Friday, March 07, 2014

Family, Friends & Significant Others: Do You All Get Along?

Through the years, I have seen and experienced some things that have pretty much surprised me. I was always the type of person who thought that each person in a relationship should be unique and different from their special counterpart. But as I season throughout the years, I am finding that it's so important to have your significant other reflect a good portion of who you are. The person you are with mirrors off from your inner most being: your heart. You "love" this person, so that says a lot about the character of who you are with. For example, I have seen mismatched couples where I can actually say it was a fact, not opinion-based. One person loved to socialize and have their own set of friends, while their other half hated to talk in public, socialize or even be seen in public. She would also rather stay at home than go out for a bite to eat with her partner. If she was out with another couple, the only words out of her mouth would be answers that consisted of "yes" or "no". Her other half had a whole lot to contribute into the conversation. That to me, isn't about shyness, but more about being socially awkward and I'm even going to venture to say, jealous of her other half doing so much better in a social setting.

I don't believe opposites attract. Why would someone go for somebody with little to zero mutual interests? It just doesn't make sense. And the excuse of "opposites attract" tells me that the person isn't that happy with the differences. "Well, the differences is what keeps it interesting." I don't believe it. You're either bored or you're afraid of dying alone. You can have different careers, different hobbies, different tastes in food, but once your differences roll into personality and character qualities --- it's a whole new ballgame. I could never be with an introvert, simply because the people I love the most, (my family and friends) -- it would be a total culture shock to them. And it's not about me needing my family and friends to accept them, but it is pretty important. Think about life with someone who doesn't get along with your family and friends - someone who can't even give more than a syllable long answer. That to me is just a dreadful time to be had.

But let's not put the introverts down. Social butterflies can be a pain in the ass too. We love attention and that could be annoying to the everyday introvert -- or anyone for that matter. Whether it stems from insecurity issues or an overzealous desire to socialize -- the introvert can see this as a huge flaw. "Why do you need so many friends?"  And we'll look over and say, "Why not?" I remember dating an introvert years ago and recall my buddies saying, "You're bringing her again?" They dreaded the fact that not only would her lesser personality soil the event, but she also took my personality down a notch as well. I feared that I would get "the talk" later, or how I was too "sociable" with 'so & so' --- more of an insecure jealousy thing that she had on top of her being an introvert. It made it impossible to be around anyone with her.

Let's face it, finding Miss or Mr right can be frustrating as it is, no less trying to get your family and friends to get along with your new mate. I have just a few gripes when it comes to accepting new mates into the 'friend group' or accepting a family member's new love: do not meddle in personal matters of the friendship or family bond, and do not ever, verbally or physically abuse my friend or loved one. It may not be my business, but I will make it my business that they are never allowed inside my home or on an outing with my friend or family member and I. My respect has diminished and I just don't want to see your mug any longer.

On more than several occasions, I have ether seen "the other person" cheat or hit on myself personally. I have rules for this type of crap.

  1. I don't meddle, because it always backfires. Be sure I'll keep it quiet.
  2. HOWEVER, I will tell you off and call you out on your scumbag tactics.
  3. I also will let my friend know that I am very uncomfortable being around their significant other without even providing a reason. 
There was only one time I told someone that their significant other was cheating on them. And of course, this person was totally gaga over her, that it totally backfired on me. I thought to myself, well I would definitely want someone to tell me, but it didn't work out the way. Never expect me to tell you if your mate is cheating on you. Eventually, that kind of crap comes out into the light for all to see. I also figure, if you're that stupid not to know while everyone else knows, then there has to be some sort of acceptance level of this "open relationship" that I don't understand and to which I will never interfere with. People are different. I accept that.

I want to make another point: never get upset if one of your friends disappears after meeting the person of their dreams. Let them go and explore - let them go at it alone for a while. They need to connect on an emotional, intimate and social level during this time. It has no reflection upon your friendship whatsoever. All new relationships go through this beautiful phase, and if they are a true friend, know that your friend will come back, even happier. And that's what we want, don't we?  But what if your friend comes back to you while still dating this new person and he or she's personality has taken plunge into boredomville? Your once 'funny-happy-go-lucky' friend has now turned into a bag of rocks. Time for a talk. If the talk doesn't smooth things over and brings back the life of your friend --- move on. I never understood why "significant others" would want to stifle the life --- the "LIGHT" that shines through your friend. It's sad that some people are willing to lose their closest friends for a relationship. Shouldn't you be able to maintain both? Is it a controlling issue? I still have yet to figure this out. Personalities do change when you mingle two people together -- perhaps they 'mesh' a bit, but it shouldn't kill off the personality your friend once had. Strange.

So what! Let him eat his pizza.
If you try to change your partner, then I have one question for you: WHY are you with them? Changing someone takes so much time and effort and you don't even get paid for it. If you fell in love with the person, love all of them, not just part of them. We all have "perfect imperfections" which make us unique. Learn more about the person you chose and accept the stuff that you may not have in common with them. Or, why not find someone more suitable for you (like a clone) instead of trying to mold someone into someone they're not? "Well, I love everything else about them, but they don't run."  And they never will unless a bear is chasing them. Let people be who they are and you'll find out, you'll be surprised to see what happiness you'll obtain from watching the person you love, be happy in return.

For more of Deb's articles, please visit: www.debrapasquella.com or join her on Facebook and Twitter. Check out her cooking blog for some of her famous recipes!