classified love as an uncontrollable force yet Joshua rebutes, " Love is under our control." Whether you are religious or not, truth is in the bible when it says:Love in patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud,It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.Love never fails. (1 Corinthians 13: 4-8)Love must start to be viewed as a verb, not a noun. Loving someone is in the choices you make everyday. But what about the butterflies I feel when that special person is around? I cannot just deny my feelings; they are real. And if these are not feelings of love, what are they? Toufexis explains these feelings of being "swept away" from a scientific stand-point, "They're not mistaken; they are literally flooded by chemicals. A meeting of eyes, a touch of hands or a whiff of scent sets off a flood that starts in the brain and races along the nerves and through the blood. The results are familiar: flushed skin, sweaty palms, heavy breathing." Sound familiar? I am sure you have experienced this at least once. This attraction is called Lust because you do not have complete knowledge or understanding of this person yet they make you feel weak. Webster defines lust as intense longing. Lust and love feel similar and are easily confused for one another. Lust is so strong that it is often mistaken for love. This confusion and strength can be dangerous when dating. Some people become "attraction junkies". Toufexis elaborates, " They crave the intoxication of falling in love so much that they move frantically from affair to affair just as soon as the first rush of infatuation fades." (pg 207) On a smaller scale of this extreme mental disease, youth practices the same thing. We find ourselves head over heels and as soon as the feelings fade, we break up and repeat the process all over again. So what is wrong with this picture? Developing a pattern in our youth that will affect the rest of our adulthood: a.k.a. divorce. Children grow up, practicing easy escapes. As soon as the butterflies fly off or as soon as there is a fight, the exciting dating ends and new matches are made. As this outlook on relationships is carried into adulthood and marriage, more of the same practices take place. " A relationship based only on physical attraction and romantic feelings will last only as long as the feelings last". (Harris 35) After the honeymoon, romance fades, adaptation to new living conditions might be too difficult, or for whatever reason the marriage becomes difficult they go their separate ways or they stray outside the confines of their legal marriage. Joshua outlooks dating as " intimate with little or no thought about commitment or how either of them would be affected when it ended." (pg 32) He goes on to question why people choose to date others. He gives many reasons including that two people might have "met each other's emotional and physical needs and helped each other's image. . . There is nearly always a hidden agenda." (66-68) The issue with youth is not dating, it is dating motivated by lust for one another and dating with insincere motives. Real love is not how that person makes you feel but loving whom that person is.So on behalf of the rest of my youth, I ask, "what do we do now!?!?" The answer is to become aware of our feelings, decipher which is sincere and which are motivated by lust, and then take appropriate steps toward healthy relationships. "You need to use your head and test your feelings so that your love is sincere and intelligent, not sentimental gush." (Harris, pg22) Testing your feelings take time which means that healthy dating comes first from healthy friendships. The biggest problems of my youth is the need for immediate satisfaction; to have what is wanted right away thus rushing head strong with every impulse. Friendships lead to dating that lead to marriage. If you could not be their friend then and do not see them marriage material in the future then what sense is there to date them now when it only leads to heart ache, confusion, and miscommunication? "We'll carry the memories of our past physical involvements into marriage." (pg 37) Would you like to bring guilt and regret from past involvements into your marriage? Instead of society focusing on loneliness, it should be rejoicing at youth's time in life to grow as individuals. In all of my personal experiences and watching my friend's experiences, friendships that later evolve into something more are almost always healthier and more sincere than those that are rushed into. It is time that society changes it's focus on relationships. Completely changing your outlook and practicing new habits (as much as your heart says otherwise) is a lot harder to do than say. I recognize all of my feelings and I know when I am falling into the same pitfall of lust yet I fall anyway. But even though I make the same mistakes, I continue to grow and learn, I consciously mold a healthy mindset on dating and relationships in preparation for marriage someday. Changing society's outlook on love and relationships is extremely difficult to accomplish but it starts with the individual's personal evolution.

1 comment:

Steve said...

YOu might want to take a look at my blog about Harris's books.

"I Kissed Dating Goodbye: Wisdom or Foolishness."

My biggest concern is how Harris isn't willing to acknowledge the problems with the system he promotes.