Saturday, August 23, 2008

Settling Matters Of The Heart ~ The Cardinal Rules Of Love

One of my very dearest fellow lion owners from the Shameless Lions Writing Circle; Rel of Under The Microscope (and his lion Zaccharias), recently posted a question regarding couples who settle for each other, when they are perhaps not well suited for one another.

Is it okay to settle? Rel asked.

My heart and mind were stirred into a tempest with this query... as I have a very strong belief about it. It is one that is well known to my friends, and usually shared emphatically with those who ask me about it. My response to Rel was this:

I am sure that it is a matter of opinion; and for some, yes... settling is fine, they'd rather have someone than be alone.

For me... absolutely not.

I'd never, ever settle. If it's not absolute, true, real love then I don't want it. I am worth that. I am worth being loved for who I am, all of my days, by one who could not imagine waking up without me by his side every day of his life, and one who wouldn't want to.

And he is worth being loved like that in return, for as I expect it, so would I give it, to the nth degree.

What is real love, but living your life with a partner whose existence is the air that you breathe, one who fills your heart with fiery passion, strong love and peaceful contentment, and who, by their love and devotion, is the inspiration that lifts the wings of your soul to reach ever higher, to be the best that you can be... and then, to give all of that back to your mate with every fiber of your being out of the necessity of love, because your heart would burst if you did not; you could know no other way to exist than to give all of yourself to him, as he does to you.

What is settling for mediocrity in the face of that? It is nothing, and I would walk away from nothing, every time. I would rather be alone than in a lie. If I settle, then what do I believe I am worth? No better than sufficient? Acceptable? What do I believe that my partner is worth then, if I am settling for mediocrity with him... then that makes him less than he should be worth in the eyes of one who should love him without limits.

I have seen too many cold and loveless relationships die, or exist like a hollow and empty shell for no beneficial reason. Life is far too short to live like that; without love, within a lie. If it's not the real thing, it isn't worth the endeavor.

Thank you, Rel. This was a very good question.


Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

What a fascinating post and such an amazing topic! You know, I've met people who've settled - and have been horrified that they've done so - only to learn, many years later that they grew to love one another and grow comfortable with each other and became really happy together. Perhaps, they shouldn't have settled, perhaps they should have waited it out, but then again perhaps for them, this was the right course of action.
Roads and journeys, horses and courses. We learn and grow from all our encounters and often what we think is right at one time, proves not to be, and often what we thought was just "settling" proves to be so much more.
I think, ultimately, it depends entirely on the individual journey of each soul.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

I agree with you completely, dear Vanilla, as I said in the beginning, it is a matter of opinion.
To each his/her own, there is no one size fits all.

I am very glad for those people who grow to love each other; I think that must happen sometimes in arranged marriages. Each learns to love the person that they are with.

Thank you, wonderful lady, for your thoughts. I always look forward to hearing from you.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

*~*{Sameera}*~* said...

So beautifully put dear!

Many a time people settle for much lesser and then try to build their love around it,forsaking many tiny desires in the process.And it is those special somethings that you outlined which matter and anything other than the best is just a compromise with oneself and their partner,triggered by circumstances-internal or external.

Indeed,you deserve it all and may you be blessed with your soulmate soon(if you have not already found him that is) :)

Suburbia said...

What about those, who think they have it all, only to lose it along the way somewhere? It happens, sadly.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

It does happen, Suburbia, and I've seen it many times. Marriages of more than 25 years shattered by betrayal and desertion.

It was this very point that started Rel's post. He was observing a man and a woman who had both come out of their broken marriages to find solace with each other; but these two were not together for love, and that hollow companionship comforts not the heart, only the body, and that seed cannot grow when planted among the dry rocks of a brief and shallow encounter, instead of the rich and fertile soil of real love.

Nothing is constant save change, but there are loves that last a lifetime; I've seen those too, and they are precious and hard won, but they exist. That is what I would have, and nothing but.
For others, the bar may not be set so high, for the price of this standard is as lofty as the goal.

Some may deem it acceptable to find sufficiency in a mate and hold to that, as long as they can.

I am not one to settle for less than what I want, and I think no less of those people who do; to each their own. If they are happy, then bless them with it.

