There is this one thing which I have heard men complain about a lot (amongst many others), how their partners fail to give them little or no space. We hate this generalisation by men, don’t we, that wives and girlfriends have no respect for their personal space. That we are overbearing in our demands when it comes to spending time together, intimacy and romance. We want to colour coordinate outfits, we want to sit next to each other, be it on the couch or at parties. We want to know what the man in our life is up to every second, every minute. But then can all of us say with confidence, that every bit of this generalisation is false?
- Men often complain their partners give them little or no space.
- So how true is it? Do women actually find giving space to their partners hard because of insecurities?
- Or is it that we correlate loving someone with dependency?
- Love doesn’t mean hovering over someone’s head like a halo. It means respecting their individuality and privacy.
Is it the candy floss idea of romance that we grow up overdosing on, that comes to bite us back, once we step into real world and real relationships with the opposite gender?
So why is it that men have this issue with women? And why is it that most women only realise the value of personal space, once they are well into their thirties or are well into full-fledged family life. Are women insecure partners? Is this invasion of personal space due to our need to be needed? Or is it just the candy floss idea of romance that we grow up overdosing on, that comes to bite us back, once we step into real world and real relationships with the opposite gender?
I am not pointing an accusatory finger at other ladies while screaming ‘Not all women!’ No, this creature has been a twenty-something once, hopelessly head over heels in love with the man she ended up marrying. I remember bugging my then fiancé constantly about not talking to me enough. Other girls in the same space as me would spend nights whispering and giggling into their cell phones while I would be lucky if I coaxed out more than ten minutes of chit chat on an average day from my man. Now as I write this down, I realise how age and experience has changed my perspective.
I guess the idea of romance that we grow up seeing in films and around us somehow sets standards for us in many ways. We begin to identify certain acts and words, certain gestures as proofs of true love. For some, love means talking to each other for hours, sitting together in the classroom during lectures. For others, it means posting couplets, poems and hymns dedicated to your partner on social media. Then there are those for whom love means constantly being up to date about your partner’s whereabouts.
We women are conditioned from childhood to be caring and providing and almost always we take those traits into our love relationships as well. We think the only way to let a person know that we love them is to fuss over them, or show them that you want to be with them constantly.
Well into eight years of matrimony and in my thirties now, I have gradually realised that love and dependency are two totally different things. One can’t be used to define another, ever. And when that dawns on you, you not only begin to respect your partner’s space, but your own as well. A little bit of space, in dimensions of both time and space only give relationships a much-needed breather. You also realise how letting go doesn’t usually mean not caring about your loved one, but trusting them and respecting their individuality.
I moved over my need for attention and it did wonders to my own self-worth. I don’t remember when was the last time I expected my husband to say some kind things to me, let alone romantic. I only text to know his whereabouts now, if its pouring hell outside, or if he is unusually late. The letting go isn’t easy, but then if you truly love someone, your presence shouldn’t feel stifling to them.
So book a date with your girlfriends or up an individual activity. As you spend some time away from your partner and put a little bit of distance between them and you, in a healthy loving way, you’ll realise they aren’t going anywhere, and infact are waiting on you.
Picture Credit: Bustle
Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are author’s own.