Tag Archives: love

Confessions

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For a while, I’ve been lurking through this Facebook page where married women post anonymously and ask the members of that group for advices.

Different women, same dramas, same problems. So, I decided to write my 428 cents in the hopes to enlighten, empower, and maybe, just maybe, put a little bit of direction to those who are lost.

Disclaimer: I am not Egyptian, and I know there is a massive cultural difference, but I still believe that love is universal, so, here we are.

This started out as a response to Confession No. 1661, but halfway through, I started writing about the common, recurring sentiments that most women in this group share. So, I thought I’ll post it here instead.

My problem with Egyptian standards is that a lot of people are blinded by noise and clutter. (Sex isn’t good, he’s not financially stable, I’m afraid his mum will make my life miserable, I don’t like his sisters, he had past relationships. I had past relationships. Blah, blah, blah.)

Ok, I’ve lived in Cairo for 5 years and I understand the culture, and how people think, and I respect it. But IT DOESN’T MEAN THAT I AGREE WITH IT.

Financial status is not an issue. Educational background and social class is not an issue. The issue here is how well you know each other, and whether or not you know him enough to actually say ‘yes, I love him and can accept him for who he is–both his good and his bad.’ Because that is what love is. Finding a partner is not about how big the stone on your finger is. It’s about accepting each other’s past, living together in the present, and working together to build a future.

I’m writing this in the context that we are all women in this group, and I can go on and on about how I think relationships work/fail. And honestly, ladies, WE TAKE THE LOVE WE THINK WE DESERVE.

Of course we shouldn’t settle for anything less, (we heard this so many times because if it was that easy, no one would have to repeatedly remind you.) But the problem that I see in most of the confessions is that it’s coming from women who are lost, broken, scared, insecure, and unhappy.

So, how about we start by finding ourselves and understanding who we really are? (In this case who YOU are.) Be the person you want to be (it’s never too late, I promise you. Even if you’re single, engaged, married, divorced, young, old, it’s never too late. You can still work on a goal and achieve that goal. Start over if you have to.)

Then, mature a little bit–meaning, understand what it is that you want for yourself, what kind of partner are you looking for? But most importantly, what kind of partner are you? Relationships will not take off if it’s one sided. Both people involved have to put effort and time to cultivate it. But before you jump to a relationship, ask yourself: if you strip this man off his educational background, social class, financial status–WHAT WILL BE LEFT OF HIM? Does he have values? Does he have respect? Does he have integrity? Because a good man is not defined by his family or his background, or the noise that surrounds him. A good man is defined by his actions, motivations, and intentions.

And for those women whose problems are about their husbands wanting them to strip tease or lap dance for them, or to those women who think they have a problem because their husbands don’t enjoy sleeping with them, or their husbands tell them that they’re boring, and not good and blah blah blah… First of all, I commend you, because you show dedication in your marriage and how you ladies are willing to move mountains for your husbands. But the same dedication is also breaking my heart because you are even considering that something is wrong with you. Let me ask you this, will your husband move mountains for you too? Will he go through that length to satisfy you? Will he put you on his priority list? Will he give you time and attention and dedication? Everything takes practice, sex even more. But it will not improve on its own. Just like everything else.

I’ve also read confessions about women in dilemmas, asking the community if they should be honest about their past. I’ve read comments saying, no don’t tell your boyfriend/fiancé/husband this or that because it will cause problems. I’m not perfect and I don’t tell my partner everything, but I make sure that when I’m with someone, my conscience is clear and that he is with me because of who I am and not because of who he thinks I am. I will always choose to be liked for who I am than be adored for who I am not. Stay true to yourself, woman. And if your bf/fiancé/husband can’t handle the truth, then he doesn’t deserve all the good that comes with you. Another way to go about this is making sure that you are honest with the other person before the relationship even starts. Like, SERIOUSLY, NEVER (and I say never ever) START ANYTHING UNLESS YOU REALLY REALLY KNOW THE PERSON, AND THAT PERSON REALLY REALLY KNOWS YOU. If you were both honest before the relationship starts, then you wouldn’t be in this predicament in the first place. We expect men to accept our past–to accept us for who we are, right? Let me tell you this, YOU will also have to make peace with your past.

Your past makes you who you are today. And I know women shouldn’t be sleeping with men unless they’re married (in Egypt.) But if you had, (first of all, always practice safe sex) let me tell you this, the only thing that went wrong was you fell in love with the wrong person. And there is nothing wrong with that. Recognising that you loved the wrong person is not a sin, or a mistake, or a weakness, but rather a STRENGTH and a sign of MATURITY that you are taking responsibility of your actions, that you have learned from it, and that you are so much WISER now.

I can only hope that everyone here will be in relationships that are meaningful, and genuine, and devoid of noise and clutter.

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Stop Lying To Yourself And Just Love

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I am not going to talk or write about love here, so you can breathe now. I mean, seriously, why would I do that? Ew. Gross. So cheesy, so high school. Who does that?

