The business of relationships


Adding on to the previous post, quite a few friends asked me how I dealt with the break up, because I can be quite an emotional person when I let myself. I cried nearly every night before Cyril flew home. But I dealt with it after he left. We had a good long-distance relationship. Lots of trust, he wasn’t worried that I’d go out w my guy friends etc.

And when we broke up, I was a wreck for a week? I remember one Sunday, I threw up both my lunch and dinner because I felt like crap… so that’s how bad it got.

And while I’m not sure if I’ve always has such clarity with me, or if it was just this relationship, I always knew to weigh my profits and losses…?

In all seriousness though, I’ve always approached all relationships (friends included) with a profits/loss approach.

After all, why stay friends with someone who makes you unhappy, sucks the life out of you, or makes use of you? I know you can’t put a number to happiness and memories, but at the end of the day, it IS about profitability, in terms of joy, if it makes you a better person etc.. Once you put the notion of profit=money aside, it’ll be easier to understand.

We’re all friends with someone whom we can grow with, someone who will help us back on our feet, someone who will encourage us… we cut off friends who aren’t worth our time.

For example, a friend who doesn’t reply you in time of need, and only comes to you for money. big loss. cut. you don’t need to deal with this shit.

A friend who’s perpetually late for no good reason. Not talking about family issues, or rushing work. But say, friend is at home on a Saturday with nothing to do. You’re supposed to meet at 5pm. At 4.30pm, he tells you he’s going to be late. And you know he’s at home slacking, he hasn’t showered. cut. my mother didn’t give birth to me so I could wait for you all my life. And if you don’t respect the time, you don’t respect the person.

What about a friend who’s always late, but is always there for you when you need him/her? judgement call. how close are you? how big is the profit/loss? can you call someone else? add in the emotional bond you have with a person, is it worth it?

I used to hang out with a bunch of guys from my secondary school. they were all older than me. i thought they were cool.. hah. we hung out at void decks, they smoked, they made a nuisance of themselves in restaurants.. everything. we always talked about people and laughed. but one day I felt that I wasn’t growing with them. I was being someone who just wanted to waste my life away, having dinner, then accompanying them to smoke. I didn’t learn anything, they couldn’t offer advice.. cut. cut cut cut.

So here’s me listing the profits and losses I experienced in my relationship. Sure, we were together for less than a year, but whatheck man, we saw each other nearly every day, lived together and all.. seemed like ages man!

I learnt about his culture, how he was brought up, the way his family thought, the way he thought. I also got an insight on who he really was. A confused man-child who thought he was more open minded than me. Profit. Because I knew what to expect, and could plan my steps from there.

I learnt how to skip stones, learnt how to dive (the theoretical aspect I guess) into a swimming pool, cycle… Profit. Life skills yo.

We spent time talking on the phone whenever we could. I was lucky because C had no job, and he was 99% free every time I called him. He made time for me. I usually called him before I slept… He encouraged me, always asked about my family. He was a really sweet person.. and I knew he’d make a good father (not to my kids, but in general), in terms of teaching them hands-on things. Neutral. Got to see how he was like, but also it meant loss of sleep.

I also learnt about myself. That I was super anal and all. I hated that he brushed his teeth after, not before breakfast. And I erh, made him change that. :/ Sorry BUT I CANT SPEAK TO ANYONE WITH MORNING BREATH LAH. Like, I always knew I was anal, but this… it goes to show that I can’t get together with someone who brushes his teeth after breakfast, cos I’m just gonna make the person change, the person’s just gonna hate me.. I also learnt to be more accepting of him and his quirks. He must eat hot food, which is something so troublesome because we usually ate at 9pm, when my mom cooked at 6pm.  Whiny and hard to please, or that’s his culture, I don’t know. I only know Chinese will shut up and eat and say thanks after that. profit. learn about myself ma.

