By Liz Pardue-Schultz
I’m not demanding anything extreme from anyone who loves me. While I might love a few grand gestures in my life, I don’t need a bunch of photo-op-worthy scenarios staged to litter my social media feeds with. I don’t need you to blow my mind with gifts all the time and you know what? I don’t even need you to be consistent in how much energy you’re putting in day-to-day.
I’m realistic enough to see that everybody’s personal capabilities ebbs and flows dependent on where and how we can spread our attention. I’m an adult; I have responsibilities, too. I get it.
But what I do need is for anyone I’m in a relationship with to meet me in the middle — that’s a necessity. I need someone who is going to see the bar I’m setting for the amount of effort I’m giving to “us” and at least match that.
And if I love you, I’m going to want to show you how much I care. That’s just my nature. I’ll shower you with all the love and affection and attention you need, and even if you come right out and say, “Hey, what I really need is a little space to breathe and find myself but we’re still good,” I can give you that.
When I love someone, I can’t help but want to make them happy. I’m ‘Team You’ all the way.
However, I’m tired of being with people who assume everything is “fine” because I’m still hustling to make them happy. I’m exhausted showering someone with love without being showered in return on occasion.
I’m not here just to fawn all over someone I adore exclusively; I want someone who will fawn all over me right back. I want someone who is ‘Team Me’, too.
Isn’t that the whole entire point of a relationship? Isn’t the point of me deciding how to meet your match, settle in and share my life with someone else so that we both have a mutual source of encouragement, fulfillment, and love? What kind of idiot thinks that another person’s sole purpose in life is to serve him or her?
I’m done playing personal assistant to someone else just because I love them; I’m ready to be a cheering section for someone who is a cheering section for me. I want someone to love me enough to take care of me when I’m sick the same way I will when the tables are turned. I’m ready for someone who will hold my hand and prop me up through my darkest moments with the faith that I’ll reciprocate when the time comes instead of playing into unrequited love.
In fact, I can go ahead and guarantee that I’ll do so even more confidently because I’ve been fueled by your love and efforts put into us. This doesn’t have to be something taxing on both of us to maintain a couple; the whole idea is that we have a symbiotic relationship that propels each other forward with our love, efforts, and confidence that the other will just bring as much to the table.
That’s what real, true, sustainable love really is, isn’t it? It’s knowing how to meet your match. It’s knowing that the person you admire and desire isn’t just returning favors or repaying debt but is honestly investing time and energy into you out of love the same way you can in return.
If that isn’t what love is, I don’t want it.
This article originally appeared on YourTango.
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