Love is seeing a person for who they are (all of them) and still saying “I choose you”
When you think about it, falling in love really isn’t a choice. It a swirl of irrational madness, mixed in with erotic desires.
Most of the time, we meet someone randomly; a guy that sweeps us of our feet powerfully and quickly. A simple touch. A sexy laugh. A three hour phone conversation and wham – game over.
You see, falling is love is the easy part. It’s all about the excitement of figuring out what makes another man tick. And at the same time, it’s also about exposing ourselves emotionally and physically, which basically makes us super vulnerable.
And the funny thing about love is that it never happens twice in the same way.
But I’m here to tell you that staying in love is a choice. This is particularly true in gaydom, where slabs of man-beef are a dime a dozen.
Staying in love with a man requires actively choosing to do the hard work necessary to build a relationship. This means seeing the guy for who he is instead of what we fantasized him to be. Otherwise, the relationship is destined for failure.
Every new beginning has a honeymoon. After the rush dissipates, you are left with two flawed people who very much want to be wanted.
As time goes on, the magic starts to fade. You start to realize you’ve heard his funny story 5 times before. The blinders that once shielded you from his imperfections slowly begin to disappear.
Perhaps it’s the small things, like him forgetting important days. Or maybe he isn’t all that thoughtful as he used to be … when he was trying so hard to win you over. And then there’s the biggies, like yelling stuff when he’s pissed – things he can’t take back.
The truth is, nobody is perfect. Everyone comes with their own special set of glitches and smudges.
Gay men who stay in love with other gay men don’t do it because they have no choice – we all know that. Every single day is a choice.
As time passes, you start to realize that the guy you fell in love with is imperfect, and the true meaning of love, the true act of loving someone, is loving those flaws as wholly and completely as you love the good.
So that’s the thing. Love is saying, “I see you” – as in all of you, exactly as you are. This means the good, the not so good and the things you don’t want your friends to see. I can see what you’re ashamed of, and the things you desperately wish you could hide. I see those things, and I still choose you. I still LOVE you.
All you can do is hope the man you are attached to sees the same.
To accept your set of shortcomings and love them the same way.
To stick around when the crap hits the fan and you are a complete mess.
To choose, even during your ugly moments – to love you back.
By: Conrad Braxton