Sometimes you are not suited to something. For instance, I doubt that I would make a very good doctor. Even assuming I could get through medical school passing fair I don’t care for blood and gore, my personality isn’t chock full of empathy, in short, my bedside manner would suck and my attention span is such that I wouldn’t be able to stay with the task on hand.
You may love basketball. You could spend hours practicing and trying to hone your skills. You may have a real passion for the game. But you may also be five foot nothing and a chubby white female. No matter your great desire and your no-quit attitude you are unlikely to become a member of the WNBA. BUT… you can support the local booster club. You can be a team supporter and go to games and cheer. You can focus that love in other ways. When we redirect this way it’s usually looked on as being REALISTIC.
When someone realizes as a part of that natural progression from childhood to young adult to mature adult that they are not suited to a particular career and they instead steer themselves to something they are good at we applaud it as self-awareness. We don’t call a mean-spirited spazmatron a quitter for not going into medicine. So I wonder then, why are we so hard on people in other aspects of their life.
Let’s take another example. I know several very happy, long-lived couples who have chosen for personal reasons not to have children. (Incidentally they all do have pets.) Why do they get viewed as ‘less than’ or ‘a bit strange’? Perhaps they have the self-awareness to know they are suited to be parents. Isn’t it a good thing if folks like that abstain from inflicting themselves on another human life; especially a life that would depend so heavily on them for so many years? Don’t you suppose that folks ill-prepared for parenthood just might be the ones that end up with neglected or abused children? Even if they try very hard to be good parents perhaps they simply don’t have the genetic makeup for it. Why do we debase those folks?
I personally have become aware of something about myself. And up to this point in my life I thought I was a failure and a quitter. I thought I was doing something wrong, I thought I had fallen short somehow. I realize now that it’s not true. There is nothing wrong with me. I am simply not suited to be in the role of wife\girlfriend. I’m no damn good at it. It doesn’t have anything to do with a lack of effort either. I’m not a bad or immoral person. In fact, I think I’m quite moral, kind-hearted, generous and loving. But I don’t have the genetic make-up to be involved with another adult for whom I’ve no real connection outside of sating a need for companionship. Certainly some of it could be marked up to poor matches. But I don’t think that’s the whole story. I see too many inequities in the male\female union. I have a big problem with that and because I’m not an idiot I have a hard time letting it pass. Do not misunderstand. I am not suggesting that folks in blissfully happy relationships are simpering dimwits. However, I may be subtly suggesting that at least within the realm of their partnership they are least overlooking much and at most lying their asses off about the bliss.
I spent years feeling like a catastrophe over my divorces and other failed relationships. I thought I had let-down my kids, my family, myself, God and pretty much everyone. I realize now that shit happens and life goes on. Not only that, but I simply don’t fit well into that mold. I am a good friend, mom, sister, daughter, aunt, teacher, worker…. But I suck at being a partner (and not in a good way). I’ve come to terms with it. I have decided to focus on all those other relationships and aspects of my life that bring me joy and allow me to give joy. If we only get this one life why would you want spend one single minute struggling in a pit of despair?
Embrace the horror! Love your bad-self an always be who you are. Unless you can be a unicorn, then always be a unicorn.