It’s Valentines Day, so lets get sappy. Now, maybe it’s just me—but I feel like true love is becoming something of the past. I could just be channeling Justin Timberlake, but honestly: “Where is the love?” I’ve been happily dating for a little over two years now, and I don’t regret my relationship one bit. It has brought balance to my life, and made me grow as an individual in ways that may have never transpired had I been in my old single ways.
For instance: I am a white guy from a small town, located in the smallest state of the nation; my girlfriend, on the other hand, is Puerto-Rican and was born and raised in Bronx, New York. So, in a sense, you could say we are from two different worlds—and that is one of the greatest things about our relationship! Mutually, we show one another different parts of life that we would have otherwise most likely never been introduced to: I now have a better understanding of the Puerto-Rican culture, and have family in the Big Apple, while my girlfriend gets to experience life outside of the concrete jungle and become more in tune with the beauty of nature found here in Rhode Island. Through our relationship, we are challenging each other and leaving our comfort zones every day, and that is where growth is fostered. People might say we’re still in the “honey moon period” and that we need to “just wait until a few more years down the road”— but so be it, I’m excited for what is to come and wouldn’t want it any other way.
The love we share is defined by trust and commitment. Those are not easy things to find nowadays, with everyone “sliding in the DM” via social media and every other media basically broadcasting that having a “side-chick” or being disloyal is the way to go. I mean seriously, listen to the radio—it’s rare to hear a positive reinforcement on why to commit to love, unless you happen to be tuned into one of the throwback stations.
As a generation, us males seem to be shying away from the essence of love—in what I believe is considered a threat to masculinity—and promoting the bachelor lifestyle. Okay, so you could choose to go ahead and party every night away, jumping from one girl to the next, but that’s a vicious cycle—especially in today’s cold world. To each his own, but I just think love is an essential part of life, and we, as a world, need more of it. It’s a cultural issue for sure—somewhere we seemed to have gone wrong. I come across a meme or status update on the regular about chivalry being a thing of the past, and maybe it is in terms of the majority, but trust me—there are plenty out there who wish to keep it present.
Anytime one of my friends asks my input on their love life I encourage them to look for someone who shakes them up and pushes them to grow. Most often—or so I’ve seen from observing other relationships—people who date a person very similar to themselves get bored easily; the time spent together grows stale, and eventually the relationship ends. They say “opposites attract” and I find this to be true. What better way to keep a relationship fresh than to consistently be introduced to new aspects of life? From one person in love to whom it may concern: Take the leap, try someone outside of your comfort zone, and find what relationships are supposed to be about—living in love!