Thursday, February 03, 2005

The sooner the better

The sooner the better

By Bob Garon
TODAY Newspaper
Thursday, February 3, 2005 12:45 AM

Last of 2 parts

So, what to do when the courtship begins and you are faced with some tough and potentially difficult questions from the one you love? Questions like “What does your father do? (He’s in jail or is a jobless alcoholic.)” or “Did you ever use drugs?” Questions that can possibly kill a relationship before it begins.

If you tell a lie and are discovered, it could mean the end. If, however, you tell it as it is, it could also mean that the courtship is over. Many lovers will opt to take the easy way out and tell a lie, hoping to do damage control later on. There is this thinking that if love is deep enough, those things won’t matter. Perhaps, but sometimes they matter very much indeed.

I think that by telling the truth, you will get to know where the other person stands and you won’t waste a lot of time. After all, there are many others out there you can love and if the one you’re courting cannot handle some unpleasant or even ugly truths about you, then there’s a good chance he/she isn’t the one for you.

If he cannot accept that your parents are separated, better that you know it now rather than later. If she leaves you because she learns that you’re using drugs, it’s almost sure that she will go later when she inevitably learns the truth.

In fact, the sooner you get these nagging questions out of the way, the better. You might even want to let the other know the truth before being asked. That might even win you some points. We all have our skeletons in the closet. None of us has a perfectly clean slate.

This is why love always has a measure of risk. Every potential lover has the potentials of being less than advertised. None of us is without some kind of blemish. And rare is the couple that doesn’t have some surprises awaiting them after the wedding.

Dr. Harold Bloomfield has a nice way of putting it all in perspective. He writes: “I had done bad things in my life, have had bad thoughts. I am not always kind nor always generous. I have placed myself first. I have lied, cheated. I have acted out of passion which has hurt others. I have been inconsiderate, punishing, even vengeful. And I have felt guilty, tried to make amends, tried to atone, made New Year’s resolutions about becoming better. I know some very similar things about you. So I’m not ok. And you’re not ok, but that’s ok.”

If your relationship is to be healthy, you will have to love your partner who will surely be less than what you expect. There will be much that is that you will wish isn’t. And much that isn’t that you will wish is.

Still you will love despite it all and find happiness in the midst of imperfections. It is the only way to love realistically.


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