Thursday, March 15, 2012

Thought for the day: Where to belong

Jaeran Won: Cutting My Hair, (2006), acrylic on canvas

People around me frequently talk of their partners; their 'significant others'. As someone without such a 'partner,' does this make me an 'insignificant other'? And is 'other' the operative word?


Kathleen said...

Being "half" of a couple is not everything.....sometimes it's nice just to "be". Nobody to answer to. A chance to explore. Embrace it. :-)

Kathleen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Beccy said...

So is that the end of the sentence - the significant other half? Yes, I don't understand why people want to be a 'half' person.

I don't get couples. When someone chooses to settle down with one person and one person only for the rest of their lives it's like they've found faith in the cult of the monogomous-couple-sect and then once they've committed, they can't see outside of it and are afraid to. They brainwash each other into a state of suppressed submission.

I try to embrace my singularity but it's hard in a world which expects bilateral unionships which are exclusivist to single people. They exclude us because they make it immoral for us to engage with them physically and they exclude us because they constantly refer to their partner as a way of reifying their own identity and in order to fit in with mainstream everyday banter. They force me to be aware of my 'minority' status as a non-partner in a society where romance rules (and sells) and, thus, my own identity becomes that of the other. I never meant to be an other. I am also a one.

ExplorationOf42 said...

It's true, people in a relationship often define themselfs in reference to their partner.
However, to a different degree, this is what we all do. We cannot define our self without some reference to the "other", whether its our parents, friends, colleagues, etc.
The special case with couples is just that they concentrate their reiifications and distunguishing onto one certain person - some of them more than other.

I don't like the notion of being a "half" in a couple, either. I believe that one and one is two. And I think this is far more healthier, too.

"They force me to be aware of my 'minority' status as a non-partner in a society where romance rules (and sells)"
--> You just made me think that the ideal of being a couple might be on the rise. Sure, it does promise assurance in times uncertain. But isn't it true, that the number of singles is rising?

So, you might indeed be no "minority" at all. It's just that the couples seem to be louder than the rest. ;)

Kathleen said...

I totally agree that the conformist and conservative views of our society don't do anyone any favours - whether you're single or enjoying being in love, it makes life harder and more confusing for all of us!

IMO that's why so many "dream marriages" end up in divorce or decades of resentment. People get blinkered and forced down paths they never wanted. What a pity.

So be brave and keep doing things differently I say! :-)