12 Nov My best friend is so lucky, why doesn’t my boyfriend treat me like that?
Comparers should be exiled from the world of love and honesty. I cannot understand how so many couples start a sentence with, “can you see Mary saying this to her husband?” or “Eddie wouldn’t dare treat his wife this way, he spoils her rotten”. Can we please put an end to this once and for all? What Mary and Eddie do with their respective partners is their own business. If it works for them, great, it does not mean it will work for you. Besides, no one knows what really goes on behind closed doors. Therefore the only comparing you should concern yourselves with is how you feel now about each other compared with how you felt before. Have you met, exceeded or fell short of your original expectations?
Comparing your partnerships to others’ is futile. The randomness and therefore uniqueness of our brains, biologically speaking, suggests that what worked for Eddie and his partner, or Mary and her partner, will most likely not work for you because your partner is not Eddie nor Mary, and neither are you.
Moreover, your journey to this point of your life, and of your partnership, is not identical to Eddie’s nor Mary’s. Comparing is a lazy cop out, a declaration of cowardice and this declaration goes as follows:
“I don’t really love you anymore. I have discovered that my assessment of our love was wrong. Had I known back then what I know now, had I put real effort in finding out if we, as people, truly ring each other’s bells, then I more than likely would not have decided to live with you this long. I had my doubts, but I didn’t take them seriously and here we now are.
Furthermore, I’ve invested far too much time and effort in this relationship, which means I’m somewhat reluctant to start again. Maybe we now have children and therefore I don’t trust that the best thing for them is for us to separate. So let’s continue to live together, but I will now and then find opportunities to show you how disappointed I am. Comparing us to others is just one way of showing you this disappointment. People that I trust, my real friends, will back me up when I talk about you negatively. I will not feel any guilt in all this because it’s easy for me to paint a subjectively negative picture of you to my friends. They will give me the support I seek to play the victim.
Deep down, I know this is weak and a waste of my only life. But somehow I find it acceptable to do this because you know what, everyone else does it, so why can’t I? And why should I release you now? How will that affect my status financially and socially? It all seems too complicated and besides, maybe it’s just a midlife crisis I’m going through, whatever that is.
Having considered all of the above, I think the best solution for us is to continue in our comfortable illusion of a moan filled and undersexed society approved way of life that is similar to so many of our equally dissatisfied peers.”
Anyone using comparison with others, rather than self reflection, to complain about their partner is actually saying exactly the above. The minute you find yourself negatively comparing your partner to others, it may be time to pause and reflect. If you, or your partner, can no longer effortlessly feel how lucky you are to be in the company of each other’s unique minds, then perhaps it’s time to realise you’re no longer with a compatible partner. Comparers maintain the high levels of separation and divorce.