Make Love Not War

All’s fair in love and war? I beg to differ. With loved ones, friends, and significant others there are lines that dare not be crossed. Judging, bringing up the past, name-calling, assumptions, accusations, comparisons, spewing insults, and pointing fingers are anything but fair. Empty words cut deep; loaded ones even deeper. The bell rings and you come out from your respective corners in a blind fury with fists flying in a no holds barred grudge match. There is no referee to blow his whistle when someone hits below the belt or a scorekeeper tallying up the points. It’s bloody knuckles until TKO or when someone taps out. Even then it’s hard to determine when the fight is over. No one is declared the winner. There is no real victory. You both lose. There is no purse, no trophy, no medal. Instead there is irreparable emotional damage, bruised egos, diminished dignity, and quite possibly the loss of that relationship. The injuries may not be visible, but they are indeed long-lasting.

Words fly off of the tongue when emotions are running high. You may speak without thinking and not mean any of it. Or you may mean every word of it, but shouldn’t have said it. This tends to result in a duel in which the weapons of choice are spiteful comments and no one bothers to take twenty paces. You push all of the boundaries and couldn’t care less. Even when you realize that this petulant bickering is pointless, you still keep your guard up. You don’t want to back down because, despite knowing better, you want to believe that there will be a winner and it will be you. The line has been crossed and probably a few times over. You’ve bombed each other’s cities. You realize that you’re tired of fighting what seems to be a losing battle. Drained and numb…not just mentally, but physically as well. You can’t even remember what started the whole thing or who fired the first shot. You’ve both said what could quite possibly be unforgivable. Those vicious remarks are the emotional equivalent to Agent Orange. The damage has been done. You have reached the point of no return. There are no war spoils to be collected. As I said before, there is no victor.

It’s time to surrender. Call a stalemate. Come out with your hands up. It may seem as if you are admitting defeat, but really, you’re both already defeated. There is no such thing as fair fighting when it comes to matters of the heart. What good can possibly come from being cruel just to get your point across? Someone needs to step up and wave the white flag. Whether that be to admit that the other is right or to utilize the phrase that makes everyone cringe: agree to disagree. Or just to simply shut up and walk away. Apply those early life teachings that are corny, but relevant: “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” Or, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Count to ten, go have a drink, sleep on it…whatever cliche technique works for you, do it. Do something, anything. Or in some cases, nothing. 

Don’t allow your rage to consume you…there are too many angry people running around as it is.


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