I think my tolerance for bs also increased. I’d make excuses for him, telling family that he needed time to find a job. At the same time, I was convincing myself he was trying hard to find something he liked. The way he sold the idea to me was, “The french govt gives us money to tide us over while we look for a job, so why not look for something we like, since we get the privilege?”. Erh, ya. Sorry french govt, I think you just brought up a bunch of babies. Loss. Life is too short. Why the fuck are you tolerating bullshit? 

He wanted me to visit his family, and if I’d like to, find a job over there. At first, I said I’d visit in March or April, when it got warmer. Then I said, maybe June, during his birthday.. and it dragged till August. I was calculating my risk there. Going over meant about 1.6K for an air ticket. Lodging would be free, but I’d want to visit other European countries! So that’s additional cost. Plus, we had a car so we could drive. I imagine setting aside 3K for two weeks. Narrowly avoided a severe monetary loss.

I didn’t even think about working in France because I didn’t speak the language. What I did think of though, was going to a language school to pick it up. It was a toss up between learning French, or doing a dive internship. Both cost money. And I thought to myself, “without C, would I learn French?” The answer was no. I’d have learnt Spanish (for practical reasons that it’s widely used in central/south america too). avoided a monetary loss. why? because I’d have used French to encourage him what ahhaahah. or think twice about breaking up. Then having to give up learning French without a motivating factor, bleh! I knew that if I learnt French, it’d be for him. Not because I dream of living in the most romantic european city. Of course, I could see it as picking up another language to widen my job opportunities, but I know that I’ve no interest in languages, I’m better at fixing a table, setting up the wiring for tvs/computers etc. More hands on.

Then there was the emotional aspect… I put in so much time/effort trying to encourage him to find a job, always being on the look out for jobs both in Singapore and in other parts of Europe, asking other people if they had job openings… and while he was always thankful, it was never his cup of tea. When people don’t know what they want to do, they do it via method of elimination. Like me. Classic example. Not sure of what I wanna do. But I’m def not made for the engineering sector, or science sector. Then I work my way backwards. What skills do I have? I can’t do finance/accounting either. See, things like that.. you narrow it down.. But him? “I want to see what good opportunities there are”. Uh, ok, continue looking. Looking at a screen gets you the job what, no? Loss. Waste my life. full stop.

It’s true, that C gave me everything he had. He was so full of love, bursting with it even. We had different love languages. His was time spent with the other party, and physical touch and words of encouragement. Mine, unsurprisingly was the most practical of the lot, acts of service. I knew that he loved hearing about my day  (even if it meant “I woke up, went to school, came home”) and for the life of me, I had to recall whatever I did in my day, because sharing meant that I wanted him to listen. I, on the other hand, felt happy when he did my laundry in Phuket, drove me around, or bought me food lolol. That was enough. Physical aspect wise, I couldn’t give him what he wanted, so we hugged and made out. And we’d hold hands to sleep hahahha. It’s a compromise because I can’t fall asleep cuddling. I can only fall asleep on my back. And I’d buy him kiwi shakes on my way home from the dive school, because I knew he liked it. Profit. I learnt to be less of a brick. And I opened up.

When you weigh all these things out, some are definitely more important than others, but apart from the “happiness, love and joy” you get, you also have to be practical.

You’re giving me all your love? Sorry, but can I eat that?

I grew in the relationship, so much that I felt like I was the man -_-. Not sure if it’s a profit or loss, but I was certain I wanted someone to steer the r/s, and that person wasn’t gonna be me. It takes two to make a decision, but there can only be one captain of the boat at the end of the day. Somebody has to play the submissive role. Two submissives, and you will just remain as friends lah! Two Domineerings, and you’d get world war III. So, there’s gotta be a balance.

We were from two different worlds. Take the circumstances away (being a minority in Thailand, seeing each other every day, goind giving), and we had nothing to hold us together. No faith, no values, no goals… I think he’d make a great guy for a girl who wants a simple life, to have a husband to love her… no idea where the money’s gonna come from, but yes. Maybe live in care bear land or something.

I think that’s all from me. any more on the aftermath would be a crazily bitchy post, and I want to talk about happy things!

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