Working to make it work

This is a sad world, ladies and gentlemen.

I’ve read a book. Romance, yes. I almost didn’t read it. It was not that badly written and it even had some aspects I enjoyed, I just didn’t like the main character. She was, well, just not what I’d expect a grown up woman to be. But I also admit that she had a sense of humour I liked, and I was intrigued by the story enough to read it whole.

I do not wish to name the book. In short, a woman and a man met, fell madly in love, and then started to discover that they didn’t know much (or anything at all) about one another and that what they learned was not what they expected or wanted or liked… However, they decided that they were still in love and wanted to make it work. A bit of denial here and a bit of compromising there. All good? Of course not. Not at all. But they did make it work, yes, eventually. (Surprise, I know, totally.)

For me, not the best book, not the worst, I’ll probably forget it soon, it didn’t change my life and I also don’t regret reading it. Readable. Fun (mostly).

What made me write about it is what I read when I added it to my list of read books. I discovered that many people were kind of disappointed (perfectly acceptable), that many people disliked the main character(s) (I can relate to that), and – well, that many people disliked the book because she and he wanted their relationship to work, because they didn’t give up.

Hm. Of all the flaws I think the woman and the man had, this was one thing I admired. Not the denial part – I could understand it, I just didn’t like it. The part where they decided that their love is strong enough to overcome their differences, the part where they decided they want to be together even when more things worked against them than with them, the part where they build bridges instead of walls – that was what I liked.

It may not be very common. Maybe that’s the reason. We give up. I’m no different. I gave up. I might have my reasons or excuses (depending on your point of view), but the whys only change understanding, not the result. I gave up. As many of us do. Do I believe we must suffer in relationships? That we must take whatever is thrown at us? That no matter what, we must stay together? No, not at all. Never. Once again it’s about balance, the grey area, the line between giving too much and too little.

I simply think it’s a sad world in which characters (or people) are disliked because they want their relationship to work. Because they refuse to give up. Because they stay together even when “they are so not meant for each other”. It’s a sad sad world…

Alenka H., 2022

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