At a crossroadS

  • Agonyaunt

Feb 6, 2018-

 

Dear Aunt,

I am a 28-year-old man with a good job. My parents are more than happy with how much I earn, my girlfriend thinks I have my life sorted, and as far as my social circle is concerned, I have a promising network. As you can guess, from the outside I live an enviable life. The problem is I am not happy. I am not content with what I do or where I am. I want to quit my job and flee this place. I want to be somewhere where I know nobody. I want to do something that is more challenging and perhaps more fulfilling—creativity wise. I have the resources to flee, but I don’t have the courage to do the same. All my life I have played it safe and I feel like I can’t afford to make a mistake. I don’t want to throw my life away and make a fool out of myself. But, if I stay right where I am, I worry I will never find happiness ever again. What should I do? 

—Mr Unhappy 

Dear Mr Unhappy, 

Is it possible that you are deeply unhappy because life has gotten monotonous for you? You know what they say about routine; it is more lethal than adventure. Instead of what you call ‘throwing your life away’ at the moment, how about you wait it out. It might be wiser to see if this feeling is just a phase. If you are sick of being around the same people and feeling stuck at the job, take a break. Go somewhere nobody knows you, but don’t make it a permanent escape. Flee only temporarily. Plan a holiday where you can do something you never do and be someone that is different from the regular you. Or pick on hobbies that are capable of stimulating the creative side of you. It is natural to get tired of life when you have been doing the same thing for years. Breaking away from the monotony doesn’t always have to mean throwing your life away. If the temporary break doesn’t bring you peace of mind, then you can think of choosing a path that is different from your current one. If you fail to be happier even after the break, then you know for sure that you are in the wrong place. Starting over is scary, but it’s never too late to do so. Sooner is always better.

 

Entangled 

Dear Aunt, 

I am in love with a girl. She knows it, and perhaps she is in love with me too. But she just doesn’t want to commit. And it is bothering me big time. When we started out, we did so with an understanding that this was going to be non-committal. The idea of ‘no strings attached’ was very appealing and we both dived in right away. But this ‘phase’ has been going on for seven months now, and I feel like it’s about time that we move on to the next level. We are very compatible, we understand each other, and make one another laugh. The best part about this is that we are both independent, also great at giving each other space. And I have realised that I have never met somebody I am so comfortable with. But, when I proposed that we get serious, she kind of got offended. She told me that it might be time to bring an end to whatever it is that we had. She is not ready for commitment and she doesn’t see herself committing to anyone in the near future. I am angry, but I also want to hold on to what we have. Should I break it off or shove my feelings aside and continue as non-committal. 

—Shuvam

Dear Shuvam, 

As fancy as the idea of ‘no strings attached’ sounds, there is always a huge possibility for feelings to come in the way and tie you down to the other person. If you two started with an understanding that this was going to be non-committal, you might have to be responsible for your own feelings. In this case, you will just have to embrace the ‘every man for himself’ mantra. If you feel like you are falling too deep, too fast, and she is failing to reciprocate the feelings, it might be time to step back. The sooner you separate yourself from her, the less you hurt. The thing about love is you can’t impose it on anybody. If she says she’s not ready, she really isn’t ready. It might take her a couple of days, it might take her a couple of years, or it might take her forever. If she has commitment issues, she will probably never commit. So your emotional wellbeing is absolutely in your hands. If you feel like you can shove your feelings aside and continue having fun, go ahead. But if you feel like it is going to be too difficult, it’s not worth holding on. As soon as one person is much more in love than the other in a relationship, there’s already an imbalance and there’s already enough room for unhappiness. Whatever you do, just remember to choose your own happiness over anything else.

Published: 06-02-2018 08:23

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