What if they're right?

Discussion in 'I Have a Question...' started by TheLoneWolf, Aug 23, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Well-Known Member

    I'm sure you've all heard the tired cliches before... "nobody else can make you happy"... "you have to be happy with yourself"... "nobody will love you until you love yourself"... "you can't depend on other people to bring you happiness"...

    (yet ironically, the same people who tell you these things are the ones who will tell you to turn to your "friends and family" for support when you're feeling down, as if we all have friends and family to turn to)

    In spite of the fact that this "advice" is oftentimes contradictory and goes against everything we know about human behavior - human beings are social animals, we are driven by a need to belong to larger communities and to find a suitable mate, society places great emphasis on family, friendship and social bonding, studies have shown that lonely people suffer from more depression and health problems, etc.; it's pretty obvious to me that this whole line of telling people that they're supposed to be happy being all alone is complete and utter bullshit, but let's assume for a minute that these things are true, that it really is a viscious Catch-22 cycle where the only way to make friends and find love is to already have friends and feel loved...

    Life is hard, and painful for many people. Myself included. I haven't exactly had a good life. So what makes life worth living? The happy times. The good things. Those moments of joy. What brings people those brief glimpses of happiness? Well it's different for everyone... for some it's hobbies or interests, or being successful, or family, or friends, or doing fun and exciting things, etc. But what about when the only thing you want is love?

    I realized long ago that I will never be wealthy. And that's okay, because money can't buy me happiness. I realized I will never be famous. And that's okay, because I don't really want everybody to know me anyway. I realized I will never have lots of friends. And that's okay, because I value quality over quantity anyway. I realized I will never have my "dream job". And that's okay, because I don't live to work anyway, I work to live. So what happens when the only thing you want out of life is romantic love? That's the one thing I've decided that I am not willing to live without.

    For most of my life, since the age of about 11 or 12, I have fantasized about having a girlfriend. That was the only thing that would make me truly happy, was imagining being with a girl who cared about me, who I could kiss and hold hands with. I would get crushes on girls and sit there and daydream about them for literally hours and hours, thinking of how great it would be if they were willing to go out with me. And these same thoughts consumed me throughout elementary school, throughout junior high, throughout high school, throughout college, and throughout my adult life after college. These dreams have never gone away. In that time, I've had a couple girlfriends (that didn't end well)... a couple of flings (that didn't go beyond that)... got rejected A LOT... and finally ended up getting married to someone that I didn't have any feelings for just because I wanted to be with someone so badly. Look, I know there's more to life than relationships, and I know I have to try to be a well rounded person with multiple interests. I have other interests... but none that consume me as strongly as my desires for love and romance. In my heart, I know that is all that I really want. And yet I can never seem to make it work. And people keep telling me that I shouldn't obsess on it... they say not to look for love, that love will find you... that you will never find it if you're looking for it... but I can't help it. It is the ONLY thing that I want. And the people who tell me that it won't make me happy are just plain wrong. Yes it absolutely will make me happy, because it's the only thing I really feel like I'm missing from my life.

    People assume that because I'm needy and depressed and lack social grace that I somehow don't like myself. I like myself just fine. I've spent many a year by myself, sitting alone, reading books or otherwise keeping myself entertained. It's not a matter of me not being happy with who I am. I've accepted who I am, even if the rest of the world doesn't. Even though I do feel like a bit of an outcast at times, I happen to like myself, and I have no intentions of trying to be somebody else. I know that I don't fit in. That's okay. Like I said, I don't need to be popular or liked by everyone. But they say that there's somebody out there for everyone, and I've always wanted to believe that... I want to believe that in spite of my quirks and flaws and issues, that there is some woman out there who is perfect for me, somebody who will complete me. And I know that once I find her, all will be right in the world. But it seems like so many people want to try to talk me out of this desire... or maybe they think they're just trying to spare me the disappointment of learning that there isn't really somebody for everyone. Maybe the only reason they tell me to be "happy with myself" is because they want me to accept the fact that I'll never find the love that I've been looking for. Or maybe they're right when they say that being in love won't make me happy.

