Thursday, May 7, 2009

The opposite of love

Hello my faithful readers:

I can't believe how quickly this year is flying by - it's already May! What a difference a few months makes; I'm still pinching myself because in a few months I'll be a full time student for the first time in almost 9 years. Yesterday I made a big commitment (scary for me) by putting my 25% non-refundable deposit down for my MBA program in the fall. I'm very thankful that I had the resources to make the payment with out too much strain (although I was really hoping for more favorable exchange rates). Work is busy again and although I'm glad to have a real, tangible project to focus on (after so many months of downtime), I wish I could just focus on getting my personal to-do list done. Does that make me selfish?

Yesterday I was listening to The Steve Harvey Morning show and he had Delilah (one of the most successful syndicated radio hosts in the US apparently) who had written a book about love. Delilah said something that rocked me to my core. The opposite of love is NOT hate. What????!?
This made me turn my radio up a little louder to hear the rest of what she had to say. Delilah says that to hate someone you have to like them at least a little bit, otherwise you really don't muster up enough energy to "hate" them. In other words if you didn't have some sort of "like/passion" for them then you would not expend the energy to "hate" them.

What Delilah said next surprised me. She said that the opposite of love is SELFISHNESS. Again I was rocked to my very core, because I have been accused of being SELFISH (by my Mom) before. Delilah says that sometimes in love you have to make sacrifices and change your plans to meet the needs of your mate. I'll admit that this is one of my biggest problems (fears) with getting into a committed relationship. I see the sacrifices that my mom, friends and others make for love. Some of them I agree with, but some leave me scratching my head thinking I don't think I could have done that. Like a (spoiled) only child sometimes I happen to think the world revolves around me. Delusional much?

This got me thinking about my decision to move to Belgium for grad school. I know that my family would rather I not move so far away to do it, but I believe it's something I believe I HAVE to do. Does this make me selfish? I've made lots of big decisions in life with only one person in mind before - ME! But now I am wondering if the big problem in my dating life is actually me. Am I (cock) blocking myself from finding the love that (I say) I want?

Here's what my (delusional) self thinks about my current situation. I understand what a real, loving relationship should be and I refuse to settle for less. When the right person comes along who deserves my focus, dedication and sacrifice I will adjust my behavior accordingly. Until then I reserve the right to be (a little) selfish. At this point in my life, I believe I haven't met THE ONE who deserves my focus, dedication and sacrifice. But I'll hold out hope that we'll find each other soon (because beneath my tough exterior) I am a big, romantic at heart. Ok, ok, ok... maybe that's really deep down inside, but really I do believe that there is love out there for us all. I just have to remember what the real opposite of love is so that I don't do it when love finally comes my way.

I'm curious to hear your thoughts on this subject. Do you agree that the opposite of love is selfishness? I think I will check out Delilah's book because I'd love to hear more about her thoughts on the subject of LOVE. I am inspired to get back into the groove again (I had started feeling sorry for myself), but until then I think I'll go check out a few new handbags at my friend Mrs. Handbags special shopping event today from 6-8 pm. Retail therapy always improves my mood. Let me know if you'd like to join me if you're here in NYC.


Georgia Peach


Anthony Otero said...

I will say this comment knowing full well that I have not read this woman's book. I totally disagree about selfishness being the opposite of Love.

Hate is very strong word that gets overused. When you really love someone then you have the ability to hate them. I am not trying to corny here but, love and hate are on the opposite sides of the same coin.

I don’t think that if u like someone a little bit you can end up hating them. If, I just liked you a little bit...and then I change my mind and didn’t like you, then I probably would not care enough to hate you.

Being selfish is not always a good thing, but it necessary. We all need to be a somewhat selfish in life to survive. Sacrifice is a big part of being in love. There is no way around that. However, love does not mean selflessness. You need to love yourself before you love anyone else. So again, being selfish is not always bad; you have to be willing to sacrifice when the time is right.

Brooke said...

This is interesting, because I always heard that the opposite of love is indifference, which actually makes more sense to me. I agree that in order to hate someone, you have to have some sort of passion/feeling for them. Only people you love can affect you that way to the point where you HATE them. But when you could care less what a person does, where they are, what they're doing - basically if they dropped off the planet and you didn't notice - then that's indifference - and THAT to me means you don't love them.

I think it depends on what your definition of "selfish" is. Being selfish to me has a perjorative connotation only if you define it that way - to be concerned EXCLUSIVELY with oneself. By that definition, I feel that anyone who is TRULY only concerned EXCLUSIVELY with themselve without regard for others doesn't really WANT to be in a relationship.

I agree with Ant that you have to love and take care of yourself before you can love and take care of someone else. But to me, that's not being selfish, it's being self aware. Self realized, self aware, self respecting people can stand in the sun without casting a shadow...meaning just because you love yourself and allow yourself to shine doesn't mean you diminish anyone else and that your love for them doesn't exist.

It's a tight rope walk, but you can you can't be truly happy without any sense of stability in one's self. We lose balance when we give up too much of ourselves for the sake of loving someone else...and that shouldn't be the case. You moving to Belgium doesn't mean you love yoru family any less simply because they want you to stay. It means that you recognize and are following the thread of who you are.

Love is many things, but it's not selfish. Love is allowing yourself to be vulnerable. Love is receiving love openly. Love is giving and loving again despite the pain you've endured. Love is being compassionate instead of being judgmental. Love is revealing yourself and allowing people to see you for who you truly are. Love is forgiveness. Love is a verb: it's something you do. Love is the willing sacrifice of SOME PART of yourself - not ALL of yourself. Love is a desire and willingness to be a part of something greater than yourself. Love is a Divine act. God is love. And since God is within us all, we have to love ourselves first in order to find that place that makes us able love someone else. Only through having a close emotional, spiritual bond with ourselves will the subtle gravity of that love draw the love we want to us.

(sorry, got carried away - great topic!)

Kendia said...

Man, can I relate. I do think the idea of the opposite of love is selfishness, it's the inability to let go of self and right now, like you, I've yet to meet someone that's worth relinquishing that idea. Unfortunately the longer it takes the more I feel like giving up altogether.

Georgia Peach said...

Kendia - don't give up. I do believe it's out there (although I do have some days where I'm like F this).

LN- it's interesting that you say that hate is the opposite. But wouldn't you say that real love is about being less selfish? If you never get to that point where you're willing to make a concession for your loved one then is it really truly love?

Georgia Peach said...

Brooke - Just read your comments and I do agree with both you and LN that you have to take care of yourself first before you're able to give fully of yourself to another person. Also agree wholeheartedly with the characteristics you give love. All very true!

Cameron Sharpe said...

Looking for short term or long term relationship to the opposite sex you must be trust yourself and ask anything about her/him. Make sure you love him/her when it comes to relationship. You may stick to one person and understand her or him vice versa. Show your feelings, give your time so that your relationship will last. When it comes to relationship, age doesn’t matter but if its up to you if you fight your love/feelings to her or him.

Georgia Peach said...

Cameron - thanks for the comments. I agree with what you said and I hope eventually I'll find someone worth it (soon).

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