Thursday, December 8, 2011

Was I Really Like That?

I just had an awkward facebook debate with a man I barely know. I wasn't going to get involved, except that he was kind of rude to a friend of mine, and those of you who know me know how I get when people are rude to a friend of mine.

It was about love, of all things, but love seen through the spectacles of the "christian religion." I already knew I wasn't going to win, and I didn't have any intention of winning. I guess mostly I have this idea of solidarity and not letting people barrel down my friends and family in conversation without at least putting up a fight (argument rather). This is not to prove a point to the bulldozer in question; they are usually blind to such points unless you are as rude back to them as they were to begin with (something I would rather not do). No, I stand up for my friends to let them know that someone else sees what happened and appreciates the breach of etiquette. I sometimes question this philosophy of mine, but that hasn't stopped me yet.

But back to the debate in question. It was about love, as I said. The original statement, one I agreed with, was that saying "I love you" in response to an "tangible action" seems (and this is in my own words here) insincere at best, manipulative and lying at worst. And I think we can all agree that "love" that has to be earned isn't really love at all, but praise and reward for behavior (kind of a behavior salary, if you will). My friend replied to this in agreement and affirmation, and then at the end said something to the effect of, "of course, tangible actions do demonstrate love." Also, in my opinion, a true statement. She did not say that "if you love, you have to do x, y, and z." She just said that tangible actions can and do demonstrate love. This vital word may have been missed or confused by the original poster, who basically replied to her saying that Jesus's action in dying on the cross for us was the best way to show love, and then said she was wrong. Which, frankly, confused the shit out of me.

You agree with her by saying that a tangible action was the ultimate gesture of love then tell her she was wrong? What the fuck, man? Are you on acid or something? Your own statements do not agree with each other! Now, he tried to say something about "since life is not tangible, Jesus gave us the coolest [implied untangible] gift." Okay, I'm sorry, but life is tangible and measurable. Unless you are talking about "eternal life." In which case, why are you switching topics? You started the topic about "people who..." and suddenly it's "Jesus who..." which would be okay if you believe Jesus to be a person, but you changed topic from people to god to make a point? That's low man.

Especially considering he then proceeded to argue with all of my statements as "ignoring his original statement." Which, I'll admit, was partially true, as I was trying to defend my friend from his rude reply to her, not from his seemingly harmless original status. (Btw, for those concerned for my mental health in regards this person's annoying status; to avoid further altercations I unsubscribed from his facebook feed. Future problems solved).

But, I'm going to skip over the silly word games he played to argue with every defense I had and go right to the completely insane bit at the end. After he claimed that I had "given him the victory" by "ignoring his original point" (a completely rude and arrogant way to try to take back a conversation) I attempted to soothe the troubled waters by saying, in essentially, "You're both right. You are right, love should not be given for actions, but freely to people, but she was right that true love is often demonstrated and manifested in actions." Then I went to the spousal example. If my husband never acted lovingly to me, how would I know that he loved me?

I will have to give his reply verbatim (ish) to give the full effect, partially because it's so full of male ego and partially because I had trouble deciphering what the hell he was talking about.

I would ask this next. Why does he have to do anything? He married you? That's add ferry social problem. People expect things. You shouldn't expect anything. But when it's done you should be grateful and humble enough to admire the action.

Yeah. If you can figure out that bit in the middle about "ferry social problem" let me know. I googled it and got nothing. But really?! "Why does he have to do anything?" Because it's a fucking relationship! That's how they work! If you never talk, never do things for each other and with each other, never communicate with each other, then you don't have a relationship! If you're going to say you do, well then I guess you have a relationship with every person who is or ever has been on this planet (good job, that's pretty damn impressive). And really? I should just "be grateful and humble enough to admire the action"??? Maybe that's how your relationship with your god works, but in a marriage that's called an abusive relationship. Women (and men) who actually behave that way in relationships typically are walked all over and treated like dirt. And while I can see the argument for being that way with an all-loving god, who is not going to walk all over you and treat you like dirt, you don't do that with people! Have a little self-respect! Have some expectations!

Oh, yeah, that was the other thing. "You shouldn't expect anything"? Really? I shouldn't expect my husband to do things like listen when I talk, respond in a loving and respectful way, do his fair share around the house (except when his hip is broken), accept me for who I am, be honest with me, not cheat on me, spend time with me? Really? I should settle for a marriage that doesn't have any of those things "if I really love my husband?!" Well, you know what, maybe if I really loved my husband I would, but if I really loved my husband and myself I would know that it is not good for either one of us to be in that kind of relationship.

Oh, and the kicker. When I said, in response, that people need to see physical, tangible manifestations of love because we can't psychically experience love, do you know what his response was? "That's so sad." Wow. Because my husband can't psychically make me feel loved while being a complete slacker husband this single guy feel sad for me?! I feel sad for you, mister, as you clearly have never been in a healthy, functioning romantic relationship that lasted more than two dates.

I wish christians would stop feeling sorry for me. They're wasting their time, because I'm pretty damn pleased with my life right now, and pretty damn happy. Don't even get me started on the woman married to the drug- and sex-addict who feels bad for me because I "lost my faith." Sigh. Oh well, no skin off my back.

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