Monday, August 24, 2015

The Knight in Shining Armor & the Damsel in Distress

When a certain idea has been continuously shoved at your psyche throughout the years, I can understand how it is difficult to stray from it. The idea of the man being some supreme savior to the poor, helpless woman is one that has been depicted in any and every way, shape and form. It would make sense for both genders to somehow feel obligated to play their respective roles even when it is against their personal nature.

Let's face it, not all men could be classified as a 'knight in shining armor'. They are human, they are flawed, and not each and every man should be expected to somehow fit the bill of the strong protector. And once we all can agree on that, instead of having false expectations of men - and men having false bravado to go with the hardware - we could get along a whole lot better. Likewise, not all women are in need of rescuing, so stop trying to save us. And ladies, stop playing the victim!! Stop waiting around for someone to save you; you are not trapped in a high tower with no way out. You need saving, start by trying to save yourself. Even if you did need saving, and he did save you, he sure as hell doesn't need to know it. You are facing difficulties in your life, as is everyone else, you are an adult and you have learned to deal, and that is what you need to show him. Otherwise, if he has taken you away from a place you do not wish to return, he just might abuse that knowledge and use it against you.

I don't know if it's deliberate, I don't know if it is insecurity, I don't know if it is some unavoidable byproduct of love, but if a man knows he has saved you from what you perceived to be a life of misery, or simply a life you were not too happy with, he somehow will come back around and hang it over your head. Whether directly - in the form of constant reminders - or indirectly - abusing you knowing you have nothing better to go back to - I have seen men use this against women a little too often. Men may do this unknowingly, but it does not make it any less despicable. Regardless of what you did for the person you love, the moment you start keeping score and start resenting your partner for it, you may start saying/doing things you regret.

No one asked you to be the almighty savior, you assigned yourself that role. And if you aren't able to play that part, don't blame it on the damsel. Especially nowadays when damsels are more tolerant to distress and don't need saving as much as before. And ladies don't give yourself entirely to a man expecting he will always put you first, you're just setting yourself up for disappointment.

When you love someone, and you need them, it seems all too dangerous to me. Loving them and wanting them in your life seems to be a safer scenario for me. Expectations need to be managed for sure. Don't rush to give too much of yourself to one person; soon enough you will realize you have no more of yourself to give, and nothing left for yourself either. That person needs to prove they are worthy of your time, effort, affection, compassion, love. Otherwise, the love you give so easily could be taken for granted somehow, someway, someday.

If you have all this pent up love waiting for the right person to just dump it all on, I have a solution for you. Look around. Look at the many people in your life; from family to friends to acquaintances to the guy at Starbucks you see every time you get your morning coffee. All those people won't say no to a little love. So rather than bottling it up for the next girl/guy who holds your hand, spread the love. When I say love here I mean it in the human, universal sense; the kind of love you find in a genuine smile. It is healthier to distribute your love and with it your attention than to have it solely focused on one person. No one person can possibly live up to all that attention without disappointing you and hurting you in the process.

For starter's, you are less likely to scare that person off, not everyone wants to get suffocated like that. Also, you are less likely to get sick of each other. You don't lose touch with the important people already in your life. You don't resent each other down the line when you realize you've been so caught up and cut off that the rest of your world has moved on without you.

A person distracting you from your troubles doesn't spell 'happily ever after' to me. When you're looking for someone to love, try to focus less on the distress and more on finding someone who makes you a better version of yourself, whether directly or indirectly, and for that betterment to be mutual. We are all in need of saving in one way or another, it should not be held against us, ever, least of all by the people we love.