When talking about relationships and dating men in a patriarchal society, folks often mistake my (in depth) analysis for misplaced cynicism or lost faith in love. That’s not the case of course.

I believe deeply in love. But I recognize and tell the truth about what our current concept looks like in a society where we continuously mistake all manner of things (power and control come to mind) for love. As bell hooks says, “the heart of justice is truth telling, seeing ourselves and the works the way it is rather than the way we want it to be.” And the truth is we want love to be this ephemeral feeling that overtakes us and makes us feel good. That improves *our* quality of life and increases *our* happiness without any work on our part. We treat love as a band-aid, a temporary fix for the wounds that were delivered in childhood and then are disappointed when what we receive does not heal all that ails us. We desperately want love, we just don’t really know what it is or how to go about loving others.

I am not cynical about love or relationships though. I long for and desire genuine love. And by seeing it honestly as it currently exists, I am able to better put into praxis that which I believe and I remain a *hopeful* romantic.

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