WHY MEN STRUGGLE WITH SETTLING DOWN
“we really know very little about love” Sigmund Freud
where are all the good women? Where are all the good men? Both the Single and divorced ; the young and old; the lovers and cheats; widow(er)s and unhappily married constantly ask themselves this question when they wake up in the morning, while they watch romantic movies or may be while walking down the streets, gazing in the sky, while imagining a world where love really exists. Why are the good ones so hard to find?
One in five Cameroonians is single and searching, even though some pretend to be happy in a relationship they know/ knew to be doomed from the very beginning. Similarly 49 million Americans aged 25 and older who are single, widowed or divorced are searching for a partner declares the American Demographics magazine. But isn’t it funny? That most single people are asking where their partners are: Where are the men/ women? It is probably hilarious because: These potential partners are everywhere, looking for love, just like you. Many argue that this problem is caused because many are looking for love in the wrong places and faces like we expressed in the last article (if you haven’t read click on this link https://the1untold.wordpress.com/2019/01/27/broken-norms/); today, I will like to add another facet which is that we are looking for love in the wrong ways.
How settling down was
In 1924 Conrad Hilton, the founder of the Hilton hotel chain, spotted a lady wearing a red hat five metres away from him in a church service, he got so curious as to who the person under the hat was and throughout he kept on starring at the lady without any luck in seeing her face. After the service, instead of heading back home, he decided to follow the red hat down the streets till he could get hold of her. Which he did, but guess what? He eventually married the lady with the red hat.
How settling down is
I’ve never been a “relationship guy.” My first serious relationship happened when I was twenty-three and it lasted three years. The girl was ready to move in with me but it just seemed too much for me to live with another person at that age. We eventually ended things a year later. I enjoyed being in that relationship, but I was also very happy being mostly single between the ages of 26 and 31. Being single made me have lots of choices to pick from; with all these options, being single can be a load of fun! I also had a lifestyle that was pretty bad for maintaining a serious relationship anyway. I was constantly hustling and was unsure where my future career would take me, I had a great time in the casual dating scene, but at a certain point I got tired of the work that went into maintaining a fun single life. I was the hopeful romantic who would stay out till 4:00 A.M. every morning, worried that if I went home, I’d miss that magical, amazing woman who showed up at the bar at 3:35 A.M. After many late nights and brutal mornings, I realized that amazing, magical women don’t walk into bars at 3:35 A.M; they’re usually in bed by that hour. Usually the women who are going out this late are less the “amazing/magical” sort and more the “nightmare/headache” variety.
As I hit thirty, I started to despise the bar scene, I had experienced every single version of those nights. I also started losing single friends (they were all getting married), One day I stood alone at a barbecue at my house and saw nothing but couples around me; it seemed like I was the only single person in the mix. Everyone else was splitting their meats into halves and sharing. Meanwhile, I had to eat a whole piece by myself like a lonely lion. I felt like it was time for a change, it was time to settle down so I decided I wanted to at least try having a relationship. I started thinking about its advantages: I’d have someone whom I really cared about, who also cared about me, I’d always have someone to see a movie with, or go to a new restaurant with, or stay home, cook food, and do everything with. It was fun being single, but I had reached the point of exhaustion.
At a certain point the cost of living the fun single lifestyle outweighs the benefits. The nights when you have amazing outings, start getting outweighed by the times you wander home alone wasted and wake up hungover. Settling down then offers the chance to fill that void with the dependable, deeper, intimate love of a committed relationship. I had to find the right person; I tried to keep an eye out for someone who could be relationship material. At first I had no luck, but then I realized why, I was a horrible person, searching in horrible places, meeting horrible people and I was complaining about it. I then decided to live like a decent person. Go to church for guidance, go to the market to buy my own food, go to the gym to take care of myself, but with the goal of meeting my love. “If you live a responsible life, you’ll run into responsible people,” I told myself. I made more of an effort to date friends of friends in the hope of meeting better people. A few months later I ran into an amazing woman whom I had met years earlier. I had liked her then, but she was in a relationship at the time. She was beautiful, funny, and a great cook! I love women who can cook. We started dating, pretty soon we were staying home, cooking food, and doing nothing most of the time but being fulfilled. It was great, after a few weeks it started getting serious and I was faced with the decision of whether to truly settle down or not. Did I really want a wife? Did I really want to give up the single life?
Today we live together, we eventually got married; she’s amazing and I’m very happy in my relationship, but making the decision was tough and it’s tough for many singles out there”.
Did you just read that? Making the decision to settle was tough.
If you just followed what happened keenly you will see massive similarities and differences between both times. However, let’s explore the fact that in the Hilton example, there is a pull (curiosity) to fall in love and eventually settle, whereas, with Aziz it is mainly the push from everyone around him. They getting married ignites its awareness and examination of the downsides of the single life.
Most men nowadays have to contemplate deeply and for a very long time to decide if settling down is the best option. This is probably the 4tharticle here on love and we always inevitably see choices and options figuring as a major challenge, that said, let’s explore:
Why people fall in love and sometimes still don’t settle
Scientists tell us, people get infatuated or fall in love due to a chemical called phenylethylamine or PEA. It is a chemical cousin to dopamine and it is responsible for giving us an emotional kick, sometimes similar to that of being high on drugs. This is the body chemical that makes your heart palpitate; your hands sweat and your inside just go funny. PEA is manufactured in the body when we first feel the physical sensations of romantic love. The bad news is that the kick doesn’t last forever or that long. Romantic love generally has a short lifespan that is from 18 months to 3 years. The good news is that it is enough time for a desperate 30 year old like Aziz to settle down and as mentioned a very short time for the same Aziz at 23 to decide to settle down.
I’ve been studying break ups lately and have been asking older people about their failed relationships and when it ended. It always magically ended between two to three years into the relationship; which is when the PEA was at its lowest.
Why aren’t men settling down at their early ages? One of the reasons is because the PEA is almost finished when they start thinking of marriage and no man wants to marry when his romantic side is at its lowest. Also, times have changed like you saw above, it was easy for Hilton to get married, but nowadays, it takes a long period of questioning, examining and contemplating for men to settle down.
The next problem is sometimes men are filled with PEA but the women aren’t, and the PEA isn’t a drug that you can fill in a tube and inject in anyone you meet and have a high for.
The previous article examined the girl problem in settling down with a partner; today we decided to examine the male problems as we just saw. How can you activate the PEA in someone you admire? Does love at first sight exist? Would have loved to share now, but will on my next article on love.
If you did read till the end, you’re a legend: please don’t forget to comment on what areas you want the untold to focus on, except you were satisfied 100%.
By leslie Micheal Ace