What Falling In Love With Your Opposite Teaches You About Love

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dating your opposite
Love

Oh my god just eat it, dude.

Before I met and started dating my boyfriend Buddy, I had a picture in my head of what my perfect guy would be. 

He would be a foodie like me, maybe not a cooker, but at least a lover of food in all its infinite wonder. 

He would be laid back and slow to anger, maybe not much of a talker, but when he did talk everyone in the room would turn to listen. 

He would get along fine at parties but prefer to be home reading. 

In short, I wanted a male, sexier version of myself to date. 

Talk about vanity. 

Needless to say, that idea of a perfect boyfriend went out the window when I met my real boyfriend. 

Buddy is wonderful, but we couldn't be more different. 

It's a classic case of "opposites attract". 

I will eat anything put in front of me with curiosity and delight (unless it is mango, I am SO allergic to mango). 

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Buddy is a picky eater, he's a supertaster and it makes eating anything other than chicken and rice and broccoli a bit of a trial. This means he picks the restaurants, because if I pick one and he hates it I'm just going to feel like shit for the rest of the date.

It's a compromise I'm happy to make to spend time in his company. 

I'm a natural and real introvert. I think people are great, but I get physically and emotionally exhausted from spending too much time with people. 

Buddy needs to be around people in order to live. I jokingly remark that this is what makes him a perfect polyamorist: he can't NOT be around someone, engaging with them in a real way. It's what keeps him alive.

When I have a difference of opinion with someone, I tend to back down and let bygones be bygones.

I am a WASP, after all.

Buddy confronts what he doesn't understand. He can be forceful. But he is always open to hearing what others have to say, which makes me braver when it comes to sharing my opinion.  

Dating someone who is my total opposite has been a challenge. I go out more now, and yes, I still get tired, but I'm also seeing more of the world, and pushing myself further.

It also helps to be dating someone who loves me. That means I can tell him "no", and not worry that our relationship will crumble to the ground. That's the beauty of "opposites attract" for me.

Dating someone who loves me means that when he won't eat sushi I can shake my head and call him a philistine, knowing that he'll laugh at me instead of glowering.

Dating someone who is my opposite means my life is richer than it was before because it has forced me to open up my horizons.

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It sounds cheesy, but I think it's made me a better person, a better friend.

When the person you love is so different than you are, it forces you to become more patient with them.

It's only natural then that this patience would bleed out into other areas of my life.

In petty squabbles with family and friends, I find myself being more measured now.

As much as we want to understand everything that the people we love are thinking and feeling, that isn't possible.

The best we can do is love them for their differences as much as we love them for their own unique "them-ness".

It's true then that opposites attract, but it's more than a cliche, it's a way we help each other grow as people.  

 

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