I happened to watch the television show Scandal tonight, and the dialogue in several scenes caught my attention. The show depicts the relationship between the President of the United States and his mistress, which is what has thwarted my interest in the show. However, I caught several some of it today, and was moved by the lines, despite the questionable moral circumstances in which they’re embedded.
In the first scene, I can very much relate to what she so fiercely declares to the man she loves, yet I was impressed by her ability to resist his romantic gestures, refusing to give in to sentiment without commitment or promise.
I must admit, I wish more of my generation would be discerning, wise, and intentional in establish high standards and expectations for how we will be treated, standing firm for those types of relationships and behaviors of which we know we are worthy. And, that any offers of relationship falling short of those standards would be steadfastly refused, despite their appeal and romantic gleam, as that first scene in Scandal illustrates. We are worth it. We should be earned, whether we’re men or women.
Olivia: I am not a toy you can play with when you’re bored, or lonely, or horny. I am not the girl the guy gets at the end of the movie. I am not a fantasy!
If you want me, earn me.
In the second scene, the President being threatened with the end of his political career should his affair be revealed, declares his love for Olivia (his mistress), and his commitment to her. Again, the idea - someone being unfaithful to his spouse, and continuing to do so, fully aware of the pain he causes her in do so - pains me deeply. Nonetheless, the firm statement he makes to Olivia in this scene expresses so firmly and succinctly what I think so many of us want to hear, to know in relationships. It is beautiful.
I wish our generation also took commitment seriously (this is an odd example of ‘taking commitment seriously’ when the fictional President is leaving his wife for his mistress, I know), knowing those people, relationships for whom we would give or do anything, and making it clear to them - in word and deed - that we choose them. “I choose you.” That we are willing to earn them.
Isn’t that why Nicholas Sparks books are so popular? Trying circumstances, sweet, considerate, passionate, strong men who see the value in the women and fight to earn that spot by their side, loving them, complete with declarations of undying love and commitment.
Women especially, I think, want to know that their men will choose them, over extra hours on the job, over video games, over that more beautiful or entertaining woman, over his other passions and interests. That we are sufficiently cherished and valued, that we have been seen as worthy of being earned (not simply seduced, only worthy of romance in the beginning of the relationship), that someone would see our heart, our mind, our personality, our body, and desiring and valuing every part of us so much, would be fully aware of how we are worthy of (nothing less than) being chosen.
Fitz: He can’t fix the fact that I love you. That I love you more than being president. I’ve told you that I’d give it all up for you, again and again. I think you don’t believe me. I think you believe that I will never choose you. So this time, I’m fixing things. We’re going to sit here … you’re going to watch me choose you.
Olivia: You wouldn’t.
Fitz: I would. I will. I’m going to. Sit with me. Sit with me and watch me choose you … watch me earn you.
The cheating and dishonoring, the thought that marriages are dispensable, that feelings of love can fade and when they do, cannot be recreated, so leaving the relationship is the only answer - I find saddening. These two decisive exchanges in relationships I wish I witnessed more often. I’ve often heard it said that the Second World War Generation was the greatest, the noblest one. One of the hallmarks of the men and women of that generation were the principles that motivated them, and the deep understanding and appreciation of commitment. Is it now finally time to restore ourselves to that paradigm?
** I am not claiming that every relationship needs to be preserved; I recognize there are relationships detrimental to one or both parties, and I wish no one to come to harm of any sort simply for the sake of ‘doing the right thing,’ or the shame of leaving the relationship, as we’ve seen throughout most of history.
I am speaking merely to the general mentality that seems pervasive today - that relationships can be quickly established, and quickly dissolved - since it normalizes lower personal standards seemingly in order to have any relationship in an era of little commitment.
Dear Mrs. Reagan
And you are Mrs. Reagan because Mr. Reagan loves you with all his heart. Every time Mr. Reagan sees the evening star or blows out the birthday candles or gets the big end of the wishbone he thinks the same wish—a prayer really—that so much happiness will go on and somehow be deserved by him.
It is true sometimes that Mr. Reagan loses his temper and slams a door but that’s because he can’t cry or stamp his foot—(he isn’t really the type.) But mad or glad Mr. Reagan is head over heels in love with Mrs. Reagan and can’t even imagine a world without her—
He loves her
le vrai amour
(Source : faithammen)