Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Opposites Attract

We’re all familiar with the cute and timeless phrase, “opposites attract”. You know, when the straight laced girl falls for the bad boy, or when the uptown corporate chick falls for the greasy mechanic, even when the country farm boy sweeps the city girl off her feet. All clichés I know, but you get what I mean. Whenever we see two people that superficially should have nothing in common, we chalk it up to simply “opposites attract”.

Here’s the funny part…no they don’t. Not when it comes to people, not in relationships. I’m sure you’re thinking, “but after all of those examples, how is that true?” Well you know I’m not going to leave you hanging.

The fact is, it’s not our superficial circumstances that dictate who we are, or who we want. Think of relationships as a lock and key; two things that externally look nothing alike, but internally are identical. It’s why men fall for bitches, women fall for players and both fall for losers. She projects her insecurities and self esteem issues through a form of behavior that is rude, distant, antagonizing, and abusive. Meanwhile his insecurities and self esteem issues are exposed in the sense that he allows himself to be treated in such a manner. In the same way that an abused woman seeks out another abuser; It feeds the dysfunctional fire and allows both sides to “play their role”. We gravitate towards those that are familiar, not different. A little deep…

This subject came about from a discussion I had with this young woman. She couldn’t figure out why she couldn’t meet a “good man”. After asking a few questions, the answer was clear. She was a “Daddy’s girl”, even though growing up, he had a job that kept him from home. Her mold of a male relationship was based on one of a distant and unavailable man. (See “Daddy Dearest”) So she has always dated distant and unavailable men, now the funny part about it is…she is distant and unavailable. She finds men that behave like her father, but in turn are also, just like her. A little deeper...

Now some of you are like, “but I’m not distant but he/she is!” My response is, then that’s not the lock and key. Most of us only see the superficial, so here’s a few tips to let you know if you truly date “opposites” or you two might have more in common than you think:

If you have been in abusive relationships…you’re the same.
If you have been repeatedly cheated on…you’re the same.
If you date “dead beat” men/women…you’re the same.
If you have given ultimatums, but didn’t follow through…you’re the same.

And here’s why…the reason people abuse and allow themselves to be abused is the same reason, just like getting cheated on. Mutual low self-esteem, fear, and insecurity are the tools of the trade here. If you support a non-productive person, then something about that parent/child relationship is what you both need, it takes two to be co-dependent. And as for ultimatums…if you give them and don’t follow through, you didn’t truly want what you were demanding…just like them.

I know for a lot of folks out there this one is going to hurt, opposites don’t attract…at the core…you’re dating yourself. Once you realize and accept this, then you can start making better decisions in mates if need be, and honestly, some of you don’t. Some of you have had nothing but great dating experiences. Some of you met and married your true love straight out of the gates. But if you’re like the young lady and haven’t been so lucky, give it a little thought. So before you go heading out looking for the next contestants for a “Love Connection”…keep this in mind; I’ll leave you with what I left her:

Why try to put so much emphasis on what is different when you’re talking about building something together? Understand that who we date is a reflection of who we are, so you might need to learn yourself a little bit better, before you let the next one slip their key into your lock.

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