Whether we want to admit it or not, we often change little things about ourselves to be likable to others. Or do we? What constitutes change? Is wearing your hair loose because your partner likes it that way considered to be a change? Is agreeing with the one you love for the sake of peace (or because you love that person) considered to be a change? What exactly is change?
From the Unabridged Dictionary (v1.1): Change (verb): to make the form, nature, content, future course, etc., of (something) different from what it is or from what it would be if left alone.
If you consider that definition of the word change, my given examples would be considered changes. So what if we change something, and then change it back to the way it was? Does it cancel out the change, or is it now two changes? Technically speaking, it is two changes, because a change alters the state of something from the state that it is currently in.
But why this discussion about what change is? If you understand the concept of change, you can try to define what someone mean when they say You are changing yourself so that I will like you. What the heck am I on about? E., an ex of mine always said that I was trying to change myself to be more likable to her. Did I? She seemed to think so, but I do not. If you merely agree with something she says, even if you disagreed yesterday, does that mean you changed yourself? No. It means you have changed your opinion about something.
Let us presume you are asked if you want to have children. Let us say a few years ago you did want children, but at the current moment in time, you are not so sure. I mean, it is possible that you are unable to have children. Do you see your self waking up at two in the morning to change a diaper? Do you think you would expect too much of your children and press them too hard to achieve what you were unable to achieve in your younger years?
I was like that once. I wanted children. Then, at the time I met E., I was unsure whether I wanted children or not. The thoughts given above where running through my head. E. proclaimed even before we were seriously dating that she would never have children again. I can understand that, with already having had 2 (beautiful) daughters, and having to raise them alone. She would not start over for anybody, and that was okay. This got me to thinking, and it affirmed my thoughts about having children. I decided that I did not want children, at least not at this time in my life. No way, Sir.
Now the following question remains: By affirming my feelings about this, that I do not want children at this time of my life, did I change my opinion about this so that we have a better chance of staying together? Considering the facts, if she does not want any more children and I do, would that not cause a lot of trouble in our relationship? Yes, but only if I wanted some and she did not. But since I made up my mind that I did not, would it harm us? Probably not. Unless one of us changes our minds again. But did I change my mind in an attempt to make our relationship last? I doubt it – because I still feel the same, almost two months after the breakup.
So, I ask again… Did I change myself to ensure our future, even at a great cost to myself? I think no. But what do you think? Drop me a line by using the contact link in the navigation bar. Would be interesting to hear some other people’s take on this…
Until next time…