What Romantic Movies Get Wrong About Romance

So, it’s not real secret that I’m in an awkwardly estranged relationship with Waffle. It’s going on two years I think and I’m still very much traumatized by the entire ordeal. I say estranged because we didn’t break up it was a break and we just kept staying very close to each other. Like, seeing each other every other day close. Waffle’s logic was being unhappy because, admittedly, we were fighting a lot but I challenge anyone who’s been in or is in a relationship to say you didn’t bicker. I’ll call you a liar. THE GRANDADDY OF ALL LIARS. Our arguments were typical, “What do you want to see?” “Why don’t you want to leave the house…” Waffle is a homebody and I’m pretty active so when it came to Netflix and chill, I was cool for awhile but then I wanted to be outside. Irony being what it is, I don’t want to be outside anymore because that means being alone and I can’t stand my own company.

-In all honesty, Waffle is a gift because of all the time we spent together, I felt like maybe I could be by myself but then was like, hell nope-

Romance is a strange thing. I’m romantic in a strange nerd way; I see something in a store and I pick it up and surprise you with whatever it is because I was thinking of you. I don’t do flowers because I tend to be allergic to them so by the time I deliver them my eyes are swollen and my nose is runny; I’m not very pretty so becoming the Zicam snot monster is kinda like…well…it’s just unpleasant.

I spend a lot of time secretly watching romantic comedies, especially off-beat ones where they’re so formulaic I can write them on a post it, mail it to some studio in LA and it’ll have Kiera Knightly or some other white girl in role with up and coming middle of the road sort of attractive twenty something male lead with an upbeat soundtrack and that one song that radio overplayed ad-nauseum. I’m obsessed to a degree with the movie “A Lot like Love” because at one point, I had a relationship like that. I use the word loosely in that regard; we were never going to be anything more than people who depended on each other until the right one came along. Charlie was already into someone else and I was just the support system until the other person got a hint. I haven’t seen Charlie in years and that was when Waffle and I started. My absolute favorite, kill me I have feelings movie is “Imagine Me & You” where the above header gif is from. Second place goes to “Saving Face” which perfectly captures the “holy shit I’m in love with you but I can’t really be all gay in everyone’s face about it but girl the world is yours” essence of just absolutely clicking with someone. Each of these movies have created an unrealistic view of love. They’re also INCREDIBLY gay but, whatever. It works in stages. You’re happy, madly in love, here’s a middle plot point that’s kinda meh (wanting kids, being out etc) and then someone makes the grand gesture.

Disney movies messed up other girls while I’m like, nahhhh kid, chill.

Just climb onto the roof of your parents Range Rover and yell:

I’m Han Solo in Star Wars; shooting the stormtrooper and winking.

I’m the guy at the end of whatever movie running in telling whoever they’re marrying the wrong person. (with my luck I’m the wrong person and that movie ends awkwardly)

I don’t date. I can’t. I don’t like people. I don’t trust them. Call it a survival skill. The farther away from them I am, the safer I feel. They’re savages. They just want to fuck and get it over with. I’ve only ever bonded with one person (which backfired after two years and resulted in the most abusive relationship I’ve ever been in) and the one person that I genuinely believe my soul is stuck with is Waffle. I just knew.

I do big things. I have done big things to get Waffle back because movies have made me think that these things are the things that need to be done to make it known that I’m not going anywhere. Sleep on the porch like Zac Braff’s character in “The Last Kiss” until his fiancé opens the door and let’s him back in even though I didn’t even cheat. (Sidebar: Waffle started listening to Coldplay because of this movie. First concert I took her to, Coldplay. DO YOU SEE?!) I’d fight bears, lions and tigers in Street Fighter. I’d cross oceans, roam caves, climb mountains just to make it known that I’m serious about this. I’ve messed up with our disagreements and think that not all horror movies are created equal and can love you better.

