Monday, August 15, 2005

Love, Unconditionally.

Is there such a thing as unconditional love?
I hear this phrase being flung around a lot.

This morning while I was at the gym, I was watching The View on one of the overhead TV’s.
They were interviewing Madonna, and obviously, after six years of marriage…she’s an expert on relationships.
We are in desperate need of her opinion on marriage.

She must have referred to “unconditional love” eight or nine times.
I’m not familiar with unconditional love.
Yes, I know that my mother is supposed to love me “unconditionally”, but all of my life I had conditions on how much she would tolerate from me for her love.
She had lots of conditions.
It was me living up to most of those conditions that stopped me from becoming a miscreant.
She used to tell me that if she didn’t have these conditions, it would actually show that she didn’t care about me, much less love me.

How unconditional is the love that Karla Homolka’s or Jeffrey Dahmer’s parents have for them?
In the case of Karla Homolka, how do you as a parent feel the same way about a daughter that murdered another one of your children?
I cannot be convinced that her relationship with her parents is not damaged irreparably.
If a loving relationship still exists at all.
So, how unconditional is it if people say they love you “unconditionally”, but you don’t feel loved?
People have been fired by their parents for certainly less than killing a sibling.

That’s parental love which is probably the closest thing to unconditional that we’re going to get, if it exists at all.

How about marital love?
Certainly there are conditions there…otherwise divorce wouldn’t exist.
What is unconditional love of a spouse?
Certainly allowing someone to beat you, and abuse you could be construed unconditional love in some people’s eyes. Spouses allowing each other to have sex with others has been described as unconditional love simply on the notion that not being possessive of your spouse equals “unconditional” love. Allowing a spouse to gamble, drink, your family’s savings away…is that unconditional love?

People toss this “unconditional love” phrase around in a very cavalier way.
I don’t believe in it.
All love requires a certain amount of condition and sacrifice.
I know no one who loves and lives with another person who hasn’t modified their way of living to compliment or compromise with their chosen partner.
There is a limit to what we will tolerate from another person whom we claim to love “unconditionally”.
I’ll wager that Madge wouldn’t call her love for her husband “unconditional” if a woman showed up on her doorstep with his baby in her arms.

I officially hate that phrase.