Valentine’s Day 2017 has come and past, and though it was hardly likely to have been a factor in anyone’s New Year’s Resolutions, we all noticed it just the same. Perhaps some of us are waking up still in a dreamy “hangover” resulting from the cozying, the chocolates, and the wines. Others are simply grateful to return to our lives and forget the day ever happened, hoping, praying our in-relationship friends don’t blow up our Instagrams with more pictures of their showers. Still, others may be waking up with happy memories of time spent with family or friends. Whatever your situation, this isn’t about Valentine’s Day. This is about the “cool girl” phenomena that pervades millennial mindsets. I’m talking about the pressure for women (or men, I don’t mean to be gender-exclusive) to be “chill”.
a companion, male or female, who possesses zero expectations regarding your relationship, is consistently nonchalant, and is ‘okay’ with skipping dinner/ gift-giving ceremonies on most, or preferably all, traditional gift-giving days
a person who gives oral sex with no expectation he or she will receive the same in return
“You’re so chill, dude, you’re not like most girls.”
synonyms: nonchalant, easy-going, compromising
Another Valentine’s Day has come and gone for me, and while my track record with this day isn’t great, this year I had a pretty good one. Being in a new relationship, I was inclined to keep my “expectations” low, but the day and the effort my partner put into it surpassed not only my default low expectations, but my “secret high expectations” as well. It got me thinking: how did I stay in my last relationship for so long? Are other people staying in equally unimaginative relationships with equally jaded partners who refuse to buy into the concept of occasionally pampering their partner? I know the answer to the latter is yes, and that simply breaks my heart.
CALLING ALL WOMEN AND MEN: being “chill” can be exemplified by:
- being flexible about which movie to watch together
- acknowledging that your partner has needs and commitments beyond you, and that he or she can’t actually devote every waking second to you
- accepting his or her financial situation and keeping your expectations within reason
Being chill SHOULD NEVER be exemplified by:
- accepting that your partner just doesn’t perform oral sex
- turning the other cheek at a birthday with little to no acknowledgement from your partner (and I’m not talking about a “happy birthday, babe” in the morning)!
- allowing your partner to indefinitely postpone a fun activity you really want to experience with him/her
I could list a dozen more examples of what a “chill” person does in a relationship. I could list a dozen more examples of what no person, chill or otherwise, should ever be okay with in their relationship; to do so means to sacrifice their primal human need to be loved, cared for, pleasured, and yes, occasionally spoiled in the form of well-thought out gifts, loving acts of service, or time spent together. To do so means to live life in the dredges of low self-esteem.
This 2017, I challenge all readers to “check” their self-esteem. Don’t stay trapped in the toxic cycle of accommodation so cleverly disguised as compromise. Whether a neglected partner or a neglecting partner, you owe it to yourself and to humanity to step up, or step out.