Thank you for your words and thoughts, friend.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

Sweet Sameera,

What wonderful sentiments, and true.
I've done that... been in that place in which I've sacrificed more than was ever gained for no benefit to the partnership as a whole, and have walked away with the lessons and more.

There is rarely a good reason to compromise ones own self, and if it were true love, it would not need to be done.

Thank you, lady.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Pawlie Kokonuts said...

I shall be circumspect on these shores of introspect and retrospect: I'd be abject if too forthwith. Do we not all settle every day over Something or other?

Anonymous said...

Well I had a empty relationship for a long time... now I am on my own instead. Cant decide which is better...

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

Dear PK,

As we reflect on this subject, it is with respect that I redirect the objects of your intellect to recollect that this aspect was solely regarding love...

We do settle in different ways every day, excellent point. But... love is the grandest and most significant part of life; should we settle on a matter that is so monumental in our lives?

Hello Mutley,

I'm very sorry to hear that.
Perhaps there is more to you now without your former friend, than there was when the two of you were together?
Only you could know.
I hope you find an ideal mate, if that is what you want.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Remiman said...

My dearest, dearest Scarlett,
Thanks for the highlight.

Your response is truly the you I've come to know and I would expect nothing less from you..."settling is worse than nothing."

Both of our blogs invited varied opinions on the apects of settling. I, myself am not averse to settling per se. I.e., I could find satisfaction, happiness even in a "B" rather than an "A" in, say, chemistry, and like that.

On the other hand an "F" would be unacceptable.

How does this relate to my feelings about relationships in general and love in particular? I set no hard and fast rules: Relationships are dynamic and as such must change with time. I think repect is essential. Compromise is necessary. Joy and fun when you are together is mandaory but joy and fun in separate interests is essential also. Setting perfection (a preconceived idea of perfection) as a goal is a good starting point. Working toward perfection as an end point is, to me, a better goal.

As always, your maturity and insight are a delight for me to ponder!

Anonymous said...

While I completely agree with you, there's a catch to this though. I've seen so many people who believe a relationship will work itself out if it's a good one, and they don't have to work on it or compromise at all. Then when they find out it doesn't work out, they conclude that person is not the right person for them and they keep looking for that one magical love.

I've been in a relationship for 4,5 years which someone who I absolutely love, but that's not to say everything magically works itself out. We still have to compromise and disagree on things, and arguments don't solve themselves. But that doesn't mean it's not real love and that you should give up. Not that I would call it 'settling', it's just that real love doesn't always give you wings...

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

Dear Rel,

You are so very wise and kind, thank you.
"...Relationships are dynamic" I love that you said that, it's true. And I sometimes wonder if aiming for perfection is unrealistic, but even then, I could still not settle.

I was thinking of D and F mates when I wrote this.
But perhaps there is some comfort zone in the middle for most people, yes?

Thank you for the idea to begin with!


There is no perfect person; no ideal mate waiting in the wings (if there were, then I'd be no match for them, as I am far from perfect myself), but there are right matches, I believe.
And that's what I am talking about. Someone very right for someone who is very right for them, and then working on building a love from that, that will last a lifetime.
A dedicated, passionate, selfless, true and real love that lasts always, from each one, for each one.
Nothing less than that.
Thank you for your insight!

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

exskindiver said...

very deep and you speak with such conviction that i actually envy.

(this is me clamming up)

Wanderlust Scarlett said...


No clamming up!
Lady, you have a wonderful husband and two sweet baby girls, and you are *there*!!
You have what we are talking about!
So what's there to be envious about?

I am so very glad for you that you have this love in your life. What a wonderful blessing!!

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Yes, oh yes! I agree with you completely, Scarlett, and your answer ranks with the greatest of modern love poetry.

I really have nothing to add except, "I'll have what she's having."

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

Dearest Hearts,

I blush. Thank you, you are too kind.
But, I am very glad to be in company with such a lady as yourself, if your agreement with this perspective gives us mutual company.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

The W.O.W. factor said...

Got here thru the "Black Box"...This is a wonderful post!!! So well stated! Your last paragraph says it all!

rel said...

the couple described in my piece have separated recently and gone their separate ways; more satisfied then when together by all reports.

I must revisit this topic of settling again, now four years hence.