Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Fluid Dynamics...

From in the what?

I was up all night last night thinking about the roles people play in our lives and the labels we assign to those roles and then how we tend to relegate people to those roles as if the labels were there first and relationships have to be decided in accordance with them rather than the other way around.

"You're my friend so we could never date."
"We sleep together, suddenly you wanna talk and be friends too?"
"You're my boss, isn't it too weird to go see the penguin movie together?"

We tend to place these self-imposed restrictions on natural interpersonal development because of some "rules" that exist even though nobody wrote them down. But thinking back, I realized that some of my most rewarding and memorable relationships were those in which the dynamic made either a gradual or dramatic shift into another realm, causing questions like "Are you friends?" and "Did you ever date?" to become unanswerable.

My friend and I didn't become close until after our relationship was over and we suddenly felt more comfortable sharing our feelings and doing the whole teenage sexual exploration thing.

Putting a label on a relationship can be a dangerous thing because it can cement that relationship into eventual stagnation. To some people "boyfriend" means "never will be a friend" and "sex partner" means "never will be someone I trust", but that limits the gradient of emotions and interactions that the relationship will allow. But this also isn't to say having a "boyfriend" is wrong.

It may appear that following my logic on this issue is like driving along a downward slope to polyamory and incest with a cinder block on the gas pedal, but it's not. I guess the point is to encourage you to respect the labels you have placed on your relationships by constantly scrutinizing them and stretching their limits. Let things change instead of die. This is so important. It will allow you to keep things fresh and reinvent the way you appreciate the people in your life, but more importantly, you'll come to realize that even if something doesn't work out like you'd hoped, there is still a world of possibilities for where it can go.

You don't ever have to really lose someone if you're willing to allow the way you see or interact with or love them develop organically around your experiences. This is a supremely comforting thought that has helped me through a lot... and allowed me to sleep.


Blogger Vasoooo said...

I always felt one cannot have a fulfilling relationship if you cannot converse/be/comfortable/open with each other as friends. An organic growth requires that openness and acceptance.

4:34 AM  
Blogger protocool said...

it takes two hands to clap, if both want to grow and change the labels great, any resistance from either one kills it, but naturally of course, this is the way to go and see the beauty of it all, how many roles, how many relations can u have with one single person? how much more there is to him and u? :)

12:45 PM  

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