Toronto
2 min

Until somebody loves you…

I'd like to punch Tom Cruise in the throat, and other thoughts on Valentine's Day

“You’re nobody until somebody loves you.” That is one of the most depressing songs I have ever heard. Single women on lonely Friday nights have consumed entire bottles of wine, have eaten countless bowls of ice cream, listening to that song. They eat “bad” foods and then spend hours in spinning classes because fitting into those skinny jeans isn’t easy.

And why? For the grand idea that we have all been sold since we were in knee socks and pigtails: until someone loves you, you are incomplete.

I’d like to beat the shit out of Tom Cruise for that bullshit line, “You complete me.” Seriously, if I ever meet him I’m going to punch him in the throat. No one will ever complete you. Hopefully you can find someone who is compatible with you; there’s a difference. Yes, straight women foolishly swooned when Tom Cruise said that line, but queer women aren’t above girlish sighing either. There is a universal pressure for women to find that perfect mate who will make them whole.

I wish I could say that because of the feminist revolution women became liberated and no longer buy into the mentality that love and relationships equal happiness, but if that were true then romantic comedies would not exist. At least straight rom-coms usually have happy endings. Queer films often have Shakespearean endings that leave the viewer feeling even more depressed and alone.

The hard truth is that the work of living an authentic life is not easy. Not to get all Deepak Chopra-Oprah Winfrey-Eckhart Tolle here, but it takes everything you have to live a life that has substance: to love yourself inside and out, to be good to the people around you, to achieve personal goals, all while recycling, composting and not leaving too big of a carbon footprint behind.

I don’t accept the tired cliché of needing a girl who can “handle me.”  I don’t want to be “handled.” I am not some wild horse needing to be tamed. I am beautiful and difficult and perfectly imperfect, and you are too.

There comes a point in a woman’s life when she must stand up for who she is without apology, take claim of her individual quirks and all-around fabulous fierceness. Those traits are more than simply a part of your personality. They are the passports to your life. You have enough gumption and daring in you to make mistake after mistake without grace, to take giant leaps of faith, to fall flat on your face and get back up.

It’s that fearlessness and spunk inside all of us that dares us to be brave, to fall in love, to willingly expose our hearts. To keep trying no matter what our perceived failures and hard-learned lessons. We watch those movies because they give us hope that one day someone will love us for exactly who we are. 

There’s nothing wrong with wanting someone who looks at you as though you were the apple of their eye. You are worthy and deserving of that much love. But we dishonour ourselves when we think that we are not enough for ourselves and the lives we are living.

We can’t wait for love and a partner to validate our lives and to make us “somebody.”  You and I are already somebody.