Monday, June 7, 2010

Settling vs. Settling Down

Maybe it's the fact that I am getting older, or the fact that I just moved away from my boyfriend (or ex-boyfriend?),  or maybe it's because I'm on Tylenol PM.  Regardless, I have been thinking a lot about marriage and settling down and being happy with someone.  I want to know if it really exists.  Like can you really be happy and passionate about someone every single day for the rest of your life, or do you have to settle for someone who brings you comfort and security? 

Being the passionate person that I am, I always dreamed of being with someone just as passionate as me.  And of course, he would be passionate about exactly the same things as me.  He would be a photographer, and like to listen to the same kind of music, and he'd want to go out on exactly the nights I want to go out and he would want to stay in on exactly the nights that I want to stay in.  And he would be passionate about art and life and creativity.  I dreamed he would write me epic love poems about me and come home with hand made nick-knacks for me every night.  I believed that I would find someone who valued the exact same things as me, in exactly the same scale.   He would be romantic, and sweet, and funny, and caring and everything my little heart could have ever wanted.  But I am starting to wonder if this is where my problem is...

How can anyone be exactly everything I need them to be at every moment of every day?  How can I expect someone to know and feel and want and need and be passionate in exactly the same fashion as me?  That's absurd, right?...

But I guess my bigger question is where do I draw the line.  What things am I willing to give up?  What things can't i live without?  What things am I okay not getting from my boyfriend and/or lover and/or husband.  What things can I bring to myself without someone else's help?  And if I let go of some of those things that I need, is that settling?  or just settling down?

Part of this grown up process has taught me that I can't expect things from people.  I have to be able to provide them to myself and I have to be content in who I am and what I can do to make myself feel joy and loved and happy even if someone else isn't doing it for me.  I have to foster my creativity, I have to follow my own dreams, and I have to listen to my own heart's callings. 

I guess what I am trying to say is that my last relationship gave me things I never had before: comfort, security, trust, loyalty, honesty and safety.  So for me,  it got boring.  There was no passion, or fire, or any real sparks on a daily basis.  Not to say that there was no passion at all, but it wasn't very frequent.  I want both, passion every day and trust every day.  But I don't know if both things exist.  My previous dysfunctional (but passionate) relationships were exciting because I never knew what to expect.  There was always some sort of danger, or harm or insecurity just lurking in the corner waiting to come out and attack.  There was passion because there was nothing else in those relationships.  So, I am just wondering if you can have passion and security?  Do they exist together?  And if I give up on one or the other am I settling or settling down?


  1. darling. i totally miss you....let's be artsy soon...i mean it! let's plan a scrap date!
    your blog is fantastic. i love your thoughts, quotes, are truly an amazing woman.
    i can't tell you how much i relate to your recent post and would love to chat anytime.


  2. It’s so interesting, KC, that you would use the term settling, because that’s exactly what I’ve been thinking about lately. Still, my list of desires in a man keeps growing!

    My friend John once told me, “I think when you get older, you realize you aren’t going to find the perfect person, so you just settle for one you get along with.” He just celebrated his sixty-third birthday in England, where he now lives…single.

    And we have to understand that we aren’t perfect, either—not even to ourselves. Don’t give up anything, except other men. If a man doesn’t like you as you are, hand him his hat, because he might not be happy with himself.

    I agree with you on desiring a passionate man who is passionate about the same interests, sports, staying home or going out. It is a couple’s common ground that keeps them strong in the inevitable downtimes.

    We cannot feel passionate about each other every day. Several sets of friends who have been married for two and three decades are now divorcing, but that is not at all surprising, nor do I think it is bad, unless one person is unkind to another.

    So many factors weigh into the coupling equation: sleep, health, career, friends, emotions, leisure activities. Some would disagree, but I believe chemistry can keep a couple strong, because even after a disagreement, it’s certainly sportsmanlike to make up in bed and be able to giggle off any negativity—naked!

    Enjoy all your thoughts and emotions—they’re all good, because you’re contemplative, you’re willing to learn and test the water. Just don’t jump in too soon. Ugly stuff comes out later, and it seems there is always some ugly stuff. Partners just need to decide what they can tolerate.

    Have no expectations. Because you write excellent thank-you notes, don’t expect others to. Because you create the most thoughtful, detailed scrapbooks, don’t expect your man to write you a poem or bring flowers. (Of course, if he doesn’t, wear steel-toed boots!) Just make sure you find someone who loves you no matter what and who respects you as much as he desires you to respect him.

    And know, in all my years of living, men will always want more than one woman, so all the comfort, security, trust, loyalty, honesty, and safety you might feel for a year is only temporary.


    Watch for a future blog about what I want in a man and why I don’t want a man on

    Oh, Aspen just finished painting your room a really cool khaki color, 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, June 9, 2010.

  3. Renee, we can meet anytime. Let me know, send me an email or text or call and let's for sure plan something. I need to be crafty/artsy/creative soon.

    Auntie, thank you for all your insightful wisdom, now it's just a matter of putting it into practice. The most pertinent thing I heard was "have no expectations"...and i think once I start there all the rest will sort of fall into place. Relationships with men are complicated, and as I am getting older they are getting more complicated. I'd much rather be naive, sixteen and blissfully ignorantly passionately mad for someone. Those were the days.

    Tell aspen hello, and that Khaki sounds like a wonderful color choice for my room.