    But here's the thing... if they're right, if love isn't enough to save me, then nothing ever will be. All those people who think they're "helping" me by telling me to give up on love, are actually only hurting me. Because if love isn't worth living for, if it's not something I can ever hope to have, if it's not enough to make me happy, then I might as well be dead. "Be happy with yourself"... I am so very tired of being happy by myself. I want to be happy with somebody else. Why is that idea so hard for people to accept? Do you not all have goals and ambitions? So maybe my ambition is to fall in love. Is that so wrong? Am I not allowed to want something that most of the rest of the world takes for granted? Is it stupid for me to base my happiness on human companionship? I don't think so. I think it's perfectly understandable. But hey, maybe they're right. Maybe it won't make me happy. Maybe I will always be miserable, no matter what. And if they are right, I should probably start getting my things in order and planning my suicide. Because essentially what they're telling me, unintentionally and not in so many words, is that there is nothing in this world worth living for.

    I hope that they're wrong. And I believe that they probably are wrong, based on how happy people are when they are in love. You see it all the time... people talking about how happy they are when they meet someone special, how their spouse is the greatest thing that ever happened to them, how their wedding day was the happiest day in their lives...the happiest I have ever been was when I had fallen for a particular woman or when sharing a passionate moment with a woman that I had feelings for. I do believe that finding my soul mate is what would make me happy. But hey, maybe "they" are right, and it's ridiculous for me to assume that love conquers all, to think that "all you need is love". And if "they" are in fact right, and I am wrong, then there is really no sense in dragging this existence out any longer.
  2. NYJmpMaster

    NYJmpMaster Have a question? Message Me Staff Member Forum Owner ADMIN

    Being a cliche in no way makes it not true; just very overused. The overuse of such cliches in this type of forum may well be an expected result (another definition of cliche) based on the type of forum.

    We definitely do not all have friends and family to turn to.

    Being happy with your self is not key to achieving " human beings are social animals, we are driven by a need to belong to larger communities and to find a suitable mate, society places great emphasis on family, friendship and social bonding" - it is merely a step in the process of achieving these goals.

    "Well it's different for everyone... for some it's hobbies or interests, or being successful, or family, or friends, or doing fun and exciting things, etc. But what about when the only thing you want is love?" all of the preceding are simply ways to pass time and work towards the goal of love - hobbies, interests, doing fun and exciting things give you the opportunity to meet people with things in common that lead to love.

    "and finally ended up getting married to someone that I didn't have any feelings for just because I wanted to be with someone so badly." Are you still with this person? Asking for what you are asking for after effectively taking yourself off the market in the eyes of the vast majority of women does not improve your chances of finding love.

    "I've spent many a year by myself, sitting alone, reading books or otherwise keeping myself entertained.//I've accepted who I am, even if the rest of the world doesn't.//there is some woman out there who is perfect for me, somebody who will complete me." Sitting alone reading books is not putting yourself out there and looking. You say you need love to be happy but then say you have accepted yourself as you are and claim to be happy with yourself; somewhat contradictory. Yes, that person is out there; thinking they are apt to come knocking on your door without you putting in the effort yourself because you have accepted who you are (an admittedly lonely person) is perhaps overly optimistic. Perhaps you should consider being less accepting of yourself and instead seek to change to attain a greater goal.

    "Do you not all have goals and ambitions? So maybe my ambition is to fall in love." Ambitions and goals without plans of action, hard work and effort are not goals and ambitions- they are pipe dreams, an unattainable or fanciful hope. There are no short cuts or easy ways in life. You have been rejected many times? If you have a goal of love and nothing else then be rejected another 1000 times to attain the goal rather then use the rejection as cause to not put forth the work and effort required. Is it easier for some than others? Of course it is - but if that is your only true ambition in life why spend your time "daydream about them for literally hours and hours, thinking of how great it would be if they were willing to go out with me." rather than going out and making it happen? If you have a goal make a plan and follow that plan - if it ends in rejection make modifications and try it again, and again, and again...get out of the corner and make it happen instead of waiting for it to magically fall in your lap.

    There are no short cuts or easy ways whatsoever in life. If you want something, work for it and devote ,not your dreams to it, but rather your energy, effort, and determination. Get out of the corner and out on the dance floor (just to add a cliche). A favorite truism of mine "success is not a goal, it is a byproduct" - you need to quit blaming and being concerned about "they say" and be far more concerned with what "you do". I am less than convinced "then there is really no sense in dragging this existence out any longer" is the move forward and try harder step you should consider to obtain your ultimate goal.