Disclaimer: I am going to talk and write about love here. I mean, seriously, why wouldn’t I do that?

I am convinced that no matter how we try to veer away from it or act like we don’t care, a lot of things, if not everything, still breaks down to love.

For instance, why do we have this lethal habit of checking our phones every minute when we know it’s not on silent? Why do we get a heart failure when we read that deadly ‘seen’ icon on facebook and receive no reply? Why can’t Friday come any faster? Why do we want to know their middle names, their favorite colors, and why do we want to know everything right now?

Wouldn’t it be a lot easier if we send that person an actual message instead of gouging our eyes out because they haven’t texted us back yet? It’s like complaining that you never won the lottery when you know you never bought a ticket!

Either it’s love or you’re stupid, and I refuse to think you’re stupid.

It is love. I’ve said that to about every guy who came into my life, to every shoe and dress that perfectly fit, to every paperback I actually read, to every single track I played on repeat, every movie that made me tear up. It is love.

And yes, I know it sounds too naive, too infantile to call all these ordinary, everyday things love when it should be said with proper caution and utmost care. Love is something–an idea, a feeling, an expression so massive and so heavy that we only dare use it when we talk about Titanic, or the epic love story that Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy had.

Love is the Voldemort of our vocabulary. It must not be named. As a general rule, we can’t just drop it like a bomb or we risk having a second Hiroshima.

No one ever say it anymore (with the exception of happily married couples and romcom movies.) I hardly even hear it (with the exception of anyone from my side of the family and almost every other pop song.) I hear friends refer to it as physical attraction. Some call it emotional connection. Others may have used the term pleasure or just for fun, or something casual and temporary. They call it an affair, a fling, a thing. A thing, that’s right. It’s an interest, a quest, a challenge. It’s the cat and mouse game. The impossible chase. I know a few people my age who still calls it a crush. Yes, having a crush still happens even now. Come on, you think late 20s is about maturity, and epiphanies, and wisdom? WRONG!

Different labels, different names. We call it everything else but. Because it’s safe. Because it poses no danger, because there is no pressure, no obligation, no responsibility, no nothing.

It can be anything else but. That’s why we put up this wall and keep people away. No one can be let in, no one is allowed to come too close. The door is closed, sorry. So, we try to act real cool. We pretend that we have our shit together when we’re totally uncool and freaking out within.

Why can’t it be? I ask. Because it’s too soon, they say. Because we’re only hanging out. Because it’s only two mature individuals on a date and nothing else. Because we’re just friends and nothing more. Because we want the emotional satisfaction minus the drama and complication. Yeah. Because, because, because, and heaps of other excuses we tell ourselves because it scares the hell out of us.

We are afraid to be the ones who say it first. We don’t want to be the one who does it more because the moment we do, we’ve already lost. We’re already on the disadvantage. Or are we?

No one wants to be the crazy chic. No one wants to be the creepy dude. And yet we crave for that person to say it first–for that person to love us more. But maybe love is treading dangerous waters. Maybe it is infantile, and silly, and weird. Maybe it’s about the boring, minute details. Maybe loving is a disadvantage. It’s an abomination. A bomb!

Ah, the irony, we might as well call it stupid.

I think I’m sooo stupid about him.

I think I’ve fallen madly stupid with her.

I really think this is it. It’s stupid!

Or how about ‘stupid means never having to say I’m sorry’?

Or ‘it’s better to have stupided and lost than never to have stupided at all’?

Or ‘stupid like there’s no tomorrow’?

Does that make it less scary? Does that make you feel more comfortable now?

Here I am using love haphazardly even if it’s scary and makes me feel uncomfortable, not for the lack of a better word but because it is the better word. It is the word that encompasses the entire spectrum of beautiful and ugly, of sane and insane, of right and wrong, of strengths and weaknesses, of every wise and dumb decision, of every victory and loss, of that first kiss, of that last touch, of the one who got away and the one who stayed.

We have to start broadcasting our feelings the way radio programs do. It doesn’t have to be the most creative, or the most unforgettable, the most brilliant or extreme. We just have to fucking tell them, damnit! I mean, seriously, you don’t go asking for tea when you really want coffee!

Jack loved Rose, and we all know how that story went down but that’s not the point. My point is they were able to recognize and acknowledge love in a ship. In a fucking ship! Amidst icebergs, and disaster, and difference in social class status, not to mention Rose’s vengeful ex-boyfriend. So, unless you’re in a ship that is bound to hit a massive iceberg, just love.

Let’s do ourselves a big favor and just stop playing it safe. For once, love. And love proud. Love even when it’s inconvenient. Love in small doses, love all at once. Go nuclear! Love like you did when you got your first puppy. Love the way you want to be loved. Love intentionally, love unintentionally. Fall in love with that guy like you did with Nick Carter when you were nine. Love that girl like you loved your first edition comic and know that you might actually have a shot at it this time. In the grander scheme of things, it’s really simple, maybe all we need is a little bit of crazy and a lot more of love.