Love conquers all, they say. And there’s many a tale of love so intense that lovers have resisted all opposition to come together. Romeo and Juliet are legends among lovers everywhere, after all. What one wonders is whether such youthful emotional overcharge would have endured over time, had they survived beyond the initial passion. Would they have been compatible, coming from different mindsets with different worldviews?
We all love the ‘happily ever after’ ending to every love story. However, psychologists suggest that it is often a surge of hormones that leads to a fixation and infatuation with a person of the opposite sex that catches our fancy — something also known as the folly of youth! I can’t help agreeing that this may actually be the case sometimes.
We’ve all gone through youthful crushes that seemed like our own ultimate love stories and have survived many a heartbreak before we found ‘the one’. The question is, how much discernment of the true qualities that one’s psyche seeks is really involved in this ‘love’. Rose-tinted glasses gloss over many facets that later bring about disillusionment — differences in the notion of boundaries, commitment, lifestyle and more.
I know of a man from an elite, well-known family whose earlier love interest and now wife, turned out to be a kleptomaniac. Many a wayward quality may not be recognised in the flush of initial romance. It is as they say — you don’t know a person till you live with them. Instances like this one are probably why older generations and traditional societies, especially in the subcontinent, are generally mistrustful of the judgement of the youth and even today, marriages are arranged by the elders.
Like most romantics at heart, I do like a love story that ends well. Ultimately, if you are in a relationship, there needs to be a respect for differing as well as shared perspectives and preferences for life apart from the will to make it work. After all, if you don’t share the same views on commitment in a relationship, it won’t matter how good your chemistry is or how attractive you find each other.
Also, while you must try and focus on the desirable aspects of your partner, an openness for differing mindsets, empathy and an ability to see the bigger picture are essential. You will need to establish a shared understanding of core values, maturity and most importantly, mutual philosophies, shared ethics, moral codes and integrity.
It is wise to discuss pragmatically what works for both. Similar backgrounds in culture, education, community, economic status and values can make a relationship more harmonious, but there is no reason why harmony cannot be found in an amalgamation of different value systems and beliefs. Love is beyond guarantees and good luck, good karma and optimism are essential for any of its manifestations to find fulfilment.
Conflicts can arise over different world views and an inability to understand where your partner is coming from. But if you keep your minds open and understand your boundaries, your way ahead can be a peaceful one, based on the principle of mutual respect and a willingness for constructive dialogue.
The writer is a columnist, designer and brand consultant. Mail her at email@example.com...