Archive for August 17, 2010

Man Theory: The Relationship Event Horizon Theory

August 17, 2010 8 comments

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“I thought it said “liberate me” – “save me.”

But it’s not “me.”

It’s “liberate tutame” – “save yourself.”” – D.J. (Event Horizon, 1997)

Photography by Xeniya Ketz, ©2011 Xeniya Ketz

The older I become the more I notice about people, life and the world. Since this blog focuses on the first two (and reserves the latter for the reader), we’ll start with the following preconditions:

1)      99.9% of people can give solid relationship advice to others.
2)      None of these people can give relationship advice to themselves.

It took me years to realize this until I started noticing a universal pattern. Both men and women contacted me, usually through instant message with an urgent request – A request that could not wait; A request that required my utmost attention.  At first I used to think that these request came because not only was I the son of a psychologist providing me with all of the credibility they needed with a fraction of the cost, but I ALSO possessed the uncanny ability to listen. It soon came to my attention that my impressive credentials were not the reason these individuals were contacting me, their request had more to do with the fact that I was the only one they could reach at 3:30am that night.
Many late night discussions were had trying to understand the opposite sex.  Guys wanted to know how come they weren’t getting laid, and girls often wanted to know why the guys they liked were so stupid. It wasn’t until a particularly interesting theoretical discussion with a good friend of mine that we made the following observation, published here for the very first time in Man Theory:

Women are like black holes.

While we [men] did our best to stand clear, we were naturally drawn to them.  Something about their silent, alluring, awesome power kept us at bay while simultaneously and seductively drawing us closer.  We liked to test how close we could get to the object of interest, without being sucked in through overwhelming gravitational pull.  Once we passed the point of no return, what appeared as normal behavior to us, could now be seen by our buddies and close friends as crazy. Some men like to euphemistically call this p-whipped or having a case of one-itis. Regardless of what one calls it, we were lost to her powers of seduction. This is what would later be called – The Relationship Event Horizon Theory.

What is The Relationship Event Horizon Theory you ask?

While you are outside the point of no return, you can view a relationship objectively. Once inside, its not so bright anymore!

Here, I’ll tell you.

The Relationship Event Horizon Theory is the inability to give oneself un-biased advice regarding one’s relationships. The two individuals in a relationship are too involved to objectively look at the relationship and thus, while being able to give advice to others we are unable to listen to our own advice.  When a member of a police team is too close to the crime because it involves a family member, he or she will be removed from the investigation. The same principal holds true here.

When I seek advice from others, often times, it is when I am at a plateau in the relationship.  For instance, things were going good with the new love interest and now things have slowed down and I seem to be stalling in place and not moving forward.  When describing the person I was dating at the time, I would paint her in the worst possible light. I’d highlight all of the things wrong with this person instead of the things that she did right.  Anyone listening would have to be CRAZY not to agree with me.

So the next time your friend calls you up in the middle of the night and you are refraining from  telling him to STFU because the answer is obvious to everyone around him,  you now know that this phenomenon is experienced worldwide, between all races and sexes.  Ultimately, the times that I make the best decisions is not when I listen to my friends, its when I take all the pieces of the puzzle, and arrive at my own conclusion.

There was a fantastic quote from Socrates that completely summarized this entire piece perfectly. However, I misplaced that one, so Morpheus from The Matrix, will have to do:

“[I] can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it.”

The outside observer can see where the person stands who has been caught in "The Relationship Event Horizon."

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