How do you know it's real?

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Mid, Sep 8, 2015.

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  1. In regards to "Love."

    In particular, I'm curious about people who are married/engaged or have been in a relationship for two or so years.

    How do you know it will last? What have you done to keep it going?

    We can even go with the how do you know it's not real? What made you decide to keep looking?
  2. My longest experience was a 2 year long relationship, though granted was on and off.

    I would have to say that there's a difference between knowing if your love is true, and if the mutual love is true.
    Which for me boils down to one very simple thing, logically the only love you can ever confirm is your own.

    You're the one feeling it, you're the only one well equipped enough to 100% know for certain if that love is there or not.
    Everything else you're guessing/trusting, it might be a educated trust, but it's still trust. But at the end of the day trust is the foundation of a relationship to begin with.
    And even when it's our own, that 100% isn't even 100% because you could later experience love elsewhere, and find what you formerly found to be love wasn't.

    As for how you know it's real or not?

    That I feel varies a ton on the individual for love is expressed in many different ways, which is partially why only you can truly be our own judge.
    But I think in a nutshell it would come down to if you legitimately care about them. If you for any reason had been separated by them, hurt by them etc. would you still care for them?
    If you ran into them several years later would feelings still be there? Would you still care about their well being? Even if logically you know it's better not to get involved again?

    If yes, then that's what I would say makes it real love.

    If you are required to physically see the person to have feelings for them (and I literally mean to maintain feelings. Not wanting to see them because of your feelings for them), if you are required to be treated well by them then it's probably closer to a strong infatuation or fondness to them. And don't get me wrong here, abusive relationships are something no one should be involved in, and one should never feel that they should be treated badly in order to prove themselves. But if you truly wanted a definitive test to confirm it, I would say you would need to be able to keep those feelings even after things turn ugly. But like I said above, relationships are founded on trust, if you find yourself actually needing to test/confirm that the other person loves you then clearly there isn't enough trust there to act as the foundation to begin with.
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  3. I'm currently in a relationship. I've been in long term relationships before. Wheeee~
    You don't. You know nothing and that's what makes it scary for a lot of people. That's why people get so nervous about enunciating their feelings--there is no knowing this sort of thing. In my current relationship I'm certain it'll last, but it's only been a thing for a couple months so far. So we'll see.
    If you have to artificially plump a relationship, you're only prolonging the inevitable collapse. Love is happiness shared. The best piece of advice anyone ever gave me about love is "marry your best friend." You'll spend far more time together doing taxes, chores, cooking, working, and lounging out. You know you've got a good thing going when you can be alone together and pursue your own hobbies without concern of what the other is thinking. If that doesn't make any sense, then you haven't had a good thing going for you yet.

    As for everything else? Treat them like family. Treat them the way you want to be treated yourself. If they're upset, inquire and try to cheer them up. If they're angry, exercise patience. If they need to fume about something that happened at work, give them an ear for a few minutes--or, at least, try.

    If love is happiness shared, then a relationship is a bridge. You both need to stand on your own to keep that bridge standing, and you both need to be interested in each other to share happiness. Otherwise, if one of you is constantly buckling and begging for help, all that happiness just falls into the river of sorrow below. To keep the relationship going, be yourself, and share your affections and emotions openly. If that isn't reciprocated, then it's not a relationship, and you should move on.
    When I can't discern lust from love or when I feel I need to hide myself in some way. It's as simple as that, really. A relationship built on lies is a house built on sand, it'll wash away in time and it'll do so painfully.
    I'm a hopeless romantic at heart. I've been stung, I've got my fair share of scars, but so does everyone else. The world isn't out to get you, nor does it love you, it's just plainly, patently, absolutely indifferent to your momentary spark of existence. Everything is transitory. The most intense love fades, the most thrilling passions dull, the most terrifying fears shrink. The energy you have in great bounds slowly fails you until something stops working, the clock stops ticking, and you die. The house you lived in will decay, the planet will eventually be swallowed by the sun as it goes into its death throes. The universe will continue to expand, the energy and matter of the universe will stretch into a cold, dark oblivion from which no work of art, no person, and no ferret will survive--or even be remembered.

    All things are transitory.

    You get a half-second of the universe to live.

    Spend it pursuing what most interests you, and share that with the people who cherish you most. Friends, family, and so on. Eventually, assuming a little luck and a lot of bouncing back from bad dates, you'll find the person to spend the rest of your half-second with.

