Sunday, May 18, 2008

Relationships and Compromises - A conundrum

Had written this earlier – different shit from what I usually write! Please do bear with me!

Why are human relationships so difficult? I am not just referring to a relationship between partners, but every single one of them – with friends (doesn’t matter if it’s a man or a woman), with parents, with siblings, with co-workers, with bosses (and this certainly differs with the sex of the boss and either can be difficult or easy).

Every relationship needs care and has to come from both the parties involved and my personal take on why relationships are difficult is that it is because of our system of beliefs that we are brought up with, initially by our parents and later on predominantly with friends.

This has a lot to do with the fact that each person is different, has different needs, aspirations, and goals in life. I might have become cynical, but I think that they will never match with anyone else, ever. All we need to do is ensure that we at least make an effort to walk part of the way to meet the other person and it can never happen if the other person refuses to do so – lets not fool ourselves, but everyone one of us has a certain amount of a narcissistic streak in us, which leads us to believe that “I” am most important. This is not even a function of age of the individuals involved – in fact, if truth be told, as ones children grow older and become responsible (there are exceptions), the streak becomes even more prominent – maybe it is the fear of death and the realization that “I” have not got enough of what “I” thought “I” should have achieved. This is what makes them even more difficult because I believe that individuals are less open to change in the latter part of ones lives.

So what happens next? We compromise with our own set of beliefs hoping that the other person also will do the same with theirs and try and move ahead. Funny thing is we end up thinking that this is precisely what “I” have done for the majority of my life – so when will this end? The answer is simple – NEVER. We humans are social animals and no one likes to be alone – we tend to want people around us all the time – why else would we want to invite people when someone is born or gets married or dies? We need support and that very support system comes with baggage which we call compromise.

The question we need to ask ourselves – is it worth all the trouble? There is, unfortunately, no answer that will satisfy everyone. Everyone’s capability to handle compromise is different. Love is what drives us to compromise and falling out of love drives us to, eventually, end the relationship.

We need to be able to make a decision on what is more important – salvaging the relationship or satiating our ego. This, my friend, is never easy because you are fighting with the self.

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