    Let me apologize in advance if this is not the response you are looking for - I am not big on meaningless platitudes and "it will happen for you just give it time" type responses.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 23, 2012
  3. Sadeyes

    Sadeyes Staff Alumni

    Again, Mr. NYJmpMaster has been eloquent in his response...my feelings about life are to 'just show up'...do what you intend to do, and let the monsters in your head have someone else to talk about...you want more happiness and intimacy in a relationship, what will it take to have that? Can that be achieved in the marriage you are in? I am sure you have thought about all of this, but I wanted to emphasize that we are what we do.
  4. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Well-Known Member

    True... but here is the problem with that - many of my interests are solitary activities, and those that aren't obviously require other people, which I do not have...

    Yes, I understand that. I have tried leaving my wife, and she is rather unreasonably clinging on to me and making it very difficult to leave. I'm talking about before I met her, along with my odds of success after I leave her... made far more difficult by the fact that I've been "off the market" for so long. But who is going to want to be with someone my age who will basically be starting over as though he never had a real relationship in his life? Because technically I haven't.

    I suffer from social anxiety. No, I don't expect anyone to come knocking on my door. But I have tried to meet women in the past, and never had much luck. I've accepted that I am not a social butterfly. I can't help that. I've tried, and it seems the more I "put myself out there", the more people try to avoid me. For many years, I was "content" being alone. Partly because I had no other choice, and partly because I knew I didn't fit in with most people anyway. But I've had a few close friends in my life that I got along with very well, and I was always hoping to meet a woman that I clicked with... it just never happened. I will never be a popular guy... that's not something I can change. But I know I do have some good qualities... just because I am a square peg trying to fit into a round world, surely you are not suggesting that I have to be a round peg in order to find love, are you? Because if that is the case, there really is no point in even trying. Speaking of cliches, what about the whole idea of finding someone who will love you for who you are, about just being yourself and not trying to be something you're not? Did all of those cliches just go out the window? I'm confused.

    Eh... the problem with the "numbers game" is that love is NOT a numbers game. DATING may be... but I'm not looking for dates. I'm looking for "the one". I'm looking for someone who is compatible with me. 99% of the women in the world are not compatible with me. Sure, many of them are nice, many of them are attractive, I am sure that some of them would be willing to date me, but those facts alone do not a happy, long lasting relationship make. I know that I can get "a woman". I'm not one of these guys who is complaining that no woman would ever sleep with me, because I know there are women out there who would. That is not the point, and that is not what I want, nor do I want to go on a million dates with a million women that I'm not compatible with, trying to find the right one. I'm no young pup anymore. That may have worked for me when I was younger, if I hadn't been such a hopeless loser... but it's a little late to change the past, yes?

    I wasn't really looking for a "it will happen" type of response. I know that nobody can guarantee anything. I know that there are steps I need to take first, etc. etc. etc., I get all that. In fact, I'm not even sure I was really looking for advice, because love is one of those things that can't be forced, or found in a bar or on a dating website... it's one of those things that just kind of has to happen. I guess what I was really asking was, is there anything wrong with wanting love more than anything else? Is it wrong to think that this would make me happy? Yes, you're right, I am unhappy now, and there are a number of reasons for that... I have no friends, most of my family stopped talking to me, I'm in a miserable marriage, I've had an utterly crap life thus far, gave up on my hopes and dreams, had a lot of things go wrong for me over the years... but my unhappiness doesn't stem from being unhappy with who I am. That is actually one of the few things that I'm okay with. Though you seem to be suggesting that even that's wrong - nah, I know what you meant... but seriously, is it really so wrong to think that my life would be better if I actually had what I've always wanted? I know it wouldn't make all of my problems go away. But it would make me feel better, which would go a long way towards helping to heal some of my old wounds. That's all I'm saying. I don't know whether love could exist for me or not... but what I'm saying is, these people who say that love won't make me happy... I think they're utterly full of shit. Love seems to make EVERYBODY happy.
  5. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Well-Known Member

