I had an unusual experience with my father when I was young.
I must have been about 13, 14, something like that. I don’t know what prompted this, but he took me on a drive, and he started explaining how I was going to hurt him.
I had no idea what he was talking about. I thought I was in trouble. And he was saying “No, it’s not anything you’re going to do specifically, it’s just because I love you and I’m your father, it’s inevitable that you’re going to hurt me.”
He had this whole speech, and I didn’t make sense of it. It was just so awkward and weird for a teen boy to be having this conversation, especially as my father and I didn’t talk like this very often (we’re better at it now).
But now, having become a father myself, I know exactly what he was talking about. I plan to have this same conversation with my daughter one day. Hopefully she’ll understand it better than I did.
My father was talking about the trade-off inherent in love.
If you want to get intimate with somebody, to have love in your life and have deep friendships and children and so on, you have to sign up to the trade-off. And the trade-off is you are definitely going to get hurt.
Best case scenario: they die of old age. That’s still gonna hurt, right?
And before then, there are still going to be painful experiences. There’s no such thing as genuine love without rough times.
Worst case scenario, they betray you, they change into someone you no longer like. This is a risk that must be taken, because the future can’t be predicted.
It always ends one way or another.
You cannot have Love without pain, sadness, loss, frustration and fear. If you can’t sign up on those terms, don’t do it.
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