Friday, 25 May 2018

Ignoring the Signs...

Image Credit: @amandaoleander

I’m currently reading this amazeballs book (‘Women Who Run With the Wolves’) by Clarissa Pinkola Estes, who really delves into the female psyche to examine and explain various aspects of our behaviour. This lead me to reflect and think deeply about women in general and question why we tend to do some of the things we do, especially with regards to relationships. It’s no surprise or shock that women are often described as obsessed with dating and relationships - I can't count the amount of times I’ve overheard females openly express their frustration with their partners - I for one am also guilty of this. We spend so long trying to understand every minute detail about our mating partners that we forget to use the same amount of energy to understand ourselves and our feelings. For this post I will attempt to think out loud regarding how we as females can explore our psyche in order to ultimately make better decisions….

I believe as females we possess a unique ability to not only respond to and anticipate our present situations but also weigh up the pros and cons of potential long term situations. However, I believe this very unique ability can contribute to our demise when it comes to the subject of ‘love’. Take me for example - in my previous relationship with Sean (let's call him Sean for privacy's sake), I definitely was struck with a form of...let’s call it “Wishful Thinking Syndrome” (not a medical diagnosis!). There were various aspects of Sean that really atrracted me; he was very hard working, did really well for himself financially, was always there for his friends and was also very in touch with our African culture. As fascinating as all these characteristics were, they only attributed for my present situation with Sean and by no means accounted for who he would be (concerning our relationship) in the future.

I translated his hard-working ability and good finances to mean he could provide for me (if I ever needed) and (hopefully) spoil me with gifts. I translated his very logical mind and displayed dependability to assume he would be invested in my personal development and be available to advise me whenever I needed. Worst of all, I translated his cultural awareness/connection to our African culture to mean he would (relatively soon) be ready for marriage/starting a family. To no surprise, the high expectations came crashing down before me, which leads to my next point…

While I glamorised and held very highly Sean’s good points/points I felt would benefit me, I failed to pay attention to the issues he did not hesitate to present. There were various odd occurrences I somehow chose to be oblivious to - the fact that after two years of being in said relationship he refused to leave his mobile phone alone in a room with me. Or the fact that he received phone calls (at odd hours in the night) from a female he claimed was his sister. Oh, and let’s not forget when he would go on vacations to Africa and give me absolute radio silence. Not to talk of showing up to my place empty handed on my birthday or outright declining my proposal to explore the possibility of moving in together. I’m by no means a saint nor am I a victim, as I most definitely gave my share of raged revenge. However, in the grand scheme of things, I chose to stay in a relationship much longer that I should have because of my Wishful Thinking for a future that could never truly be. Typing this now, I realise how ridiculous I was to ignore such signs, but when we open ourselves to fall in love, it's very difficult to exercise logic. This leads to my next point…

Every female being has a unique voice within that guides us in this great journey called ‘life’. Whether it reminds us to take an umbrella, or not to wear those heels (as we’ll regret it later) or the bigger/deeper messages such as somethings up or he’s hiding something. We all have that voice, that intuition. I feel we quite often do not pay that voice enough attention and it ultimately becomes very quiet or even worse silent. Though I fell deeply in love with Sean, there was a (potentially) pivotal point where my intuition flagged up the red flags and warned me all was not as it seemed. Unfortunately, the volume of my intuition was not as high as that of my Wishful Thinking - which I chose to listen to over and over again. Though falling in love can be an amazing experience, it often leaves us very vulnerable and open to (dare I say) abuse and mistreatment. Looking back, I realise how important it is to see people for who they are and not what they can be - to listen to my intuition as she is always right. If anything, I would advise to take your time with dating, get to know the different depths of your partner before daring to bring your (precious and often fragile) heart to the table. Because once your heart is involved, logic is basically out the window!