GodsPhysicist

Too ambitious for marriage?

6 posts in this topic

I realized something about myself.  I used my single life to become a better person.  I learned new things, acquired new skills, visited many places, met interesting people, and got really creative.  Whenever I would probe the "playing field," however, I found that I had less in common with prospective dates as I got more out of life.

 

So, I find that I have been running life like a race.  Whenever I looked back, I found that all the rest of the people I was racing with were too far behind to be seen anymore.  I've never crossed a finish line with anyone I've really cared about.

 

I now have this Catch-22.  On the one hand, I make myself a better person and intimate prospects have trouble relating to all the things I have experienced.  On the other hand, I cannot enjoy single life without doing all the things I have a chance to do before I am married.  I have become a person with plenty to offer, but with no one who can experience it all at once.

 

I have never considered crossing finish lines as failures before.  I am considering how much I have failed at life.  I am beginning to think that living life simply by doing things correctly is a complete waste of time.  (cue cute pathetic and muted trumpet sound: whaaaa whaaaaaaaaa)

 

If this seems egomaniacal to any of you, then you see my point.  There is really no point to becoming better if you end up too good for everyone else.

 

Here's a question for everyone who now thinks I am an arrogant prick after they have read my post:  anyone ever stopped achieving in life just to allow people catch up to you?

 

In the whimsical nature of my curious approach to life, I cannot resist the 80's sentiment from A Flock of Seagulls:

 

And I ra - a - an.  I ran so far a - wa - a - ay...

 

heh...

 

And now, I brace for impact as someone might pontificate a lesson in humility...

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I have the natural tendency to consider life a race. However, the older I get, the more I realize how fallacious that is. Everyone's definition of success is different, and rightfully so. I have friends who are going to grad school at Ivy League universities. But I don't know anyone else who is planning to marry the person they were with when they were 16. Which of us is 'winning?' Which of us needs to 'catch up?' Am I doing it 'correctly' because I ended up with the first person I ever kissed, or are they doing it right because they put off having a relationship until they could build a solid career? The answer is truly in the eye of the beholder.

 

Live your life according to your definition of success, and search for a partner who has the same outlook. Anything else will make you miserable. But I would try to avoid thinking of life as something you can win or lose at. It will either crush your ego, or needlessly inflate it. The end result, though, will always be needless alienation from others (and believe me, I know from plenty of first-hand experience on both sides of the coin). 

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I understand the drive to improve, experience, and expand the potentials of life.  Many people are content at just living for today and not even thinking about tomorrow.  That is hard for me to understand, I'm all about planning the future and am success-driven.  On the other hand though, there is no such thing as perfection.  It cannot be attained.  We are human.  We are not better than anybody else if we out-educate them (for example).  We're still the same flesh and blood as they.  And it is hard to measure one's success with another's success because people are born into different households with different opportunities presented to them at birth.  So it is entirely unfair to look down upon someone who did not seek and find their potential as you have since they started the race at a different starting point.  But, I do think it is quite reasonable to attempt to find someone like-minded.  I personally hope to find someone incredibly noble.  But that eliminates a large portion of society.  It doesn't make me wrong or egotistical.  I just live life to different standards, and that's okay.  Whatever your standards are are probably okay too.  You just want someone who understands you and who will walk alongside you.  That's reasonable; not egotistical.

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Well, I'm assuming you plan to marry just one person.

 

It'd be a problem if everyone seemed right for you.

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There is absolutely nothing wrong with using your singleness to become a better person.  You are expanding your world and learning every time you cross another finish line.  The right woman will appreciate that and will probably feel the same way.  

 

For myself, I don't think I would be happy with a man who didn't use his time being single to pursue hobbies or jobs that he loved,  If he had no goals in his life, then he is probably not the man for me.  I wouldn't want him to "stop achieving in life" just so I could catch up.  But you have raised a good point and one I have pondered before...not that I will stop achieving in my life.  The right man for me won't be intimidated by what I have accomplished and the paths that I have chosen to pursue.  Hopefully everything that I have learned and done over the years will complement his skills and his path in life as his will complement my own...

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To put a name your situation let me suggest Tall Poppy Syndrome - except that you seem to be putting it on yourself...

 

People experience life differently and value different things, they also see things differently. A success for one person can be an utter failing for another. I get where you are coming from - for some of us our view of life is far more ambitious and involved - others are content living an existence that we might find utterly boring and unfulfilling. A couple stayed at my parents place for a while and the husband told us a bit about his upbringing: his mother would basically cook the same thing every week with minor modifications e.g. wednesday pasta with something, thursday potatoes...and his father was completely content that way. I wouldn't be so quick to discredit what might seem like an irrelevant experience which might bring great joy and fulfillment to others. When traveling I like to observe my surroundings - rather than sleep on an hours long trip I prefer looking through the window - others find this boring, they don't see what I see. An autistic person might find more fulfillment and depths of experience looking at a flower or a piece of carpet for hours than someone else watching a 3D superHD movie! I'm sure many people if fully faced with the futility and emptyness of their activities/lifestyle would accept it as a sad truth but on the off-hand chance maybe try and see their experiences from their perspective. 

 

Also as far as this is connected with seeking a partner, I think I might share a similar conundrum. I am very avid in some of my interests such as law reform and human rights and while it would be wonderful for her to have an equal enthusiasm about it I don't think she needs to express it in the same way. Do I want a wife who will fight with me in the courts, who will pour as much energy into it as I would or could I be content with someone who rather than being a peer in the fight will pour her energies into supporting me in my fight? Do I want a wife who will run the race by my side or be there at the finish line with a smile, a cheer, and a welcome drink and care for me so I am ready for the next race? You may argue that the runner is having a more rich and exciting life but without the carer they won't be running for long....

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