We are groomed to accept toxic love.
Perhaps this started with the story of Romeo and Juliet, star-crossed lovers who were doomed to death at the onset?
For whatever reason, the stories we tell and are attracted to affirm these types of love stories.
Romeo and Juliet may have started it, but literature is rife with toxic love stories. From Heathcliff and Catherine in Wuthering Heights to Edward and Bella in Twilight.
Romances that start in a whirlwind wreaking havoc on all involved or in close proximity to the danger zone.
Why are these the stories that have become the romanticized ideal, telling us that ‘real love’ comes with a price, and that price is often pain and suffering?
If you really love someone, you’ll live in misery for them in your yearning.
At least, this is what the stories we are shown ad nauseam tell us that love looks like.
If we continue looking at Romeo and Juliet we see an instant spark and chemistry between two people who are not supposed to love one another, families being sworn enemies and all.
Perhaps their love could bridge the gap of animosity and hatred between the two families, that is if they were not teenage codependents who really don’t know one another.
All they do know is that their genitals are tingly.
Let’s also not forget that just earlier that morning Romeo had been bemoaning Rosaline and his unrequited love for her.
Until he spies Juliet.
Then it’s love… err… lust at first sight.
And this story has been a blueprint for so many that have succeeded it.
This, my friend, has toxicity written all over it.
Love shouldn’t be a battlefield, sorry Pat Benatar.
True romance shouldn’t be consumed by doom and gloom.
Life is already difficult enough and we don’t want to make it more difficult by inviting toxic love stories in.
This isn’t to say that relationships are not complex and pose unique challenges.
However, relationships shouldn’t be full of drama, conflict, controversy, and angst.
Though oftentimes these are the relationships we jump into with both feet, groomed to think this state is normal, desirable, acceptable, and — dare I say it — sexy.
Perhaps there is even a belief that this particular strain of strong emotions is necessary for passion.
Mature adult love, the kind that provides peace, calm, comfort, and space for evolution and growth seems almost boring in comparison (especially if it’s falsely assumed to be devoid of passion and thrill).
One in which tension, anxiety, and butterflies are not the norm should be what we strive for, though.
The absence of these emotions is an indicator from our body that we are safe and secure… that we are home.
Perhaps it’s time we rewrite all the love stories?
Your Trusted Friend ♥