Shallow Nothings: shallownothings.wordpress.com
1. On Failure. What does love mean to you? What constitutes a failed relationship? What about a successful one? Did you ever think of yourself as a failure because a relationship came to an end?
SN: Love has many definitions and forms, and I believe that a person’s experience and being, allows her to build her own definition of it. Being who I am and where I am right now, I strongly believe that love is a middle ground, a compromise, a truce, a safe place.
Love is what makes people disregard their differences, and learn to compromise at the midpoint. I think this ability to meet at the heart of the matter is what makes a successful relationship. It doesn’t always have to be rainbows and butterflies, or sweet walks in the park and candlelit dinners. A real relationship is one that has those ups, and the downs–disagreements, misunderstandings and shortcomings, but it becomes successful because these downs are overcome, and remedied.
A failed relationship, on the other hand, is one where both the ups and downs are present (qualities of a real relationship) but there is no middle on which both parties may communicate, see eye to eye and find a solution.
When a relationship fails, it’s easy to blame yourself or your partner. I would be lying to you if I said I haven’t kicked myself for contributing to the mess that once was my relationship, because I have. It’s easy to take the blame upon yourself because you are one-half of the problem. It’s what you do after you realize this that makes the difference.
2. On Being Flawed. Are you more comfortable on your own or in a relationship? Do you think there is something wrong with people who cannot or would not sustain long-term relationships?
SN: I have no problem with being on my own, but I have to admit the relationship that I have been in for the past three years has made me a different person. I can’t say that I’m whole because of this long-term relationship that I am in, but it has made me a better version of myself.
However, it isn’t for everybody. You can’t judge people who cannot or will not devote themselves to a long-term relationship because we’re all made differently. Just like how we have different definitions of love based on our experience and being, our view of relationships reflect that, too.
3. On Eros. Do you require a romantic relationship to feel fulfilled?
SN: Like I said earlier, I can’t say that I’m whole or fulfilled by the romantic relationship that I am in right now, and I’m not saying that I’m not either, but I can stand alone or be with someone and still find fulfillment. I guess it’s a matter of how content you are, and how you perceive your situation.
4. On Soul-mates. Do you believe that there is a soul-mate for everyone out there? Do you ever feel that you are only half of the equation, and will be ‘lacking’ something until you find someone to share your everyday life with?
SN: Ah, yes, soul-mates. There is an innate need in humans to feel love and be needed, and I think that the feeling of missing something is engraved in our DNAs. In other words, yes, I do. I believe that there is a soul-mate out there for each person. I do feel that soul-mates aren’t limited to our finding another person “meant” for us. A soul-mate can be a relative (non-romantic way), a pet, a talent, a hobby, an item, a cause or it could be anything, just as long as it calls to you. If it does, that is where your soul belongs, and that is your soul-mate.
5. On Self-Love. Do you think that to be loved by others you have to love yourself? What does self-love mean to you? To love, can it sometimes mean letting go?
SN: I don’t think that you need self-love for others to love you, because a person can choose to love you whether you know it or not. Especially if you like it or not, they could care less. I do feel like self-love contributes a lot in having a healthy relationship. I’m not saying this healthy relationship has to be successful, because it can be a total failure. A healthy relationship is one where you can make decision for yourself because you have self-love. If the relationship that you are in is not for you, you learn to let go of it and try to move on. If the relationship that you are in needs your attention or your push, you do it. That is the best thing about loving yourself.
6. On Fulfilment. Can we only find fulfilment in others, or is it possible to be happy and find contentment in our other accomplishments, whatever our relationship status?
SN: Like I had mentioned about soul-mates, I don’t think our fulfillment is limited to finding it in another person. It could be a number of things, some of which include non-living things, or non-items (like a cause).
7. On Interpersonal Skills. Are people in relationships simply better at ‘people skills’ than those who are not?
SN: Yes, and no. Some people get into relationships out of peer pressure, or the fear of dying alone. Some people don’t get into relationships because they want to meet different people. People in relationships are just that, people in relationships. Though I have to say that some people in relate-sionships cannot find anything to relate on!
8. On Project R. Do you think this a worthwhile project? In what way, if at all, did this project help you think through the question of “relationships”? Feel free to add here any other thoughts you may have on the subject that was not covered by the above questions.
SN: I wouldn’t have answered these questions had I thought this project wasn’t worthwhile. It’s a great idea, and a good start! I would love to see this grow and evolve into something else. What that is, I don’t know yet, but I hope to see it!