True Love Should Bring out the Best in Us
I read an article recently titled, “Why Nice Guys and Gals Finish Last in Love,” and was all but choked with anger by the end. This article basically advised nice people to stop investing love, time, and money in their partners; stop making themselves available and accessible; and stop rewarding behaviors like tardiness with more kindness. When nice people treat their loved ones too well (i.e. make all of the investments in the relationship), they are the ones who fall in love, not the other way around.
To remedy this situation, the author suggested nice people take a page from the books of those who are more selfish with their time and selective with their affection. This means not being available all the time and not lavishing your partner with too many good deeds, like making coffee for them in the morning. To quote: “…show them that you are a valuable and attractive person with some self-respect. Then, you can still be a decent person and find love…without being so nice others walk all over you.”
What I gathered from this article is that I have to be a diva in order to find a man who will love me. And, as a diva, I need to make constant demands so that he is the one investing. Then, and only then, will I be someone worthy of finding love.
Am I Not Good Enough?
No wonder I was so angry after I read these words. This is yet another article telling me I’m not good enough simply as I am; instead, I need to change into something I’m not. The truth is that, in every relationship I’ve ever had, I’ve always been the one to give. I’ve given of my time, money, and love. I’ve immersed my partners' lives, tried to be part of their families, and objectively considered their opinions and interests. To me, these activities are normal when you find someone you love. It doesn’t mean you’re a doormat or that you don’t value yourself, but that you’re part of a working, thriving relationship that requires constant nurturing and attention.
When each of my previous relationships failed (and believe me, every single one did), I put it in my head that the other person wasn’t right for me. I’ve said this a million times, but my first serious boyfriend was vastly different from me – he liked partying with his friends, smoking, drinking, bowling, and fast cars. When I bowl, there’s a chance the ball will go anywhere within the bowling alley building, I rarely drink, never smoke, and know nothing about cars.
My first marriage ended because I couldn’t live another moment with a narcissistic alcoholic. I was not perfect in the relationship; I worked a lot of long hours and was generally absent, but the onslaught of verbal abuse basically drove me out of the house. And my second marriage ended after I discovered he had cheated twice and made a third futile attempt with one of his ex-girlfriends.
True Love Brings out the Best
Perhaps it’s not that nice people aren’t lovable, but that they need to be loved in return by those who are also nice. I don’t believe that nice people need to change in order to be accepted, or that divas are more worthy of love than those who don’t make daily, ridiculous demands. I think true love brings out the best in both people, which automatically renders them kind and receptive to their partner's needs. My solution is this: nice people continue looking for love until they find someone who’s worthy, rather than settling for the first individual who comes along. Forget trying to be a diva… and focus on being yourself.