    No, that cannot be achieved in my current marriage. I mean, intimacy, yes, I could have that, but what good is intimacy without love? I used to have some feelings for her... not exactly love, but things were better once... and being with her has improved my life significantly from what it was like before. I can't deny that. So even without love, my relationship with her went a long way towards improving my problems... but since it wasn't real love, and since we're not compatible, those feelings I had for her have faded. I still care about her, and that's why it's so hard to leave, because she doesn't want me to leave, and I don't want to hurt her... I know, it's a messed up situation. But the fact is that no, I can't ever be happy with her. And I want to leave her, but it is difficult. I always thought that if two people were married and one of them said they were unhappy and wanted to see other people, that the other person would be upset, but they would go their separate ways. I never anticipated that she would beg me not to leave her. And that makes things extremely awkward. I don't love her. I have told her this. But she seems to believe she can "make" me love her. Again, as I already mentioned, love is not something that can be forced. If I fell for a woman and she told me she had no feelings for me, then I wouldn't want to be with her anyway. I couldn't be with someone who didn't feel the same about me. I don't understand this mentality of fighting to hold onto someone who doesn't want to be with you. See, some people assume I have low self esteem... I do not. At least not anymore. My wife on the other hand, does. It's very much a less than ideal situation. I understand why it is difficult to be with someone who has low self esteem, because I have firsthand experience with that.

    Again, let me stress that while I do sometimes get angry at myself and I am sometimes insecure, while I have fears and doubts and anxieties, and I don't exactly think I'm charming or handsome, that does not mean that I have low self esteem or that I don't like myself. Do I sometimes wish I was someone different? Sure, only because I might have had a better life... but not because I think I'm some worthless person. I know my strengths and I know my weaknesses, and I've seen people with worse issues than mine find love... though I do sometimes question whether or not I'm unlovable by the mere fact that I am so incompatible with so many people. It's not that I think I'm undeserving of love, but rather that I wonder if I even have a "soul mate" out there. There have been a few times in my life where I thought that perhaps I had found someone I was meant to be with, but considering that it's never worked out, it seems obvious that I was wrong all of those times.

    I'm never going to be happy with my wife, nor will I be happy if I spend the rest of my life alone. I doubt anybody really would be, with the exception of those few people in the world who actually WANT to spend their lives alone. But I really don't think that anybody who craves love and intimacy as much as I do could ever be completely happy if they were forced to live their entire lives without it. I mean, am I sounding completely unreasonable here? I'm not way off base with this assumption, am I? I thought it was a pretty reasonable assumption, myself... but there are so many people who seem to disagree, who seem to INSIST that people can be happy when they have no friends, no family, and no lover. And I highly doubt that 99% of the people on the planet would be happy given those circumstances.

    Sorry, I didn't mean for this to go off on tangents about dating advice or marital problems, lol. I was just questioning whether or not it was valid for somebody to think that love could make them happy, in the same way that some people (falsely) believe that having lots of money will make them happy. I do think there's a huge difference between love and money, though. One is real and meaningful, and the other is very much the opposite.
  6. Nyu

    Nyu Well-Known Member

    You really should just leave your wife then, it might completely crush her but it would be better to do it now instead of dragging her along. As long as you're still married you can't really be open to finding love with the right person, and it wouldn't be fair to your wife to be searching the whole time you're with her for someone else, and possibly cheat. She'll only still believe she can make you love her until you leave.
  7. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Well-Known Member

    Yeah I know. I keep telling her I want a divorce, and she keeps begging me to try to make things work. Eh. I'm not good at this whole breaking up thing. I've never done it before. I always thought that if you told somebody you didn't want to be with them anymore, that was the end of it... right? I don't understand the mentality of somebody who has convinced themselves that they can make somebody love them. In all my desperate and lonely life, I never once believed that I could MAKE anybody love me, nor would I even waste my time trying. I just feel very guilty and confused about the whole thing. And then there are those people who believe that marriage is supposed to be forever and they tell me that I'd be committing a mortal sin and basically pissing off God if I got a divorce. But I know I'll be miserable if I stay. So either I stay and be miserable, or I piss off God and crush her and risk spending the rest of my life alone. No good options there. And then people wonder why I think that suicide is a viable alternative. It saves me the trouble of having to deal with any of this shit anymore.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.