Special Bonus Issue

New Voice For Politics’ Guide to Finding that Special Somebody

It is that time of the year again, when nominees come out to announce their intention to run in the next election. They all flutter about in an attempt to woo the electorate with sweet words and impassioned promises. Some suitors are new, while others are old flames who have returned to rekindle our hearts.

As candidates begin their courtship dance, many have asked, where can I find a candidate that holds my values and will be true, a candidate to last my whole life through. Some have become jaded from past searches, while others find their hearts fluttering once again for a new candidate. This issue is for those who are still looking for that special somebody to love.

 

Somebody to Love

By Jillian George

Note: to enhance one’s reading enjoyment; please click the links in this article to listen to the songs that are vaguely related to the topic being discussed.

Trying to find somebody to love is not as easy as it looks. At its core, it would appear to be a simple thing to achieve: step 1, find a person; step 2, love them; step 3, target of affection loves you back. What could be easier? After all, there are billions of people on the planet, and only one is necessary for the 3-step plan to succeed.

Admittedly, finding a person is not the difficult part. Loving a person; that can pose a challenge. We all know people, but we do not love them all. In order to love somebody, this person must have some, or better yet a number of, attributes that we admire. These attributes can be cerebral, intelligence, skill-based, musically gifted, or aesthetic, beauty. Whatever it is; there is simply something about them that makes them so right in our eyes that we cannot live without them. It is this perception that is the key; for we do not view others as they objectively are, but as they are subjectively perceived through the filters of our mind.

Unfortunately, many people have been hurt in the past. They have opened up their heart to another; only to have their tenderness abused. After such an experience, it is no wonder that one would be hesitant to try again. Sometimes our previous experiences even alter us for the worse, we no longer see things as they are; instead, we view reality through distorted lenses. Like mirrors in a fun house, certain attributes are elongated and made larger than they are, while other characteristics are minimized.

The worst distortion occurs when a person has been hurt to such an extent that they supersize all potential lovers’ negative attributes and minimize their positives. When this occurs, the hurt person becomes repulsed from some truly nice people, because they see others not as they are, but as a repugnant caricature. The hurt person runs away in fear, because they believe every new suitor is the monster from their past that has returned to terrorize them yet again. In their mind’s eye, the heartbroken person believes that they are in a sequel to a horror film, like Friday the 13th Part 15; but in reality, nothing could be further from the truth. They are not at risk of being harmed by some maniac with a machete as they walk through the woods in high heels; the only person they are at risk of harming is themselves. While the perceiver believes they are simply protecting themselves by being hypervigilant to threats from potential suitors, they are actually hurting themselves by missing out on a potentially wonderful relationship by inflating a minor blemish in their admirer into a terminal deal breaking catastrophic relationship ending defect.

When a person goes looking for flaws, they will inevitably see them in others, because they can only see imperfection with their eyes. Such a search will always result in the searcher finding unhappiness and despair at the end of every quest, because a person will always find what they are looking for, a flawed person that they cannot love. Admittedly, no one is perfect, but most people are not fully faulty. If one is to locate love, they should look for the positives in a person. When a person finds someone that they value in a number of ways, they have usually found somebody to love. The key is to make sure that our past relational pains do not distort our vision of this person; otherwise, we might miss out on love.

Now some might ask why is all this sappy talk of love and feelings being mentioned in a political and economic newsletter.  This metaphor is mentioned because finding someone to love is like finding a political candidate to support. If a person follows politics long enough, it will only be a matter of time before a candidate disappoints them. Those in the know; know what I am talking about.

The dashing young candidate comes on the seen with a big smile on his face and says all the right things. He looks into your eyes and tells you all the promises that you have been waiting for someone to whisper into your ear. They make you feel special, like you are the only one in the room when you hear them speak at political rallies. Before you know it, you are head over heels for them. You feel joyful, almost giddy, as you work on their campaign, walking door to door and making telephone calls upon their behalf. Things are great, and you let everyone know this by constantly posting about your special candidate on Facebook to the point that a number of friends have blocked your updates from their news feed, but you do not care because you are in love. When the candidate is finally elected, you feel like you are on top of the world.

The campaign period is the honeymoon period of the relationship. During this time, you have been seduced by the candidate and were unable to notice the tinniest imperfection in them. But after the election, you start to notice that the love of your life is not all that you had hoped they would be; no longer is everything rainbows and butterflies. This reality can be quite jarring and disappointing. They do not do all that they promised to do. It can even come to the point where you can no longer stay with them and have to move on.

After such a betrayal, a person can become hypervigilant for signs of future disappointments in all candidates that they see. Every candidate is now viewed with suspicion and a bit of contempt, if not scorn. The doubt that is held in the heart of many after such disillusionment leads them to reject all candidates as they close their heart to all future politicians.

Love and politics can hurt a person, but are past heartaches a reason to run away from all candidates or lovers in the future? Should we allow the actions of one to give love and politics a bad name? We all have been injured at some time in one or both of these domains, but what should someone do after they have been hurt? Should they search for flaws and reject everyone who is not perfect or should they accept a few flaws and find somebody to love?

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