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do not want

My love, though silly, is more brave ;
For may I miss, whene’er I crave,
If I know yet what I would have.

-from “Negative Love” by John Donne

 A few days ago, my mother and I ran into a boy, Zach, who’s a friend of my cousin, Sam (the closest thing to a brother I have). Zach has been Sam’s friend since middle school and is a groomsman in the same wedding I am a bridesmaid. Zach also happens to be my sister’s ex-boyfriend.

Zach and Kelly haven’t dated for years now, but my mother still clings to the idea of Zach being “a good boy.” I wouldn’t say he’s a “good boy” but more of an “okay boy”. My mother can’t seem to comprehend this idea. “But Brianna!” she nearly begs me, “He’s such a nice boy! I know why Kelly won’t date him. Why won’t you try? He’d be good to you!”

I tried to explain to my dear mother that I have very important and distinct characteristics for dating (which I won’t bore you with). Why should I waste my time being in a relationship with someone who 1) I’m not compatible with both in temperament and more importantly, morally, politically and intellectually, 2) doesn’t share any interests with me, and 3) I do not find attractive (on both a physical and emotional level) just so I can say I’m dating someone?

I am part of many online communities where I meet people who are literally obsessed with being single. Or they are obsessed with being alone. They date people they know are not good for them. They hook up with random people in bars. They stay with people who hurt them emotionally. People use sex as a way to fill a hole within them, to desperately affirm that they have some connection in this disconnected world. I worry about the friends and acquaintances I meet there. Has eros love and romance just broken down to a commodity we “need”, like water, just to get by in a distant and cold world? By all accounts, I think it has, for many, many people.

My mother just wouldn’t drop the topic, even hours later. “Brianna, you’re going to have to lower your expectations sooner or later or you’ll be alone the rest of your life!”

This seems insane to me! Why would I set myself up for heartbreak and conflict by lowering my standards and being with someone just to experience the commodity of eros  love (the old adage is true: sex sells)? Yes, I understand that every relationship is a compromise within itself, but why should I compromise what I feel like I need as a person just so I’m not “alone”?  Does everyone do this? Is this the dirty little secret of marriage? Did everyone lower their standards just so they could fulfill a biological imperative?

I have said many times before that I feel like I’ll never get married or have children. And you know what? I am more than fine with that. These last couple years have opened my eyes to worth I possess with out anyone else attached. I don’t believe I was made just to compliment someone else. I was made to have my own life, to bring something completely different to this world that has never been here before. That blows my mind every time I think about it. Each and every single one of us have never, ever been made before. We are new. The whole world has never seen a person quite like us.

Maybe I am made to have a “better half”. I’m alright with that But if I don’t, it’s okay. Not ever experiencing a physical, sexual love? Sounds okay to me. Because of the commodifiction of sex and “closeness”, people probably think this is crazy. Am I crazy? I don’t think so. No one has ever died because they haven’t had sex.

Am I the only one in this world who is alright with this possibility? Well, I’m not the only one but sometime I feel like it, especially among Christians. I know God said “Go forth and multiply.” But does God have multiplication as an operation in my equation? (AHAHHA sorry, worst play words ever!)

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