When you first fall in love with someone, you can’t imagine a world in which your lover isn’t “perfect” in your eyes. They always look great, smell great, and say the right thing. When we’re first in love we justify flaws as “adorable little quirks” and we think that everything will magically be alright if we’re together.
Fast forward to a little way down the road when that initial haze of love and hormones starts to lift, and you begin to realize that this person who you thought was so “perfect” is really a huge pain in the ass. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge romantic who believes in love, the concept of “forever,” and that the man I’ve been with for ten years is perfect for me (even though he’s clearly an imperfect human being). And maybe “pain in the ass” is harsh, but the reality is that some days – it sure feels like it!
But, isn’t that what love really is? Still loving someone even when they become the aforementioned pain in your ass? Accepting the not-so-perfect characteristics of someone because you love them? There’s no beauty in love if it’s not sometimes less-than-perfect. At the end of the day, relationships are about finding a balance and accepting someone for who they are while simultaneously always working together to make your relationship as strong as possible.
Whether or not you want to admit it, relationships aren’t always easy. Us human beings are weak and frankly – disgusting. We get hurt, we get mad, and we’re very rarely actually easy to love (just admit it). But, that doesn’t mean that love isn’t worth fighting for. It’s what gets us through the things that made this list!
Maybe it’s time for you to accept these 5 hard truths about relationships. Go on, I dare you *wink, wink*.
It won’t be all great sex and good feelings (especially in long-term relationships)
There seems to be this idea (especially in new relationships) that being “in love” means always looking at your partner with adoring eyes and not being able to keep your hands off each other. But, anyone who has been in a relationship longer than a year knows that this fantasy is simply NOT true. Sure, there should still be days like this (hopefully). But frankly, the sex might not always even be that great (get real – life doesn’t have a lot of steamy sex scenes like in the movies) and you might not always even feel like you even like your partner. Long-term great sex takes work and there will be days where you feel like your partner annoys you more than makes you happy.
You won’t always “sync up”
From everything from emotions and libido to everyday preferences – you simply won’t always want the same things as your partner. Some people seem to think that “true love” means that you basically became the same person, but that’s not the case. Your wants, needs, desires, and moods won’t always be the same just because you’re in love (grow up). That’s part of what love is – compromising when it’s needed to make it work. Some days you’re going to argue over things as trivial as what to eat and other days you’re going to be annoyed by their bad mood when you wanted to have a good time (or be frustrated that they weren’t in “the mood”).
Sometimes you’re going to resent the hell out of them
People have negative emotions and the longer you’re with someone, the more likely you are to find something to resent. Whether it’s a better childhood, a better job, or an easier life; eventually you’ll find something. Honestly, I think most women (myself included) resent their man just because he’s A MAN, which means that his privileged ass doesn’t have to deal with sexism, periods, or child-bearing. That’s a difficult thing not to resent a little.
The reality is that in a good relationship, you must discuss and work past your resentments (because there absolutely will be resentment on both sides). Half of the time resentment will be 100% emotional and out of either of your control, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t talk about it. The best tactic is to allow talking about your resentments to help the two of you grow closer and learn to support each other emotionally.
It’s going to get REAL
Let’s get honest right now – the beginning of relationships is all about pretending that you’re hairless and never fart. But, that’s not how the human body works. And, once you move in together, it’s going to get SUPER real.
Sure, there are things you can do to prevent your partner seeing the worst sides of you (the invention of poopourri was a game changer for couples – seriously, look it up), but eventually your partner is going to see you pre-grooming, see you get sick, see you get emotional over something stupid, and become way too aware of your bathroom habits. All of this is a kind of blessing in disguise because ultimately it forces a grand level of intimacy, but there’s no denying that some of the mystery is gone once you know what time of day your partner uses the bathroom.
Your significant other will not be ALL you need in life
The biggest thing that I think is a misconception about relationships is that they are somehow so great that it’s all we need out of life. This is not the case for most people. Sure, it feels like that in the beginning and honestly, I don’t think I could be happy without my partner in my life. However, I’m very aware that he’s not all I need to be happy. There are other things in life – a fulfilling career, a family, a worthwhile hobby, a social life, etc. Your partner can’t be everything to you. It’s just not realistic.
A satisfying romantic life is generally needed for a fulfilling life. However, that doesn’t mean that you should be only focusing on your relationship and letting your individual life get neglected (we all know someone who has made that mistake). The best relationships are the ones that encourage us to grow together to be better people who accomplish our individual goals while loving each other for who we are. Your lover isn’t going to be all you need. Rather, they are going to be a part of what you need to be happy and, if you’re lucky, a large part of what makes the bad days feel better.