When we were young, it was easier to love (or be in lust with) the outer appearance of a man without really considering actual long-term compatibility. But as adults, I would hope that when one is considering starting a relationship, they would care more about the goals and character of the person they’re pursuing than their sexual abilities or simply the way the person after their affections makes them feel. I was asked a peculiar question over the Fourth of July weekend that had me questioning the necessity of “love and affection” in a relationship. Should romantic intimacy be the only goal when seeking a life partner or is it fair to approach a long-term relationship like a business investment? If you plan on spending the rest of your life with a person, wouldn’t it be smart to consider doing so with a person who shares the same ambitions when it comes to achieving important life goals?
For instance, it’s similar to the decisions you make when preparing to purchase a new car. How silly would it be to make an investment on a vehicle that did not possess the full capacity to help you accomplish your goal of getting from point A to point B? If it looks so good on the outside and makes you so proud to be in the driver seat, but you can’t get anywhere with it, why did you invest in the car in the first place? In terms of an intimate relationship, if the goal is to spend the rest of your life with a person, how important is it to find someone who can help you get from point A to point B? This is not a concept related to marrying for money or career advancement, but a logical concern when choosing a life partner to support you in reaching your full potential.
Have you ever known a couple that seemed to be destined for one another? They were the type that completed each other’s sentences, couldn’t keep their hands to themselves and seemed to have effortlessly maintained the spark in their relationship. All that is nice until you realize that when it comes to their quality of life, it looks like the blind leading the blind. I know I am not the only person that has questioned the reasons behind why two people would stay together when it’s clear that they are not beneficial to one another in more ways that just looking cute as a couple.
Now imagine for a moment that you did meet this person who, like Ne-Yo says, makes you better, but he is rarely available to you (because he’s chasing his dreams) and when you are together there isn’t much passion or affection between the both of you. Could you endure a relationship such as this one? If you and this person made an excellent partnership of sorts in business but had very little in the emotional connection department, could you feel complete in this relationship or would you feel like something is missing?
Thinking on all of these questions, I can’t imagine any adult relationship that would survive on sexual intimacy alone. The consensus among many married couples I know is that when it comes to passion, after a while, it fizzles out, and therefore, there must be another element to the relationship that keeps it alive. On the other hand though, I can’t really say that a business-style relationship has any chance at long-term survival either. If that were true, side chicks wouldn’t be winning. We wouldn’t swoon over movies about passionate love affairs between people who naturally shouldn’t be together but seem to be created for one another (I adore Titanic by the way). These questions cannot be answered without carefully considering the necessity of both arguments and figuring out what it is you’re looking for in a long-term love. Of course it’s beneficial to love a person who can match your drive to accomplish goals, but doing so long-term without any real emotional connection would be lonely wouldn’t it?
When it comes to healthy relationships, I think the answer to what is necessary is relative. You have to know what it is you’re looking for and where you see yourself down the road. But no matter what kind of relationship you prefer, never settle for less than what you deserve.
Opal Stacie is a freelance writer out of the Miami area. Keep up with her on twitter @OpalStacie.