Friday, January 23, 2009

Real Simple's "Love Rules" - Part 3

9. Love conquers all.
Love can withstand many hardships, but, as sociologist Pepper Schwartz writes, "Love won’t conquer poverty, addiction, or abuse." And it doesn't take something so severe either, as personal-development expert Barbara De Angelis says, "Love is a big part of a lasting relationship, but shared values and commitment are still required."

10. Everyone experiences the seven-year itch.
Who says it takes seven years? I think at some point in most relationships there's going to be a temptation to split up or start seeing someone on the side. Whether or not that temptation is acted on is up to the couple and how hard they're willing to work to keep the relationship going. Psychologist Howard Markman would agree with me I think, as he states: "The data show that most people who thought about getting divorced were happy they stayed married when surveyed five years later. When things are tough, focus on increasing friendship and sensuality in the relationship."

11. The way to a man's heart is through his stomach.
As much as I wish this were true—I fancy myself a pretty good cook and like making food for guys—I don't think it usually is. "It’s true if he loves food, but that part about having to feed the needs of his heart is true, too. Still, don’t lose sight of your own needs. For a relationship to be successful, both partners need to feel pleased and fulfilled," writes sex-therapist Judy Kuriansky. Ideally, my partner would want to cook with me and have the same skill-level that I do; there's something incredibly attractive about cooking together that I'd like to experience again.

Thus concludes my response to Real Simple's article. Are there any "love rules" that you've heard that I didn't include here? I'd love to know.

Finally, because a day doesn't go by that I don't find something truly ridiculous on Craigslist, here's your daily funny:


or is it Schroedinger's Ass?

For a clever answer, a professional asstimator will consider postmodern drinks.


Superquail said...

My mother once gave me a rule of thumb. She said "never believe that you can change someone; either take them as they are, or leave them."

Following that advice has gotten me into a certain amount of trouble. I was generally very unwilling to actually tell any guy I was dating when he did something I didn't like. If I didn't like it, I would decide whether or not I hated him enough to dump his ass over it, and if I didn't, then I stayed with him.

The truth is, if you tell someone that you don't like something that they're doing (e.g., not showering very often) there is a chance that they will change if they see that it is negatively affecting the relationship. If a person is unwilling to change a habit after having been asked to, that's perhaps a better time to ask yourself the "is this a dump-worthy offense?" question.

Lanafactrix said...

And in response to SQ's comment--people don't read minds. If you don't tell your partner that X, Y, or Z bothers you . . . how would they know to CONSIDER making a change? Also, frequently something that grinds your gears is something they don't care about one way or the other and would be happy to adjust.

I'll give a real life example because this literally happened last night. When we order pizza, my boyfriend has a habit of just leaving the leftovers sitting in the box on the counter. This bugs me, partly for food safety, but mostly because I like cold pizza, and I think the texture is better if it's been in the fridge. Last night I finally just went ahead and put the pizza in the fridge. When I mentioned it, he said that leaving it out is a "bad habit" he picked up from an ex-girlfriend, which used to really bother HIM. And he's glad that I took the initiative to change things--when all this time, I'd been figuring he liked doing it that way.

Superquail said...

Here's another love rule that I've used with both of my most recent boyfriends: If you kill my cat, this relationship is OVER. It's very important to be clear about the things that are very important.

Sitting down with a partner and making a list of deal breakers may not sound like the world's most romantic date, but I think it is both an important thing to do and it can give you some really good insight into your partner. Such a discussion may bring you closer together.

For example, I told H that infidelity would not be a deal breaker - unless he was having sex with my sister. There are some things I think I could probably get over or learn to deal with, but that's not one of them. It would be too weird. Also, if he ever hooked up with his ex while we were dating, that would be a deal breaker, too.