    It's worth it. The brilliant spark that you leave behind in the annals of history, no matter how momentary, is unique in the way it briefly illuminates the cold progression of eternity.
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  4. Didn't last =\= not real


    I don't think there's any way to tell if it'll last or not. It's important to differentiate between love and the warm fuzzies known as infatuation though. One can last, the other never does.
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  5. I've had two relationships crossing the two year mark, so I guess I'm qualified? Yeah. Close enough.

    You don't. You really don't. This is frightening, but people change in many ways. Sometimes people grow apart. Sometimes it relied on the rush we feel during the, say, first year (this actually differs, but yeah.) My advice is to just focus on the present. The future is uncertain and to some degree, it does have to line up, but it's far more important to experience what you have in the moment.

    The most important thing is to make sure you are happy in the present. Of course, there are some future things to worry about, oh hell do I have stories, but love is happiness shared. Do fun things you both enjoy together. One thing that's really good for relationships I think is teambuilding exercises, as they reinforce trust and can be fun of and on their own. Personally I enjoy trying out new things, so if I can share that with someone that's a very strong form of bonding as well. It doesn't have to be a bunch of big things, they can be small experiences too. Routines for me personally kills all kinds of excitement. It might be different for others, though.

    Usually it all starts with this underbelly feeling. As people our decision-making organs are tied stronger to emotions than ratio. That doesn't mean doubts can't be cleared one way or another, but... That's where it starts. Generally the rule is that, if you're consistently unhappy in a relationship and it is in more ways detrimental to your person than it is good, it means you're probably going to need to have a talk with your partner.

    For love? I don't. I just live my life and either it will fall on my doorstep one day or it won't. Love is happiness shared and specifically looking for love usually means that in some aspect or another you are unhappy. I don't want to rely on another person for my happiness. I don't want another person to rely on me for happiness. So, yeah...

    That said, this might make me seem like a huge hypocrite because I occasionally go out of my way to approach people I find attractive. Heck I've even used tinder. #dealwithit. Also apparently I've grown too old for just superficial lust (even if my genitals hate me for this) but my excuse to myself is that it's also a way of meeting new people and I suppose that is my motivation. It's a way of meeting people you'd otherwise not; opening yourself up to potential experiences. What blooms from that, I don't know. I'd rather let it happen than blindly pursue it.
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  6. I just say two years as an example. A lot of younger kids think making it a month is true love and I'm like, you haven't lived kid xD. Plus with more time and experience, people have different opinions on the topic. Hell, some don't even believe in it and just do it because they'd rather not be alone.

    I am curious about the serial dater's perspective. Are they looking or just date because?
  7. I've been married for some sixteen years, and throughout there have been fantastic times, and there have horrible times I didn't think we were going to make it at all. From the very start, we had three rules to abide by, to keep us together: 1. No cheating (of any kind) 2. No physical abuse 3. No addictions. Anything bad that happens beyond that can be worked out by committed and intelligent people, one way or another (and go as long as we have, bad things are going to happen - lots of them!). One thing we never did, was treat our relationship as if it were disposable.

    Before that though, I was what you might call a "serial monogamist," dating several guys (but one at a time). If there was anything I would change about what I did then - if, say, I could go back in time? I would remove 'having sex' from the equation. I was not raised to believe anything morally about sex or dating or marriage at all, no church or synagogue or mosque, nada, nor was I raised to believe in the sanctity of my body in the act of sex. I paid for that dearly with a lot of internal torment and pain (no, no unwanted pregnancies, no STDs, just a lot of hurt because I did not understand the fullness of what I was really doing). And so if I could change anything? I wish I knew then what I know now (doesn't everyone? ;) ), and treated all of myself with the respect I deserved.
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  8. I love this post!!! I understand completely what you mean in regards to dating, sex and respect for yourself. It's also really inspiring to hear about marriages lasting so long. That's really beautiful.
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  9. There's really no way of knowing until you get there.

    I thought I had a love that would last forever, once upon a time. I spent seven years with a lady, and those were some of the best times. It just didn't last, though. I can't pinpoint a turning point (and I'm not going to go back and try), but it just didn't work out in the end.

    So the story goes.

  10. I am happily married and have been for several years.

    My husband and I first got together in high school. We dated on-and-off throughout college (we went to different universities, and mutually agreed it was in our best interests to do the college thing and be cut loose). Basically after undergrad was done, we got back together and got married several years later.

    Here is the one piece of advice I can give you, and anyone else:

    Relationships take work.