I probably told the story before of how we met so I won’t go over it again but the problem isn’t that the break was the most awkward thing in the world it’s that movies have made me think that time, patience and the belief in love conquering all can fix this. I’m a mess. Full disclosure. I’m working a great, stressful job, doing my best to keep my manic depression in check without medication, failing at a proper sleep schedule and the gym and I aren’t even talking to each other (it’s on the list of things that need to be fixed along with doing laundry regularly and not buying new bottles of whiskey) BUT this thing with Waffle is the thing that consumes me to the point of madness. I feel like utter shit because in all this time, the work, the effort, the achievement, means nothing compared to being able to look at Waffle with big stupid heart eyes and have them returned in kind. I’m jealous of celebrities and their romances. I never posted photos of us online because that was for me, for us. I didn’t want to put that out there where other people can judge and talk shit and throw comments. I was Waffle’s and Waffle was mine and that’s what mattered. What matters.

I sound insane.

I relate so hard to this

Romantic movies tell you that it’s all fixable. That you recover from heartbreak and fall in with someone else when you’re ready. That you’ll be sitting somewhere ready to move on and there they will be, standing there with a smile asking forgiveness and saying they want to try again. Romantic movies tell you it’s fine to lay in bed a few months and cry about it, know that they’re doing their own thing and they’ll regret it. They tell you get a revenge body, get even but the reality is, you’ll spend more time crying and more time eating and more time trying to understand why you’re so broken up about it that you’ll forget to think about them having a life and wonder what your own life is. Romantic movies have fun soundtracks and good lighting and sex scenes that make you miserable.

Infinite tenderness my aching ass.

Romantic movies complicate everything.

That’s what they get wrong.

They make it seem like within 90 minutes or three hours, you’ll have a solution. People just fall back into place after falling out of sync. They make it seem like there is some kind of solution and that everything works EXACTLY like this and you spend all this time looking for the signs to find your personal solution and resolve your own issue. You spend all this time analyzing and overthinking and dismantling and repairing before you can just admit it, you’re a mess and that person is the only one who can fix it so you wait and wait and wait for them to come to the same conclusion because that’s what happens right?

Romantic movies say that someone has a little lightbulb go off and they run run run run run back to you. They run and they catch you just before you get on the train, before you get on the plane before you leave them behind because you just can’t do it.

Nobody does that.

Nobody.

All my OTP’s are a total mess because nobody does that.

They won’t swallow their pride and try again and Waffle says there were attempts. (Odds are there were and I was too hurt to see them and fix them but to be fair, they weren’t identified as such). Nobody admits they were wrong and they want another shot, not in the way that romantic movies say they will. (I’m actually doing that all the time. My dignity can’t keep taking those hits but I have no shame or dignity and honestly I don’t have much else) No one fights for love anymore. They say it’s dead but that’s mostly because we’re all walking around broken from not trying; we let someone else beat us up and didn’t bother to fix any of it.

thanks Rick

Romantic movies, are garbage. They make you aspire to things that don’t exist. I’m here, literally and figuratively pouring everything out for Waffle and it’s not doing anything. I know there’s a million things happening in both of our worlds but it’s hell doing things alone and the thing is, neither of us have to be alone.

They can guide you, inspire you, they make you forget the world is trash and make you believe that you’ll find the one, make it work and get that happily ever after.

Love is compromise. You have to suck up certain things, concede other things, win and lose. You have to accept that the other person writes terrible Facebook posts, takes duck face selfies and has done the hip out, hair flip pose. You have to understand that they’re not as tech savvy as you are and that they don’t pay attention to the world the way you do. You have to accept that you’re both different and that kind of different is why you work. You can’t yell at them about something stupid, then demand a ring back and when they hand it to you, you can’t start crying and shove it back on their finger and tell them don’t be stupid and muttering I love you repeatedly into their mouths while you’re kissing them. you can’t. It’s why they leave you. It’s why you have to fight to get them back because it’s a compromise and you can only argue with yourself about nothing for so long before it starts to get painfully lonely and you stare at photos of the two of you wondering why you completely fucked up the best thing in your life. Suddenly you’re not the one wanting to chased, you’re chasing, even though you do. Love is desire. The need to be loved and love someone in the same way so it’s mutual and it works.

I still believe in us and that’s the saddest part about it. Maybe because it’s a movie and they’re supposed to kill time, the time that’s kill me  is the muddling middle of those movies; the part where the music swells and the tears fall and we just keep missing each other until we connect. Maybe I’m just a terrible optimist and I just keep holding onto the hope that it’ll all make sense that it’ll all get better and that things will end just like they do in the movies.