My wife doesn’t understand me; she doesn’t understand my art (although I think she likes some of it), my motivation, my philosophy, my attitude(s), and how my dirt poor, Texas-white-trash upbringing helped shape the person I am today. She doesn’t understand how all of that in combination helps to color a lot of my decisions about life, work, child-rearing, and God-only-knows what else.
In short, she just doesn’t "get’ me.
That being said, I’m absolutely convinced that she does love me. I’m not worth anything financially, I’m often cantankerous and ill-tempered, and —despite being considered ‘cute’ in a quirky way— I’m far from handsome. Also, my schlong is only about average in size. If she didn’t love me, I’m sure she would’ve taken her family’s advice and kicked my ass to the curb looooong ago.
So, is it necessary that your mate have a deep and profound understanding of you in order for them to love you? Is true love dependent on understanding and knowledge, or is it dependent on something —or some group of things— more subtle and difficult to put one’s finger on?
What about vice-versa; is it necessary for you to have a deep and profound understanding of your mate in order to love her/him?
I’m single so I can’t comment on mates, but my mom loves me (and I her) even though we have almost nothing at all in common, have completely different socio-economic views, and are totally opposite one another in disposition and demeanor, and a number of my best friends are tree hugging, new-agey vegetarians and vegans while I had two cheeseburgers for lunch, am an avowed atheist, and tolerate but do not love nature.
The expression ‘S/he really gets me’ is so vague and clichéd, it really does seem to betray some narcissism. You don’t want to waste your best qualities on someone who doesn’t appreciate them, right?
Some people need to be gotten. Some don’t. I think it’s perfectly possible for a parent to love but not ‘get’ a child. Not sure about romantic relationships. Maybe she ‘gets’ things about you that you don’t even know about. Do you get her?
There are a lot of things about my husband I don’t “get”, and I’m sure he could say the same about me. But we do have a lot of things in common, as well. Most important is respect (well, when it comes to partners). If you respect one another, then that doesn’t mean there will be love, but it means there can be love. Also trust. I don’t necessarily understand him, but I trust him to make decisions that are good for us as a family, and again, that flows both ways.
As far as kids are concerned, you can love them no matter what.
I come from a family that moved every couple of years if not more. I was always the ‘outsider’, always making new friends, don’t really have any roots.
This has made me willing to try new things, a little more daring, and risk-taking.
My SO came home to one house from the hospital and moved out of it to go to college. He had the same friends his whole life, the same surroundings. This has made him cautious and careful. We complement each other marveously.
He doesn’t get my background, entirely, and I don’t get his. Yet we both bring strengths to the relationship. And we love each other very much.
Most of the people in my life are people I don’t exactly “get”. I figure they probably don’t “get” me, either. Half the fun of a loving relationship is the “figuring it out”. I learn, figure out, etc. new things about my friends and family all the time. It’d be exceptionally boring if all my friends and family had my views on things, or even if I just understood everything they knew/loved/felt/believed. I’m grateful that I don’t “get” them. I just love them, and accept them, and that seems to work well. One person mentioned trust. That’s a big part of it, too. I know that my family and friends will do their best to do the best for everyone involved in a situation.
THIS! Goodness, sometimes I watch the boys or Mr.CJ do or say incredible things that would never occur to me.
I don’t get my wife, and I don’t think she gets me a lot of the time. I often find I will have to explain stuff to her - she seems to find it very hard to tell when people are joking and when they are being serious, whereas I have a very dry sense of humour so tend to pick up on deadpan stuff easily.
That’s not to say she is not intelligent - she gets a lot of stuff (art, especially) that I have no clue about. But if you both knew and thought the same things, life would get pretty dull.
My best friend is atheist, his wife is baptist. She’s told me before that she doesn’t care about most of the stuff he talks about (sounds rude when I type it out, but she didn’t mean it that way), and when he and I start talking about Dawkins and ontological arguments, she usually just rolls her eyes and starts reading a magazine or leaves the room until we’re done. She just doesn’t understand his fascination with that stuff.
My parents never understood each other and they did love each other very much. There’s a lot of things that Dad never understood about any woman (he had a basic expectation that we’d all be aliens, which made it difficult for him to understand any of us); there’s a lot of things Mom believed about Dad which I’m sure were completely wrong. There’s a lot of things Mom hid from Dad.
But he never wanted another woman and she never wanted another man.
I once dated a guy for a while and figured out I wasn’t going to marry him when I saw that, after only three dates, I was already able to finish his sentences. It would have made for a very boring life!
Of course, you can love someone you don’t get. As an example, see most of my family. Hell, see most of most people’s families.
I’m not really sure what I think about how possible it is to love someone in a romantic way without getting them at least somewhat. Or, rather, I’m not sure how possible it is to have a happy and satisfying romantic relationship with someone you don’t get at all. IRL I know a lot of couples who love each other very much, but seem to have a deep and fundamental disconnect. They seem to have a lot of conflict and…well, they just don’t seem to really enjoy each other very much and don’t seem particularly happy. I know enough of these people that sometimes I kind of feel like a freak for actually like my husband.
Other couples have very disparate interests, backgrounds, and viewpoints, but there’s still this underlying vibe of connection between them. I don’t know how to articulate it, but it comes across in how they talk to and about each other, even when they’re at odds with each other.
I think that is the case for my relationship with my boyfriend. On the surface, we have very few things in common (different political views, different religions, different tastes in music, different hobbies, different socioeconomic status) but yet we get along very well. Even when we disagree, we can talk things out easier than most couples seem to. There’s just something about our personalities that clicks. I find that I tend to dislike people who remind me too much of myself, actually. It’s more interesting to be with someone who is a bit different.
I know a lot of these couples, too. I’m glad not to be one of them.
You may well be a freak, I don’t know. But if liking your spouse, in addition to loving them, makes you a freak, then my husband and I are freaks, too. We genuinely enjoy spending time together.
Us, too. That reminds me of one of my friends’ wives - she once said to me, “Oh, you actually talk to your husband?” like that was completely out of the ordinary. Of course, she and her husband had both been spouse-shopping for years before they met each other. I’m pretty convinced that the two were so ready to start married life with anyone by the time they met that they each settled for someone they could tolerate rather than genuinely liked.