    It's a two-way street. If you want to make it work but they're not willing to put in the effort, it's not going to work. If they want to make it work but you're not putting in the effort, it's not going to work. If one of you stops putting in effort, then it's going to stop working.

    I hesitate a little to use the word "work" though. The word itself is kind of unfitting because when you're in a good relationship, it doesn't feel like work. You genuinely want to make your partner happy because they make you happy. It's not like a chore - it's just something you learn to do.

    Communication is huge. This was a really really big hurdle for me to get over because for some reason, as a teenager I used to think "If you love me, you should know what's wrong without me needing to tell you." That is stupid. It's childish and naive, and it pains me to know that some folks still think that way well into their adulthood.

    Nobody is a mind reader. If something is wrong, ESPECIALLY if you are upset with your partner/significant other, you need to talk about it! If you don't talk about it, they can't know - if they don't know, they can't fix it, and if they don't know to fix it they don't know to prevent it! It's a vicious cycle that can all be stopped if both of you are honest, upfront and open about your feelings.

    Ultimately, I do think it's possible to know, but it's the type of thing you have to feel out first. If you're confident that you could spend the rest of your life with this person, goods and bads - loving them, being loved by them, maintaining them, supporting them, putting up with their little tics and tendencies that drive you insane - if you feel you could do that for the rest of your life and if you're confident they'll do the same, then yeah. You know.
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  11. I wish people made bumper-stickers out of this quote.

    Communication. +1. Very important.
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  12. My dude and I have are going on the two year mark though we were friends first. I am not going to be like "Oh yeah, I know it is going to last because we are in love." In all honesty I don't know what the future holds. We do love each other but above all we are best friends devoted to making our relationship work and being able to communicate with one another is the main key. I think with any relationship. You have to have that willing to be open with one another and work together. A relationship takes two not one.
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  13. I JUST DID.

    I can't explain the mechanics. But I always knew when I liked someone like that and when it was no longer working for me.

    With Gibs, I knew the very day we met in real life that he was going to be FOREVER GUY. o__o It was instant comfort. Like being at home and yourself with someone. No pretenses, no worries. It was just right.

    That feeling has remained ten+ years later. Not without WORK AND COMMUNICATION though, just like others have said. 8D Sometimes we've had problems, but we've always been able to get through them and it's made us stronger as a couple.
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  14. I have had a few long term relationships. 6+ years. And to be honest, both times both parties held on too long. When it was over there was an obvious shift, and out of convenience or comfort or I don't know, the relationships continued anyway. People change over the years. Priorities, and ideals change and sometimes a person and their partner naturally drift. It's not for lack of trying. I don't think there is an absolute sure way to know something is going to last, if there is I sure haven't figured it out.
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  15. Seeing some of the posts here I think it should be noted that two individuals can love each other and the relationship still not work out for a number of reasons.
    Maybe they sincerely care about each other, but their personalities just don't connect well enough, maybe outside issues are too much pressure etc.

    It's important when evaluating things like Love that you separate feelings from the result.
    Feelings are strictly how one feels for the other, if the relationship is actually working or not however is suspect to many elements.
    Love is required, but you're not going to make it last on love alone much of the time. Which I think everyone whose said that you need to put effort and communication into your relationship realises.
    #15 Gwazi Magnum, Sep 9, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2015
  16. I'm at 6 years, engaged.

    As time goes on the one thing I have noticed about myself was my negative reactions to things she did differently. What do you mean, you don't hike? What do you mean, you shower in the morning sometimes? What do you mean, etc?

    But I discovered that my irritation was unfounded and based upon some weird belief that what I did was right simply from the force of my personal habits. Once you realize that, accepting them is very easy. It's not a question of incompatible personalities, the right initial fit, or any of that bullshit. It's about acceptance, compromise, and commitment.
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  17. That's where I'd say it goes to the "Pro's VS Con's" scale.

    In other words, whenever anyone is making a decision to stay in or leave a relationship they are doing so by evaluating the pro's and con's of it.

    Pro's could include stuff such as: Strength of Love, Similar Interest, Physical Attractiveness to one another, Charming, Funny etc.
    While Con's could include: Distance, Arguments, Lack of time to see one another (such as say from work demands) etc.

    So if in the end there's more pro's then the relationship will likely continue, more con's means a break up will likely happen.

    Plus there's the matter of extreme's.
    For example 2 miles distance is far less an issue than 2000 miles.

