Chelsea Joy Arganbright
Bonds, Not Binds - On Relationships | 25 Years Old | Perth, Australia
People all have very different ideas surrounding love, relationships, commitment. In these modern times, we seek to balance out the ambiguity which characterizes this generation by compensating with an overzealous control. Our society places a pressure on this abstract concept of being tied to someone to the point where the other person is suffocated beyond measure by expectations which limit their ability to truly be themselves, keeping their individuality intact. In turn, the instigator of suffocation ceases to respect or value the other as they have now lost any semblance of who they originally were, the person who was fallen in love with. Resentment from both parties ensues creating friction, loss of the energy which once drew them together, and sometimes anger – or worse, indifference. One person may cheat, the other may retreat further into themselves. This process is seen all too often in an era where people try to retain something of substance and meaning amongst a culture validating invalidation: ghosting, commitment-phobia, ambiguous connections and the You Only Live Once (can’t even bear to type the acronym) mentality.
Modern relations have become a frivolous game amongst people who don’t have to be accountable. How do we handle that, as humans? When we do find something that is on our heart’s radar, beyond the white noise and static of superficial liaisons, we’re so afraid of losing it that we cling. Cling, control; we want to categorize it and place it in a little box. We lose our peripheral, expansive vision and our sight becomes tunneled. Given, this is most commonly enacted by women but I’ve most definitely found it in men too. Compensating by going entirely the opposite way which throws off the equilibrium. It’s exhausting. The more one clings to something the more elusive and fleeting it becomes. Hold onto things gently and it can grow organically without pretense or agenda. Let go of the control – not in an apathetic, complacent, or YOLO (there, I said it) way, but in a mindful way. Like releasing a butterfly to the wind, gently with purity of intention.
My version of commitment is a love that is as fiercely loyal as it is fiercely independent, both people inspired through the relationship to be amazing, fun-loving explorers – both of the world and their own selves. Side by side by choice rather than by shackles, liberating one another to embrace the joys and beauty of life in all its glory. A connection so strong that both people trust one another to the point where a need for handcuffs is nullified. Releasing expectations, giving room to grow. This is a love that bonds, rather than binds people within a partnership.
Written Sept 19, 2015