The Truth About Romance: It’s Not All About Love

In the grand play of life, men and women often find themselves caught in roles that society scripts for them. Men, for instance, are encouraged to paint extravagantly expressive canvases, while women are expected to provide the funds for the paints and brushes. Women labor tirelessly, racking up overtime hours, to ensure men have the finest paints and brushes.

In return, men share their first masterpiece with the woman in their lives, uttering ‘I love you’ at sunset while extending a handful of delicate flowers. This may sound like the perfect romantic dinner scene. But like most things seemingly perfect, it hits a precarious snag when the woman earns a much-deserved promotion.

The opportunity that the woman fought tooth and nail for finally arrives. But during a day-long work-from-home conference, the male partner grumbles about her missing the enchanting sunset outside their window in pursuit of dreary work. He dares to ask, What good is work, if you miss out on such natural beauty? She retorts, explaining her need to earn money. His disgruntled reply accuses her of being purely materialistic, saying how uninteresting her life has become.

It is at this regretful juncture the woman realizes that her romanticized notion of love is, in reality, airy-fairy. What’s worse, she harbors feelings for a man who is nothing more than a castle in the air.

Often, we daydream about an idyllic life upon tying the knot, but marriage is a practical endeavour. Your significant other should understand the arduousness of mundane household chores, realize the trials of earning money, have knowledge about raising children, and knack for creating romance.

While a person capable of experiencing life may seem dull, a person ignorant of life’s realities makes regular life starkly chaotic.
Contrary to what romantic notions portray, someone capable of mustering 100% trust may well shatter your safety and romance in a spark of a moment, if their moral compass is not properly aligned.

People inherently seek gratification and avoid discomfort, with negative traits acting as inherent guiding principles. It is one’s moral code that dictates whether they act in line with their innate behavior or against it. Take infidelity, for instance. Betrayers know well they shouldn’t be cheating, yet they continue to succumb to temptation over and over, giving in to their hedonistic cravings.

Love isn’t a strong enough anchor. Biologically speaking, love is transient, nothing more than a fleeting hormone at play. This very hormone is susceptible to fading out. From a biological perspective, it is unnatural for a person to be monogamous.
Character thus becomes the safety net when love dwindles, offering a safety cushion to the partner. Kay Lin, for instance, married his wife without much affection. But as a husband, he was determined to stay committed and stand by his wife.
Even in the face of more attractive women, or the appearance of a childhood lover, Lin remained unflinchingly steadfast. It wasn’t an absence of desire, but the inherent knowledge of right from wrong.

Haruki Murakami, in Norwegian Wood, describes a gentleman as someone who does what they should, not what they want.
Throughout life, we face numerous choices. A high moral character promises adherence to past promises, constraints unruly desires, and respects its better half. In the long run, it is character that sustains the relationship and stabilizes the home.
Marriage is never easy and loving the right person is even more challenging. So it goes without saying, marrying the right person is better than marrying for love.

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