    A minor thing like "We shower at different times" is a far smaller thing than "We don't share any interests" or "We hold very different family and household values".
  18. I think showering at different times is better, that way I won't be late for work.


    I am absolutely certain unanun is here talking about not letting things that ultimately do not matter get to you. Seriously, gwazi, seriously. The guy is actually talking about self-improvement here.

    As for your pro and con-list, I'm just going to tell you the following. Bad gwazi, bad. Bad. Bad. Bad. You take the humanity and individuality out of the connotation of a relationship, which is for the majority an emotional bond. I've touched upon this earlier, but people primarily decide based on gut, even if the numbers stack against them. In fact, rational arguments their primary function are to make most of us feel good or bad about our emotional decision; they're influencers. Deciding whether to stay together or not is not a calculaton.

    If you go with a pro and con list, there are numerous issues. One you already mention yourself is different values attached to different pros and cons. where the problem gets even more real is trying to attach an actual numerical value and balancing it against other feelings over an extended time period because we are acually kinda whimsical most of the time. ie; it can't be charted properly at all unless you go lay down under an MRI 7 days a week or something (and then there's still a large possibility of shit being skewed).

    Secondly, even if the outcome is mostly positive, a person can decide they want more. Or perhaps despite all the benefits, there isn't enough emotional attachment to these pros. Alternatively, someone has high hopes for a relationship despite it being difficult at the time. Their emotional attachment is strong enough to believe that working harder on said relationship will in time better it.

    I know this isn't a debate thread, but a pro and con list is some abso-fucking-lutely terrible advice to give and I don't want anyone to take it, because they're likely going to hurt their selves and others with it.

    Seriously, for fuck's sake.
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  19. Kestrel I don't think we're even disagreeing here. I think there's just been a miss-communication as to what I'm saying.
    Agreed. But Unanun saw it as a negative, so for their sake I regarded as such for the example.
    You missed the point entirely then.

    All I really said was people tend to be influenced by pro's and con's.
    These could be emotional reasons too you realise.
    Emotions and Logic are not mortal enemies where one cannot be using both (Granted I generally prefer logic. But combinations are a thing).

    In fact anyone who goes into a relationship with that mindset is honestly asking for failure either way.
    If it's only logic they lose the entire emotional bond to begin with.
    If it's only emotion they won't ever be able to solve things rationally which will cause issues to snowball.
    Which is exactly what evaluating pro's and con's do...
    For god's sake I brought up a system that involves some level of reason, I'm not saying to go on an Inquisition against emotion or anything.
    You do realize I was not telling people to simply sit down and math it out right?

    "That's where I'd say it goes to the "Pro's VS Con's" scale".

    ^Note the absence of word's like 'should'?
    I was not suggesting someone do this, I was stating that this is something every human being in a relationship already does.

    I mean have you ever broken up with someone "Just because", or was there always some form of reasoning behind it?
    Did you feel you didn't connect well? Were you being hurt? Was the distance too great?
    Break ups, marriages, getting into a relationship to begin with are all done for a reason.

    Emotional reasons, but reasons where in their mind the pro's are outweighing the con's.

    Except I never provided any numbers, I never even suggested that it should be numbered.

    You evaluate the pro's and con's personally, and then personally decide for yourself what you want.
    And like I said above, I'm not suggesting people randomly sit down and plot it all out.

    This is an ongoing process, people are constantly re-evaluating things and making choices based on it.
    This doesn't even limit itself to relationships, it could be anything.
    That goes back to the individual weighing certain things more or less.
    The "Wanting more" thing would count as a con, the "lack of emotional attachment" would be a very big con.
    In which case the person has still evaluated their reasons for continuing and not continuing and then made a decision.
    Which can still be taken into consideration.
    One doesn't need to be evaluating the immediate moment... That would be rather disastrous in cases such as a couple arguing.

    This could be used in an over-all sort of deal.
    This could count as a Pro. Or if we want to be technical a Proxy-Pro.

    For it's not truly a benefit, but it's hope for a benefit, which in the case of what we're discussing serves the same function as being a reason to stay in a relationship.

    Another way one could interpret it though (and this one does require me to change my earlier posts wording) is that a break up may not even happen the second there's more con's than pro's but rather once it's reached a certain threshold.
  20. Things like these make a list convoluted. The only purpose of such a list would be organising your thoughts and topics that need be brought up. It shouldn't have any decisive power of itself, regardless of what form you present it in.
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